Today’s lesson is inspired by my continued amazement at the legions of supporters for Southern Charm’s Craig Conover. Week after week, for almost four seasons, he has shown us his petulance, entitlement, arrogance and general weaselly-ness. For everyone out there who thinks Naomie and Shep are too hard on poor, delicate Craig, or that Craig doesn’t deserve every bit of contempt the world may heap upon him, here is some food for thought.
- First and foremost, he lied about graduating from law school. He lied (on national TV!) to his friends, his parents, and his former employer. He repeatedly defended himself against his castmates by whining “I just graduated from law school,” knowing full well that he had not. That alone should have precluded him from being permitted to take the bar, as it says everything about his moral compass. Most states require a character and fitness assessment before even being allowed to sit for the bar. Assuming South Carolina has this requirement, it is a mystery to me how Craig weaseled his way through this phase of his application, but obviously he did, because he took and passed the February 2017 SC bar exam. (I can’t even imagine how smug and insufferable Craig must be regarding this achievement, but I guess we’ll see it at the upcoming Southern Charm reunion.) Craig is a perfect example of why people hate lawyers. He displays all the smarmy qualities people assume all attorneys employ in their daily business of shystering, manipulating and fudging the truth. Why, WHY, would the South Carolina bar perpetuate this largely-untrue stereotype by admitting this charlatan into their ranks?? I can’t decide if he would be better as a bottom-feeding ambulance chaser or a soul-sucking corporate attorney, but he’ll probably choose whichever he perceives to be the quickest route to easy money. I’ve got news for you Craig–there is no easy money in law. Good lawyering requires hard work and something you have already proven you do not possess–integrity.
- He has the vocabulary of a 13-year-old girl. When JD told him he wouldn’t be heading Gentry’s bourbon division (um, duh, Craig–you didn’t even know what whiskey was), it made Naomie “sad,” which in turn made him “[get] sad.” People are “mean” to Kathryn. As he informed us viewers in a talking head, he’s “super smart,” yet he didn’t know the meanings of the words sanctimonious or Lothario, and he pronounced “lapel” as “LAYple”. He either whines and mumbles his way through difficult conversations, or passive-aggressively subverts the topic at hand (see below).
- He’s rude. He is always late, which either: 1) shows his disdain for everyone else’s time but his own; 2) displays his utter incompetence (he’s stuck in traffic, he misjudged how long it would take him to get somewhere, he’s lost, etc., etc.); 3) reveals the depth of his personal vanity (insecurity?) because he’s styling his hair or picking out his outfit while people sit around and wait for him to finish primping; or 4) a combination of all three. In addition, he never covers his mouth when he yawns. Not only does he lack the basic manners to observe this simple propriety, he appears to employ this tactic whenever he is unhappy with a conversation. Perhaps the most egregious example of this is when he and Naomie are on the way to see a couples’ therapist. As Naomie is trying to discuss the issues and problems she wants to address with the therapist, Craig, rather than engage in a respectful conversation with his girlfriend, opens his mouth and YAWNS in the middle of her sentence, shocking her into silence. Pretty bold for a shiftless man-child who is living under a roof and tooling around town in a Porsche provided by the parents of the girl he just so rudely dismissed. But then again maybe he thought his behavior was justified because Naomie was being “mean,” which made him “sad.” A million eye-rolls.
- He pats himself on the back for being able to read situations, but he is ALWAYS wrong. Not just a little wrong, but way, way, off into the boondocks, 100%, ending up as far away from the ocean as you can get on Jekyll Island wrong. Oops–I take that back–he was right once, in Season 1, when he called Kathryn out for sleeping with three people at the dinner table and warned Thomas that she was bad news. He was right that one and only time, but subsequently reversed his position and has been wrong on every call he’s made since then. He thought he could show up to work whenever he felt like it even after his supervisor told him point blank that he couldn’t. Wrong. He thought Kathryn’s titanic meltdown on Jekyll Island was justified by Whitney’s treatment of her. Wrong. He assumed JD was grooming him to helm the Gentry bourbon division. Wrong. He insisted that the root of Whitney’s enmity for Kathryn was his unrequited love for her. Epically, laughably wrong. Craig was wrong about all these things, but he was especially, egregiously wrong when, after Kathryn crashed Thomas’ Election Night party, stomping into the room like the crazed Xanthippe she is, and making everyone (but Craig) squirm in discomfort, Craig cheered her on and opined that by attending she was behaving like the “bigger person.” This could not be more off base. Rather than showing her to be the bigger person, Kathryn’s appearance at this event displayed her petty, shameless compulsion to hijack any and every situation and make it all about her. Patricia, Whitney, Shep, Thomas and even Jennifer Snowden recognized her attention-seeking, addled behavior for what it was–a base and woefully ill-timed attempt to assert her position in Thomas’ life. Not Craig. Not dim, puerile Craig, who somehow interpreted Kathryn’s uncouth display as a show of support for Thomas.
- He ordered a fruit plate at a bar.
There are many, many more examples of why Craig sucks, but I grow weary of pondering his transgressions and the bell is about to ring. In a nutshell, Craig is the guy that shows up for a round of golf wearing the loudest clothes, carrying the flashiest golf bag stocked with the shiniest balls, then furtively kicks his ball onto the fairway when he thinks no one’s looking. He’s a latter-day Judge Smails, and thanks to the (apparently) lax character and fitness requirements of the South Carolina bar, this sniveling weasel-cum-attorney could actually become a judge one day. Look out, Bushwood.