Friday, August 4, 2017

My 10 Favorite TV Show Characters

Have you ever watched a show because of an actor or a character or one specific storyline while you did not care at all about the rest of the show? Well, actually, that might just be me... nonetheless too many times have I continued to watch a show just because of one character. This list on the other hand is made of all of those characters that were within awesome shows, which in return elevated their stories. I wanted to do this list because it is sometimes the death of certain characters that makes me want to write my novels and scripts. It was actually the death of one of these ten that got me working on my very first script over ten years ago. Good writing makes great characters and the ones I'm going to talk about now had a major impact on my life and the way I look at character development within stories.

10) Maggie Ryan (Pan Am)

"I didn't realize having principles made me simple. Thank you for the education."

This was unfortunately a short show, getting canceled after just 14 episodes, nonetheless, just within those few Maggie Ryan (played by Christina Ricci), completely evolved into a whole other person. She was very superficial and the girls around her made her grow into a woman who she was meant to be. She is a strong woman in a world that is governed by men. She is supposed to accept that she is just an object who solely exists for the pleasure of others. But Maggie takes charge and makes sure that whoever crosses her away will remember her for the rest of her life. I for one fell in love with her character and am happy that, even if for just 14 episodes, I got to see her journey. (Click here to read my review on Pan Am!)

9) Erin Lindsay (Chicago PD)

"Is it wrong that I'm kind of relieved that I'm the one who killed him?"

This show has worked it's place into my heart right after the first episode and Sophia Bush's character went through a lot... like a whole lot since the beginning. Her past never leaves her and it was inspirational how she kept on fighting to stay above the water that kept trying to drown her. Not to mention that when she kicked someone's ass, a rapist, or a killer, or a maniac it was incredibly satisfying to watch! Just delightful! Strong women being kick ass at their jobs! I love this show so much and her character was amazing, probably the best in the whole cast.

8) Danny 'Danno' Williams (Hawaii Five-0)

“You know, for a woman who died in a car bomb 20 years ago, 
you are remarkably put well together.”

This show is very serious, yet, there is a Superman & Batman friendship in it that is made up by Danny Williams (played by Scott Caan) and Steve McGarrett (played by Alex O'Loughlin), which makes for great laughs. What I love about this character is not just his sense of justice, but his journey as a father. During the biggest chunk of the series he was the only character to have children and the love he showed his kids was touching. He too kicks ass and it is very welcoming and exciting when he does. Nonetheless, he is a dad above everything else and the way he loves his family and friends is wonderful in my opinion. He is also hilarious.

7) Galina 'Red' Reznikov (Orange Is The New Black)

“I never liked this woman. She puts cream in her carbonara. It’s vulgar.”

When it comes to Netflix shows, you have to admit that if it wasn't for the success of OITNB then we wouldn't have so many new shows, each better than the other, I must admit. And when it comes to OITNB, well, let's be honest, you love the side characters a lot more than the main ones, don't you? My favorite has got to be Red (played by Kate Mulgrew), the relentless cook with back pain who just says it like it is. She cares for her girls and she can throw down with the toughest of them. She is an inspiration (despite the being in jail thing...)!

6) Rayna Jaymes (Nashville)

"Well that wasn't very smart, but it sure was brave."

I just f*cking love this show. Here is the key ingredient: communication. When one character asks someone 'What's wrong?' they don't run away pouting and crying and ignoring and dragging things out for three to four episodes... instead they have a problem, they talk about it, they discuss what is happening and how to resolve it and they behave like real people and not talking and walking clichés. And the music, oh... where do I start with the praise of this show, honestly, every episode is a home run for me! The heart and soul of this show was played by the spectacular Connie Britton, she was none other than the country artist Rayna Jaymes. It was her that made me want to write this list in the first place because I felt a connection to her character that I rarely feel. This list was born out of me looking through my favorites and looking for characters like her, who simply took the show their were in ahead.

5) Chloe O'Brian (24)

"Yeah, well, shrinks are always giving advice that they probably don't follow themselves." 

