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"I really like beer."
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August 19 2006

James Gunn responds to our complaints. The Slither director explains why Mal didn't make his best television characters list. Also, you can see the artwork for the UK Slither DVD here. And Joss posts his own Top 25 TV characters list here. A further reply from Gunn can be found here.

This guy's blog kicks ass! Now I have to make sure I see Wonder Showzen and Tromeo and Juliet.
When was his blog posted on here to elicit "80 billion f-ing messages?" I must have missed something.

Fun blog to read. Sorry, but Kirk Gleason makes me cringe (and often want to leave the room) when he's on GG, and in no way is he better that Mal, Spike, or Spock. It always comes down to who you know, not what you do - even in the blogverse.
It was here.

All right you crazy Whedonesque-reading browncoat monkeys

Eh. Scorsese's said worse about us.
I think it's hilarious that he thought to include kirk on his list. I'm mostly excited he included stephen merchant.
"Browncoat monkeys"? Why monkeys? Why can't we be "Browncoat Penguins"? Penguins are so much cooler than monkeys.

[ edited by EvilFirePixie8 on 2006-08-19 20:18 ]
Dude. Nothing beats monkies.
Should we start complaining about him leaving the rest of the crew off now?
Penguins wear tuxedos, not browncoats. Everybody knows that. Duh.

Still, I can't believe you crazy Whedonesquers emailed him in sufficient numbers to get called out by name. I'd make some pithy comment but I'm still all confused by Kirk's 'brother' talking dirty some. Head asploding.
Yes. In fact, I'm totally going to email him and complain about not putting Serenity on his list of favourite TV space ships. And that he hasn't written the list yet.
So what does it say about James Gunn that he put Ray Barone on his list and not other beloved JW characters (I note that he does go quite aways back in time ... Columbo - well, who can't help loving Peter Falk)? I've watched ELR for Peter Boyle (Frank) and Doris Roberts (Marie) but Ray Barone? He must relate in some small, tiny, very miniscule way (okay, okay, I'll admit the "fly-eating" episode involving one of Robert's girlfriends is one of the funniest things I've ever seen that wasn't Frank or Marie-centric on that show - but it was just that one time).

[ edited by Tonya J on 2006-08-19 23:17 ]
I see he can pick multiples from the same show but only one from Joss?! Three from the Office, two from Deadwood, two from Larry Sanders, and two from the Sopranos. What is up with that?

And yes, we are monkeys. Terrifying space monkeys.

"Browncoat monkeys"? Why monkeys?

Nah, it's fair.

[ edited by Caleb on 2006-08-19 22:47 ]
Awsome. I love it when get recognized :)
Hey hey, we're the monkees. and people say we monkey around. we're too busy singing...
80 billion fucking messages

Hey. We're bigger than Google.
Bigger than the entire world too apparently.
James may actually be blind from wanking over pictures of Mal's arse, so his figures may be adding one or two zeroes.
*Has images in head of 80 billion messages fucking each other*

It's like a giant message orgy!
I took a gander at that James on IMDb. He's pretty cute, but not as cute as Mal. Maybe it's rampant jealousy that kept Mal off the list!
First, LMAO over James and our replies in this thread! (Is LMAO just a humorous version of masturbating?)

Second, here's our proof that mail-bombing directors only pisses them off. (Don't e-mail Sam Raimi about ED remake, mmm'kay?)

Third, I think there's more sex and violence in this thread than the last 3 eps of Deadwood combined. Sweet.

Is LMAO just a humorous version of masturbating?

That's the most profound question I've ever seen on Whedonesque.
I'm humbled, gossi, truly. ;-)
Yeah that's us. Rock and roll kids of the nephilim.*

*Believe me when I say that actually means something, but it involves train tunnels, the Manic Street Preachers, the NME and a village where I lived which ultimately inspired a lot of Stephen King books. It's a bit complicated really.
SIMON: “Eh. Scorsese's said worse about us."

Okay, Simon, I give up. I've just spent two (2) hours of my life that I will never get back looking for something on the interwebs that Martin Scorsese might have said about whedonesque. (Okay, so I got a little sidetracked over at myspace, but that happens, and there was that lengthy visit to youtube-- was I really there 20 minutes? -- and a day isn't really complete without a good rummage through the dustbins over at Fandom Wank... but essentially I've been looking for it for freakin' ever!)

So can you help me? Simon or anyone else? This rabid & enquiring browncoat monkey wants to understand how such a bizarre feckin' travesty an intriguing juxtaposition could come to be.

"SERENDIPITY fans happen to be the most tastefullest fans who have extra or redundant body parts." -- Joss, interchange with Warren Ellis on WE's site, Feb. 2006

(Edited to correct comic book-creator combining... thanks, delirium_haze.)

[ edited by QuoterGal on 2006-08-20 05:46 ]
Psss.. it's Warren Ellis.
Did I say Scorsese? I meant Spielberg. And by that, I freely admit I'm making this whole thing up as I go along.
SIMON: “Did I say Scorsese? I meant Spielberg.”

*mutters* sending me haring off on another virtual paper-chase, well I hope you're having a good larf at my expense, I expect when I come back from my fruitless Spielberg+whedonesque search you'll tell me it was M. Night Shyamalan in The Man Who Heard Voices or Clint Eastwood in a interview by the NRA. There is no end in sight :>

Shouldn't you Brits be in bed or something?

[ edited by QuoterGal on 2006-08-20 03:17 ]
Hi! Remember me? I don't. But I think I have something to do with writing stuff, or writing ABOUT stuff -- I might be a food critic. I'm pretty critical about food, so that's probably it.

Anywhy, I couldn't look at Mr Gunn's nice list without suddenly being compelled to make one of my own. What is it about lists? Are they like soft-shell crab with a mango coulis, where... actually I don't know where that's heading. Possibly to ADVENTURE! I made a list.

Following James' rules, but also adding a "no shows of my own" clause, here's the first awesome 25 I could come up with. Let the debate be debatey! (oh, also I'm not bothering to spell check, IMDB, or ask anyone about things I only partially remember. So best of luck knowing what the hell I'm typing about.) In no particular order:

1) #6. (See, it really is no particular order, or this would be about 5 later.) Patrick McGoohan retaining ultimate cool in the face of existential, Kalfka-esque shennanigans and a giant floating Blancmange.

2) George Michael Bluth. Arrested Development is impossible to choose from, but the buttoned-down kid is usually the character I can't stand and George Michael is frikkin' adorable. Poor little guy.

3) Does anybody remember the desperate last-minute revamp of "Beauty and the Beast"? Where they got all thrillery, killed Linda Hamilton and replaced her with Jo Anderson as a sort of female Will Graham (before half the characters on TV were sort of female Will Grahams-- before, in fact, Clarisse Starling)? Well she was awesome. Cool, and wicked beautiful, and being stalked by Lance Henriksen as a guy named "Snow"! The stuff of life! Show died in a month.

4) Belzer from Hill Street Blues. Guy could not partner with anyone who didn't die. The actor, the wannabe hero, the 'tard, the nice lady -- they were all meat for the Belzergrinder. I don't care how repetative it was -- he was feral, funny and human. Eating out of a can on X-mas, getting a call -- that's a wrong number -- and never for a moment feeling sorry for himself. Wow. I feel sorry for myself all the time, and I eat from very fancy cans.

5) Josh Lyman from the West Wing. Another 'throw a stone, hit a favorite', but Josh has a thing. That thing is called Donna.

6) Ed Asner in any show featuring Lou Grant. Solid, baby. Oh, I'll just slide my character from high comedy to high drama like people do all the time. What's that you say? Well, surely very often, yes? No?

7) Gordon Jackson: Mr Hudson the Butler in Upstairs Downstairs. The avatar of cool, except in that late episode where they made him cry over some young woman which was entirely unseemly.

8) Lisa Kudrow as Phoebe on Friends. Yeah, backlash etc, but that was one of the best written shows ever for a spell and when it was she could not miss. Really unique.

9) President Stands-With-A-Fist from BSG. The role she was born for. You wanna go head to head with Edward James Almos? Perhaps you don't remember what a bad-ass he was on Miami vice. So bad-ass, in fact, that he's

10) so there.

11) Rod Serling on the Twilight Zone. He wasn't a character per se, he was just TV at its finest and smoking at its coolest.

12) Quincy M.D. Or my wife will divorce me. But also, yeah.

13) Logan from V Mars. Smirking his way into TV history.

14) The american Office is another throw-a-stone, but I'm giving it up for Jim, 'cause I've watched that scene between him and Pam in the season 2 finale like 17 times and his readings are smooth like booze. Also, he's the person in that scene who's not married to James Gunn, so I can rant and nobody gets freaked. (I fear James as I fear few things.)

15) Agent Dale Cooper. 'Cause pie.

16) Finola Hughes, Anna Devane on General Hospital. Why does she flirt with me so?

17) Jonathan Banks in Wiseguy. Here's a guy doomed to play heavies in movies like "Freejack" -- throw some wire-rimmed glasses on him and he becomes the coolest man on the tube. (3rd use of 'cool'. This isclearly important to me, this 'cool'.) While Ken Wahl lost his mind and gained his weight, Banks anchored the show from first to last. Indelible.

18) Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer. This may be stretching the rules, but your modern world frightens and confuses me and he's on the damn list.

19) Kristie MacNichol on Family. Early crush. Can't remember much more.

20) That car rental guy from Veronica Ma -- oh this is too cheesy even for me. Columbo.

21) Bea Arthur as Maude. Or in anything ever. But mostly Maude.

22) Jerry Orbach in Law and Order. I hated the obligatory wisecrack, but Jerry is New York personified (and a Broadway Hoofer) and as real as it gets...

23) ...Unless it gets to Dennis Farina in Crime Story, who actually WAS a cop before he started acting. Tough guy, great cars, whatashow. The bad guy gets nuked. NUKED.

24) Dick Van Dyke. He's diagnosing... murder! Also I think he had a sitcom.

25) House. If you saw him in Blackadder, even more so, but if you haven't, House. The last great humanist.

'Kay. That's that then. First off, what's up with all the cops? Even Finola on GenHo was Chief of Police. Second, I reserve the right to wake up tomorrow and scream bloody murder at remembering the 25 I actually like much better. In fact, I think I'll do it now. BLOODY MURRDERRRR!!!!!

I feel better. Back to work, Crachitt.

... and then there's Joss. Ha! My spidey-sense was tingling. Now I don't have to post my chart illuminating the times & dates of Joss's posts. Phew. Quelle relief.

I love the list -- and Hugh Laurie as anything, but especially House. I even like him in Peter's Friends which is saying something or not much.

It's like Josh Lyman posting on Lemon-Lyman. La, how we've missed you. I won't even quote you back at yourself.

[ edited by QuoterGal on 2006-08-20 03:25 ]
Ha, Joss named a crush of mine, Jonathan Banks on Wiseguy. It was those wire-rims pushed mw over the edge. Also, Joss watches a lot of television.

[ edited by zandra on 2006-08-20 06:34 ]
"Snakes on blog"
Joss likes Josh Lyman! Another reason I have to watch more West Wing. I adore that guy.
Yes! Whedon is a Josh/Donna shipper. (Any and all other ships are happily accepted :-) He also loves Dale Cooper/Pie! And Logan! And House! And he made the President Stands-with-a-Fist joke! And Jim! And Phoebe!

I couldn't be more happy with Mr Whedon right now.
Mostly in agreement with you Joss, although I haven't seen all the shows (because I'm, like, 14. Or 24. Or somewhere in between).

I am liking the Friends love, as nobody shares it here except apparently us. It was an orange juice carton Ross rolled onto and squirted at Rachel, people. But it's okay.

I have trouble watching House *because* of Blackadder and his other shows.

President Laura Rosalin. I would never argue with that woman.

My favourite TV character of all time is, in fact, Asian Dan. He didn't say much, but it's all in the performance. That dude had LAYERS.

Also: I am a UKer, but I love American Office. I just wanted to put that out there, to make myself feel special again. That's it, I've done gloating.

[ edited by gossi on :10 ]

[ edited by gossi on 2006-08-20 04:11 ]
Okay Joss, numbers 9, 13 and 15 earn you even MORE of my undying love and affection than you already had...

