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An Ode to Ben Cafferty, 'Veep's' Jaded Black Hole of Depression

By Brian Byrd | Lists | May 29, 2015 |

By Brian Byrd | Lists | May 29, 2015 |

Veep is built around its characters. Well, characters and scathing, diaphragm-clenching one-liners. But mostly characters. Thus, everyone must have a favorite. This is the Internet. Pick a side, or find a place where indecisiveness is welcome. Like France.

Where was I before I rudely interrupted myself? Oh, Veep characters. Some gravitate toward gangly, sophomoric Jonah “Jolly Green Jizzface” Ryan. Others prefer Selena Meyer AKA Mammary Meyer AKA Betty Poop AKA Veep Throat AKA Mrs. Doubtmeyer AKA Piss Face, or the incompetent Mike McLintock, or maybe the perpetually uptight workaholic Amy Brookheimer. All fine choices.

The right answer, though, is Ben Cafferty. Selena’s miserable Chief of Staff with the perpetual 1,000-yard stare has become the show’s Most Valuable Pessimist in the last few years. Jaded doesn’t begin to capture Ben’s demeanor. If Ralph Lauren ever created a cologne based on his essence it would smell like the inside of a bowling alley located in a town whose last chicken processing plant relocated to Singapore five years ago. Ben (played by Kevin Dunn) makes Eeyore seem like [insert whatever overamped Skittles-and-Mountain-Dew-fueled YouTube sensation your kids watch on a loop]. If his depression got any worse it would be tropical fucking storm. The only spirit remaining in his broken, bloated body is fifth of Macallan 18. Nothing encapsulates Veep’s cynical take on Washington more than this moping, lethargic, barely-functioning alcoholic acting as Chief of Staff to the most powerful person on the planet.

Yet there he sits, pouring Miller Lite into his giant Thermos just 10 feet from the Oval Office. He has accomplished more than you or I ever will. The man is a national treasure. Let us bask in his magnificent desolation.





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