There’s something really special about TV shows that movies have never been able to replicate. A movie might turn into a series, spawning two or three sequels (or 17 if it’s a horror movie), giving us a chance to watch the characters develop a little. But with a TV series, we get to watch multiple characters develop a lot. Writers don’t have to condense a lifetime of change into a two hour film, and some truly amazing things happen when given time. Shows like Breaking Bad and Justified allow relationships to be explored in depth and characters to change in perfect fashion.
But there’s always going to be a trade-off. For every Walter White and Raylan Givens that graces the screen, we get a few static characters that are just there to remind us that nothing is truly perfect. If you’re like me and have ever wanted to just kill off a character so your favorite show won’t be held back anymore, then you know exactly how I feel. I’ll try my best to stay calm, but below are the five characters that ruin shows that are inches away from being perfect.
SPOILER ALERT: I will be talking about things in these shows that may ruin episodes or seasons if you are not caught up. Basically, don’t leave any angry comments saying I totally ruined these shows for you. Read on, brave souls!
5. Violet – American Horror Story
Obviously, this is a relatively new addition to this list. I loved almost everything about Ryan Murphy‘s twisted nightmare American Horror Story. Ben and Vivien Harmon were complex, intelligent characters. The spirits that roamed the house were worthy of our attention, and learning all of their histories was something I loved doing every week. But something about Violet just bothered me since the beginning of the series.
Maybe it was because she was fit into the “rebellious/depressed teenager” stereotype that’s overplayed. Maybe it was because she only had two emotions: angry and depressed. Maybe it was because her love situation with Tate never really caught my heartstrings. Whatever it was, I just didn’t like her that much. Or at all really. So when I found out that she killed herself when she took a whole bottle of pills, I wasn’t shocked. I didn’t feel bad at all. I’m a little ashamed to admit that my first thought was, “serves her right.”
You say I’m heartless? Well…sure, why not? Either way, I’m glad her depressed teenager schtick didn’t end with some “happy redemption” story that isn’t plausible. Word on the street is that the Harmons won’t be in the next season or two of American Horror Story, so the break from Violet should be nice.
4. Skyler – Breaking Bad
I’ve gotta be honest here: I just started watching this show. For years all of my friends have been getting on my back to give it a chance, and for some reason it took me this long to finally do so. That being said, Breaking Bad is a fantastic show, and even though I’m only about halfway into season two, I can already tell that some huge developments are brewing.
Of course, the only person that doesn’t sit right with me is Skyler, Walter’s wide-eyed, nagging, probing wife. No matter what Walt does, he is always wrong in her eyes. The poor guy has cancer and she still keeps throwing crap at him. I know this is messed up though, because Walt and his partner Jesse are the ones cooking and dealing meth, so I shouldn’t be cheering them on at all. In the real world, Skyler would be a beacon of intelligence as she starts to notice things are going wrong.
However, this isn’t the real world. This is Breaking Bad, and in this universe, she’s worse than the DEA and the cops combined. Of course, this comes with the label that I am still only in season two, so I don’t know exactly how her character progresses or what will happen between her and Walt. Obviously, something could drastically change. But as everything stands where I’m at in the series, Skyler deserves a punch in the jaw.
EDIT – Ok, so after watching more, I’ve realized she’s actually pretty smart, even if I still want to punch her in the jaw. So I’m officially replacing Skyler with Brainy Smurf because he’s a bit too smug for my tastes. Smurf that guy.
3. Lila – Dexter
To be perfectly clear, Dexter is one of my favorite shows of all time. Every actor and actress is cast perfectly and the relationships they all have actually mean something to me. I even like Quinn, which is no small feat. Season four is the best season any show has ever had, and the Trinity Killer was easily the most diabolical villain to grace the small screen. That’s why it hurts to admit that characters from Dexter plague this list not once, but twice.
First up is Lila, Dexter’s bad influence from season two. Viewers will remember her as the horse-faced pyro that almost killed his family and made him cheat on Rita. As if that wasn’t enough, she also had an annoying British accent that made her sound like she just ate the Prime Minister. Watching Dexter kill her at the end of the season was a scene that brought me great joy (which might sound awful, but come on, the whole show is a bit grim).
I can’t tell if Lila was meant to actually be a character that viewers liked or not. Sure, she brought out the more primal side of everyone’s favorite vigilante, but she was also the most annoyingly unattractive character, both physically and in spirit. She had no redeeming qualities except for her mortality (gloomy zing!).
2. Lumen – Dexter
Any of my friends will tell you how much I hate Lumen. Remember how I said season four of Dexter was the best ever? Season five made me want to tear my eyes out and jam them in my ears. It’s hard to enjoy watching Dexter finally act human when Lumen is following him around screwing up all of his plans. Dexter finds her locked in a room of one of his victim’s houses and takes her in. Of course, she wants to play with the big boys and kill the man who had her kidnapped. This horrible decision haunts the rest of the season by making it completely awful.
No matter how elaborately Dexter sets up some sort of plan, Lumen is one step behind him, acting more like Clouseau than a killer. Sure, her and Dexter finally catch the guy and kill him, but I’m sure she missed most of it since she forgot how to tie her shoes. What makes her an even more painful character is that we’re all supposed to believe that she is “strong” for wanting to try and kill the guy who kidnapped her. I give Julia Stiles props for trying to tackle this character, but she would have been better left on the cutting room floor. The studio’s or Dexter’s, I really don’t care which.
1. Tara – True Blood
Oh, Tara Thornton. Where do I even begin with you? If you take the amount of hatred I have for every character on this list, square it, and then put Sandra Oh‘s face on what’s left, I would still hate Tara more. I didn’t become a fan of this fantastic show until about a year ago, but I was instantly hooked. Sure, it can get a little girly every now and then, but who can resist Eric’s chilling charm or Bill’s gentlemanly manner? Apparently Sookie can resist both, but that is neither here nor there.
Tara! Oh dear God, how can a character this weak exist anywhere? First off, let me be superficial: her voice sounds like rusty nails on a chalkboard with Coldplay playing in the background. Her screechy, whiny voice pervades every scene that could be ten times more awesome without her. Also, her relationship with Sam isn’t right, because Sam deserves way better than Tara (end girly rant).
And now my biggest problem with Tara: she is way too weak of a character. Remember when Eggs got shot because he was about to murder someone? Yeah, all she did was cry and cry and cry for a whole season. Eventually, she left Bon Temps, and I celebrated. But then we get to see what she did with her life: she became a lesbian cage-fighter. Ok, so she toughened up a bit. Good for her I guess. And then she drags her sorry self back to Bon Temps, and becomes a whiny, sniveling mess yet again.
It seems like the writers heard my plea of “make her go away!” though. This past season ended with Tara’s brains shot onto the kitchen wall. Now let’s all pray they stay right there.
Well I feel so much better now that I got all of that off of my chest! What do you say? Do you agree with this hate? Am I just a soulless jerk, or are these characters just as terrible as I think they are? Let me know if you agree or want my head on a platter in the comments below!