5 Fictional Couples That Were Doomed From the Start Chrissa Hardy

Some loves have no chance for survival. As hard as we ship, some couples are just not meant to be. And it might not be obvious at first. A gut-wrenching break up between two people that adore each other might not be a predictable ending. But when it comes down to it, I’m a firm believer in “if it’s meant to be, it’ll be.”

Here are five fictional couples that we rooted for, tweeted about, joined teams to support, but had everything working against them from the start and ultimately went their separate ways. (Best breakup story ever goes to Min and Ed of Why We Broke Up, and you could win a free copy! Deets below.)

1. Summer and Tom from 500 Days of Summer

Sure, Tom was insecure, a bit needy, and loved the idea of Summer more than Summer herself. Summer was cold, a little selfish, and even though her actions went against her words, her words ultimately prevailed and she wasn’t the right one for Tom.

But, you guys, Zooey and JoGoLev played these roles with adorable charisma and accrued 500 days of #Awww moments. You wanted them to last because they were so freaking cute together. I think we’re all looking for the same level of adoration that Tom had for Summer. He knew he loved Summer instantly. It took her a while to warm up to the idea of him. Sometimes that works out, some people just take a little longer to fall in love. Not these two. They broke up. Summer moved on. She got married. And Tom found Autumn. *Sigh*

2. Katniss and Gale from The Hunger Games

Don’t hate me, but I was Team Gale, right up until the end. Peeta and Katniss didn’t make much sense to me. I know they balance each other out, and the way the trilogy ended *SPOILER ALERT*, it made sense that they ended up together. But Gale was such a dreamboat! I just kept picturing Katniss and Gale, side by side, taking on every battle together.

They never would’ve made it though. Katniss and Gale were too similar. Not that being alike is a bad thing, but they were similar in their level of anger and stubbornness. Recipe for divorce, right there.

3. Min and Ed from Why We Broke Up

Min and Ed are your classic young love odd couple. Min is an introvert, coffee lover, and cinephile. Ed is a popular jock, but a lovable jock that digs math. Their love story is predictable, and certainly relatable, but is beautifully told in this book. The story begins with Min leaving a box of mementos on Ed’s doorstep with a letter explaining the significance of each item, and why they broke up. The box holds two bottle caps, a movie ticket, a folded note, a box of matches, a protractor, books, a toy truck, a pair of ugly earrings, a comb from a motel room, and every other item collected over the course of a giddy, intimate, heartbreaking relationship.


Through the story of each item, you fall in love with them as a couple, but you experience all of the pain through their struggle to make it work. Min and Ed, I’m on both teams.

4. Jack and Kate from LOST

The show ended with Jack and Kate back together in that weird sideways purgatory before the island crew all went to heaven together. Wait, is that what happened? I’m still not sure. But the entire show leading up to that was Jack and Kate having unbearable sexual tension, and clashing at every turn. Neither one likes to talk about their feelings, and neither one is satisfied with appreciating what they have when they have it. Jack always needs a project, a mission to work on, and Kate needs drama to make her run away emotionally, or she chooses to literally run away and start a new life somewhere else.

If you can’t make it work on Earth, how is a purgatory vaca the answer?

5. Mindy and Casey from The Mindy Project

I loved these two so much. It also makes me sad to think that Kelly and Ryan were perfect together, but Mindy and Casey couldn’t make it work. Maybe they’ll find a way back to one another, but the reason they broke up made perfect sense. Mindy, despite her chaotic personal life, is a driven, successful doctor. As much as she loved Casey, his career ADD was too much to handle. It’s also a red flag for the way he handles other big life decisions. Not an ideal hubby.

To all of these incredible couples (RIP), we miss you and wish you the best of luck in all of your future romances.

Get your copy of Why We Broke Up here. Or try to win a free copy by entering our giveaway!


Giveaway Deets:

In the comments below, answer this: Which fictional couple break up was the most heartbreaking? Share your answer for a chance to win a free copy of this book!

Only entries from residents of US will be considered.

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  1. Sookie and Eric from True Blood <3

  2. Worst fictional break-up ever was probably High Fidelity’s Rob (played by John Cusack) and … all of the women. No, really, I think his breakup with Charlie (played by Catherine Zeta-Jones) was really heartbreaking. They certainly weren’t meant to be together (if you’ve read the book or watched the movie, that is extremely clear), but they still seemed to really be attached to one another.

    • Thank you! I’m glad I’m not the only one who thought so. Most of my friends who’ve seen it are too caught up in how much of a jerk Rob is, but how is that surprising given his terrible track record with women?

  3. Dawson and Joey. Dawson placed Joey on such a pedestal, which Joey couldn’t handle, plus she was always second-guessing Dawson. She also couldn’t tell the difference between loving someone as a friend and loving someone as a partner for life. They idealized their relationship too much as well.

