Don't Curb Your Enthusiasm for Our Round-Up of TV's Lovably Despicable Characters

After a year-and-a-half hiatus, HBO’s minutiae-examining Curb Your Enthusiasm returns this Sunday at 10/9c with its eighth season. Now, as much as we love both the real and heightened versions of Larry David — and even his onscreen cohort, played by Jeff Garlin — fact is, these two partake in some pretty despicable behavior. Case in point: In the season’s second episode, the guys deny a dying dog its last supper in order to tame their own hunger. (Seriously!) And yet we watch, we laugh, and we love these men. This led us to ponder the existence of similar TV louts, of which there are many. You know, the other morally corrupt ones we can’t help but cheer on.

Here, flip through our picks for TV’s Most Lovably Despicable Characters — including but certainly not limited to Curb‘s Larry and Jeff. Plus, see who we’ve determined irredeemable.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. M says:

    With Cuddy gone, there is no more ooey-gooey House, sorry. Some might like it, for others that’s exactly what constitutes irredeemable.

    • Tania says:

      M, you sound like a broken record. For frak sake, GET OVER IT! Change the damn tune!

      • timshel says:

        Amen to that!

      • Ann says:

        ITA! Sadly the Cuddy/huddy fangirls will keep whining over and over again, we won’t get rid of them so easily. Oh, well at least the huddytards are amusing when they are so bitter

        • rmr says:

          but you guys have been whining since JMO left House, what are you talking about.. you should be more concerned that JMO’s new show does not get cancelled or something even worse..

          • Ann says:

            Wrong, I watch the show for House, I’ve never liked Cameron nor the hameron thing so I was happy when JMo left but at least Cameron didn’t ruin the show when she was on. No, Cuddy and the huddy crap ruined the show and now the huddytards can go whining with the hams, I find amusing the stupid cat fights between guys.

          • Ann says:

            Ops, ‘between you guys’

        • LMAO says:

          You know what even more amusing? Few idiots that can’t learn new words. Time to extend your vocabulary, honey. And get that weight off. It won’t make you smarter, but at least less bitter.

          • LOL says:

            My dear huddytard, your bitterness is so funny, please keep whining! And let’s see: the dumb huddy crap is over, Cuddy is gone, LE is out, well I don’t know why I should be bitter, I’m actually very pleased with tptb!

          • @LOL says:

            Well, as I said before, when people of such obvious intellectual brilliance start to be pleased with TPTB, that’s the problem. The best statement to their efforts. Of course, you can’t know that – I haven’t met a person with lowered mental capacity who wasn’t in love with himself. But please do keep express yourself in writing. I am sure the more people see you talking, the more they will be inclined to enjoy exactly the same things as you do. Who wouldn’t want to match his taste level to yours? Right? :)

          • Jess says:

            Lol to the huddytards who try so hard to look smat but all the got is an epic fail!

      • Hypocrites says:

        Umm, the topic starter in a very reserved manner mentioned TWO points of view. You, on the other hand, are throwing a tantrum. Maybe it is you who needs to get over it (and over yourself, while you are at it)?

    • lipsticksocialism says:

      i agree with you that House is irredeemable, but it doesn’t really have to do with Cuddy being there or not, because we’ve seen his ooey-gooey side even without her (most recently, when he told Thirteen he would end her life if there was no one else to do it). BUT, the fact that he ran a car into Cuddy’s house. That pretty much makes him irredeemable.

      I’ve only seen a few eps of Hung, so I don’t know what other things he has done from the list, but making a living out from prostitution is hardly irredeemable—at the end of the day, he’s only hurting himself.

    • Ann says:

      Have you ever seen the first seasons of the show? The ones where Cuddy was less than a secondary character, whit few seconds for episodes and sometimes she wasn’t even in it?
      Cuddy and her dumb arc ruined the show, it was time to get rid of her.
      Get over it and search for something else to watch

      • @Ann says:

        The very fact that people of your level of intellectual supremacy, grandiose rhetoric and exquisite manners hate Cuddy, makes everyone who liked her feel oh so righteously proud, let alone thoroughly entertained. So please keep going and never ever stop. The more people see it the better. :D

        • LOL says:

          You can embroider your post but nonetheless your bitterness and rage exude from it! Keep it up, you silly fangirls are so entertaining but don’t try so hard, your little brains could succumb!

