Sexiest characters in the Walking Dead

Over the seasons, The Walking Dead has gotten more and more grim. Literally, nothing good ever happens. The characters go through hell and then some, then dust off and go again.

I’m very close to being done with watching it. But it did get me thinking, despite all the characters being permanently under a layer of blood and dirt, the show does have quite a few sexy actors in its line-up.

I know I know, I’m shallow and a terrible person. But one of the reasons we watch film and TV is to be entertained right? And yes, granted, good storylines are great, compelling characters hook us in, but, if I’m honest, it does help if they’re attractive too right? Yeah, I’m going straight to hell.

Anyway, here are my favourites from across the show.

THE MEN

Jesus, played by Tom Payne

He’s a young, peace loving dude with kick ass martial arts moves, piercing blue eyes and an impressively hipster beard. In recent seasons he’s served as Maggie’s close advisor (with me vaguely hoping they become a couple at some point). He remains one of the show’s most moral characters.

Shane, played by Jon Bernthal

Ah Shane, how we miss thee. Actor Jon Bernthal was a big part of what made the first season so good. His tension with Rick was palpable and fans loved his intensity and charisma, to the point where he often thoroughly dominated most scenes. Although, weirdly, I’ve managed to choose a picture of him looking kind of cuddly.

Ezekiel, played by Khary Payton

Who doesn’t love a character that gets introduced as ‘the King’ and comes with his own pet tiger? Ezekiel is regal, wise and noble. All things a king should be. Plus, he’s just so damn cool. As his kingdom collapsed under the threat of the Saviours it was interesting to see him adapt and grow.

Negan, played by Jeffrey Dean Morgan

First Shane, then the Governor, then there was a gap in our lives. At least in terms of a big, bad Walking Dead bad guy. That was until Negan showed up in his leather jacket, oozing charisma and sex appeal, whilst menacingly swinging his barbed wire bat, Lucille, as he monologued evilly all over the place. And we loved him for it.

Rick, played by Andrew Lincoln

Over the seasons Rick’s fortunes – and mental state – have gone up and down, largely depicted by what kind of majestic beard he’s sporting. Not that his beard defines his character, he’s driven, strong, brave and selfless, basically the ultimate hero, and thus forever captures our hearts.

Aaron, played by Ross Marquand

The show’s first openly gay character, Aaron, is a bit of a bad ass. Tough, sensitive, resilient and brave, we first meet him as a recruiter for the Alexandria community. He forms a close bond with Rick and, as the show progresses, he grows a beard, which makes him look even more fetching.

THE WOMEN

Sasha, played by Sonequa Martin-Green

A firefighter pre-apocalypse, Sasha sought sanctuary in Rick’s group with her brother Tyreese. Her brother lasted a little while before biting the dust, yet Sasha – a far more interesting character – endured and went on to become a core member of Rick’s team as the group’s sniper. As a testament to her ability to hold the screen, when Martin-Green left the show she went on to become the lead of Star Trek: Discovery.

Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

Cyndie, played by Sydney Park

Introduced in season 7 as part of an all-female community called Oceanside, Cyndie and her gang had previously encountered Negan’s Saviours and had since chosen to stay as far away from them as possible. We meet her when Tara gets separated from the main group and they form a bond of sorts.

Maggie, played by Lauren Cohan

Talk about the evolution of character. When we first meet Maggie she’s just one of Hershel’s daughters, living on a peaceful farm and somewhat oblivious of the danger in the world. She grows and toughens through the show to become one of the main group’s leaders, heading up the Hilltop tribe. After the death of her partner Glenn she becomes tougher and harder, assuming a key leadership role and is as essential to the group’s survival as Rick, perhaps more so.

Rosita, played by Christian Serratos

I read somewhere that when Rosita’s character was introduced it was pretty much as the male fantasy version of post apocalyptic – short shorts and a crop top. Over time this was toned down as her character was beefed up. Particularly after she suffered the loss of her partner, Abraham.

Top ass-kicking actresses on TV that I like lately

Lately, I’ve started to become dimly aware of something. A lot of TV shows I’m currently watching seem to have not only a decent gender balance in general, but also well-written female characters in leading roles. Perhaps this has been the case for a long time, but, somehow, I’ve just noticed it. Maybe these characters have always been present, but perhaps in the past just to serve the journey of the male characters? Sort of mild fridging, or pre-death fridging perhaps? But now, in the golden age of streaming TV with Netflix and Amazon Prime, and in the age of #metoo and #timesup, female characters seem to have more agency. Are we at some sort of turning point? I asked this in a recent post about action women in film, and I think the same applies to TV.