But number 3? That may be the greatest thing you have ever, EVER written. You're a god among insects, Mr. Sweden.
I done done the list. And take that to my partner, who says I have issues with working on a deadline.

1) #6. (See, it really is no particular order, or this would be about 5 later.) Patrick McGoohan – oh, hell, yeah.

2) George Michael Bluth – oh, fer sure, and just when you’d think he’d have to make a false step, he wouldn’t. He always broke my heart.

3) Does anybody remember the desperate last-minute revamp of "Beauty and the Beast"? Nope. These were mostly the “I hate TV” years for me.

4) Belzer from Hill Street Blues. Okay, yeah, I get it.

5) Josh Lyman from the West Wing.Yup, and I would have dumped my partner in a hot minute for Josh. Donna could stay, but she’d have to be quiet.

6) Ed Asner in any show featuring Lou Grant. I miss him and his nerve.

7) Gordon Jackson: Mr Hudson the Butler in Upstairs Downstairs. So unyielding and always right. The crying was just shocking.

8) Lisa Kudrow as Phoebe on Friends. At the show’s peak, there was no one better. One of my cats is named after her.

9) President Stands-With-A-Fist from BSG. La-la-la, hands over ears, I’m not listening to this, ‘cause I’m buying DVDs.

10) so there. Tough guy.

11) Rod Serling on the Twilight Zone. A legend for a reason.

12) Quincy M.D. Or my wife will divorce me. I’d like to go there with you, but I just can’t. I don’t have a divorce riding on it, though.

13) Logan from V Mars. Smirking his way into TV history. Oh, abso-feckin’-lutely. Although he stole my “quote-for-the-day” message.

14) The american Office is another throw-a-stone… I can’t get past liking the Gervais one better.

15) Agent Dale Cooper. 'Cause pie. Well, yeah. Plus, Joss said “pie”, Goners-folks. You heard it here…

16) Finola Hughes, Anna Devane on General Hospital. Joss needs our help. Please, won’t you?

17) Jonathan Banks in Wiseguy. Oops, I can’t watch gangster stuff, I just can’t. *runs and hides for a minute.*

18) Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer. Unfrozen anybody is good (South Park, f’rinstance) but unfrozen Phil Hartman rules.

19) Kristie MacNichol on Family. Okay, that’s just weird. Although I confess to a fondness for Little Darlings.

20) That car rental guy from Veronica Ma -- oh this is too cheesy even for me. Columbo. Haven’t seen him yet (another current-season DVD hold-out.) I hear he’s good, and I thought Numfar was ground-breaking.

21) Bea Arthur as Maude. She’ll always be the best Threepenny Opera Lucy for me...

22) Jerry Orbach in Law and Order. *sniff* He'll always be the only Billy Flynn...

23) ...Unless it gets to Dennis Farina in Crime Story, who actually WAS a cop before he started acting. (not so big on the cops, either. *hides again…*)

24) Dick Van Dyke. He’s my childhood TV wrapped up in an actor.

25) House. If you saw him in Blackadder, even more so, but if you haven't, House. The last great humanist. Hugh Laurie. I like him a lot when he acts with Imelda Staunton, too. That way, I can pretend he's with me.

Okay, Joss-Boss. When you're busy working, also get some good R&R and don't wait so long to call or write. You know how we worry.

[ edited by QuoterGal on 2006-08-20 04:58 ]
Shouldn't you Brits be in bed or something?

Yes, QuoterGal. That's a very good point. Me and my monkey are going to e-bed.
Expected to be on the same page with the Boss on Veronica Mars and BSG. But, Joss loves Belzer, Mr. Hudson, Lt. Castillo (THE best part of Miami Vice)and Jonathan Banks on Wiseguy! Yay! Why does this make me happy? Joss-love is weird.

And Zandra--I thought I was the only one who crushed on Jonathan Banks! Between Castillo and J.B. I clearly spent my adolescence lusting over strong silent-type high ranking TV cops. So why didn't I dig Frank Furillo? No air of "don't fuck with me" menace?)

Question: Has Joss watched Deadwood? If so, I figure Al, Doc, and Dan (who I see as Deadwood's version of Jayne) must be on the next day BLOODY MURDERRRRR list.

Oh, and Jerry Orbach and Phil Hartmann? Sad now.

[ edited by narnia on 2006-08-20 04:44 ]
Joss has good taste in his list of characters. It figures one of them would be Hudson, the most famous butler since Jeeves. Imagine Gordon Jackson as a Watcher, or maybe Stephen Fry. Cool, huh?
Big surprise: I like Joss's list better than Mr. Gunn's. Nothing against Mr. Gunn but besides madmolly's point,

"I see he can pick multiples from the same show but only one from Joss?! Three from the Office, two from Deadwood, two from Larry Sanders, and two from the Sopranos. What is up with that?"

I just do not know him or his work. (Did not see Slither.) Joss on the other hand...

So yea for Patrick Mc Goohan in pretty much anything, Columbo, Lou Grant, Belzer, Rod Serling etc.. All of them that I know, I can see why they are on the list.

Excluding Whedonverse characters, my list would have to include Spock and at least one secondary character from Northern Exposure. Other than that my mind is going blank.
"A Bit of Fry and Wesley"? Oh, hell yeah, impalergeneral, what a supercool notion.

Wait, no, now I've got Peter Falk in my head as the bumbling Watcher. And Bradley Whitford as the smart, quintessential politically-savvy Watcher, and Ed Asner as the tough no-nonsense-yet-compassionate Watcher and Phil Hartman as Unfrozen Caveman Watcher and Bea Arthur as the madcap irrepressible post-menopausal Watcher...
Emma Peel. How can I forget Emma Peel? ...I'm surprised no Emma Peel from Joss.

[ edited by newcj on 2006-08-20 08:11 ]
Joss likes Finola Hughes on GH!! I never got to share my love for her with anybody. I'm not alone!! yeah.

[ edited by WheelsOfJoy on 2006-08-20 07:50 ]
Oh my god, I completely forgot about Hugh Laurie on Blackadder!! He was the Prince in the 3rd one, right? And probably in numerous bits in the other seasons, since that's sort of how they did things.


I miss Rowan Atkinson. What has he been doing with himself lately, I wonder.
Joss watches GH!?! Hmm, is that why Nicholas (a lawyer at W&H), Robin (betraying prostitute), Lucky (frat boy that Cordy liked) and Carly #2 (one of the mob of girls infatuated with Xander) were all in various episodes of BtVS, AtS and Firefly?! I think Lucky was on BtVS first and then on GH though! And yes, Finola Hughes is great!!

Loved both lists but I loved yours more Joss!! I guess I watch way too much TV!
15) Agent Dale Cooper. 'Cause pie.

O.O Pie is definitely the way to this Goner's heart <3 and it's going all pitty-pat right now!

And putting #6 as #1? Deviously perfect!
joss said, "GenHo". :)
wow. I hated it when Linda Hamilton was killed, but I LOVED Jo Anderson.

And Snow totally kicked ass.

This list explains so much.

And by the way Linda Hamilton wasn't really killed. I know its been decades but I'm pretty sure she is still alive and coming back. Seriously.

So there.

[ edited by Xane on 2006-08-20 09:13 ]
I go away for a few hours, and look who stops by! So, so, so much love for the Jossy goodness, but I have to say, until I read the explanation of "#6," I was totally thinking of another all-time best character -- does that make it a 2-for-1? ;-)

Rockin' list, Boss! Sharin' the Hugh Laurie-in-Blackadder love muchly, as well as the George Michael Bluth love, Logan love, Pres. S-W-A-F love and, by god, yes, the Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer love. I even love the #6 you didn't mean. In any case, there's not a one on there that sucks in any way whatsoever.

This really made my weekend, and why? 'Cause pie. ;-)
Funny story.

I was reading this thread and noticed someone had made their own list. Meh, thought I. Then I made it halfway down the list itself and thought, well, the poster can write - props. Then, a few hours later (as life got in the way as it tends to when you're busy making other plans), I saw the tagline and thought "Giles, my boy, you have just been pwned"

So, my question is, do people still say 'props'?
Well, Joss, can't say that I much agree with your list, but it's great to be hearing from you!

I'm pretty sure that that blond fang-y guy with the chip and then the soul and then the whole not being corporeal thing would make the top of my list.
OMFreakin'G Joss, I knew I loved you for more than just your Buffy/etc. goodness! You are probably the only other person I know who loved the character of Diana from BATB.

Does anybody remember the desperate last-minute revamp of "Beauty and the Beast"? Where they got all thrillery, killed Linda Hamilton and replaced her with Jo Anderson as a sort of female Will Graham (before half the characters on TV were sort of female Will Grahams-- before, in fact, Clarisse Starling)? Well she was awesome. Cool, and wicked beautiful, and being stalked by Lance Henriksen as a guy named "Snow"! The stuff of life! Show died in a month.

I just KNEW you ruled!!
I don't know why but I take a great deal of comfort from knowing that Joss has watched so much more TV than me, because I really, really do. Of course he is also much cooler than me because would I have to make the same list I'd get to #7 and give up in confusion and tears, as I am wimpy like that.

2) George Michael Bluth. Arrested Development is impossible to choose from, but the buttoned-down kid is usually the character I can't stand and George Michael is frikkin' adorable. Poor little guy.

so MUCH AGREEMENT. That show has an embarrassment of riches, re: characters, but George Michael was adorable in unseemly ways. I don't think anyone else has ever managed to capture perfect adorability and pathos in one seamless performace, and all from an actor so frikken young! I wanted to hug the stuffing out of him even as I was convulsing with laughter at his expense: genius!

Also, pretty much any character that Bea Arthur played is guaranteed to be awesome; Hugh Laurie always rocked, but he is rocking so much harder as House; LOGAN!1!; and even though I don't like BSG all that much, President Roslin is an incredible character (as well as Starbuck).
Should I confess that just yesterday I was all concerned that we hadn't heard a word from Joss in two months? Now I have to go and work out my own list, and post it to my lj because this topic will soon disappear behind the horizon of more new topics.

And Joss really does watch a lot of TV!
Oh my god. How did I not know this blog before? I've read like, most of the first page and I feel like I need to meet him and share a beer and an hour of TV with him. He's so cool!
So, my question is, do people still say 'props'?

Since posting on Whedonesque for this last, uhm, year (it now occurs to me how often I post here), I've started saying 'props' and 'dude' a lot. It's totally Joss' fault. I've also developed a tendancy to stab people with telephone polls, but that's probably more due to the movies I watch.
Gotta go with the House love. As The Man said, watch Hugh Laurie in Blackadder and stand amazed that they're the same actor. AND he plays piano!

Interesting. James Gunn has updated his blog and talks about why the massive internet buzz about SoaP failed to translate into massive box office. What does that remind me of...?
Maybe it's easy for us here in cyberspace to forget there are millions of people out there without a computer.
Well, Joss I have to say, I haven't seen most of these shows. I just didn't watch TV in the 80's. There were few things on that my mom would actually let me watch. My favorites though that I did get to watch were Cosby, GG (that's Golden), and Give Me a Break (that Nell Carter, she's funny). I didn't really start watching a lot of TV until I found Buffy. Then I realized, "hey there really *is* good TV out there." Thank god for Netflix! I'm watching X-Files now :)

I agree with 8, 9, 10, and 13 but that's all I've seen. I would have to add in no particular order: Lorelai and Emily Gilmore, Dr. Gaius Baltar, Mille from Freaks and Geeks, Sydney Bristow, Dr. Perry Cox, Sheriff Jim Valenti (ducking the stones, hey he cared about those aliens!), Dr. Miranda Bailey, Rube from Dead Like Me, Jaye Tyler, Veronica Mars, Felicity Porter, Sawyer from Lost, Miranda Hobbes and of course Fox Mulder. Oh, and my husband has to add Kramer.
Harmalicious, I recently watched Freaks and Geeks. It's fucking awesome.

Interesting. James Gunn has updated his blog and talks about why the massive internet buzz about SoaP failed to translate into massive box office. What does that remind me of...?