          • Killed it says:

            Wow, congratulations, three new words! Unbelievable! You go, girl! Show’em! Oh you are so precious, you have no idea. Haven’t laughed this hard for a long long time. My sincerest thanks! :DDD

          • Jess says:

            Poor, bitter huddytards, so pathetic but still so funny!

  2. Trixie says:

    Chuck is the for sure the best male character on Gossip Girl. Ed does a great job of making us believe in Chuck no matter what he does.

  3. Isabel says:

    Love this article. There’s definitely something attractive about these lovable bastards. They make TV shows exciting. My favs are: Chuck Bass, House and Dexter.

    • Tego Livi says:

      I don’t have a problem with most of the characters from other shows, but Larry on Curb Your Enthusiasm isn’t a despicable character in any way. The show is funny exactly BECAUSE he doesn’t do the bad things he’s blamed for. Very few things Larry David (the character) has done on the show are problematic to sane, normal people. The problem is, he’s surrounded by a bizarre group of characters who get offended at the stupidest things. It’s one of the main things the show has in common with Seinfeld–the ridiculous set of rules of etiquette the characters obsess over.

  4. Alyssa says:

    Even if a little amount of online fans have hatred for Chuck he is still the most favorite character of majority of GG viewers.He is a lovable basstard and Ed Westwick is so good at portraying him.Thanks to his acting talents, he gave us one of the most interesting and amazing character of favoriets on this list is Chuck Bass, Ari Gold and Dexter( sweetest killer)

    • MSC says:

      So true, Alyssa. Chuck Bass dominates the general audience and that’s who is talked about most. I love Chuck Bass. He and Blair are the only characters worth watching on Gossip Girl.

  5. Sally says:

    Chuck Bass is by far the most interesting and compelling male character on Gossip Girl. Ed Westwick plays him brilliantly. It doesn’t hurt that he’s sexy as hell either!

    • Carrie says:

      My heart skips a beat every time I see Chuck Bass/Ed Westwick! He is the most compelling male on that show and others pale to him. The only one who can act aside from him is Leighton as Blair. Ed plays him brilliantly. What a sexy catch!

  6. Santana says:

    I didn’t realize how fond I was of anti-heroic characters until I went through this slideshow! Thank you. :) I would never want to deal with any of these folks in real life but Chuck Bass, House and Jackie Peyton make for compelling TV characters. I think it’s their lack of moral boundaries combined with just enough humanity to keep me from totally writing them off. They can do shocking things but I’m still in their corner. Some of the others on the list (namely Cartman, Sue Sylvestor, etc) are just fun on a pure anarchy level. They do things we’d never dream of doing in real life but secretly want to. I’d actually classify Dexter as more of a heroic character than an anti-heroic character. Sure he’s a serial killer but his motivations are rarely selfish. Killing is in his nature, but he uses it for justice.
    Anyway, fun article and slideshow. :)

  7. Kyle says:

    No Walter White? Hello?

  8. wmcc520 says:

    I think Nancy from Weeds should go into the irredeemable column too. What started out as a widow trying to get by has become a selfish reckless character who puts herself and her love of danger ahead of her kids. There is nothing likable about this character anymore and I can’t even watch the show.

    • Tucker says:

      I would have to agree with this. Even my love of Mary-Louise Parker’s talent – and my little crush on her – can no longer overcome how unappealing Nancy has become.

      • tahina says:

        I just finished watching first 4 seasons of Weeds on Netflix. I loved Mary-Louise Parker, but liked Elizabeth Perkins acting even better. Yet, both of their characters Nancy and Celia, fall under the same criteria, despicable women and even worse mothers.

