20 Most Annoying TV Characters Ever

Ellis Boyd, Smash (2012)

For the love of sweater vests, please kick Terrible Ellis (Jaime Cepero) off Broadway! This pathologically opportunistic, eavesdropping assistant hasn't met a door he doesn't like pressing his ear against. It'd be one thing if he were deliciously evil — or better yet, if he could sing — but this blank-faced lurker is one of the biggest flaws in a hugely flawed (yet weirdly addictive) series. —Stephan Lee

Kim Bauer, 24 (2001–10)

They called her ''Cougar Trap.'' The hapless teenage daughter of terrorist fighter Jack Bauer on 24, Kim Bauer (Elisha Cuthbert) had a never-ending series of misadventures that kept distracting our hero from saving Los Angeles. Most infamously, a season 2 nature trek resulted in Kim getting caught in, yes, a cougar trap, then nearly eaten by the very animal the trap was meant to catch. Apparently the cougar was smarter than she was. —James Hibberd

Nikki and Paulo, Lost (2006–07)

There's a reason some characters are relegated to the background. When Lost writers decided to bring two of the also-crasheds to the forefront, no one could have predicted how grating the pair's whiny inanity would become. Only 11 episodes after their debut, Nikki and Paulo (played by Kiele Sanchez and Rodrigo Santoro) were unceremoniously buried alive in a particularly gruesome (and satisfying) bit of fan service. —Keith Staskiewicz

Janice Litman, Friends (1994–2004)

If irritation could be tapped as a fuel source, our reaction to Janice's laugh could power a midsize city. The curly-haired cackler (Maggie Wheeler) ruined any number of events in the Friends' lives, popping up throughout Chandler's courtship of and marriage to Monica, and even crowding into Rachel's hospital room when they went into labor at the same time. —Lanford Beard

Sam McKinney, Diff'rent Strokes (1984–86)

Most people point to The Brady Bunch's Cousin Oliver as the ultimate horrifying example of a newer, supposedly cuter little kid brought in to boost ratings, but give me Diff'rent Strokes' Sam. Wait... no, that's not what I mean. I mean don't give him to me. Because he's super annoying! Truth be told, I can't remember what exactly made that little scamp (Danny Cooksey) so irritating, but every so often I wake up in a cold sweat with the words ''Hey, Mr. D!'' running through my head. And it's that kid's fault. —Dalton Ross

Oliver Trask, The O.C. (2003–04)

Oliver (Taylor Handley) was around for only six episodes, but it seemed like much longer. During his time in Newport Beach, the Marissa-obsessed poor little rich boy faked a girlfriend and a suicide attempt, before sealing his TV-villain fate when he held Marissa hostage. Just the mention of Oliver's name still makes us brood, Ryan Atwood style. —Breia Brissey

Kimmy Gibbler, Full House (1987-1995)

The Tanners' wacky next door neighbor and DJ's best friend was definitely the Urkel of Full House. Danny Tanner (Bob Saget) and Uncle Jesse (John Stamos) always wanted Kimmy (Andrea Barber) to go home, and her outfits — she was fond of neon, patterns, and horizontal stripes — were as loud as her blaring voice. One of her most defining traits: her especially stinky feet. Gibbler, go home! —Stephan Lee

Arnold Horshack, Welcome Back Kotter (1975-1979)

Sounding a bit like a vacuum cleaner trying to suck up a billiard ball, or the cachinnations of a gravely ill hyena, Arnold Horshack's laugh was one of the most grating sounds in television history, possibly beaten only by some unholy Jean Stapleton/Fran Drescher hybrid. Sure, he was the lovable weirdo of the Sweat Hogs, but every time he raised his hand and yelled, ''Oohhh, oohh, oohh, Mr. Kotter!'' you wanted to send him straight to detention. —Keith Staskiewicz

Lutz, 30 Rock (2006–present)

He's not funny, he's not likable and perhaps most importantly, he's not Alec Baldwin. On a show where no character has any real redeemable qualities to begin with, it must say a lot that Lutz is considered the worst. Lazy and unlovable Lutz is the butt of far too many jokes, transcending pity, and passing into cringe-worthy territory. It's oddly self-serving that the characters on 30 Rock can't stand Lutz, because frankly, we can't either. —Marc Snetiker

Will Schuester, Glee (2009–present)

Despite essentially being Glee's main character, the ever-drippy Will Schuester has the intrigue of a blank chalkboard and the personality of a pair of pleated khakis. It's not entirely Matthew Morrison's fault that Will is a needy, whiny, sad sack of a teacher whose body runs on complaints and Activia. But whenever Will is peeving about something or getting in the way of the kids' fun, things just seem a little less gleeful. —Marc Snetiker

April Kepner, Grey's Anatomy (2009-2012)