Yeah, spotted that. The reality of any situation online is that what you see in the t'interweb world isn't always representional of what's happening in the real world. Mention Serenity or Snakes On A Plane on Livejournal or an online forum, and a lot (most?) people will know what you're on about. Mention it to average joe on the street, and not so much.
OMG Joss! You read my mind last night (I'm scrolling, not even looking at the other responses yet) by mentioning Jo Anderson on Beauty & The Beast and Lou Grant. Why was I all reticent-y and didn't mention THAT!? And I was a lover of Family as well. At least, I remember it far better than you. You may or may not remember that Buddy, Kristy's character, had a gay female teacher at one time, and back then those things were verboten. Mother Lawrence (Sada Thompson) found out, was quite intolerant about it, teacher was outed and decided to leave the school, and she was portrayed as just a nice, normal teacher who couldn't overcome the whispering and ostracism. Pretty brave for 1976. You did better on Buffy.

One I would add to the list that was a really unique character until that show, or whoever associated with it made it Jump the Shark, is Frank Black (you already mentioned him, Lance Henriksen) on Millennium.

So cool to see you here.

[ edited by Tonya J on 2006-08-20 18:15 ]
Fascinating list Joss, though it must have been agonising to have to choose between Josh and Toby. Personally, I would have gone for Toby - bitterness rules supreme.
Frank Black - Tonya J, you speak the truth. He *OWNED* the screen.
I am liking the Friends love, as nobody shares it here except apparently us.

Gossi, take that back now y'hear. Friends used to be one of the best sitcoms on tv. Though - predictably - Chandler was always my favorite instead of Pheebs.

Also: yikes. How many shows on Joss' list have I not seen? Makes you wonder how his purpleness ever gets anything written. Like, at all. Of course, the years he has on me might've helped.

As for Josh or Toby... let us not choose. But if we do, trust Donna, pick Josh.
I cannot flippin' believe He mentioned Beauty & The Beast. *sigh*

...and the Joss-love just keeps on keepin' on, doesn't it?
Mostly in agreement with you Joss, although I haven't seen all the shows (because I'm, like, 14. Or 24. Or somewhere in between).
[ edited by gossi on 2006-08-20 04:11 ]
gossi | August 20, 04:09 CET

Like that's an excuse.
You got a DVD player? A VCR?
Then you can see a lot of the stuff that's on Joss's and Gunn's lists. Me? I was definitely happy to see someone mention #6 as a great TV character. I've had a decades-long crush on Patrick McGoohan. I saw "Secret Agent", the prequel series as well as The Prisoner when they came to the U.S. 'cause I'm...well, it's none of yer beeswax how old I am, see?
I got to see The Prisoner series again when I was in college and our local PBS station ran it.
What I really want to know, though is: Where are Napoleon Solo and Ilya Kuryakin of The Man from U.N.C.L.E.?? And why didn't anyone mention The Tick? Patrick Warburton ruled in that role.
I'm just sayin'.
; )

[ edited by AmazonGirl on 2006-08-20 19:49 ]
Yeah the Prisoner. Still stands up as one of the most amazing TV shows ever. I wanted to be Patrick McGoohan when I grew up. Or bear his children. Or something. I even suffered through a horrible "Ice Station Zebra" for that man.
That was a Blancmange? Must have tasted pretty awful if people kept running from it.

Hey guys. James Gunn here.

Joss - Your list was fab. Lenny Briscoe was one of the folks I left off my list through negligence. Thank God that didn't show up on an L&O board or I'd be fuh-ucked. Also, good call with WISEGUY! One of my favorite shows ever. And I CAN watch gangster stuff.

As for the rest of your comments...

You Whedonesque folks are creamy and delicious and I love you...

However, I don't have 3 characters from THE OFFICE. I have 1 from the British Office and 2 from the American Office. And --

When I first started putting this list together I found it was full of people I knew - Michael Rosenbaum from SMALLVILLE, Seth and Sarah from BUFFY, Nathan, my brother and Keiko from GILMORE GIRLS, Jason Segel from HOW I MET MY MOTHER, the whole band from 2GETHER, and practically every single American Office character, including Dwight, Angela, Toby, Kevin, and Phyllis. I've known Joss for a long time and, for one reason or another, I've become friends with many of the people in his shows (or, in Nathan's case, had them force themselves upon me sexually). As you might imagine, what was supposed to be a list of favorite TV characters became a list of my friends who were on TV and was, in effect, fairly fucking lame. If someone I like is on a show, or has created a show, I tend to enjoy that show much more -- for instance, I doubt GILMORE GIRLS would be at the top of my Tivo list if my brother wasn't on it. I'm sure I'd prefer spending my Tuesday nights softly rubbing a cheese grater against my eye.

Therefore, I decided to limit myself where friends and family were involved with the shows. So: one Jenna-connected character, one Sean-connected character, and one Joss-connected character. However, I love me my Creed and I just couldn't keep him off the list. He went on there automatically. It just happened, I swear. And although Creed is a MySpace friend, I've barely met him in person. (I actually don't want to get to know him, because my hope is he's as creepy and strange as he is on the show, and I don't want to be disappointed.)

But honestly, a LOT of you guys have written me (okay, I'm so busted, 80 billion was an exaggeration -- but 200 and 80 billion are pretty close, right?), and most of you mentioned how much you liked SLiTHER, DAWN, my Playgirl spread, or whatever. So this has been a lot of fun, and thanks. You can always visit me at to continue the dialogue. It's a lot easier there to bitch about who I leave off my lists (and where people are mostly upset I left off John Krasinski and Rainn Wilson).

Let's make sweet love in the morning light, in a bed of diamonds, surrounded by newborn suckling pigs oinking ever so gently (Amen),
Hey, James, welcome to the - erm - club? Joss stalker club? Group? MOVEMENT? I don't know. Freaks? Geeks? People?

By the way, I wasn't joking when I sent you that mail saying a kitten dies each time you masturbate over Mal. Take note, fellow fans! There's, like, a big pile of dead animals in the corner thanks you TO.

(And, on an actual serious note, I hadn't gone on Myspace to say - but I really liked Slither. It was wicked cool. Seriously).

[ edited by gossi on 2006-08-20 21:52 ]
Me, too. Slither was good. And if I had friends, I'd probably want to hype them.
James Gunn: “Let's make sweet love in the morning light, in a bed of diamonds, surrounded by newborn suckling pigs oinking ever so gently (Amen),”

"Dude!" A bed of diamonds? Your practices would appear to involve hurty edges and pointy points, however luxurious, although "props" for the "creamy and delicious" thing. (We also smell like roses and violets.) I don't imagine our listmania will die down for a while, now.

AmazonGirl, I am [none-of-your-beeswax] old, too, and "Secret Agent Man" sung by Johnny Rivers is on my iPod -- I loved that show and used to watch it with my Dad. The whole secret agent thing is hardwired into me from that time: I used to hide on the stairs and sneak-watch the Man from U.N.C.L.E. (What a disappointment the Girl from U.N.C.L.E. was in that it sucked so loudly.) Honey West had its moments, but it took Emma Peel to get me a great kick-ass female agent. (Yes, I am just that old.)

Speaking of, yet completely OT, I wish somebody had made a great TV series or film (yes, I know, but it's only got kitsch value) from Modesty Blaise -- here was a seriously kickass woman giving orders to her sidekick Willie Garvin and he was loving it -- not until Buffy (I believe) did we see that relationship on TV.
The spikiness of the diamonds is the fun part. Along with the part where we are fucking.
That was a deleted scene from season 6 of Buffy, actually. She likes it rough.
Well, yes, there is that. I guess I really hadn't thought it through. I musta been distracted by the sounds of those little pigs.

"The French are glad to die for love.
They delight in fighting duels.
But I prefer a man who lives
And gives expensive jewels.
A kiss on the hand
May be quite continental,
But diamonds are a girl's best friend."
-- words by Jule Styne & music by Leo Robin

Actually, I just realised who writes all THAT Buffy/Spike diamond pain fan fiction now.
Better late than never, my list (no order, 'cause that's impossible, and, I had to include some cartoons, it was unavoidable):

1) Buffy, BtVS
2) Wesley, Angel
3) Mal, Firefly
4) River, Firefly
5) Homer, The Simpsons
6) Fox Mulder and Dana Scully, The X-Files (you can't seperate them)
7) Spike, Buffy/Angel
8) Hawkeye, MASH
9) Graham, My So-Called Life
10) Ricky, My So-Called Life
11) Rayanne, My So-Called Life
12) Angela, My So-Called Life
13) Lindsay, Freaks and Geeks
14) Bill, Freaks and Geeks
15) Jaye, Wonderfalls
16) Al, Deadwood
17) Trixie, Deadwood
18) Veronica, Veronica Mars
19) Sam, Quantum Leap
20) Junior Gorg, Fraggle Rock
21) Rebecca, the Inside
22) Pinky and the Brain, Pinky and the Brain
23) Clyde Bruckman, the X-Files
24) Dale Cooper, Twin Peaks (yeah, I have to go with that, too)
25) Lois Lane, Lois and Clark (Teri Hatcher *owned* that role)

[ edited by pat32082 on 2006-08-20 22:43 ]
Yeah, if I were going to make a list, which I'm not, 'cause it's too much work, it would have to include Homer.

Bed of diamonds, hmmm. Well, they can cut glass but they're not really aggressively cutting, like glass... I could probably work with the bed of diamonds.
Are we done being overtly sexual on this thread? 'Cause if so, then I have to say:

Any character ever created by Joss Whedon (and that includes Kennedy and especially Andrew -- I'm still waiting for the musical), Joel and the 'Bots, Stan, Kyle, Cartman & Kenny, The Truthy Man, Comic Book Guy, and every character created by Monty Python. Oooh, and "Penny" from Sky King.
I think the House thing is common to a lot of us brits. I can't get around his accent. so used to his actual voice from Blackadder, F&L and endless annoying TV ad voiceovers (the saving grace of his Stateside move). It's my major obstacle from getting into House (well, other than my strong reluctance to ever get into a television show again)
I love me some Dale Cooper. :)
Wow, checking late today and noticed all the activity on this thread. "Must be a Joss-post," I says to myself. And whatdoyaknow, I was right. Some of my all-time favorite characters on that list -- including Jo Anderson's! Jeez, I haven't thought about that series in a long time. Anyway, Joss, thanks for dropping by and making our weekend.
YAY with the Anna Devane love!
I had some issues with the list but James you made me get into a movie about fast moving zombie's so I can live and let die, or that thing on the diamonds either way.
QuoterGal and Amazon girl, I learned to play those first few notes of Secret Agent Man on my brother's brand new guitar. Or, as the Brits knew it, Danger Man.
And how can we forget the original Mission Impossible with Martin Landau and Barbara Bain, Juliet's parents?
The best! Well, except that The Prisoner is the best. After Buffy, Angel and Firefly.
Also, Christopher Nolan and friends are making The Prisoner movie. But don't worry, it might actually be good - I've come across Chris' stuff before, and he knows his shit. Also, check out The Prestige when it arrives at theatres. Yep, I'm THAT tackily plugging it (but it's awesome).
QuoterGal, shoutouts to Secret Agent/Danger Man, Johnny Rivers, Honey West, Emma Peel and Penny from Sky King in the same thread? I think you must be the perfect woman.
The perfect woman is actually Jenna Fisher. She's like, totally hot. Although I'm not too sure about her husband - I've seen photos of him, he looks like one of those horror geeks from Comic Con.

If anybody is looking for me, I'll be stabbed in the corner, by the way.
See, this is why Joss wrote:

"Second, I reserve the right to wake up tomorrow and scream bloody murder at remembering the 25 I actually like much better. In fact, I think I'll do it now. BLOODY MURRDERRRR!!!!!".

Oh, God, Lioness, yes, Mission Impossible's Barbara Bain & Martin Landeau -- I remember being so proud that the first time I saw Dru, without even knowing her last name, or if they'd even had children, I just knew she was their child -- the credits merely confirmed it. Her combo of serene & elegant beauty, with that odd strikingness & piercing eyes -- she had to be theirs. My partner said I was crazy, but I knew. (Never got to brag about that before.)

Now all sorts of early TV shows are flooding back to me: Top Cat, which necessarily calls forth The Phil Silver's Show (Sergeant Bilko), Captain Kangeroo ('cause of Tom Terrific with Crabby Appleton), Gomez & Morticia Addams, I Love/Hate Lucy, Mannix (but now only for the theme song & the Armo-connection), Bonanza (*sigh* Little Joe), Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman (for Louise Lasser & Mary Kay Place), Soap, and (oh, God, don't laugh) Mad About You (mainly for Cousin Ira).

