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10 Best Bad Boys on TV

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Tawnya is a freelance writer and mom of a tiny gymnast. When it comes to buying gymnastics-related gear, I'm an industry pro.


Common Character Traits of a TV Bad Boy

The Recipe for a TV Bad Boy

  • Loner
  • Strained familial relationships
  • Substance abuse
  • Masochism
  • In love with a good girl
  • Charming
  • Witty
  • Involved in sketchy business
  • Handsome
  • Misunderstood

Who Doesn't Love Bad Boys?

When you think about the most popular sitcoms and dramas on TV each of these shows has one thing in common - a bad boy. While most women, including myself, don't want to marry a bad boy, it is fun to lust after these mischievous, yet charming, fictional characters. Below, you will find the tell-tale traits of a TV bad bad boy and my personal list of of the 10 Best Bad Boys on TV.

Check out my list and make sure to vote for your favorite in the poll at the very end.

10. Dylan McKay - 90210

Dylan was the first fictional bad boy that I fell in love with on TV. Dylan was played by Luke Perry in the drama 90210. The teenage version of myself rooted for Dylan in the toughest of times and always wanted he and Brenda to get together and live happily ever after. However, Dylan had his own demons including divorced parents, a criminal for a dad, and a little problem with the bottle.

9. Duke Crocker - Haven

If you haven't watched Haven yet, you definitely should, even if it is just to watch Eric Balfour play Duke Crocker. In this drama, Duke is a smuggler turned bar owner who has a supernatural talent. Duke has no trouble with the ladies - in fact, you will get to see a great deal of his tattooed body in compromising positions, but his heart only pines for one, Audrey Parker.

8. Jesse Pinkman - Breaking Bad

Jesse Pinkman, played by Aaron Paul, is everyone's favorite methamphetamine dealer. Although Jesse has gone through one heck of a transformation through the seasons of Breaking Bad, he is always up to no good. His strained relationship with his parents, a dead girlfriend, and risky career have earned him the number 8 spot on my personal list of TV's Best Bad Boys.

7. Logan Echolls - Veronica Mars

Jason Dohring portrayed the bad boy on the hit drama Veronica Mars. During his time on the show, Logan played the on/off boyfriend of the beloved Veronica. While I always knew Logan truly loved Veronica, he often self-destructed, which ruined any chances he had with the beautiful teenage detective. Like many other bad boys on the list, Logan's self destructive behaviors were due to his snarky behavior, bully-like personality, and the fact that his father was an abusive jerk and his mother was deceased.

6. Dylan Massett - Bates Motel

If you have seen Max Thieriot portray Dylan Massett, you already know this guy has all the makings of a memorable TV bad boy. Dylan is the son of the psychotic Norma Bates, a product of incest, and involved in sketchy business. With all this going on, Dylan delivers an edgy, outsider persona that is simple irresistible.

5. Oliver Queen - Arrow

Many of you may be asking what is Arrow? Arrow is a great comic-based drama that stars Stephen Amell as Oliver Queen. Oliver is a billionaire playboy turned vigilante in this dramatic series. One look at Oliver Queen and you know he has the makings of a very bad boy. While currently a vigilante, Oliver can't seem to let go of the playboy tendencies that landed him in exile for 5 years. Oliver is also an orphan and pines after the one woman he may never be able to have.

4. Damon Salvatore - Vampire Diaries

Now that we are nearing the top 3 of my list, you can imagine that the bad boys are getting badder and with that in mind, Damon Salvatore doesn't disappoint. Damon is the better looking, more psychotic vampire brother that stars in Vampire Diaries. With his black hair and crystal blue eyes, Damon never had a chance to play anything but a bad boy. Although a bit more psychotic than many of the other bad boys on the list, Damon, who is played by Ian Somerhalder, is a darkly handsome vampire that can go from casual to pure evil in the blink of an eye. Damon is tortured by his past and prone to impulsive behavior. The only reason Damon hasn't imploded so far is because of his one true love - Elena. However, Elena is also the one true love of his brother, which creates the familiar dysfunction that earns Damon Salvatore his place on my list of TV's Best Bad Boys.

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3. Daryl Dixon - The Walking Dead

Okay, the only reason I ever watched The Walking Dead in the first place was to catch a glimpse of the super yummy Norman Reedus. In The Walking Dead, Reedus plays Daryl Dixon. Daryl has an ill temper, but is a fierce protector. His instinct to survive is fostered by his abusive upbringing. Although Daryl's social skills suck, there is one woman that is able to smooth his ragged edges - Carol.

2. Chuck Bass - Gossip Girl

There are so many reasons that I shouldn't like Chuck Bass, played by Ed Westwick, but I can't help but love this TV bad boy. Chuck is the anti-hero of Gossip Girl. In addition to being a wealthy, teenage entrepreneur, Chuck is also a sexy hedonist, a snob, a liar, and a manipulator. Despite all these negative personality traits as well as serious "mommy issues" women flock to the sexy New Yorker. While Chuck takes his time basking in a sea of sex, alcohol, and reckless behavior, but his heart belong to Blair Waldorf, the Queen Bee, but his own actions make it impossible for Gossip Girl's kind of good girl to truly trust and love the notorious Chuck Bass.

1. Jax Teller - Sons of Anarchy

With his sometimes shaggy blonde hair, mysterious hazel eyes, and tattooed muscles, there isn't much not to love about Jax Teller, played by British actor Charlie Hunnam. Jax is an outlaw, a murderer, mechanic, and the President of SAMCRO, a fictional California biker gang. Despite Jax's flaws, I love this character. In fact, I often root for this anti-hero to make the right decisions - although he never does.

Your Favorite TV Bad Boy

Don't See Your Favorite?

Did your favorite bad boy not make the list? Tell me who it is in the comments below.

© 2014 Tawnya

Did Your Favorite TV Bad Boy Make the List?

Anna Richmond from Fort Wayne, Indiana on February 03, 2015:

It is so difficult to pick which bad boy to love! I am torn between Logan and Ollie...

Tawnya (author) from NE Ohio on November 10, 2014:

Awww, the Miami Vice goes are still cool.

Ann1Az2 from Orange, Texas on November 10, 2014:

Sorry, but I'm a little behind the times. My favorite bad boy was always Sonny Crockett from Miami Vice. And he is the one that started "cool."

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