        • Snsetblaze says:

          I’d agree that Celia would have belonged on this list if the list had been done two years ago when the actress was still with the series. I’d add Kevin Nealon’s character, Doug, to the list.

  9. ds says:


  10. MSC says:

    So true, Alyssa. Chuck Bass dominates the general audience and that’s who is talked about most. I love Chuck Bass. He and Blair are the only characters worth watching on Gossip Girl.The rest of the characters are a waste of airspace these days.

  11. sweetiepie1019 says:

    As much as I adore Ed Westwick, I’m not finding Chuck Bass very lovable these days. Somewhere between the hotel thing, the Jenny thing, the Rainna thing, the almost forcing himself on Blair thing, and the sleeping with Blair after his stupid mess almost got her killed and even though she had a fiance thing, I stopped feeling sympathetic for him. Maybe giving up Blair really did show some signs of maturity; maybe he’ll finally actually grow up a little – and I’m not asking for a lot of progress, just some recognizable forward momentum – and I’ll be able to love him again. Or he’ll revert to form next season, and I’ll give up on him altogether.

  12. Meg says:

    I love Chuck Bass, I can’t deny it. Ed Westwick plays him so well and ,while this character has a lot of growing to do, I never doubt he’ll eventually end up being a strong character who will figure his life and end up with the woman he loves in Blair Waldorf. His is a journey and ,like many great tv characters, it is hard and there are a million mis steps along the way. Chuck Bass is loved and we root for him to succeed, even in his darkest hours.

    Dexter Morgan is another great pic. While he considers himself a monster without a soul or feelings, he is quite the opposite to us. Sure, he kills and sometimes tortures men and women but his killer instincts at least are ones of justice. With that we have seen his pain and agony. Live on Dexter Morgan, to fight another day!

  13. no says:

    Chuck Bass is an abusive womanizer and not at all appealing. TV or not, I don’t find him lovable whatsoever and I kind of judge anyone who does.

    • Amy says:

      Have to agree. And this is coming from someone who used to consider Chuck her fav character…

    • Alyssa says:

      you judge the ones who love Chuck Bass? so who do you think are you to judge people?Aww I guess you worship Dan Humphrey the Judger!
      Deal with it pathetic haters Chuck Bass is the most loved character of GG most people are only watching for him and noone outside your little cyber world think he is abuser or something.Get a life! Chuck Bass and Blair Waldorf aren’t real people.Learn how to watch a show and if you aren’t happy with it just go and find another one.Stop abusing the people who love the characters you don’t like.

  14. Lexie says:

    Yes!!!! Of Course you picked Chuck Bass! He’s the best character on tv. I hope he and Blair get together again!

  15. areyouserious says:

    Chuck Bass is the worst character on any TV show I have ever watched. He is an attempted rapist and abuser whose flaws are constantly glossed over or glorified by the writers. He isn’t ‘lovably’ despicable – he’s just despicable, period. I wish they would kill him off.

    House also sucks. He could have murdered Cuddy with the stunt he pulled in the series finale.

    • Steph says:

      Pathetic and crazy ass posters. Suck it.

      • areyouserious says:

        Don’t you have some self-insert Chuck Bass fanfiction to go and read or write? Bye now.

        • Steph says:

          Mad Chuck Bass made the list and fans love him. Go cry on that big pillow of yours.

        • Allie says:

          Aww, it’s Charlie Trout! Don’t you ever get tired of repeating the same thing over and over again?

          Here’s the thing- lots of people love Chuck, and nothing you say will make any difference to them. So ultimately, you’re just wasting your time.

      • Amy says:

        Whats pathetic and crazy about someone merely expressing their own opinion?

  16. Jenna! says:

    I like Chuck Bass, Barney Stinson, and Dexter Morgan. The whole list is really good. Chuck Bass is a very entertaining guy and he and Blair sizzle on my screen. Excellent choice. Barney, so lovable and funny! Dexter, dark and dangerous but he has me glued to my set too!

