5 Stellar TV Show Characters You Genuinely Hated Before Falling for Them
Not every character you fall for eventually is love at first sight. We have to admit, we hated these five initially but then they made up beautifully for the first impression.
Warning: This article contains spoilers for several TV shows.
5. Spike from Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Don’t get us wrong, Spike — like many others on this list — has been immensely charismatic since the start. However, it takes several seasons until this unhinged and bloodthirsty vampire reveals his other side. For quite some time, Spike remains a powerful antagonist who tries to kill Buffy and wreaks havoc everywhere he goes.
It’s only after Spike falls in love with Buffy that we get to see him as more than just an agent of chaos. It turns out that this terrifying creature of the night is capable of genuinely caring about others and has a tender side. From a textbook villain, Spike evolves into an actual anti-hero, and we (and Buffy) are very much down for that.
4. Alfie Solomons from Peaky Blinders
Mr. Solomons first appears in Season 2 of Peaky Blinders and immediately makes a lasting impression. The leader of a Jewish gang in London, Alfie controls the area of Camden Town which he rules over with an iron fist. The first things we realize about Alfie Solomons? He’s unpredictable, cynical, ruthless, and prone to violent outbursts.
Somehow, it’s hard to dislike Alfie even after he backstabs Tommy Shelby; his death during their face-off almost feels like a tragedy. Though insane, the Jewish gang leader evokes sympathy, and when it turns out he’s alive several seasons later, you greet him like an old friend, and so does Tommy. You can’t stay mad at Alfie for long.
3. Steve Harrington from Stranger Things
No one likes high-school bullies, save for their closest relatives and direct minions. Steve Harrington comes off as the most generic bully from every second movie you’ve ever watched, and you can’t shake off the disgust. Steve has no empathy or desire to develop it; all he wants is to take what is “his,” regardless of the means.
Despite the first impression, Steve’s character evolves marvelously over the course of the next seasons. From being at odds with others and hated by them, the boy becomes one of the most loyal friends they could wish for, and we see him for someone other than a bully: a nice and kind person hidden behind the facade.
2. Daryl Dixon from The Walking Dead
It’s impossible to feel any empathy for Daryl Dixon at the start of his journey in the world of The Walking Dead. A devoted follower of his fascist elder brother, Daryl is cold, hateful, and aggressive toward other members of the group, supporting whatever heinous acts his master, sorry, brother, is up to, no questions asked.
However, after losing his sibling, Daryl gradually transforms into the version of himself we all grew to love. He got closer to other group members and, free of his brother’s wicked influence, developed into his own man: a fiercely loyal, selfless, and overall caring Daryl who carried his crew on his back when needed.
1. Jaime Lannister from Game of Thrones
There’s no way around it: Jaime Lannister is a massive jerk in the early seasons. Though charming and brilliant, the Kingslayer is narcissistic, ruthless, unprincipled, and borderline evil with his “the ends justify the means” attitude. Come on, his first act on the show was killing a child to hide his relationship with his own twin sister!
Jaime only truly changes after losing everything: his freedom, his dignity, and his hand. The immense suffering the Kingslayer has to go through and the help of people he never expected anything from transforms him into a better man — a noble, compassionate knight in shining armor he was supposed to be all along.