Toxic relationships (that aren’t your own) can make for amazing entertainment. And yet, still be really annoying at times! Here are seven of the most toxic couples in television history.
1. Ross Geller and Rachel Green (Friends)
Rachel Green (Jennifer Aniston) and Ross Geller (David Schwimmer) define the will-they-won’t-they trope, and I wish they just wouldn’t because they’re absolutely terrible for each other! They bring out one another’s worst qualities such as jealousy, insecurity, and controlling tendencies.
It all began with Ross’s obsession with Rachel in high school. Through beginning of the series, it’s abundantly clear that his feelings never left. Eventually, after almost two seasons of “what if,” Ross and Rachel finally lock it down in season 2 and become a totally in-love couple. (Well, that is until Ross’s insecurity gets the best of him.)
Basically, come season 3, Rachel quits her job as a waitress at the coffee shop to pursue a career in fashion. After meeting a kind stranger named Mark at a restaurant, she lands a job at Bloomingdales thanks to the chance connection. Ross becomes insanely jealous, and not just jealous of her new friendship and working relationship with Mark, but of how much time Rachel begins investing into her new work as well. Rachel, understandably, gets pissed and they end up getting in a huge fight where they agree to “take a break.” To Ross, a “break” means going out and sleeping with someone else. That very same night. Nice.
Rachel finds out about his betrayal and they part ways once more. Then for the next several seasons, they go back and forth, with Ross even marrying someone else (and accidentally saying Rachel’s name instead of his fiancé’s at the alter). Also, don’t forget Ross and Rachel’s own quick marriage followed by their immediate divorce, their baby daughter Emma, and the fact they still dated other people after having a kid together. Like, no one is worth this much drama!!! Especially ROSS.
Anyway, Ross and Rachel do end up together in the end. Good for them, I guess. Hope Emma gets a good therapist!
2. Carrie and Big (Sex And The City)
You can’t talk about a toxic relationship without mentioning Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker) and Big (Chris Noth) from Sex And The City. Another on-and-off again “romance,” Big and Carrie are utterly toxic. Affairs, manipulation, discarding, and the like. Big basically only wants Carrie when he can’t have her. And Carrie is always willing to go back for more heartbreak.
Now, I couldn’t help but wonder: what the actual hell, Carrie?! YOU COULD HAVE HAD NICE AIDAN SHAW! But no! Instead, you screw it all up by cheating on him with Big. Literally will never get over this injustice.
Anyway, eventually Big and Carrie do get married and seem good together in the show’s spin-off series Just Like That. Oh, except Big literally dies in the first episode.
3. Nate Jacobs and Maddy Perez (Euphoria)
Nate Jacobs and Maddy Perez are the opposite of relationship goals. For one, Nate is utterly abusive. In addition to being physically violent, Nate emotionally manipulates Maddy, which ultimately keeps her hanging on. Oh, he also cheats on her with Jules. Eventually, Nate and Maddy breakup for good (and Nate sleeps with Maddy’s best friend Cassie a mere three or so weeks afterward). Just toxic.
4. Mindy and Danny (The Mindy Project)
I mean, Danny was just a dick. Simple as that. He was jealous, controlling, and judgmental. He wanted Mindy to completely throw away her career, one she worked very hard at building, to be a stay-at-home mom to raise their kids. Gonna be a no from me.
5. Beck and Joe (YOU)
I feel like there is no explanation needed here. But just in case: He is a literal murderer, lol.
6. Dean and Rory (Gilmore Girls)
The most toxic relationships usually start off great, and this is exactly the case for Dean and Rory on Gilmore Girls.
When Dean and Rory start dating, he quickly becomes a toxic nightmare. Possessive and controlling, Dean wants to take hold of every single component of Rory’s life. Let’s not forget his insane jealousy issues either.
7. Aria and Ezra (Pretty Little Liars)
Uh, he was her high school teacher? Like, enough said. A big yikes.