It’s kind of a refreshing and exciting place we find ourselves in, from a storytelling point of view. At the very least, as recipients of said stories.

So with that in mind, below are a selection of characters that have entered my TV watching world in various guises, from women that plot and scheme, through to those that straight up fight, to those that code and those that build. TV people take note, more of these characters please. Modern storyelling needs them, now more than ever.

Thandie Newton
As Maeve in Westworld

As one of the AI ‘hosts’ of Westworld, Maeve starts out as a madam in a brothel, but quickly becomes one of the show’s key characters, breaking her programming and fighting back against her creators. She evolves to the point where she controls other hosts and has them do her bidding in a mission to rescue her daughter.

Hannah New
As Eleanor Guthrie in Black Sails

Eleanor, following in the footsteps of her father, runs a black market operation out of Nassau, dealing with cut-throat pirates day in day out. And, in an environment where the only other female characters of note are prostitutes, she cuts her own path as a canny businesswoman, striking unsavoury deals with dangerous pirates to keep her enterprise going.

Kathryn Winnick
As Lagertha in Vikings

Married to a farmer with big ambition and King-in-waiting, Ragnar Lodbrok, Lagertha starts the show as a shield maiden, but makes her dismay clear when Ragnor leaves her behind during his first raids on England. She’s firmly part of the team on the next raid and remains a key figure throughout the show, growing in power to become the Earl of a nearby area, as well as a key figure in the viking raids on Paris. Whilst she’s a fierce warrior on the outside, she’s really an emotionally complex and thoroughly interesting character. Her fractious relationship with Ragnor is one of the most compelling and watchable things in the show.

Lindsey Morgan
As Raven Reyes in The 100

As the youngest zero-G mechanic to come through the ranks of humanity’s last survivors in space, Raven is clearly smart as hell, highly capable and about as tenacious as you can get. Not only does she launches herself in a tiny rocket to get to Earth, she builds homemade bombs to fight the ‘grounders’, and bests a homicidal AI through a combination of frantic coding, no sleep and a lot of coffee. And she does most of this after being shot in the spine and having to relearn how to walk.

Mackenzie Davis
As Cameron Howe in Halt and Catch Fire

Cameron enters the show early, being recruited by Lee Pace’s stuffed shirt ex-IBM sales guy to build a PC that’ll blow the big boys out the water. She acts as a good foil to the show’s buttoned-up, tightly wound male characters, in that she dresses like a geek, listens to punk rock and heavy metal whilst coding and does things very much her own way, to the chagrin of the men.

Maggie Siff
As Wendy Rhoades in Billions

Maggie is a psychiatrist tasked with ensuring the traders of Bobby Axelrod’s (Damien Lewis) hedge fund remain ruthless and committed when it comes to their work. She’s equally close to Bobby as well as his arch nemesis, Chuck, the District Attorney hellbent on destroying him – who also happens to be her husband. Oh, and on the side she’s a Dominatrix in the bedroom, giving Chuck a spanking when he gets out of line.

My name is who? My name is what?

christmasjonesbondChick-a chick-a Slim Shady. Remember the song that announced Eminem to the world? I remember thinking Slim Shady was a funny name at the time, but then he’s a rapper. Same applies to actors’ character names, particularly action stars. They’re exempt from reason. I’m not sure who’s responsible for naming them… The writer? The actor? The studio? And I cannot decide if I love or hate their ridiculous character names – either way, they’re a guilty pleasure I’ve resigned myself to embrace.

Or maybe it’s more the case that; the more ridiculous the concept of the film or plot, so it is reflected in the names of those taking part. As if the filmmakers are saying, you wouldn’t buy into this film if we took it too seriously, so here are some silly names to get you on board. And in the world of silly names – much like Monty Python’s Ministry of Silly Walks – there are some standout contenders. Here are some of my favourites.

