Someone who, well, creates great TV.
Sometimes they're just villains, but in many cases, despite the conniving, the hurtfulness and the creep, you can't help loving them.
Here are some of my favorite Despicably Lovable Characters:
- Eric Cartman: Southpark's leading lovable bastard definitely makes the top of this list. His refusal to take responsibility for his actions is limitless. Eric is lazy, obnoxious, profane, shameless, has insane anger management issues and is potentially the most politically incorrect in TV. He stirs the pot, has no sense of right from wrong, is unfathomably self-absorbed, and it all culminates in one of the most genius satirical tools ever.
- Barney Stinson: On How I Met Your Mother, Barney will do anything to sleep with a girl and never call her again. He openly loathes committed relationships and being aware of your feelings. He cons people, tricks them and is generally lacking any kind of filter or ethical boundaries. He does, however, have his fantastic, suited-up, hilarious moments. Lots of them. And thanks to that NPH charm, you still adore him.
- Don Draper: Mad Men's leading man is one of the most female-offensive characters on television. He lies, he cheats, he treats women as if they're disposable. A philandering, narcissistic alcoholic, it seems there is no end to the depth of his sociopathic tendencies. But then you see him at his best- pitching an idea, being a good dad, and let us not forget how super fine he looks, well, always. And as bad as it sounds, I'd let him dispose of me any day of the week...
- Sue Sylvester: On Glee, Jane Lynch's Coach Sylvester is like a living cartoon villain. With her glee-club-loathing wrath, she terrorizes the underdogs, breathes venom into every sentence and creates a tornado of fear from around every corner. She may as well drop anvils on people's heads and have steam come out of her ears. We'll settle for the fantastic attacks on Will Shuster's hair and crazed, slushee-throwing outbursts of fury.
- Chuck Bass: The plotting, the tailor-suited swagger, the throwing away money and women without batting an eyelash. Gossip Girl's resident bad boy is so deliciously tortured and extravagantly degenerate, I can't keep my eyes off him. (To be honest Chuck and the fashion are basically the only reason to watch the show at all...) The wayward rich boy has a weakness for beautiful things, strong drinks, and trouble, and I have a weakness for him.
- Moriarty: Sherlock Holmes' nemesis on BBC's Sherlock is so fantastically diabolical you don't even need to meet him in person until the end of the first season to fear him. The source of innumerable plot twists and turns, and some of the most abominable crimes you can think of, he is an unthinkable criminal. But, as the only mind even closely matched to Sherlock's, he is one of the best villains on TV right now.
- Thomas & O'Brien: This depraved duo ravages the manor on Downton Abbey with their scheming and conniving. Nothing is sacred if it stands in the way of their own self interest. The king and queen of making something out of nothing and perpetuating wicked turn of the century maneuvers, they take the cake for treacherous teamwork. And I LOVE them.