It sounds like I did nothing but watch TV my whole life, but actually, there were years I didn't own a "television machine.' There were apparently years, though, that I did.

If you want to re-visit your childhood TV-watching, check out this site: Classic Television Images & Theme Songs, but only if there's a couple of hours you're not planning on using for anything else.

jaynelovesvera, thank you everso -- only one man thought so enough to take my crap, but that one was enough *sigh*. I get along really well with both men and women, though; my MMPI said I was both ultra-masculine and ultra-feminine. How weird is that?
gossi, you can be "Thread Killer" and "Stalker of the Year" if I can be "Perfect Woman."

Uh, unless, you want it.

(BTW, have you gotta good link for The Prestige?)
Okay, harmalicious, my wife and I both want to marry you! We enthusiastically agree with every one of your additions. Really.

It's criminal that Perry Cox wasn't on either list.

pat32082 (can I just call you pat from now on?), I love your whole list too. I'd make my own but I'm too lazy (for the moment at least).

And QuoterGal, major props for mentioning Joel and the 'Bots!!

(I love this thread. It needs to continue on DotOrg when this scrolls off the front page here.)
I'd be hurt if you didn't, Haunt. ;-) Can I call you "H"?
I don't need to be crowned perfect woman - we all know I'm that already. Just with a penis.

The Prestige. They've not done a good job with the trailer, and they're release it near another similar (on the face of it) movie, so I'm not sure how it'll do. But I've read it, and it's - er - magic.
Can I call you "H"?

As you wish.

(I'll chat with you later about Deadwood tonight...)
gossi: “...and they're release it near another similar (on the face of it) movie...”

Thanks, gossi, my favourite *giggle* hermaphroditic-or-should-I-say-"gender neutral" whedonesquer, The Prestige looks fab. The cast (with 17% more Wolverine), the setting, ooh, the time period, the writer/director (really liked Batman Begins) -- the whole ball o' wax. (You mean The Illusionist as its sorta "rival", right?)

I've never read the Priest novel this was based on, but I'll probably see both, 'cause they have that mysterious Victorian Master Magician thingy with a touch of Robertson Davies thrown in that's so appealing.

Plus, goodness, later he's doing the Dark Knight?
gossi, thanks for reflecting the Frank Black love. Millennium was super-dark chocolatey psychological goodness before it got bit in the ass by Mr. Whitey. I guess most people just don't get it (but the guy is sooooo hot, you know?).
Millennium was super-dark - to the point that Chris Carter actually nixed any humour in the first season of the show. No wonder it made me want to kill myself. The second season was far more entertaining, but eh, I have a hard time caring about that series' demise.

Someone else said you can't separate Scully & Mulder - that's right, because the dynamic between the two is what made them interesting. Alone they were both as one-eyed and bland as each other.
and (oh, God, don't laugh) Mad About You (mainly for Cousin Ira).

Hey, you're not alone. I like Mad About You. Actually, I always watched it with my family, so I didn't know I should be ashamed of it until... well, until your comment.

No, damn it, I won't be ashamed. Mad About You! Woo! I'm excited!

Uh... woo!
The spikiness of the diamonds is the fun part. Along with the part where we are fucking.

Diamonds?! No wonder I'm not gettin' any. And here I thought rose petals on the bed would have made me look like a hero. ;-)

Welcome, Mr. Gunn, and your extremely, er, educational posts! Hope to see you here again many times in the future. :-)

ETA: Oh, yeah, almost forgot. Hey, James -- do you think it's still OK to have the pigs oinking away when you're having sex with a vegetarian, or with someone who keeps kosher? And how does that add to the experience, anyway? Maybe there's something about oinking and boinking at the same time? I needs to know, dude! ;-)

[ edited by billz on 2006-08-21 04:38 ]
If we're going to get all nostalgic for '60s spy TV characters, you have to include the pair that introduced me to the genre: Kelly Robinson and Alexander Scott.

Who? you ask. And well you might!

I Spy was the best action/adventure show of its time to have a tennis player masquerading as an international spy. Or maybe it was the other way around. And of course the very first show on American TV to cast an African-American in a lead role. I wonder whatever happened to that actor...

[ edited by cabri on 2006-08-21 04:31 ]
Oh, God, yeah, cabri, I Spy had that snappy dialogue between Kelly & Scottie. Also, Get Smart 'cause of Buck Henry.

Musn't forget "Little Wooden Boy" from The Tick.
"Hey, James, welcome to the - erm - club? Joss stalker club? Group? MOVEMENT? I don't know. Freaks? Geeks? People?

By the way, I wasn't joking when I sent you that mail saying a kitten dies each time you masturbate over Mal. Take note, fellow fans! There's, like, a big pile of dead animals in the corner thanks you TO."

Actually, I think it's puppies that die, gossi. Lots and lots of puppies.

The lists were hilarious. Both of them. And I guess I'm not the only one that watches too much TV. Oh, and I love Gilmore Girls. I love it even more after Luke bitched about the last Star Wars movie. I love Luke.

2nd Edit: I believe some of the 80 billion emails came from gossi's other site, and the Nathan Appreciators over there. :) I think one direct quote was, "We were really annoying too." LOL. I love those ladies!

[ edited by NYPinTA on 2006-08-21 05:21 ]

[ edited by NYPinTA on 2006-08-21 06:10 ]
Awww, Haunt! Thanks! Oh, and I think I'll add Claudia from Party of Five. I love my list, right down to Felicity's controversial haircut.
I'm not letting my kids have crises again, because it makes me miss Joss posts!

Emma Peel. How can I forget Emma Peel? ...I'm surprised no Emma Peel from Joss.

I so wanted to be Emma Peel when I was a kid. Then I wanted to be Julie Newmar's Catwoman. Then I wanted to be Wonder Woman. (That is not a hint or anything.)

So my list would be something like this, since I'm kind of old:

1. Spock. My first big crush. Unfortunately, I married a man just like him.

2. Emma Peel, because catsuits and she could kick ass (and doors).

3. Catwoman, because catsuits and she could scratch ass (ewww....)

4. Fish on "Barney Miller," because if I don't mention him, his niece will kick me (or make him review one of my plays - as Fish).

5. #6.

6. Buffy. Fortunately I don't have to follow Joss's rules. Plus, it's his show, not mine.

7. Angel, but only on his own show.

8. Spike - on anyone's show - even his own.

9. Willow, who made nerdy sexy, and played academic role model for my daughter.

10. Jean Luc Picard. That voice. That head. (sigh...)

11. 4, 8, 15, 16, 23, 42 - It might as well be a living character.

12. Malcolm Reynolds. Somebody has to mention him! That's what started this whole thing.

13. Dr. Gaius Baltar. Sleeze in a toaster.

14. The Doctor, but only as played by Christopher Eccleston. I don't know why. I'm just funny that way.

15. Veronica Mars, because for a teen on a modest budget, she's sure got all the coolest gadgets.

This thread has probably sunken into the abyss by now... :(

Edited because The Doctor is played BY Christopher Eccleston, not MY Christopher Eccleston. Freud and his stupid slips...

[ edited by Nebula1400 on 2006-08-21 08:00 ]
Adriana LaCerva, ALF, Dr. Zoidberg, Calamity Jane, Mal Reynolds, Cordelia Chase, Windom Earle, David Addison, both #6's, Frankie Page, George Costanza, Larry David, Maxwell Smart, Ponch, Oliver Babish, Philip Marlow, Rick Simon, Ruth Fisher, Tammy Henderson, Veronica Mars. That'll do.
Oh Quotergal, thanks for mentioning Soap! That was the first show I ever saw that had me literally rolling on the ground--okay, carpet--laughing. What a role Bert Campbell was--do you remember when he thought he could snap his fingers and be invisible and then he snapped them at the same time the space aliens beamed him away and Mary thought he actually could become invisible? I'm rambling in my Soap love. I love this thread. And whedonesque. And this Gunn fellow seems alright too.
Ah, Fish--I even liked his shortlived spinoff because Bernice was so damn cool. And No More Mr. Nice Gaius! But, best of all Christopher Eccleston. No, he's not my Christopher Eccleston, but his Doctor, will always be MY The Doctor.
This list mostly courtesy of my hormones, and in no particular order.

1. James T. Kirk (William Shatner, Star Trek)
Hey, I was only 7 or 8!
2. Sebastian Flyte (Anthony Andrews, Brideshead Revisited)
It was the clothes. And the teddy bear.
3. Oscar Wilde (Peter Egan, Lillie)
Made me go get his books from the library.
4. Floris (Rutger Hauer, Floris (Dutch))
Young Rutger, as a knight. That's all.
5. Giles (Anthony Head, BtVS)
Possibly my last ever tv crush
6. Andy Renko (Charles Haid, Hill Street Blues)
Poor old Andy, always trying.
7. Dr. Doug Ross (George Clooney, ER)
This was before downloads and I stayed home every Friday night to see it.
8. Danny Wilde (Tony Curtis, The Persuaders)
Brooklyn Danny seemed so much more attractive than aristocrat Brett.
9. John Steed (Patrick Macnee, The Avengers)
Can't beat a man in a suit.
10. Sergeant Wilson (John Le Mesurier, Dad's Army)
A milder forerunner of Gregory House
11. Albert Foiret (Bernard Hepton, Secret Army)
Nobody remembers it, though everybody knows the spoof series 'Allo, Allo'.
12. Toby Siegler (Richard Schiff, The West Wing)
Bitter, superior, flawed.
13. Xander Harris (Nick Brendon, BtVS)
Everyman holds his own.
14. General Melchett (Stephen Fry, Blackadder goes forth)
It's Stephen Fry! He's a god.
15. Titus Pullo (Ray Stevenson, Rome)
Brings the funny, perfect sidekick to the dour Vorenus.
16. Garak (Andrew Robinson, Deep Space Nine)
Spies are always the coolest
17. Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Steward, Star Trek TNG)
"There are four lights"
18. Buck Cannon (Cameron Mitchell, The High Chaparral)
He looked so very good in black.
19. Hannibal Heyes (Pete Duel, Alias Smith and Jones)
Sigh. Maybe the first time I mourned actor's death.
20. Gregory House (Hugh Laurie, House)
If I were a guy, I'd be just like him.
OK, I can't do my list properly because I literally can't do something this wide-ranging without busting an eyeball from stress, but I can do it Jossverse style, breaking it down by shows:

Buffy the Vampire Slayer

1. Buffy - when her heart broke, so did mine.

2. Giles - he's 10% of the reason I'm studying to be a librarian, and he's sexy, mature and frighteningly intelligent and wise to boot. Whatever comes out of his mouth is automatically the truth -- one of those bedrock characters that provide a fictional universe with moral authority. When he killed Ben/Glory, I felt such love for him, I was verklempt. (also, did I mention the sexy?)

3. Spike - I liked him when he was the funny asshole character, and JM acted the hell out of his heartbreak and sincerity when he fell in love with Buffy. I just find whatever Spike ended up doing innately interesting even when he gave me whiplash.

4. Faith - Dru was the mess-up little broken doll of a girl who collapsed into madness from the trauma of her past, while Faith was the girl who took all the pain she got as a kid and forged it into a weapon of rage and damanged sexuality to inflict upon others. Love. Her.

5. Oz - he's just so cool.

Angel: the Series

1. Dark!Wes - never much cared for Goofy!Wes, but he became compelling and sinful once he lost his moral center. Like dark chocolate, only more lethal. Plus his relationship with...

2. Illyria - I once read in a forum that if your cat could talk, it would sound like Illyria, a description so dead-on it made me laugh for days. Another broken girl... god-king, whatever, and her fractured relationship with Wes, her shifting back and forth from Fred, her reluctant understanding of and total contempt for humanity: fascinating and rich with potential.


1. River - what is it with Joss, broken girls and super-powers? Why does he do them so well? Why do I love River? Because by all rights, she should be damaged beyond all repair, but she's not. She's stronger than her madness and the wicked fingers of men in her brain. I think that what I ultimately took away from "Objects in Space" was River = Love.

2. Jayne - he's such a dunce. So crude, all muscles, leers and greed: so, so alive and funny. Vital in a non-polite way. Jayne = Glee!

