Things That Make Me Nervous

10 TV Bad Boys Who Make Me Nervous

chrissa tweet

One of the HelloGiggles editors, Chrissa, posted this tweet last Thursday, kicking off a Twitter discussion of TV bad boys between the two of us and fellow HelloGiggles contributors Erin, Sam and Gina. The conversation lasted for roughly two hours and covered important issues such as: Who from Saved By The Bell was the “bad boy”? Can blonde dudes be considered bad boys? Does Roger Klotz qualify even though he’s green and animated? By the end of the 30-tweet-thread, we had compiled a list of roughly twenty fictional television characters that, per our expertise, qualified as bad boys. After paring down the list to ten, I was left with a topic for this week’s piece.

These fictional fellas are the Sour Patch Kids of the television world. They do awful things like cheat and steal, but then they do something sweet and adorable, like make breakfast in bed and cry on your shoulder about their awful childhood, and all is forgiven.  It’s not their fault they’re trouble, they just need someone to show them they’re worthy of love. They are lost puppies and we just want to take them home and fix them up.  They create unrealistic expectations for real life bad boys and set the bar too high for the good guys. From their smouldering glances to their criminal records, everything about them makes me nervous.  So… here we go.



1. Tim Riggins, Friday Night Lights

Let’s start with the man who inspired it all. Tim is a borderline-alcoholic high school football player who likes to hit people on and off the field. Despite all his anger issues and self-destructive habits, Tim genuinely means well and will sacrifice his happiness for those he loves. He hasn’t had the easiest life and all I want is for him to be okay, living happily ever after in Texas. Forever.


2. James “Sawyer” Ford, LOST

Or as Chrissa so brilliantly referred to him, “Island Riggins”. Sawyer is/was (I’m still not sure what was happening with the timeline on that show) a con artist. He lies, steals and breaks hearts professionally. Yet, whenever it comes down to choosing a side, I am Team Sawyer all the way. He has a heartbreaking family history and a talent for creating witty nicknames. Swoon.


3. Logan Echolls, Veronica Mars

Logan terrifies me, because no matter what this fictional rich boy does, I still love him. I’m talking terrible, awful things like organizing bum fights and slipping roofies into people’s drinks. Logan is a huge jerk, yet… nothing he does changes my opinion of him. Duncan, Deputy Leo, even Piz were solid good guys, yet the hopeless romantic in me wanted V to end up with Logan. Logan has a spell on me that is powerful and unbreakable.


4. Damon Salvatore, The Vampire Diaries

When we first meet Damon, he has a habit of compelling underage girls and using them as play things. I tend to cut him some slack because he’s dead and all, but even for a vampire, he’s a complete psychopath. The thing is, he’s an underdog and there’s nothing I love more than a good underdog. He’s constantly coming in second to Stefan and he acts like a jerk because everyone expects him to act like a jerk. He’s damaged and needy and so much more interesting than Stefan. I think the thing that makes me most nervous about Damon is that I just wrote this paragraph about Damon, a fictional vampire on a CW show. I’ve officially lost the right to make fun of Twilight fans, haven’t I?


5. Crosby Braverman, Parenthood

When the show started, Crosby lived on a house boat, did laundry at his parent’s house and was hiding his newly discovered son from his then girlfriend who was begging him to commit. Crosby has screwed up over and over throughout the show’s run, but we quickly realize that his poor decisions are made out of fear and insecurity. He never means to hurt anyone, people just get caught in the crossfire of his self-destruction. Crosby grows immensely over the course of the series, showing us that bad boys can change, which is a problem because then we expect all bad boys to be capable of change.


6. Pacey Witter, Dawson’s Creek

Pacey is definitely the bad boy on the creek. He sleeps with his 36-year-old english teacher, gets detention for masturbating in school, gets in fist fights, spits in a teacher’s face, etc. He’s a class clown who doesn’t do well academically. He thinks he’s a loser, because his family is constantly telling him he’s a loser. The more we know Pacey the more we love Pacey, because in addition to being tough and funny, Pacey is sweet and lovable. We forget all the gross stuff he does, because he has that smile and those eyes and he names his sail boat “True Love” and it’s just awwwwwwwwww.


7. Ryan Atwood, The O.C.

Ryan wears leather jackets and white tank tops, so we KNOW he’s a bad boy. He is headed down a long and troublesome road, when Sandy Cohen pulls him from the dark side. He is almost literally a lost puppy when the Cohens take in. They care for him and have faith in him and despite multiple setbacks throughout the series (his mom abandoning him, his brother trying to rape his girlfriend, his girlfriend shooting his brother, his girlfriend dying), Ryan makes it through and achieves his dream of becoming an architect. It is a rags to riches story: From Chino to UC Berkeley. In high school I always hoped one of my friends’ families would take in a cute criminal for us to fix up.