  17. Steph says:

    Chuck Bass PWNS!!! Haters, go away because Chuck Bass is a fan favorite and here to stay! He and Blair make Gossip Girl. No way it would be on without them. Can’t wait to see my awesome, lovable Chuck Bass kicking ass again. Haters, live with it!

  18. Elisha says:

    My man, Chuck Bass made it! I love him! Live on forever Chuck Bass, we love you! Go get your girl Blair!

  19. Paige says:

    Yes to Klaus, Katherine, and esp Dexter.

    Chuck isn’t really a lovable character these days either. The fangirls are just blinded. He’s become a real mess.

    • Crista says:

      I’m not blinded. People like the guy. He’s a tv character, you don’t have to be a jerk because others don’t like what you do. Glad Chuck Bass made the list.

      • Steph says:

        They’re so dumb. They actually think Chuck is real. They take fiction very seriously and actually believe he and Blair are real. Chuck made the list. They’re mad they’re crappy characters don’t.

  20. Crista says:

    Diggin’ the Chuck Bass and Klaus picks! Chuck Bass is great and I love watching him on my tv set every Monday. Without him Gossipgirl is boring. Klaus on TVD was compelling and had me a little scared at times but fun non-the-less.

  21. meg says:

    There should be 2 lists – the tv characters who does despicable things who isn’t a woobie, and the tv characters who does despicable things who is a woobie because the other characters on their resp. show treat them like they’re god’s gift to the world who can do no wrong and not someone who does despicable things.

    • Crista says:

      I think it’s their list, so it’s their rules. I really like the list because most of my favorite tv characters are here. Chuck Bass, Barney, Sue Sylvester, Katherine and Klaus. Great list tvline!

      • Star says:

        Trending does not equal postive feedback, casey anthony trended so does tha mean she is the most popular person in america? I know you can’t be this naive Steph.

        • Renee says:

          I respect everyone’s right to like the fictional characters they like. That’s up to the individual viewer. But to act like Chuck Bass isn’t a popular character and to liken him trending on twitter approx 7 times now (e.g., twice worldwide, twice in the US, once in the UK, once in Canada, once in LA I believe) to Casey Anthony is pretty absurd.

          If you don’t believe me and think the only reason people talk about him is because they hate him sooooooo much then go look for yourself. Just type in his name and look at the tweets. Other than the tweets from the 5 crazy PC fake feminists obsessed with saving Blair Waldorf (and ensuring her “agency”) and hysterically attacking Chuck/Blair fans and the @GGWriters, the vast majority of tweets are positive. He’s an iconic character that gets people talking and generates buzz for the show. Given how craptacular Gossip Girls ratings have become and how much it’s viewing audience has shrunk within the last year the fact he gets that much attention for the show is pretty damn significant. Especially given how they marginalized his character last season to explore an alternative pairing for his leading lady. Even with terrible storylines dominated by guest stars he gets people talking.

          So go ahead and disagree with the writer calling him “lovably despicable.” That’s certainly your right as a viewer. But you look ridiculous claiming he’s hated by the majority.

          • Star says:

            Whatever helps you sleep at night sweetie.

          • Angie says:

            Great post! And it’s true. Chuck Bass is loved on Twitter. He trends when other GG characters never have. I love Chuck Bass and I root for he and Blair too. I do find it sad a small group is so rude to others because of a television show.

          • Allie says:

            So much word. Some people really can’t handle anyone disagreeing with them- they just hate him so much, they can’t stand that so many people like him.

        • Crista says:

          Everytime Chuck trended it wasn’t because he was horrible. It was because fans love him. Try to stop twisting things because they upset you.

  22. Star says:

    What about Chuck Bass is lovable? He gets away with everything, Blair always pays 2 times more for his sins than he does. According to the show after he whored her he could still have any girl he wanted, while Blair was forced to pine over him all season and can barely even like a guy even though she is always the wronged party.

    So yeah there is nothing lovable or redeemable about him in my eyes. It has gone so far past the line of what we should have to accept a character doing, rapist, pimp, abuser etc anybody who wants this as their romantic lead has some serious issues. The shows REAL most popular character is Blair Waldorf and her being always on the receiving end if his crap has made her weak and pathetic which is probably why people have tuned out in droves.