3. Simon - his sacrifice and love for River counts so much more because you can sense how much it cost him, how much he lost.

4. Zoe - because she's a total bad-ass, but ultimately, the Giles figure of Serenity: absolute moral and practical authority lies in her cool, brusque manner.

5. Mal - he's one messed-up doofus, but he's our lovable, angry, pointy-headed messed-up doofus.

... and to finish this off, I can't believe that in all these lists, no one mentioned Lisa Simpson, one of the wisest, smartest and human voices in all of TV. I wanna grow up to be just like her.
I can't believe how much love I'm feeling for this board and everyone on it right at this moment! So many wonderful TV memories (note to self: get life, NOW!), from all the years of my misspent youth and adulthood. Did I even see a shout-out to Honey West? She was so unbelievably cool, she had a pet ocelot. Great googly-moogly, I even had a Honey West comic book. (Woe betide that awful day I came home from school to find my mom had thrown out all my precious comics, including quite the Wonder Woman collection and a wicked cool Batman featuring Zatanna and Poison Ivy, thank you very much...'scuse me, I think my allergies must be acting up *sniffles loudly*.)

Wonderful, Whedonesquers! I think I want to marry a list so exquisite that it ranges from (Morticia) Addams to Zoidberg, with stops in between for Dark!Wes, Zoe, Mal, Lord (or, in BA4, General) Melchett, Peel and Steed, Eccleston!Doctor, Fish (what? no Wojo or Yemana? or Harris [ahem!]?), Garak, Picard (especially for "there are 4 lights" -- nice, Caroline!), Perry Cox, Al Swearengen and Trixie, Ruth Fisher (what, no Claire?), Scully/Mulder, Robinson and Scott, Catwoman (Julie Newmar only, of course), Joel & the 'Bots (sorry, Mike, it just wasn't quite the same), the Tick (we did mention the big guy, right?), Laura Roslin, Pinky and the Brain, Castillo and Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer (brilliant!).

Of course, there's always (in somewhat reverse chronological order)
The Monarch ("The Venture Brothers")
Buster Bluth (Tony Hale, "Arrested Development"...but, Joss, you're right -- any character/actor on that show was worthy of any top 25 list)
Warren deMontague ("Greg the Bunny")
Tim Bayliss (Kyle Secor, "Homicide")
Al Calavicci (Dean Stockwell, "Quantum Leap")
Samuel Beckett (Michael Boatman, "China Beach")
Dan Fielding (John Laroquette, "Night Court")
and capping my list as one of the most fascinating characters/portrayals ever,
Frank Pembleton (Andre Braugher, "Homicide")

Now don't bother me again; I'll be busy watching my favorite series DVDs for the rest of the, make that, "month." ;)
This list is courtesy of me giving up smoking today:

1) Christopher Eccelston's Doctor Who - Fantastic.
2) Karen (Will and Grace) - one of the greatest supporting characters in any sitcom. A goddess to put it mildly.
3) Mr Lucas (Are You Being Served) - The Angel to Mr Humphries' Spike.
4) Tom (Spooks/MI5) - To see him go off the rails was tres Shakesperian.
5) Toby (West Wing) - The last angry man in politics.
6) Fletcher (Porridge) - Antihero and darn funny too.
7) Wesley (Buffy/Angel) - Had the best character growth in any of Joss' shows. Plus Alexis Denisof - what's there not to love?
8) Garak (Deep Space Nine) - Just awesome. During an average episdode of the show, he was the only thing worth watching.
9) Harry Perkings (A Very British Coup) - Ray McAnally as PM and a socialist Britain. One of the greatest political thrillers ever.
10) Francis Urquhart (House of Cards) - America had the warm hearted and pious President Bartlett, we had a Prime Minister who murdered and blackmailed his way to the top. Now which character do you think is the more watchable?
11) Chandler (Friends) - Why didn't he get the spin-off?
12) Keith Mars (Veronica Mars) - Best dad on telly. My favourite actor on the show too.
13) Robert McCall (The Equalizer) - gotta to have an 80s character in there somewhere and Edward Woodward is really captivating on screen.
14) Sgt. Bilko (The Phil Silvers Show) - Best American sitcom ever. Which seeing as it came out in the 1950s, doesn't say much for the current state of American sitcoms.
15) Nicky/Geordie/Mary/Tosker (Our Friends in the North) - You try picking your favourite character from that show. It's not easy to choose when they're played by Christopher Eccelston, Daniel Craig, Gina McKee and Mark Strong. The line-up is the acting equivalent of The Beatles.
16) Tim (The Office) - We've all been Tim at one stage in our lifes. Putting up with a crappy job and a really bad manager. Martin Freeman does the best facial expressions too.
17) Tony Hancock (Hancock's Half Hour) - An actor playing himself as a character is always strange. Tony = the little man who thought big and had the long suffering Sid James to help him.
18) Gene Hunt (Life on Mars) - Old style cop. The most recent of my favourite characters of all time. Shame the American airing of Life on Mars got cut for time.
19) Del Boy (Only Fools and Horses) - I heart David Jason.
20) Morse (Inspector Morse) - John Thaw stole every scene he was in.
Best to include the brilliant Leo McKern as Rumpole, lest we incur the righteous indignation of She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed.

And Maverick and Rockford, a two-for-the-price-of-one combo from the wonderful James Garner.
11) Chandler (Friends) - Why didn't he get the spin-off?

NBC Executives should be forced to write essays on this. Over and over again, possibly until their heads explode.
gossi, you are so right it hurts.
Well, I shall limit myself to one character per "verse". By the way: James Gunn, I freaking adored your movie. My wife too.
No order, yadda yadda

1. JAMES T. KIRK - Star Trek- close run with Jean-Luc but you get flamed less with the original.
2. WILLOW- Buffy
3. MAL REYNOLDS- Firefly
4. TIM- - Not that American one, British Office. The best. (which is fine but not a patch on Gervaise's
5. CHANDLER BING- Friends - Yeah that's right. Screw you, I love the Bing
6. JED BARTLETT- The West Wing - "We don't come back with a proportional response, we come back with TOTAL DISASTER!"
7. HOMER SIMPSON- The Simpsons
8. BUTTERS- South park
9. VERONICA MARS - Veronica Mars - (close run with Keith, until I realised Veronica Mars was smarter than me)
10. HAL- Malcolm in the Middle
11. PRESIDENT ROSLYN- Battlestar Galactica
12. JACK BRISTOW- Alias- He would make Jack Bauer wet himself before begging for his teddy bear.
13. GREG HOUSE - HOUSE - Yes about Blackadder, Hugh laurie is a genius.
14. PERRY COX - Scrubs- Scrubs rules. We all know it.
15. LARRY DAVID - Curb Your Enthusiasm - The way I wish I could be were it not for social constraints.
16. NUMBER 6 - The Prisoner
17. SAWYER- Lost
18. LEX LUTHOR - Smallville- More about Rosenbaum than the show...
19. ROBERT BARONE- Everybody Loves Raymond
21. ISAAC JAFFE- Sports night - Love him. I wish he was my mate
22. ADAM WILLIAMS - Cold Feet
23. FOX MULDER - X Files
24. NIALLS CRANE - Frasier
25. BENTON FRASER - Due South
Did anyone mention Illya Kuryakin?
1. Cartman - South Park
2. Montgomery Burns - The Simpsons
3. Xander
4. Anya
5. Wesley
6. Veronica Mars
7. Derek 'Del Boy' Trotter - Only Fools and Horses
8. Arthur Daley - Minder
9. Chau Pressley - Off Centre
10. Jack Bauer - 24
11. Sherri Palmer - 24
12. Jack Bristow - Alias
13. Samantha Stevens - Bewitched
14. Sgt Bilko - The Phil Silvers Show
15. Adrien Profit - Profit
16. Vic Mackey - The Shield
17. Illya Kuryakin - The Man From Uncle
18. Gaius Baltar - Battlestar Galactica (The new one!)
19. Niles Crane - Frasier
20. David Addison - Moonlighting
21. Jeff Murdock - Coupling
22. Londo Mollari - Babylon 5
23. G'Kar - Babylon 5
24. Delenn - Babylon 5
25. Dr Zoidberg - Futurama

[ edited by Jon on 2006-08-21 13:17 ]
Chloe - 24. That's as big as my list/effort gets.
FFS, how could we have forgotten our lovely Chloe? Thanks for saving us from needing to hang our heads in shame, gossi!

ETA: Congratulations on stopping smoking, Simon! Good luck keeping it up (and thanks also for bringing up Life on Mars -- it just rocks)!

[ edited by billz on 2006-08-21 13:36 ]
Careful, David Fury posts here. I shouldn't have reminded him about Chloe. Put the knives away, Fury. Back away from the keyboard.
Simon, we are proud of you. Good luck with that not smoking thing!
Illyia - oh yes! And Robert Culp in I Spy was a little too tall and cool for my childish heart but I can see the attraction.
And Agent 99 in Get Smart. I couldn't understand her crush on Maxwell Smart but other than that, she was perfect.
Because there are 15 minutes to pass before the intellectual tour de force that is Neighbors begins, here is my list (no particular order):

1. Horatio Caine (CSI Miami) - he's hi-larious.
2. Jack Bauer (24) - see above.
3. Virgil Webster (The Inside)
4. Rebecca Locke (The Inside)
5. Faith (Buffy)
6. Lilah Morgan (Angel)
7. Greg House (House)
8. Emily Gilmore (Gilmore Girls)
9. Lucille Bluth (Arrested Development)
10. Dr. Kelso (Scrubs)
11. Bree VanDeCamp (Desperate Housewives)
12. Easy Going Veronica Mars (Veronica Mars)
13. Illyria (Angel)
14. Holland Manners (Angel)
15. Charles Logan (24)
16. Martha Logan (24)
17. Mike Novick (24)
18. Izzy Hoyland (Neighbors) - the sole ray of light in an otherwise bland soap
19. Jaye (Wonderfalls)
20. Catherine Piper (Boston Legal)
21. Dr. Cox (Scrubs)
22. Chloe (24)
23. Wesley (Angel)
24. Detective Goran (Law and Order: Criminal Intent)
25. Sherry Palmer (24)
Just because I don't think anyone else has mentioned them (apologies if I'm wrong):

The Invaders (David Vincent)
Dr Who (Rose Tyler)
Bewitched (Samantha Stephens - because I loved this show when I was a boy)
Dad's Army (Captain Mainwaring and every other character!) inspired by Caroline's mention of Sergeant Wilson
Haven't made my own list, but here are a couple that maybe should be popping up and I haven't seen mentioned (apologies if they have been), and a couple that I have seen, but that deserve more mention.

Nate Fisher - Six Feet Under (however you slice it, Peter Krause is awesome, see also Casey McCall/Sports Night)

Also a big fan of Seth Rogen's Ken Miller on Freaks & Geeks.

Glad to see the Garak-love from some of my fellow W-esquers. He is a god among men, that Andrew Robinson. On this note, I also love Jeffrey Combs and his multiple roles on DS9 and his current appearances on 4400.

Victor Garber's Jack Bristow was a huge part of my enjoyment of Alias.

John C. McGinley's Dr. Perry Cox (Scrubs) was House before Hugh Laurie was (plus, I can't help but think Black Adder when I see Hugh ;) )

I really love John Simm's Sam on Life on Mars.

Richard Coyle's Jeff Murdock on Coupling, but really the whole cast, as with Arrested Development.

The whole cast of Spaced. Although Simon Pegg & Nick Frost get a lot of credit, Jess Stevenson, Mark Heap, Julia Deakin, and Katy Carmichael should not be left out.