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  • Johanna Sch

    I feel the exact same way about Logan, but I fear the new movie will disappoint us both! Still., we can hope to at least see his adorable face and perfect comebacks!

  • Tiffany Fulton

    there are so many missing, whom I adore :)

  • Ashley Coffey

    Damon Salvatore is a little more than a “bad boy”. He’s a homicidal maniac!

    And Pacey is a beacon of light from heaven.

  • Curry Flora

    How could you not have Jordan Catalano from “My So Called Life” in the top ten?

    • Justine Craft

      You can’t talk about bad boys without talking about Jordan Catalano.

  • Caroline Gerdes

    Great list. But I think Jordan Catalano would be a good addition.

  • Tinna Breiðfjörð Guðjónsdóttir

    No eric northman? What about Alex Krycek?

    • Ashley Coffey

      Alex Krycek. So pretty and yet so so evil.

  • Shelby Rollings

    Chuck from Gossip Girl!!

  • Shannon Armstrong Schultz

    How could Dean Winchester be left off this list? Nobody sets the bar higher than he does. He is the perfect Alpha Male.

    • Gaby Montaño

      I agree with you! He just does as he pleases, from pissing demons off to sell his soul to save his brother and stealing all of our hearts while he does that and eats pie <3

  • Tiffany Renee Johnson

    9. Actually, Jess dropped out to work full-time at Walmart.. (Is it sad that I remember that?)

    • Nicole Paulhus

      No, it’s sad that I didn’t remember! I specifically remembered his boss saying the fork lift was like an extension of him and him wearing a smock, which translated into Home Depot in my brain. I’m so ashamed!

      • Tiffany Renee Johnson

        Haha, no worries. I may have watched the series too much when it first came out on DVD. The reason I remember it so well is because Luke gave Jess such a hard time when he found out he worked at Walmart.. Good times.

        I also love that you included Jesse from Breaking Bad… just finished season 4 myself and I’d keep saying he’s a bad boy… or at least a badass. :)

  • Delea House

    How did NONE of the super hot bad boys from Sons of Anarchy make the list?!

    • Chrissa Hardy

      We would never forget Jax Teller or Eric Northman. Or Dylan McKay, or Jordan Catalano, or Chuck Bass. All given lots of love and honorable mention in our original convo.

  • Gina Vaynshteyn

    So much love for Jesse Pinkman! Thanks for the shout out, girl!

  • Michelle Grove Shaffer

    Logan = YES!!!

  • Alexandria Scanlan

    I love the you put Logan, Jess and Damon on the list. My favorites! :)

  • Meghan Cook

    Logan, Jesse, Jess, I love this list

  • Nicole Paulhus

    The Sons of Anarchy, True Blood vamps, Jordan Catalano and Chuck Bass were all on the original list!

    • LeAnn Ruth Buschbaum

      Yes, Yes, Yes!

      Jax Teller should be #1 on this list.

      I don’t think you can find a badder boy out there on television.

      Killing, dealing drugs and guns, contributing to large amounts gang violence, yet he’s a sweetheart and a family man who does what it takes to survive. He can never be a bad man in my mind. I see those blue eyes and instantly all bad he has ever done is immediately forgiven. Plus Charlie Hunnam is effing HOT.

      • Kelsey Fiona

        Except Jax Teller is a Man not a Boy.

        P.S. Nathan Maloney would be a great bad boy on this list, a character that Charlie Hunnam played in QAF UK in the late 90’s.

        • Chrissa Hardy

          Let’s just throw Lloyd from Undeclared on there and give Charlie Hunnam his own list, yeah? PS – if you haven’t seen Pacific Rim yet, oh man, you must!

  • Shalaka Salian

    Dean Winchester. Well he is not bad..but doesn’t he makes you feel all bad about him? Damon Salvatore for me. tee-hee

  • Colleen Sweeney

    I am in love with Tim Riggins, Damon Salvatore (although I haven’t watched the show in ages), Jess Mariano, and Sawyer. I never wavered in my devotion to Sawyer, even when he ended up with Juliet (which still bugs me years later).

  • Melanie Seaward

    #9 correction, Jess worked at Walmart, not a hardware store.

    I also wish you included Eric from True Blood & Spike from Buffy!! Sexy vampires make the best bad boys!

  • Lisa Marie Sivley

    For me it was always Jordan Catalano and Spike from Buffy series… bad boys who have done horrible things but when they are good, they really shine.

  • Miriam Lane

    Ok… Let me say I LOVE this article… But Jess Mariano he quit school to work at Wal-Mart (I am 99.9999% sure of this fact, I am the biggest fan ever). I think another Bad Boy that should be included is Logan Huntzberger. I he is the rich snoody kid who is in and out of school and Encourages Rory to drink and have wild adventures. I mean sure he gets his sh*t together but still he is a bad boy in my book. Swoon

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