Annoying characters make for good TV

By: Veronica Schubert

Sports Editor

Just like how some of the best teachers might annoy you, obnoxious or over dramatic characters make movies and shows more interesting. While theatrical depictions seem unrealistic, the overemphasized characters, different from everyday life, keep viewers engaged. Since the time of Charlie Chaplin’s first comical storytelling, viewers have favored exaggerated characters.

Annoying character #1: Lorelai Gilmore from Gilmore Girls. Both she and her daughter, Rory, are irksome, but the show wouldn’t be successful if they were normal. The pilot episode begins with Lorelai begging for coffee, although she has already had 5 cups. Then, when Rory asks for lipgloss, she pulls out two giant makeup bags containing lip glosses flavored vanilla, chocolate, strawberry, and toasted marshmallow. Another changes color “with your mood.” Her every other sentence has a pop culture reference and, apparently, she worked with a speech therapist to ensure rapid line delivery. Lorelai is annoying, yes, but that’s what keeps viewers entertained. Who wants to watch a show about a boring old life?

That brings us to annoying character #2: Michael Scott. The characters in The Office elevate a boring nine-to-five workday to a show people want to watch. The writers of The Office were particular about creating this contrast, between an extremely mundane office with overdone characters. The first seasons where Michael is still present have a totally different vibe, where most (if not all) of the cringe factor stems from Michael’s interactions with others. Office fans either love or hate Micheal, but none can deny that the seasons in which he appears have a much higher entertainment value.

Annoying character #3: Ross Geller. Ross Geller is the most disliked out of the core six Friends characters, but without Ross, the show would not be complete. More than just Rachel’s love interest, Ross’s irritating obsession with dinosaurs balances the other whimsical personalities on the show. Ross is the rock (or fossil) that grounds the group; on a show about finding career paths, his work drive persists throughout all 10 seasons. Ross’s downfall is his insecurities, highlighted in his relationship with Rachel, stemming from his failed marriages. Although badgering, the vulnerability of Ross creates a holistic personality of the collective characters. 

Bothersome characters add to the environment of a show or movie, and certain traits are elevated for the purpose of entertainment. Emphasized traits are more obvious on annoying characters, subjecting them to more audience dislike. So, next time a teacher, parent, or coach just irritates you immensely, take a second to consider how their quirks resemble your favorite tv character, and appreciate that they have the energy to engage you.

Categories: Opinion

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