Dylan Moran's Bernard Black on Black Books is also big fun for my money.
OK, if everyone is doing it:

Two rules: no more than two characters per show, so it isn't all Deadwood and Buffy, and no cartoon characters. Arbitrary, but whatever.
1. Al Swearengen, Deadwood
2. Trixie, Deadwood
3. Fitz, Cracker (British version -- how has nobody mentioned him yet?)
4. Gareth, The Office
5. Willow
6. Buffy
7. Spike (I count him from Angel, so no rule violation)
8. Basil Fawlty -- he cannot be excluded!
9. David Brent, The Office
10. Frank Pembleton, Homicide
11. Tubbs -- from the League of Gentlemen, not Miami Vice
12. Vern Schillinger, Oz
13. Demelza Poldark, from the 70s Poldark miniseries. She is my first love
14. Arthur Fonzarelli
15. Tony Soprano
16. George Costanza, Seinfeld
17. Hank Kingsley, Larry Sanders Show
18. Artie, Larry Sanders -- had to steal these from Gunn's list
19. Harris, from Barney Miller (though I loved them all)
20. Mary Richards, the MTM show
21. Edith Bunker, All in the Family
22. Ralph Kramden, the Honeymooners
23. Dr Perry Cox, Scrubs
24. Veronica Mars
25. Gregory House

Dylan Moran's Bernard Black on Black Books is also big fun for my money.

One of my friends told me when I crack out the red wine I remind them of Bernard Black. I'm so proud.
Did anyone mention Illya Kuryakin?

He was sooo cute!

I can't believe I forgot Morticia Addams! I so wanted to be her when I was 8-years old!

I would have mentioned other favorites (Dark!Wesley, Illyria, Oz, Giles, Xander, Anya, Tara, Keith Mars, Logan Ecchols, etc.), but I would have spent all night making the list.
gossi - "You can find work and sort your life out anytime. The pub closes in five hours."
Hyacinth Bucket - "Mind the pedistrian Richard!" Classic stuff
Best. Thread. Ever.

Giant props to you, Jona (and, yes, we do still say "props," all the time!)

That is all. Carry on. :-)
zeitgeist - See, I aim to be a wise man.
Since my list would look like a carbon copy of most of yours, I'll just make one addition that I haven't seen here yet:

Barnabas Collins.
I see no one mentioned Archie Bunker. I know he's a character you love to hate, but Carroll O'Connor deserves some props for his portrayal.
I aim to be a wise man.

Actually, I just realised, that should totally have been the tag line of Serenity. Or Karate Kid 4.

[ edited by gossi on 2006-08-21 18:24 ]
Karate Kid 4 had Hilary Swank. So that would have been a little weird. I'll let someone else make the Boys Don't Cry joke.
I notice the glaring omission of Scatman Crother's portrayal of Hong Kong Phooey.
Willowy: I did include Barnabas at my lj (embers_log), and I remembered to include my love of Stuart Baily (Ephriam Zimbalist, Jr's role on '77 Sunset Strip'), but I've been kicking myself for forgetting my love of Illya Kuryakin! I also made a list at my yahoo group that was 100% Whedonverse actors, and 25 wasn't enough to cover my favorite characters. This is the kind of meme where 100 wouldn't be enough.
By the way, didn't anyone else include George from 'Dead Like Me' or Max from 'Dark Angel'?
See? Isn't it fun making these lists?

My original list also stated:
-No puppets or cartoons, otherwise Kermit and Homer would definitely be on this list.
-No mini-series, otherwise I'd definitely include Philip Marlow from THE SINGING DETECTIVE.
-No reality show people, otherwise Matt Kennedy Gould from THE JOE SCHMO SHOW would be on here.
-All characters must be regulars on the show.
Not that anyone needs to follow these rules, but that explains some of my omissions.
For those in love with lists:
Not that anyone needs to follow these rules, but that explains some of my omissions.

I'm still trying to figure out some of your inclusions!
All time favorites? Limit of 25? Can I sort by decade? But I'll throw out a few that would be on my list that I didn't see on others. I skimmed, I may have missed.
Dr. Johnny Fever- WKRP in Cincinati(and the whole cast for that matter.
Ed Chigliak/Chris Stevens- Northern Exposure (above also applies)
And I'll second Caroline's Uncle Buck form High Chaparal
Chris Jennings-Dark Shadows
Mary Hartman
Stopping now, although I notice that my favorites all seem to come from shows with ensemble casts that are like an uber character (and I'm sure that sounded more profound in my head before I processed it into words.) It's certainly true of all Mr. Whedon's shows and Veronica Mars, my current, um is obsession too mild a word? And speaking of VM, Cliff McCormick!
Mr. James Gunn needs to have a color when he posts - he's a VIP: veritable insouciant punster (or something like that). How about blood red? Seems fitting.

[ edited by Tonya J on 2006-08-21 21:03 ]
Okay, couldn't resist. For those who care, here's my list:

1. Malcolm Reynolds (Firefly)
Complex and interesting. Carried Firefly.
2. Wesley Wyndam-Pryce (Angel)
Had what was probably the most interesting character arc in any Whedonverse show.
3. Vic Mackey (The Shield).
Start with murder, end up with actual sympathy. Monster one moment, loving father or committed cop the next. Totally intruiging.
4. Winifred Burkle (Angel).
Kick-ass beautifull scientist girl. Need I say more?
5. Xander Harris (Buffy the Vampire Slayer).
Go, everyman, go!
6. Ephram Brown (Everwood).
A little too wise for his years, but that was part of the charm.
7. Rupert Giles (Buffy the Vampire Slayer).
A flawed fatherfigure with a dark past who doubles as stuffy librarian. Killer combo, right there
8. President Josiah Bartlet (The West Wing).
I'd definately vote for him...
9. Hoban Washburne (Firefly).
Funny pilot guy with a warrior wife? Yep, this is one of those 'wish I were him' things.
10. Shane Vendrell (The Shield).
He's crooked. He's a racist. But, man, he comes alive on screen like no one else.
11. Commander William Adama (Battlestar Galactica 2004).
The President is great and all, but thís is the guy I'd follow. Loyal, honest and wise.
12. Logan Echolls (Veronica Mars).
Ah, yes, the complex grey-area guy. They make shows interesting, y'know.
13. Keith Mars (Veronica Mars).
Best tv dad evah!
14. Josh Lyman (The West Wing).
Donna knows best. Trust her.
15. Chandler Bing (Friends).
Have you ever SEEN a funnier character on screen?
16. Barney Stinson (How I met Your Mother).
Gives Chandler a run for his money.
17. Jimmy James (Newsradio).
If only everyone could have a weird millionaire boss.
18. Lt. Col. Tyrus Cassius McQueen (Space: Above and Beyond).
A truly honerable man who's trying to fill a life without family or friends
19. Berg (Two Guys, a girl and a pizzaplace).
My personal hero. Can I be Berg, please?
20. John Loengard (Dark Skies).
It's the old, reliable, yet driven to do great things vibe, here.
21. Fox Mulder (The X-Files).
Mulder = great, m'kay?
22. Londo Mollari (Babylon 5).
Never mind the hair. Troubled by his conscience and burdened by responsibility. Interesting.
23.The Doctor as played by David Tennant (Doctor Who).
I love his field trip schoolboy style of exploring!
24. Jean-Luc Picard (Star Trek: The Next Generation).
Have to agree with Caroline: "There are four lights"!
25. Jack O'Neill (Stargate SG-1).
The ultimate entertaining character in a show that doesn't strive for complex stories or layered characters. But that was mostly the point. Fun all the way.
Simon, good for you for quitting smoking and good luck with it.

Andy Dufresne, I thought I was going to be the first to include Benton Fraser, but you beat me to it. I could watch Paul Gross read a phone book!

Some of the people I have on my list have already been mentioned, but I'll give it anyway (in no particular order):

1. Benton Fraser, Due South
2. G'Kar, Babylon 5
3. Delenn, Babylon 5
4. Garak, DS9
5. Dr. Julian Bashir, DS9
6. Ilya Kuryakin, The Man from U.N.C.L.E.
7. Kelly Robinson, I Spy
8. Det. Lt. Howard Finucane (Victor Jory), Manhunt (dating myself with that one!)
9. James Garner, Maverick (and The Rockford Files)
10. Paladin (Richard Boone), Have Gun - Will Travel
11. Lt. Horatio Caine, CSI: Miami
12. Lucas Wolenczak (Jonathan Brandis), Seaquest DSV (What a shame we'll never see what he could have done as an adult actor.)
13. Devon Adair (Debrah Farentino), Earth 2
14. Marshall Teller (Omri Katz), Eerie, Indiana
15. Casey McCall (Peter Krause), Sports Night (also as Nate Fisher on "Six Feet Under")
16. Dan Rydell (Josh Charles), Sports Night
17. Josh Lyman, West Wing
18. CJ Craig, West Wing
19. Lorelai Gilmore, Gilmore Girls
20. Rory Gilmore, Gilmore Girls
21. Veronica Mars
22. Keith Mars
23. John Carter (Noah Wyle) ER
24. Jarod (Michael T. Weiss), The Pretender
25. Alexis Davis (Nancy Grahn), General Hospital

And if I really had to choose only one character from each of Joss's shows, it would be Spike from BtVS, Wesley from AtS and Mal.

[ edited by samatwitch on 2006-08-21 21:51 ]
I love this thread.
Can't make me own list because I'd be here forever.
Or an hour.
Somewhere between the two.
Anyway, I would have to put Adrian Pasdar's Jim Profit (Profit) on here.

And his delightfully wacked out stepmom, Bobbi Stakowski played by Lisa Blount, also.

Love 'em sometimes, hate 'em others, appalled by their actions in almost every episode--but they were always, always fantastic fun to watch.
This post has caught the attention of Whitney Matheson, an avowed Whedonphile, in today's online version of the USA Today. (If I knew how to link, I would include it here.)

As for my own favorite characters, good Lord -- where to start? 25 is a daunting number. Obviously, Buffy would be at or near the top. In no particular order, I would also include Peter MacNicol's character on Ally McBeal (John Cage), Maurice on Northern Exposure, early (pre-1976) Hawkeye on MASH, and, since Joss made it acceptable to cite General Hospital alumni, Anthony Geary's Luke Spencer.
Aheh, that's pretty cool. The USA Today thing can be found here
On almost everyones list there is someone who I didn't even think of until I read it on their list but then
"Oh! Of course!"

So only trying to mention previously unmentioned,

Sledge Hammer
Nikita and Michael
Tony on Taxi (I'm partial to the tuchus)
Bill McNeil on Newsradio
Joy Hickey on My Name is Earl
Jay Peterman on Seinfeld
Pat, I didn't even know even there was a Karate Kid 4.

Whitney Matheson from USA Today manages to point out I spelt Jenna's surname wrong. I'm such a rubbish stalker fan.
Yup. There was. :-)
Well, I cant resist doing this. Hopefully, a couple of these will surprise you. Note: Xander is my favorite character, but for some reason Buffy is above Xander. I think alot of it has to do with where they started versus where they finished.

1) President Bartlett (Martin Sheen-The West Wing)
2) Homer Simpson (Dan Castelleneta-The Simpsons)
3) Samurai Jack (Phil Lamarr-Samurai Jack)
4) Anthony Dinozzo (Michael Weatherly-NCIS)
5) Buffy Summers (Sarah Michelle Gellar-Buffy The Vampire Slayer)
6) Hawkeye Pierce (Alan Alda-Mash)
7) Jeremy Goodwin (Joshua Malina-Sports Night)
8) Xander Harris (Nicholas Brendan-Buffy The Vampire Slayer)
9) Giles (Anthony Stewart Head-Buffy The Vampire Slayer)
10) Montgomery Burns (Harry Shearer-The Simpsons)
11) Greg House (Hugh Laurie-House)
12) Leroy Jethro Gibbs (Mark Harmon-NCIS)
13) Dan Rydell (Josh Charles-Sports Night)
14) Dr. Perry Cox (John C. McGinley-Scrubs)
15) Edward J. Stevens (Tom Cavanaugh-Ed)
16) Chandler Bing (Mathew Perry-Friends)
17) Josh Lyman (Bradley Whitford-The West Wing)
18) Mike Burton (Josh Randall-Ed)
19) Stewie Griffin (Seth MacFarlane-Family Guy)
20) Isaac Jaffe (Robert Guillaume-Sports Night)
21) John Dorian (Zach Braff-Scrubs)
22) George Costanza (Jason Alexander-Seinfeld)
23) Joan Giradi (Amber Tamblyn-Joan of Arcadia)
24) Frasier Crane (Kelsey Grammar-Frasier and Cheers)
25) Batman/Bruce Wayne (Kevin Conroy-Batman: The Animated Series, Batman: Tales of the Dark Knight, Batman Beyond, and Justice League)
Whitney Matheson from USA Today manages to point out I spelt Jenna's surname wrong.