  4. The Doctor and River Song….. She was traveling back in time through his timeline and he knew her less and less each time they met… And vice verse. So depressing, and everyone knew what would happen eventually. Like River said, “There will come a day when I look into that man’s eyes and he won’t have a clue who I am… And I think it’s going to kill me.”

    SOB. Thanks a lot Doctor Who.

    • Absolutely. They just didn’t have enough time together.

      Dorium: And Doctor Song? In prison all her days?
      The Doctor: Her days, yes. Her nights… well, that’s between her and me, eh?

  5. Buffy and Angel. So many heartbreaking scenes from both shows, and knowing that they could never be together.

  6. LoVe!

  7. Logan and Veronica from Veronica Mars broke my heart each and every time they broke up. I’m really hoping that they’ll end up back together by the end of the movie.

  8. Rory & Jess from Gilmore Girls, Jo & Laurie from Little Women (although they technically weren’t together, but they should have been), Logan & Veronica from Veronica Mars.

  9. This is a bit of a throwback here but in my opinion, Princess and Ann and Joe Bradley in one of my favorite movies, Roman Holiday. Princess Ann (played by Audrey Hepburn and the role that won her the Oscar) escapes from her responsibilities after consuming medicine that makes her sleepy, walks around Rome at night. Joe Bradley, (played by Gregory Peck) a reporter who is incidentally doing a story on the princess, finds her and pretends to not know who she is. He shows her around town and in the process they fall in love. But Ann must go back to her life as a princess, and we know they can’t be together. The scene at the end (Spoiler Alert), where Joe interviews her along with the other reporters and then waits to see if she’ll reappear…. and she doesn’t, breaks my heart every time.

  10. The Doctor and Rose Tyler for sure. Just the thought of them sometimes makes me cry.

    Also, pretty much all the couples that don’t get together in “Love Actually.” That movie speaks to love in all it’s parts from the unrequited to break ups and the missed timing, but you root for everything. (At least I did!)

  11. Although technically they never truly became a couple officially (they were on the way to it), the nameless narrator and Terrence Butcher in Incendiary (the novel NOT the movie). If you haven’t read it or seen the movie *SPOILERS* Her family is killed in a suicide bombing and he’s her husband’s boss at the bomb squad whom is estranged from his wife. He tries to help her and it swiftly becomes an affair. Until Jasper (who’s obsessed with the narrator) let’s her know that Terrence knew the bombing was going to happen. The relationship turns into one of betrayal and hatred and the narrator’s broken life crashes around her. Not entirely romantic, but the wrongness and dirtiness of it adds so much depth to the story.

  12. This may be a bit of a throwback but Monica Geller and Richard Burke from Friends! ! I thought they made such a cute couple but I do understand why they broke up-she wanted something that he didn’t and besides if they didn’t break up, than Monica and Chandler might not have happened (I love them together too)!

  13. Lyra and Will from Phillip Pullman’s His Dark Materials Trilogy. They were so amazing together, and went through so much together, and then the ending completely ripped my heart out. They’re forever stuck in their own world, never having the chance to see each other again.

  14. Maybe it’s because I was young, but I think the worst break-up was when Cory and Topanga broke up – given they got back together, but that was so heart-wrenching and felt so.. personal.
    Nowadays I’m obsessed over Zoe Hart and Wade Kinsella. It was so sad to watch him want nothing more than to be with her and yet, one drunken night, make the mistake of throwing it all away.

  15. Ooooh, Like Crazy is just a sad, emotional roller coaster. Even though Anna and Jacob don’t break up in the end, the spark of their relationship is gone and it is just destroying. I loved that movie! In a I-want-to-sit-down-and-just-cry kind of way.

  16. I, personally, was in love with Violet & Tate from American Horror Story. Their love story was so complex and creepy. There were so many reasons why they should and should be together. The end of their story was so tragic.

  17. I agree with Logan and Veronica! And also (although many people may not agree) I was sad when Ryan and Lindsey broke up on The OC…I thought that she balanced him out…I wasn’t really into Ryan and Marissa (well…after the first season I wasn’t).

  18. You forgot the iconic Rick and Ilsa from Casablanca. Oh to always wonder what could have been…..gone into the fog of night!

  19. I know they didn’t really break up in the end, but when Amy and Rory wanted a divorce in Doctor Who, it was the most heartbreaking thing ever. Because they were the Ponds, and she was the Girl Who Waited, and he was the Last Centurion. They loved each other more than anything, and proved it time and time again, and then all of a sudden they didn’t? Good thing the Doctor always fixes things :D

  20. Grey’s Anatomys : Christina Yang and Owen Hunt!