The Worst TV Boyfriends Of All Time
When it comes to our favorite television shows, we can get pretty involved with the love lives of the characters. Some of the most famous relationships to ever grace our screens have been dramatic emotional roller-coaster rides that we just can’t help but hop on. But while we may have even harbored secret crushes on some of these guys (give us credit — we were young and naive) in reality, they were awful.
These are the worst TV boyfriends of all time.
Ross Geller – Friends
If you love Friends as much as we do, then you’ve probably spent a significant amount of time invested in the lives of these characters. Sure, each one is lovable in their own unique way, but did you ever stop to truly appreciate how bad of a boyfriend Ross was to Rachel? If you strip back the laughs, this is a guy who ruthlessly pursued a girl way out of his league, got her to fall hopelessly in love with him, only to cheat on her and use the incredibly awful excuse of “We were on a break!”
Mon-El – Supergirl
There are fewer TV characters as endearing as Kara a.k.a. Supergirl, so when someone treats her badly, it doesn’t go unnoticed. In fact, Kara’s relationship with Mon-El was so toxic that it caused some viewers to abandon the show completely. Not only was he both emotionally and verbally abusive but he made Kara question pretty much everything about her own existence as a woman and as a superhero. Rule number one of every relationship ever: empower each other! It really isn’t that hard to not make your significant other feel like a piece of dirt.
Larry Bloom – Orange is the New Black
When Orange is the New Black catapulted onto our screens in 2013, females around the world rejoiced. We finally had a show that really spoke to us — well, besides the being in jail part. When it comes to the intricacies of woman-to-woman relationships (and woman-on-woman relationships) the series is unmatched. The drama is incredible, but there’s one element that we can’t stand. Its name is Larry. Sure, Piper was no angel (already getting it on with Alex while in prison) but somehow that’s forgivable given the traumatic prison element, right? Larry hooking up with Piper’s BFF is something we will never get over. Never.
Roy Anderson – The Office
The Office is arguably one of the best sitcoms of all time and Jim and Pam are (also arguably) one of the best couples of all time. But before Jim and Pam gave us relationship goals, Roy and Pam were making us cringe. Roy is perhaps one of the most selfish TV boyfriends ever. Not only did he constantly slam Pam’s artwork, but he ignored her and strung her along as his fiancee for three years without ever trying to plan their wedding. He never treated her like a beautiful, smart individual she is and we were all happy when the two finally split for good.
Steve Harrington – Stranger Things
Now, this one is tricky. In season 1, Steve was the character we loved to hate in the smash-hit series Stranger Things. He was obnoxious, had stupid ’80s hair and pressured Nancy into being intimate when she wasn’t really ready. Not to mention, when Barb went missing he couldn’t care less. While all of this is undeniable, he did figure some stuff out and really fall in love with Nancy — but alas, we just can’t forget. Later on, after the pair breaks up, Steve helps the kids out and actually becomes a pretty likable person. We almost felt bad for him in season 2. You still suck the big one as a boyfriend though, Steve.
J.D. – Scrubs
We hear your cries of protest. “He’s so funny! He has a big heart!” That all may be true, but when you really think about it, J.D. is immature and unable to carry a stable relationship. His obsession with Elliot is all at once sweet and terrible. When he is happy, he sabotages it — and when Elliot moves on, he sabotages that too. J.D. may be a cool character with some great inner monologue and quote-worthy jokes, and while we ship his bromance with Kirk (to the moon and back), we can’t get behind him as a viable love interest.
Mr. Big – Sex and the City
Ugh. Mr. Big was so awful that we can’t even say his name without hissing — and the worst thing is, he still got the girl. SATC fans everywhere were appalled by Mr. Big’s treatment of our darling Carrie. He was a giant commitment-phobe, left Carrie, married someone else, cheated on his wife with Carrie, then when she was finally happy got involved again and Carrie ended up cheating on beautiful, lovable, gorgeous Aidan with him. Yes, we get that Carrie had a role to play here too — but we still want to knock that huge smug smile off of Mr. Big’s dumb face.
Jess Mariano – Gilmore Girls
Yes, Jess was the subject of many a teenage girl’s fantasies, but the brooding, miserable and intolerably misunderstood boyfriend of Rory earns a well-deserved place on this list. Not only does he actively pursue her while she’s dating wholesome Dean, but tells her numerous times that he hates spending time with her friends, family and well, anyone. His attitude was kind of attractive to those of us who were too young to know better at the time, but now we’re grown up we can appreciate him for what he was — a massive idiot with very good hair.
George O’Malley – Grey’s Anatomy
Don’t get us wrong, we absolutely adore George. When he died (the first of many main cast member deaths that broke us in two) we cried harder than we did when One Tree Hill ended. But, this doesn’t change the fact that when it came to women, George never got it right. For a start, he slept with Meredith when she was in a terribly vulnerable place emotionally and then got mad at her for it. When he found a woman way out of his league, Callie, he married her and then cheated on her with Izzy. His headstone should read, George O’Malley, Bad at Love.