She does?
Yeah. By spelling it right. She's talented.
Good to see the "I Spy" love. I just have a hard time splitting that pair apart, but I guess I would also have to go for Kelly. James Garner as Maverick was truly one of a kind, got to add him to my imaginary list. Illiya has got to get kudos for being the only (natural) blond character to peek my interest...ever, but I don't know that he was a great character, just cool.'d forgotten about him and Honey West. Talk about memory lane, I guess I used to watch a lot of TV when I was a kid. I don't know any of the shows on now. I just don't have the time to watch more than a couple shows a week.
1. Vincent - Ron Perlman will always be the epitome of a romantic hero and kickass avenger for me on Beauty and the Beast
2. Angel - I love Spike/Marsters but David Boreanaz touches me more with his never-ending quest for redemption and his destiny. He’s a lot like Vincent.
3. Gil Grissom - William Petersen, CSI Las Vegas -channels his Will Graham character from Manhunter.
4. Frank Black - Lance Henriksen, Millennium – enough said.
5. Fox Mulder - David Duchovny, The X-Files - yes, he gets points for the speedo scene.
6. Sue Ann Nivens - Betty White as the round-heeled, viperous cooking show host on the Mary Tyler Moore Show.
7. Jim Dial - Charles Kimbrough’s stuffy anchorman on Murphy Brown
8. James Stephens - James T. Hart, the Paper Chase. Must be where my love of law/cop shows started.
9. Angela Chase - Claire Danes, My So Called Life. Teenager muy interesting.
10. Dr. Smith - Jonathan Harris as the instigator of trouble on Lost in Space … “William, my dear boy.”
11. George Jefferson - Sherman Helmsley, The Jeffersons - the black Archie Bunker; it’s a tour-de-force performance.
12. Victoria Barkley - Barbara Stanwyck on Big Valley - one of the greatest actresses to ever grace a television screen.
13. Dr. Mark Craig - William Daniels on St. Elsewhere - one of the original hardasses of medical drama with a heart.
14. Sam Malone - Ted Danson on Cheers - he tackled the unenviable task of playing an ex-jock and a lothario with ease. Comedy ain’t easy.
15. Gabriel - Stephen McHattie on Beauty and the Beast - played “Snow’s” employer. Totally underrated NYC actor who should’ve gotten bigger roles.
16. Lucas McCain, a/k/a The Rifleman - Chuck Connors. One of the best Pa’s around.
17. Sydney Bloom - Lori Singer on the short-lived but fascinating VR.5. David McCallum played her dad.
18. Tom Daniels - Adam Storke on Prey. His DNA-changed human left me wanting more when the series was cancelled.
19. Diana - Jane Badler, V - her looks say she could’ve been on Dynasty but she’s the leader of a group of aliens/Lizards who want human flesh and water to take back home. Awesomely evil. And rat eating.
20. Matthew Sikes - Gary Graham, Alien Nation - Very basic guy, okay, a bigoted guy with issues gets thrown together with a Newcomer as his new partner.
21. Chandler Bing - Matthew Perry’s fab creation of a neurotic, self-effacing, nervous-Nellie of a guy on Friends. With that many tics, it’s a wonder he survived.
22. Ehhh, this is far as I could get at work … yes, I like Sci-Fi. If I could add Variety shows to round out the list, I'd add Tim Conway, Harvey Korman and Carol Burnett for their indelible
characterizations on The Carol Burnett Show.
Larry, Darryl and Darryl from "Newhart". Also, Stephanie and Michael from "Newhart".
Oh, God, I so forgot and I have to give props to him -- he maybe doesn't really count as a TV character, as it was a short hop on PBS -- but I adored Edward Petherbridge as Lord Peter Wimsey. Seriously, I wanted to kill Harriet Vane and bear his children, and I didn't even want kids. And Harriet Vane doesn't exist.

This list thing is so goddamn addicting. (Caroline has just made it worse with her list-link -- I didn't know anyone but me made lists of songs for their own funerals. Shoulda known...)

Okay, Simon, not to mirror you once again, but good on ya for quitting -- I'm supposed to quit smoking in the next week or so for reasons of dental surgery that fails to heal properly, and after 35 years of smoking, I am petri-fied at the thought. ("Literally.")

Maybe making lists will help me, too. Be warned and very a'scared.

Oh, Groucho Marx playing "himself" on You Bet Your Life. One of the best ad-libbing snarkers ever.
My dear friends, wonderful lists but nowhere did anyone mention one of the coolest night skulkers on TV, Thomas Hewitt Edward Cat (T.H.E. Cat). He'd swing by El Gato for some evening jazz after pulling a job, wearing those stylish turtle necks (yes, I started wearing them . . . ahem), which all self-respecting cat burglars wore. (Starring Robert Loggia.)
Oh, Groucho Marx playing "himself" on You Bet Your Life. One of the best ad-libbing snarkers ever.

I really have to agree -- although there are only a couple of us who even have memories going back that far. The man was brilliant.

I must say, one of my very first crushes was on Ray Walston's "Uncle Martin" on My Favorite Martian. The show doesn't hold up well, now, but to my child's sense of things, he was cool -- and not as over-the-top as Robin Williams' Mork, although I liked him, as well. Nanoo, nanoo.
I SOOO want to make my own list, but I've got the same problem many others have cited... it would most likely just be a rehash of bits and pieces from everyone else's lists.

Oh what the hell. I'm with Joss on this one, I reserve the right to change this list at any moment (there's no way to limit this to ONLY twenty five). These are my above-all-others faves at this given moment(in no particular order), most of which have already been mentioned but which ALL deserve every mention they can get.

1. Wesley Wyndam-Pryce (Angel)
2. Dr. Gaius Baltar (Battlestar Galactica)
3. Spike (Buffy/Angel)
4. Logan Echols (Veronica Mars)
5. Vincent (Beauty & the Beast)
6. Mulder & Scully (as someone else said, they're a package deal) (X-Files)
7. Walter Skinner (X-Files)
8. Byers, Langly & Frohike (X-Files/Lone Gunmen)
9. Denny Crane (Boston Legal)
10. Jim Profit (Profit)
11. Al Swearengen (Deadwood)
12. Faith LeHane (Buffy/Angel)
14. Fred/Illyria (Angel)
15. Lorne (Angel)
16. Barney (How I Met Your Mother)
17. Malcolm Reynolds (Firefly)
18. Dr. Perry Cox (Scrubs)
19. Pinky & the Brain (Pinky & the Brain)
20. Samurai Jack (Samurai Jack)
21. Data (Star Trek: The Next Generation)
22. Frank Black (Millennium)
23. Batman (Batman: The Animated Series)
24. Jayne Cobb (Firefly)
25. The Nerd Trio (No, not that one [although they should be on here too]. I mean the three guys from Freaks & Geeks whose names I'm ashamed to admit escape me at the moment.)

And so many, many, many more. Yeah, I watch a couple hours of TV a week I think.

ETA: Dammit, I forgot Ari Gold from Entourage. See? I told you I'd have to change the list. I'm lucky I could even get through it.

[ edited by Haunt on 2006-08-22 03:02 ]
My dear friends, wonderful lists but nowhere did anyone mention one of the coolest night skulkers on TV, Thomas Hewitt Edward Cat (T.H.E. Cat). He'd swing by El Gato for some evening jazz after pulling a job, wearing those stylish turtle necks (yes, I started wearing them . . . ahem), which all self-respecting cat burglars wore. (Starring Robert Loggia.)

Drifter | August 22, 00:40 CET

Holy crap, Drifter! You remember T.H.E. Cat (on NBC) then you must be somewhere around my age! I still remember the theme music from that show!
Ah, younglings, this show was very cool.
Between T.H.E. Cat and Alexander Munday...and #6...there were some fine, slinky men on TV back in The Day.
: )
Oh man, I feel like a Wolverine in a trap that wants to gnaw its own arm off. Knew I shouldn't have done that list at work b/c of course I forgot really cool folks. The rest of my list:

23. Jim West - Robert Conrad, The Wild, Wild, West - was this one of the first shows that ever had episode titles? It certainly had the best opening and mid-episode puzzle graphics. The American equivalent of Brit espionage.

24. Artemus Gordon - Ross Martin, The Wild, Wild, West, who made wearing a dress an art-form for a man. One of the greatest duos ever on television.

25. Let's face it - there can never be one list because it's all subjective. But I have to say my adolescence of watching horror and sci-fi would not have been complete without this fella:
Carl Kolchak - Darren McGavin as that fearless vampire and monster hunter on The Night Stalker.

Yes, Six Feet Under was a marvelous experience but how do you choose among that ensemble? I loved Nate Fisher too, but I'm surprised by the bile when I try to bring his name up elsewhere. That whole family was a mess and they were portrayed by a troupe of fabulous actors. I can't choose.

[ edited by Tonya J on 2006-08-22 03:47 ]
I haven't thought about T.H.E. Cat in ages! Wow! Dormant neurons being reactivated!
And Alexander Mundy! I drew a portrait of him when I was 12, and suddenly had 38 orders for portraits - with offers to pay. It eventually got displayed in a small gallery in NYC for a while. I can't believe I forgot about him, too - but really, his character wasn't so outstanding compared to the likes of Columbo or Spock.

-No puppets or cartoons,

I've heard actors being referred to as meat puppets. I haven't heard of them being referred to as meat cartoons, though.

Did I miss it, or did nobody mention Mason from Dead Like Me?

[ edited by Nebula1400 on 2006-08-22 03:34 ]
Oh and Niles Crane from Frasier. I wasn't a huge fan of the show, but I *loved* his character! Just so adorable and miserable and pathetic all at once.

SIMON! I'm sending you major positive vibes!!!! You are amazing! You totally can kick that nasty, disgusting habit! I'll be your own personal cheerleader! GOOOO Team!

I'm personally a fan of GVH's list! Great picks!
T.H.E Cat! OMG.Thank you Drifter for that. I loved it. He was the epitome of cool and daring.
And I have to brag. I know John Frid who played Barnabas Collins. In fact I expect to see him in a couple of weeks. I'll tell him his character made some of the lists. He'll be pleased.
QUOTERGAL: "Oh, Groucho Marx playing "himself" on You Bet Your Life. One of the best ad-libbing snarkers ever."

PALEHORSE: "I really have to agree -- although there are only a couple of us who even have memories going back that far. The man was brilliant."

palehorse, as old as I am (and Drifter and AmazonGirl, I do remember enjoying T.H.E. Cat), I watched Groucho in syndication at college in the 70s, and not when it originally aired.

As to my age, for those of you under 25 or so, think of your Mom, only really well-preserved, with tattoos. Scary? You bet! As Gwen Verdon said in the original B'way production of Chicago, "I'm older than I ever intended to be."

This thread & I are BFF with privileges.

[ edited by QuoterGal on 2006-08-22 05:44 ]
I actually had thought of mentioning T.H.E. Cat in one of the numerous posts I almost wrote. I think of that show every time I see Robert Loggia.

Although I loved It Takes a Thief, I thought Alister rather than Alexander was the more interesting character. Alexander was very cool and attractive, but his Dad was...well...Fred Astair.

As long as people are bringing up shows from my childhood that I thought only I remembered, what about The Rogues. David Niven, Gig Young, and Charles Boyer strike a bell with anyone? It took a lot of wangling to stay up to watch that show starting at 10 pm when I was at an age when most kids were in bed by 8. I did not manage to see it very often, but at least my parents had to agree I had good taste in actors.
Forgot Shawn Farrell from The 4400. Dagnabbit... too many good characters...

[ edited by Haunt on 2006-08-22 06:56 ]
A few I didn't see above:

Elliot Ness (Robert Stack) in The Untouchables

Amos Burke (Gene Barry) in Burke's Law

Bat Masterson (again with the Gene Barry) in Bat Masterson

Perry Mason (Raymond Burr) in, not surprisingly, Perry Mason

and, for the fellow fossils among us (or is that amongst?, damned if I know):

Michael Anthony (Mark Miller) in The Millionaire

Oh! Oh! And Cricket Blake (the be-still-my-heart (and another part) beautiful Connie Stevens in Hawaiian Eye.
TonyaJ: I can't believe I forgot Carl Kolchak - Darren McGavin as that fearless vampire and monster hunter on The Night Stalker, I really loved him. You all got me remembering so many wonderful old shows:
Gordon (played by John Amos) on Mary Tyler Moore
Nick Yemana (played by Jack Soo) on Barney Miller
and the amazing Reverand Jim Ignatowski (played by Christopher Lloyd) on Taxi!
I was up on Sunset Blvd. a few hours ago and saw Diahann Carroll standing by Hamburger Hamlet. Damn, for 70 she sure looks good.