I will admit, April's lightened up a little this season, but a few episodes of sympathetic behavior can't erase the painful memories of Seattle Grace-Mercy West's most irritating doctor being, well, Seattle Grace-Mercy West's most irritating doctor. Becoming chief resident hasn't made her any less insecure or shrill; instead, she's risen to new heights of boring. Nauseatingly innocent and a self-righteous killjoy, April seems to have existed solely for the purpose of making everyone else on Grey's Anatomy look worlds more interesting. —Marc Snetiker

Susan Mayer-Delfino, Desperate Housewives (2004–2012)

To get to the core of why Susan (Teri Hatcher) is a nuisance, one need look no further than the helpless shrubbery of Wisteria Lane. Susan found herself there — naked — way back in season 1. It was ''zany and adorable'' at the time. And then, while people were dying left and right, Susan continued to find herself in similarly ludicrous approximation of that character-defining stunt for seven more seasons. It's not always about you, sweetie. —Lanford Beard

Screech, Saved by the Bell, Saved by the Bell: The College Years, Saved by the Bell: The New Class (1989-2000)

Brillo-haired Samuel ''Screech'' Powers (Dustin Diamond) was a scrawny misfit whose squeaky voice, nerdy interests, and talent for bungling things made him unbearable — Steve Urkel, but not as smart. Most annoyingly of all, Screech (and Diamond) just didn't know when to quit: The grating character appeared in not one, not two, but all three incarnations of Saved by the Bell. No wonder Lisa Turtle wanted nothing to do with him. —Hillary Busis

Henry Mills, Once Upon a Time (2011-present)

To be fair, Henry's (Jared S. Gilmore) screen time has drastically decreased as Once's freshman year has progressed — and absence makes the heart grow fonder. But throughout the first half of the season, the precocious kid drove viewers up a wall with his exposition-heavy dialogue and penchant for stating the obvious. Sure, the kid is only supposed to be 10 years old — but hasn't he learned what happens to obnoxious children in fairy tales? —Hillary Busis

Dawn Summers, Buffy the Vampire Slayer (2000-2003)

Dawn (Michelle Trachtenberg) had issues, and with good reason: The people she loved kept abandoning her, her sister was an ultra-enviable superhero, and, oh yeah, at age 14, she found out that everything she thought she knew was a lie. Still, it was tough to feel sympathy for Dawn as she sulked, complained, and developed an irritating shoplifting problem. Maybe if the teen had whined less, viewers wouldn't have yearned to see her get eaten by some Hellmouth beast. —Hillary Busis

Dr. Peter Benton, ER (1994-2009)

Why did it always seem like there was a bug up the butt of Dr. Peter Benton? We get it — an emergency room isn't the place for a whole lot of Tra La La — but LaSalle's brooding depiction of a talented but rarely satisfied surgeon was a total downer, man. —Lynette Rice

Janice Soprano, Sopranos (1999–2007)

No one in this Mob family could be said to make good choices, but Tony's sister Janice (Aida Turturro) seemed to delight in her selfishness in a way that was just crazymaking. Yes, a mother like hers would have created a monster in anyone, but between that shrill voice, her conniving ways, and her awful choices in men (Ralphie Cifaretto and Richie Aprile, anyone?), I couldn't stand to see Janice onscreen. —Abby West

Meg, Supernatural (2005-2007; 2009-present)

Once upon a time, demon Meg was a formidable foe for the Winchesters. Whether she was infiltrating Sam's life, setting traps for the boys and their father, or possessing Sam's body, her presence meant trouble. But after her first vessel (played by Nicki Aycox) bit the big one, she debuted a new body (Rachel Miner) in season 5. But gone is the deceivingly sweet exterior that made the character a hit. The result? She's gone from sinister to sinfully unnecessary. —EW Staff

Georgina Sparks, Gossip Girl (2008-present)

In season 1, Georgina was a welcomed challenger to Queen B Blair Waldorf. Frankly, it was fun to watch Blair and Co. squirm upon her arrival. But these days, Georgina doesn't seem to have gotten the memo that her once-foes have moved on to adulthood — and so should she. —EW Staff

Kennedy, Buffy the Vampire Slayer (2002-03)

Granted, Kennedy (Iyari Limon) had some serious shoes to fill, replacing the dearly departed Tara (Amber Benson) as the new girlfriend for sapphic witch Willow (Alyson Hannigan). But did she have to be such a brat? The Hamptons-bred potential slayer aggressively pushed her way into Willow's heart whether Willow herself was ready for it or not, and stridently called into question Buffy's leadership at the moment when her leadership was most needed. Her one redeeming virtue: Kennedy herself even seemed to know how annoying she really was: ''This might have escaped your keen notice,'' she once told Willow, ''but I'm kind of a brat.'' —Adam B. Vary