No Such Nonsense

A little of this, that and... what was I talking about again? It's TV, sports, pop culture and politics - all the stuff that really matters in life.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Equal Opportunity: 10 Worst Characters

Working on my list of 25 great characters got me thinking... what about those characters who make you cringe rather than delight, those characters who can suck the life out of an otherwise great show? Don't they deserve a list of their very own? Damn straight.

Here then, are my nominees for the 10 Worst Characters in TV History:

1) Ross Geller, Friends
In my best list, I mentioned that it has become fashionable to slag Friends. While I still love the show, here's one area where I simply cannot argue. Slag on Ross. Slag away, people. Ross was mopey, whiney and massively uninteresting, yet managed to snag ridiculously hot girlfriends anyway (Rachel, Emily, Mona and Charlie to name a few). Painfully unfunny, Ross could zap the energy from a scene just by walking in the room. The worst character in TV history, by a long shot.

2) Kramer, Seinfeld
I may be treading on sacred ground here, but I just never found him that funny. The pratfallish entrances, the spazzy delivery... the whole goofy Kramer character started to wear thin with me around season two. And that left seven more seasons for faint annoyance to grow to festering disdain.

3) Samantha Jones, Sex and the City
I'm not sure if it was the crude sex-bomb characterization or just Kim Catrall's snooty, stilted portrayal, but Sam was the shallowest, least interesting character on the show. Though she was almost redeemed by the sweet, final season love story with Smith, I still get the urge to change the channel whenever she shows up on screen.

4) Deanna Troi, Star Trek: The Next Generation
Why was she even there? Was it just to show off her rack? I can think of no other reason. I'm sensing complete lameness.

5) Ally McBeal, Ally McBeal
In the first season, Ally was a quirky breath of fresh air. As time progressed, she became shrewish, bitter and, well, a little more crazy-ass than quirky. Introspection is one thing, utter self-obsession is another.

6) David Silver, Beverly Hills 90210
The whiter version of Vanilla Ice, David had all the street cred of, oh say, Kevin Federline.

7) Stephanie Tanner, Full House
OK, this may be pushing the boundary of 'great' TV shows, but she really bugs me. Why is Stephanie so annoying and pointless? It's classic middle-child syndrome. DJ got all the boyfriends and wacky-best-friend plots, the Olsen twins were absurdly adorable even before they were moguls and Stephanie, well, Stephanie had really big teeth.

8) Marissa Cooper, The O.C.
Man, oh, man, does Misha Barton suck. She's like a weirdly skinny robot. Bye, bye Coop, bye bye.

9) Bernice Clifton, Designing Women
This one's a little obscure, I'll admit. Bernice was the addled senior southern belle who sometimes dropped in on the Sugarbaker gals. Isn't it a hoot when old people say inappropriate, vaguely racist things? Ah, senility - how uproariously funny.

10) Claudia Salinger, Party of 5
Yes, it was very sad that she lost her parents. Yes, it was very sad that the rest of her family got caught up in their own melodramatic love affairs and promptly forgot Claudia and Owen existed. But did Claudia have to be so clingy, so needy, so earnestly annoying, so without a plot? Very sad indeed.


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