Why do I mention this? (Other than just plain ol' garden variety showing off?) To remember Julia, a show starring a woman of colour (& a single mom) -- the first time that had been done since several actors played "Beulah" in the 50s, and the first starring portrayal of a professionally-employed woman of colour. ("Beulah" was, of course, a maid.) It was a kind of ordinary, just nice-nice show, but significant in its own way.

Hamburger Hamlet is a great place to dine & watch Hollywood's stars & players of the, shall we say, older set.
Gah! Piece by piece, you all have mentioned the greats in my personal television history! My list would be an amalgam of all of yours, with one or five from your lists making my own. How to display my favorites now, without being redundant? With your permission, may I try to scribe my personal favorites? They will NOT be in order, as that would be too task-y for me right now...

Captain James T. Kirk
Captain Jean-Luc Picard
Barnabas Collins
Basil Fawlty
Willow Rosenberg
Christie Love
Jo (Pertwee's Dr. Who assistant)
Fucking cocksucker Al Swearengen
Jane Cannary
Carol Burnett
Cher (70's version)
Apollo (yes, you elitists, I'm talking about Richard Hatch - suck it up!)
Archie and Edith Bunker
Fred Sanford
Cosmo Kramer
Julian Luna
Jim Profit
Mel Profitt
Luke Spencer
Erica Kane (!)
Whitney Ellsworth (RIP)
Dan Dority
Fox (who shatters my very existence with the wee and simple fact of his fictional fucking being) Mulder.
Freddie Prinze (numero uno, thanks. Junior does nothing for me, regardless of who he married.)
Mary Richards

And there you have it, and there it is. And I will reserve the right to revise at any minute or month that I see fit. That's my list and I'm sticking to it. For now. Wait - no... it stands for the moment. I, sort of promise.
Because all the cool kids are doing it:

Dale Cooper, Twin Peaks – logic and reason versus mysticism in the one man
Laura Palmer, Twin Peaks – yes, she was dead, but she was still fascinating
Buffy Summers, Buffy – she saved the world a lot and she was only a girl
Michael Garibaldi, Babylon 5 – because he kept picking himself up…
John Sheridan, Babylon 5 – an intergalactic leader with love
Gaius Baltar, Battlestar Galactica – endlessly fascinating
Julian Bashir, Deep Space Nine – the newbie who got changed on the frontier
Frank Pembleton, Homicide: Life on the Street – God and he are not on speaking terms
Tim Bayliss, Homicide – the newbie who got changed on the streets of Baltimore
Murphy Brown, Murphy Brown – strength, beauty, brains on television on television
Nate Fisher, Six Feet Under – complex to the bitter, inevitable end
Brenda Chenoweth, Six Feet Under – complex, just complex
Michael Bluth, Arrested Development – yes, he was just the straight man, but what a straight man
Joel Fleischman, Northern Exposure – quintessential fish-out-of-water who mellowed
Linda Day, Press Gang – a teen Murphy Brown, with a darker edge!
David Brent, The Office – too true to life
Jed Bartlett, The West Wing – a Roman Catholic Economist as President, what a fantasy!
Chandler Bing, Friends – “if I were a man…” and “sometimes I dream of being a lesbian”
Arnold Rimmer, Red Dwarf – the ultimate self-loather… in space!
Brian Kinney, Queer as Folk – dynamic, magnetic, self-assured, tough-guy (psst, there’s a heart in there somewhere)
Mal Reynolds, Firefly – because he brought those people onto his boat even though he hated the Universe…
Doug Ross, ER – compassion inside a womaniser
Winnie Cooper, The Wonder Years – just the girl next door or the memory of that girl next door you once knew
Gregory House, House – bitter, sarcastic, loveable
Devon Adair, Earth 2 – explorer, mother, torn between both
Arnold Rimmer is a fantabulous call!
I think she might have been mentioned but may I add Mary Hartman? It was like reality TV before the concept existed and when she had a nervous breakdown in front of an entire TV audience it was one of the most powerful things I have ever seen on TV. The show was a wonderful feminist statement.
I'm personally a fan of GVH's list! Great picks!

Thanks Harmalicious, glad to be of service ;-)
Has no one really mentioned Lucille Ball?
Eve Arden as Our Miss Brooks. Forget Maude. Eve Arden was the original.
Topper in the series Topper (Leo G. Carroll).

(Only mentioning names I haven't seen on here yet or else I'd just be replicating lots of others. Sorry if I repeat. I TRIED to read all 179 posts).
Data, Seven-of-Nine. Ro Larimer. Although she was only recurring, not a regular. Seven-of-Nine may be my favorite television character of all time.
Cordelia. She deserves her own spinoff. Except of course for the being dead thing. Principal Snyder. How can you not love a character who says "That's the kind of woolly-headed liberal thinking that gets a person eaten." And then gets eaten. The Mayor. Evil has never been so wholesome.
Nick Andopolis in Freaks and Geeks. So heartbreakingly sincere in his adoration of Lindsay.
I believe it's Ro Laren, barboo, and I loved her too. Totally agree with you on Cordy as well. And maybe nobody mentioned Lucy because instead of being just one character, she was a force of nature! :)
I dunno, one weekend of drunken debauchery and look at what I missed !

My inner compulsive list maker couldn't hold out any longer (with some reasons why) ...

1) Columbo - for making a dirty mac a bit less dirty
2) Greg House - for bullying the world into believing in itself, one misanthropic comment at a time
3) Doctor Who (as played by Tom Baker) - for the sake of Jelly Babies everywhere
4) Jim Rockford - for keeping his answer phone in good working order
5) Adrian Monk - for being obsessively, compulsively, detectively
6) Constable Benton Fraser, RCMP - for always getting his man. Or maintaining the right. It's a grey area.
7) Samantha Carter - for the technobabble and the eye rolling and for 'Grace'
8) Hawkeye Pierce - for letting me get Groucho on here even though it's TV only ;)
9) Fox Mulder - for the first 5 seasons
10) Kevin Arnold - for not growing up too fast and for making voice-overs work again
11) Mal Reynolds - for sniffing the air and for the Beagles
12) Hoban Washburn - for (and from) 'This land...'
13) Zoe Washburn - for flying true, even when bashed up
14) Jack Bauer - for stick-to-itiveness. And for Kim. Good genes man ;)
15) Eddie Shoestring - for being a little guy that just stayed in there and for the theme tune
16) Sgt. David Callan - for standing up for the little guy. And then usually assassinating him.
17) Det. Supt. Andy Dalziel - for threatening God when Pascoe's little girl was ill (and making us afraid for the great sky-bully)
18) Kara 'Starbuck' Thrace - cos no-one fucks with the Buck ;)
19) Jonathan Creek - for seeing reason everywhere
20) Kerr Avon - for showing that not all computer programmers have sand kicked in their faces
21) Peter Benton, MD - for that last surgery. His kung-fu was strong.
22) John Carter, MD - for setting the tone and for sometimes being a bit of a dick
23) John Crichton - for doing what every guy would do if they were ever transported into Aeryn Sun's body ;)
24) Aeryn Sun - for having the guts to grow and for "The Way we Weren't"
25) Jean-Luc Picard - yep, for the lights and for setting the limit high

25 is pretty hard. Couldn't fit Buffy, Wesley, Faith, Fred but I also can't see many i'd take out.

Good luck Simon, BTW. Not an easy task (I found biting my fingernails up to roughly the elbow was the perfect solution to the cravings). Watch out for anniversaries too. After my first 6 months off them I celebrated by, yep, having a fag 'to see if I still liked them' (turned out I really did). Silly, silly man ;).

[ edited by Saje on 2006-08-22 16:58 ]

T.H.E Cat! OMG.Thank you Drifter for that. I loved it. He was the epitome of cool and daring.
And I have to brag. I know John Frid who played Barnabas Collins. In fact I expect to see him in a couple of weeks. I'll tell him his character made some of the lists. He'll be pleased.

Way cool, Lioness. Remember also THE Cat was pretty good with a knife, which tended to appear out of nowhere and go flying at the bad guy with amazing accuracy.

And yes, (standing up . . . where's my cane . . . uh) some of us are old enough to be your parents, you young whipper-snappers (see if these johnny-come-much-latelies get that term). Hee, okay, I pulled that out of the historical records, 'cuz I'm not THAT old hint: born in '50s


"Between T.H.E. Cat and Alexander Munday...and #6...there were some fine, slinky men on TV back in The Day."

I don't know from slinky, but they were way cooler and smarter than the d**kheads that appear as PIs on TV now, those who talk with their fists because they've never put together a single complete sentence in their lives. /rant over/
HA, Joss has Columbo on his list. Makes me smile. He's my all-time numero uno. The best show EVER. The best character EVER. Lol!
Best thread ever... lost forever by being forced off the front page.
I thought I'd hop in here at the end & be (technically) Thread-killer.

Joss said, "Let the debate be debatey!"

It ended up being more of a love-fest on a bed of diamonds with lovely baby piglets oinking in the background...
Lost? Hardly! Too good a subject to be lost yet.
I mostly certainly did not mention Lucille Ball because even as a kid I thought Lucy was very stupid and not very funny. She no doubt had exquisite comedic timing but I disliked the character.
I'm still here, too, Lioness, and with another name that, although new, I am getting ever fonder of: Deputy Chief Brenda Leigh Johnson of the LAPD (The Closer). Solves crimes like Columbo, knows how to hide in her office & eat vending machine chocolate cupcakes like a real woman. What's not to love? :)
TV Squad's Anna Johns noted Joss's & James lists, and made her own, although hers is considerably shorter than twenty-five characters.
I don't understand how someone can have "The Beav" and Angela Chase in the same list. Blinks
What happens if most of the Hollywood producing corps starts linking to Whedonesque?

Anyway, I think Haunt has a good candidate for:

Best thread ever...

What? - did no one mention anyone from MASH - Hawkeye, Trapper, BJ Honeycutt, Radar, Hotlips, Frank, many to choose from.
Late to the party as usual, but here are some names that at least needs a honorable mention, in the TV characters hall of fame ( no Buffyverse characters, to easy).

JR Ewing, Dallas.

Al Bundy, Married with children.

Miss Parker, The Pretender.

Kojak, Kojak.

Livia, I Claudius, Rome made me think about the original.

Stringer Bell, The Wire.

Lurch, The Addams family, my personal hero back in the day.

Fred Flintstone, the great great...grandpa of Homer Simpson.

Tony Soprano, Sopranos.

Al Swearengen, Deadwood.

Susan Ivanovna, B5.

CJ Cregg, The West Wing.

Spock, Star Trek TOS.

And for the kids, (at least around here) Pippi Longstocking, redheaded girl with superpowers ( probably a watcherless slayer:) living alone with her horse, monkey and bag full of gold coins.

Javier Grillo-Marxuach nails it with

"chloe o’brien, 24 – she makes extreme social maladjustment look like a quality you would demand in a potential mate: if the entire fifth season of 24 had consisted solely of chloe sitting in that hotel bar tasering men who hit on her, they would have just mailed them the emmy already."

ETA, cause somethings just have to be added.

Blackadder, Blackadder series.

Manuel, Fawlty Towers.

Kenny, South Park.

[ edited by jpr on 2006-08-24 12:16 ]
I doubt GILMORE GIRLS would be at the top of my Tivo list if my brother wasn't on it. I'm sure I'd prefer spending my Tuesday nights softly rubbing a cheese grater against my eye.

To each his own! Lauren Graham as Lorelai Gilmore easily tops my top n list of favored characters, and GG is quite near the top of my favorite shows list.

And for a totally non-sycophantic declaration: Pam Beasley is also one of my favorites--pitch perfect performance by the missis, Mr. Gunn.

[ edited by Ubqtous on 2006-08-26 10:34 ]

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