Chuck Bass – Gossip Girl
Fans of the show may find this one a little hard to swallow, but Chuck Bass from Gossip Girl wasn’t a stand-up guy. One of his earliest scenes is when the wayward teen attempts to sexually assault Jenny Humphrey — and he never gets pulled up on it. He hires hookers, goes to strip bars and is pretty inept at loving anyone or anything the way it deserves — including Blair. While his issues get passed off with the excuse of “Daddy never loved me,” there’s no denying that Chuck Bass was awful all-around, as a human and as a boyfriend.
Lucas Scott – One Tree Hill
Chad Michael Murray made our teenage worlds go around, but his character Lucas made us want to hit him with a sledgehammer. One Tree Hill was all about the drama and Lucas brought a lot of that. He spent an irrational amount of time bouncing between Peyton and Brooke, damaging their friendship and toying with their hearts. In fact, every romantic interest ended up getting hurt by the blonde-haired beauty in some way. Even when he was writing books about how much he adored Peyton, he got engaged to a different girl. It was all a giant Lucas-shaped mess from start to finish.
Danny Castellano – The Mindy Project
Danny Castellano might have seemed like the man of Mindy’s dreams on The Mindy Project, but let’s break this down for a minute. He jerks her around, breaks up with her and then ends up catfishing her in order to get her back — if that doesn’t scream psycho, what does? If that weren’t enough, when she has a baby, he tries to manipulate her into giving up her career and everything she has ever worked for to just stay at home, as if women can’t do both. We’re still not over it. Probably never will be.
Dean Forester – Gilmore Girls
Man, Rory made some bad choices. Her first love, Dean, seemed like a stand-up guy at first. Even as their young romance blossomed, we liked him. He was cute, seemed to be pretty respectful and genuinely loved her, but it wasn’t long before his jealous personality emerged. Dean was super emotional too, and while that’s not always a bad thing, it did make him a little hard to tolerate. Worst of all, he married someone else, treated her terribly, slept with Rory and then blamed her for it. The list is kind of endless.
Emmett Bledsoe – Switched at Birth
Emmett is the kind of bad boyfriend that fathers want to point their shotguns at. Not only did he cheat on his girlfriend, Bay, but he pursued her and won her back, only to do one of the worst things imaginable. After Bay got sexually assaulted while he was at college, he cut her off like she was a rotting limb, completely ghosting her and ending their relationship like it wasn’t anything. On top of all that, he even made a movie about her experience without asking her about it first. If we sound mad, it’s because we are.
Xander Harris – Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Xander is the underdog, always picked on and he never quite gets it right. We’re sure there’s a heart of gold in there somewhere —after all, he did save the world numerous times — but when it comes to women he is a complete ass. He bags the most popular girl in school who sacrifices her reputation to be with him, then cheats on her with his best friend who has loved him for years, only to discard her once the affair comes to light. Then he leaves Anya at the alter, breaking her heart and turning her back into a vengeance demon. What a drag.
Dawson Leery – Dawson’s Creek
We never got the obsession with floppy-haired Dawson. He’s whiny, self-obsessed and has the worst ugly-cry ever documented on film. He also treats little Joey Potter like she’s nothing but a toy. While Joey was in love with him for years and the pair eventually hooked up, he could never truly decide what he wanted and when she moved on to start a relationship with Pacey, he hated her for it. Don’t even get us started on the way he treated Jen. Seriously, why did girls love this guy?
Dan Humphrey – Gossip Girl
Everyone got with everyone on Gossip Girl. There were so many relationship switch-ups we could barely keep up, but the most stomach-churning drama came from Dan Humphrey. He was cynical, demoralizing and by and large emotionally damaging to virtually all of the women he was involved with — mainly Serena, Blair and Vanessa. If there was hope, he cut it down. If there was a dream, he’d shatter it. For him to date Blair after his ‘great love’ with Serena was bad enough, but to also treat Queen B badly — we want blood, Humphrey.
Ted Mosby – How I Met Your Mother
“No, not Ted! Keep Ted out of this!” We’d like to, we really would, but you just can’t argue with the facts, kids. The biggest fact? This guy is insufferable. His insane notions of finding ‘the one’ puts enormous pressure on any girl that happens to cross his path. He spends so much time and energy getting his girlfriends to fit his ridiculous expectations that we can barely watch. Robin may have seemed like the perfect fit, but he constantly tried to change her. Shame on you, Ted.
Ezra Fitz – Pretty Little Liars
There was so much wrong with Aria’s and Ezra’s relationship we don’t know where to start. He pursued her despite finding out she was underage and his student, stalked the gang to develop his own writing career and then got engaged to Aria only to still mess around with his ex-girlfriend and fly out of town at a moment’s notice. The pair may have got married in the end, but there are so many issues with this guy that it was too unbelievable to fathom. Despite that, he always gets away with it. We’re honestly baffled.
Logan – Glimore Girls
And we have a hat-trick for Rory Gilmore! We couldn’t leave Logan out, could we? Logan did have his good points. He got little Rory out into the world and brought some excitement into Star’s Hollow — but he was also spoiled, immature, reckless and a ladies man. When Rory refused to marry him, he left her. Then, in the 2016 Netflix special, he was engaged to someone else while still sleeping with Rory whenever the pair were in the same town. There’s no excuses for that level of debauchery in our book.