  23. Alice says:

    Chuck Bass is my favorite character!

  24. fiction vs reality says:

    I love that Chuck Bass made the list. I love that basstard and I love Ed Westwick. I’m not denying the fact that Chuck has done some very awful things but at the end he’s a fictional character and has seasons to grow and make up for what he has done. Chuck is the main reason that the show still gets buzz and he is still loved by many, some are afraid to admit this though since it’s popular to call them out as ‘pro-abuse’ and ‘pro-rape’. I really wonder what’s more despicable; a fictional character or people who cyber bully real life people?

  25. lipsticksocialism says:

    yes, Dan Scott is utterly irredeemable!

  26. Captain says:

    Cartman is the greatest antihero on television. I’m sorry but saying that Dexter is the most “universally loved” antihero is a bit cheap. The show is called Dexter, you’re enjoyment of it depends on you liking the character. The entire show is about him, if you don’t like him, you don’t watch the show.

  27. ds says:

    I don’t find Chuck Bass despicable at all..he may have a dark side and devilish style but he and Blair have the biggest hearts in GG…and Ed Westwick is such a talent to portray him, you literally feel him…GREAT TALENT! He makes GG worth watching (especially him and Leighton-I mostly watch GG because of Chuck&Blair)…everything about these two are very intreguing and pulls you in!! also I don’t find Barney despicable either…if Chuck and Barney would make a duo that would be great..they can be their wingmen :P they have lots in common, they both wear suits anyway LOL…these multilayered-fragmented characters make worth watching a serie, not the plaid ones…I love Chuck Bass, Barney Stinson, Cartman and Dexter..also I’ve never hated them…never and ever =)

  28. Dexter Crazy says:

    LOOOOOOOOOVE Dexter Morgan! Never thought I’d root for a serial killer. I can be his Lumen anytime!

  29. Matt says:

    Even though she is off air now Julie Cooper is always the most lovably despicable evil women I’ve ever seen on TV.

  30. un-holy says:

    Eric Cartman LMAO! (tbh he would not make my top 3 favorite South Park characters list, but I still like him)

  31. Marco says:

    I just want to know what the HELL is Ray Drecker doing in this list, and as an ‘irredeemable’, no less! He isn’t prostituting himself for fun, like Nancy Botwin (at least initially) didn’t sell pot for fun! I mean, way to show you’ve never watched an episode of the show and how hypocrite you are!

  32. ana muller says:

    who DOESN’T love Barney Stinson?

    • Jana says:

      true that :)

    • Tego Livi says:

      I don’t, for one. I thought his schtick was mildly amusing for an episode or two, but got really old really fast. Fortunately, the people who make the show seem to have realized it, too, because they reined him in after a while. His catchphrases and annoying mannerisms are delivered in much smaller doses since the first season.

  33. Jana says:

    Ari Gold is the best TV character EVER created.

    And this is the first TV line list I can totally agree with :).

  34. C says:

    I fail to see what is remotely likable about an attempted serial rapist like Chuck Bass.

  35. Becca says:

    What about the gang from It’s Always Sunny? I feel like they ALL fall into this category.

    • Amber says:

      This is my favorite comment. I wholeheartedly agree. Which one is the worst out of all of them do you think, though? I go with Dennis because of his lack of ethics when it comes to statutory rape and taking a girl out on a boat to the middle of the ocean and thinking she’ll have to put out because of “the implication”. Also, let’s not forget the D.E.N.N.I.S. system. Demonstrate value, Engage physically, Nurture dependence, Neglect emotionally, Inspire hope, and Separate entirely. Dennis Reynolds is one hilarious, bad guy.

  36. sheesh says:

    i can’t believe you deleted my comment. BITCH

  37. airhead says:

    I will never like chang. He’s just way too creepy

  38. J says:

    Chuck Bass is disgusting, and Ed’s overacting is getting hilarious.