BOND GIRLS
To get us started I thought I’d look at a crop of exotic and seductive ladies we love to hear utter the wordsxenia ‘Oh James!’ at any and every opportunity. What’s that Bond? You’ve met an attractive woman with a ridiculous name? Steer well clear I’d say – she’s bound to be trouble.

  • Honey Ryder (Ursula Andress, Dr. No)
  • Pussy Galore (Honor Blackman, Goldfinger)
  • Kissy Suzuki (Mie Hama, You Only Live Twice)
  • Plenty O’Toole (Lana Wood, Diamonds Are Forever)
  • Mary Goodnight (Britt Ekland, The Man With The Golden Gun)
  • Xenia Onatopp (Famke Janssen, GoldenEye)
  • Dr. Christmas Jones (Denise Richards, The World Is Not Enough)

ACTION STARS
Arnold Schwarzenegger
arnold schwarzenegger commando(2)You’d expect the Austrian oak to have more embarrassing names under his belt, but most are fairly passable. Some though… There’s no version of reality where someone looking like Arnie could ever be thought of as a Gordy or a Kimble.

  • John Matrix (Commando)
  • John Kimble (Kindergarten Cop)
  • Jericho Caine (End of Days)
  • Gordy Brewer (Collateral Damage)

Steven Seagal
I almost feel Seagal is such as easy target in terms of being a joke as an actor. Casey-RybackIs he aware of his reputation? He seems so serious all the time. I mean, with a name like Gino Felino can you really take yourself that seriously?

  • Mason Storm (Hard To Kill)
  • Gino Felino (Out For Justice)
  • Casey Ryback (Under Seige)
  • Forrest Taft (On Deadly Ground)
  • Jonathan Cold (The Foreigner)

Jean-Claude Van Damme
The muscles from Brussels does OK in the name game, more trashy quality than quantity. From time to time though, he does pick some peaches. If you had the opportunity to play a man called hardtarget-snakeChance Boudreaux you’d take it right?

  • Gibson Rickenbacker (Cyborg)
  • Chance Boudreaux (Hard Target)
  • Vincent Brazil (Assassination Games)
  • Samson Gaul (6 Bullets)

Jason Statham
The Stathe – as he’s known to his legion of fans – is still learning his craft when it comes to shocking names. He’s doing well though, aged 46 he’s already got some crackers under his belt and shows no sign of lettinstathg up.

  • Quentin Connors (Chaos)
  • Chev Chelios (Crank)
  • Terry Leather (The Bank Job)
  • Lee Christmas (The Expendables)
  • Phil Broker (Homefront)

Nicholas Cage
In contrast to Arnie, the wild and unhinged Cage has a treasure trove of terrible names scattered across his filmography – most of his roles in fact. And there’s a correlation too, the worse the name the better his performance.cameron-poe

  • Stanley Goodspeed (The Rock)
  • Cameron Poe (Con Air)
  • Castor Troy (Face/Off)
  • Memphis Raines (Gone in Sixty Seconds)
  • Joe Ransom (Joe)

Sylvester Stallone
Introducing to you the Godfather of tragic and terrible trashy names, the man they call Sylvester ‘Sly’ Stallone. I suppose if you’re called Sylvester you’re already on the back foot – so you may as well embrace the madness.barney

  • Cosmo Carboni (Paradise Alley)
  • Deke DaSilva (Nighthawks)
  • Lincoln Hawk (Over the Top)
  • Raymond Tango (Tango & Cash)
  • John Spartan (Demolition Man)
  • Ray Quick (The Specialist)
  • Barney Ross (The Expendables)

BEST OF THE REST
Not to be outdone, there’s other actors out there dabbling in the name game that should get a mention. Guys you feel should take the red pill and find out how far the rabbit hole goes.rico

  • Johnny Utah (Keanu Reeves, Point Break)
  • Stacker Pentecost (Idris Elba, Pacific Rim)
  • Cole Trickle (Tom Cruise, Days of Thunder)
  • Johnny Rico (Casper Van Dien, Starship Troopers)
  • Mutt Williams (Shia Lebeouf, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull)

So there’s my list. Are you feeling deliciously sordid yet? Do you need the literature equivalent of a warm bath? Go soothe yourselves in Shakespeare if you must. Just know this: you’ll return to these characters. Their names and what they represent will always be a guilty pleasure and something you cannot resist. Just try it. Go on. Go ahead punk, make my day.