24 is a great show, I don't have to tell you that, you know already yourself. But when I talk about it to people I always have to admit that I started to actually love it from the third season on. The first was good, the second was tooo much for me, but the third... I rewatch it up to today. And it was here that I was first introduced to a character who would become my favorite for years to come, Chloe O'Brian, played by Mary Lynn Rajskub. She too went miles from her first scene to the last. It was incredibly fun to accompany her on this journey and what touched me above everything else was her loyalty to Jack Bauer. When you take a closer look to the relationship of these two you will see the kind of natural friendship that is based on respect. It is the kind of relationship that I have with my male friends and it was great to see that for once there was no love story unnecessarily forced on the viewers. She is definitely one of the most interesting characters out there, and one of the most relateable ones when it comes to crisis situations like the ones dealt with in 24. *Note: I have not seen the 12 episode mini series that was done in London. A friend of mine told me what they did with her character and I got so upset that I never watched it. Her story for me stretches from the third to the eighth season and that is it.

4) C.J. Cregg (The West Wing)

"Everybody's stupid in an election year, Charlie."

I grew up with The West Wing. I am fairly certain it is this show where most of my English knowledge comes from. Having grown up with it I am very much interested in politics and political science as a whole and have tried to focus my studies on it. Now, this show is simply a masterpiece. It will remain one of the best shows ever made out there and for good reason. Honestly, I loved all the characters, still, the little girl in me looked up at the fierce, brave and strong woman that Allison Janney played. She too had quite the journey in the show, of which she was a part of for the whole seven season run. The last episode before the finale of the seventh season just focused on her and where her life was headed after the journey of the White House and it is my favorite episode up to today. She cared so much for her job that a life without it scared her, but there was much more to be done and she had to learn that. I like that there is an admittance that we never stop learning and if that isn't a great message for any viewer out there, than I don't know what is. There would be no show without this character, I can guarantee that!

3) Ryan Atwood (The O.C.)

"Let me tell you something, okay? Where I'm from, having a dream 
doesn't make you smart. Knowing it won't come true? That does."

We all like bad boys, it is an unnatural attraction that drives women for some reason. The best thing about this bad boy is that... he is not. Ryan, played by Ben McKenzie, will punch the shit out of you if you hurt anyone he loves, but otherwise he just wants to do something in his life that matters. This is very important because most of us are looking for a purpose in life and rarely do we find it, unfortunately. And if there is no real purpose then we just want to make sure that our life wasn't in vain. This kid was born into a neighborhood and a family that should have set the course of his future before it begun. However, he did not let that stop him after life finally gave him a break for once. All of us in our lives are given one chance to change everything and it is recognizing that chance that makes the difference. Ryan was perhaps not a singular character, as we like stories where one grows into the person they can be, but to me he was one of the first ones and thus he is very close to my heart.

2) Tony Almeida (24)

"I don't have to establish position, I've already got it. Now what do you say we stop wasting time arm wrestling here. I respect your opinion, but we're going to disagree from time to time and when we do, we're gonna do it my way."

Tony Almeida, played by Carlos Bernard, was one of the best written characters in TV history in my humble opinion. First, his ability to step up in a crisis. Second, keeping a level head and being able to judge good from bad. Third, his undying love for his wife Michelle. That one always got me. He put his whole life up just to make sure he gets revenge for her death. He gets so consumed in pain and hatred that he sometimes loses sight of the good person he promised he would be and I can relate to that... on a strange level I understand that grief sometimes takes over logical thinking. Tony's death was directly responsible for my first movie script, and I have written a big review on his character which you can read if you click here! *I am yet to see 24: Legacy where his character is set to return.

1) Abby Lockhart (ER)

"Well, I do know that if you dress your baby like some sort of designer accessory, you're headed for problems. But don't worry. I work in the ER, so I'll be there to take care of her when she comes in, 14, pregnant, with a drug overdose."

You already know I love her as I have written an intensive review on the nine years Maura Tierney spent playing this character (click here to read it!). She was the best part of ER for me and I still today there is always something I learn from her. All the odds were against her and even when she gave in to the pain, she still fought her way back to the top. To me, losing sometimes does not mean we are weak... it means that we were strong for too long. She is a great example of that.

All these characters taught me something and they made their shows better! Who are your favorites?

Until the next item on my list!

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