As a young teenage girl, I was all over those teen drama shows such as “Gossip Girl,” “The Vampire Diaries” and “Pretty Little Liars.” But the real reason most teenage girls watched these shows were not for the riveting plotlines or complex characters — it was for the hot boys. Yet now, as I rewatch these shows as a young woman, I see that a lot of the male characters I used to be obsessed with and dreamt of marrying one day are actually hella problematic. So, here’s why your three favorite teen drama heartthrobs are actually very problematic.
- Chuck Bass from “Gossip Girl”
Ah, Chuck Bass. He is perhaps the epitome of a problematic, hot character we all love for some reason. When I was younger, he was my favorite, and I always called his relationship with Blair “goals.” Looking at it now, I don’t know how I overlooked all of the horrible things he did. For example, Chuck literally sexually assaults Serena and Jenny in the first episode, pinning them against the wall and trying to kiss them while they clearly don’t want him to. This happens in the VERY FIRST EPISODE. Right off the bat, Chuck proves he is a horrible person, yet we chose to ignore that.
He also treats Blair horribly for the entire first half of the show. He stands her up and insults her to her face multiple times. And if all that is not bad enough, he literally exchanges Blair for a hotel, setting her up to have sex with his uncle in episode 17 of season three (yeah, it’s pretty weird and messed up). Clearly, Chuck proves throughout the show that he has zero respect for women, and maintains an abusive relationship with Blair.
2. Ezra Fitz from “Pretty Little Liars”
Ezra Fitz is next on my list, because this man is all sorts of wack. I actually never liked him as a character when I was younger, and my dislike continues to this day. This man pursued Aria, one of his high school students, and started dating her when she was only 16. In addition, he hooked up with Alison (Aria’s best friend), when she was only 15. In his defense, he didn’t know how old she was when it all went down, but still.
He knew that Aria and Alison were good friends, so I’m sure he could assume she was way too young for him. Not to mention he was spying and stalking the girls in the name of “research” for his book. Bottom line, this man is 100 percent a huge creep. He took advantage of his young students and then proceeded to stalk Aria and her friends.
3. Damon Salvatore from “The Vampire Diaries”
Damon Salvatore rounds out my list because he is the hardest one for me to write bad stuff about. He was and continues to be my favorite character from “TVD.” But Damon still did his fair share of horrible stuff on the show.
We all hate him when he first shows up, but regardless, we’re attracted to his bad boy attitude. He literally shows up to Mystic Falls just because he’s bored and wants to torment his brother Stefan for fun. The worst thing he did was use his compulsion powers to force Caroline to sleep with him and let him feed off her. Because she was under his spell, she couldn’t consent to anything. He gives her bruises and bite marks, and she is forced to cover them up and keep quiet about the abuse she’s receiving.
In addition, he killed countless people simply for his own amusement, or just to spite the people he was close to. Damon does have a full character shift by the middle/end of the series (when it’s Stefan who turns evil), but he was a pretty horrible person who did unforgivable things that somehow are forgotten by the end of the series.