While it’s important to explore why the obnoxious teen daughter stereotype exists, we can’t deny its prevalence on TV dramas — the trope has even been the source of inspiration for sitcoms like 8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter, I Hate My Teenage Daughter and Last Man Standing. So, why is the daughter often televised as the sore spot of the family, while the son is usually portrayed as goofy or clueless? Both roles are arguably entrenched in sexism or stereotypical behavior and used as a device for TV story arcs. Whatever the cause, you have probably been glued to the screen as a teenage daughter’s rebellion unfolded. Here are the 25 teenage-iest TV daughters whose angst has fueled our binge-watching addictions.
1. Paige, The Americans
If Paige isn’t complaining, she’s finding another way to annoy us like hitchhiking or barging into rooms unannounced. C’mon Paige, do you really need another pair of legwarmers?
2. Julie Taylor, Friday Night Lights
Why is Julie Taylor like this when her mom Tammi Taylor is the coolest woman on the planet? Bad writing? Coach Taylor’s genes? Either way, the sleeping with the professor/escaping to Chicago storyline was almost too much Julie Taylor to bear.
3. Dana Brody, Homeland
Dear Dana, you ran away with some guy for a season and still no one cared. Please grow up. Love, Homeland fans everywhere
4. Amber Holt, Parenthood
Really, you’re only going to apply to one competitive school (Berkeley) and then have a break down when you don’t get in? Then you are going to show up drunk to work at your aunt’s law office, really? At least Amber eventually got it together.
5. Hattie Braverman, Parenthood
Amber got the bad wrap, but Hattie was also obnoxious. Her mean girl campaign against Amber was an overreaction and she got her mommy involved. Super lame, Hattie.
6. Rory Gilmore, Gilmore Girls
Lorelai Gilmore is a queen. Ready to duck for cover here, but I can only tolerate 20 minutes of Rory storyline an episode in seasons 5 through 7. She became an obnoxious, entitled Yale brat. Possibly even becoming a butt-faced miscreant herself? Plus, she broke up a marriage and was hardly sorry because Lorelai has made much tinier mistakes … what? Rory, take some responsibility here.
7. Lane Kim, Gilmore Girls
Why did Lane ever even go to that awful college? She was also still in a secret band at age 18. I know her parents (I know we only ever saw Mrs. Kim) were weird, but she was pretty out of touch with reality herself and boy crazy to boot.
8. Jenny Humphrey, Gossip Girl
While Gossip Girl was often ridiculous, Jenny Humphrey was just plain intolerable. Really, you need to run away from rock star Rufus Humphrey and your awesome Brooklyn loft? Cry me a river.
9. Blair Waldorf, Gossip Girl (Actually, the entire cast of Gossip Girl)
Blair, you sabotaged yourself with Yale at every step. Your dad(s) got you that adorable bulldog and you were ungrateful and entitled. But, the entire cast was ungrateful and entitled. So, I guess they all deserve a spot on this list. Hey, whatever happened to that bulldog, anyway?
10. Lux Cassidy, Life Unexpected
We get it Lux, you had a hard life. But, why would you ever think Bug or your teacher were viable romantic choices?
11. Bay Kennish, Switched at Birth
When Bay tried to flee to Mexico (remember how dumb that was?), she may have earned the title for most annoying teen daughter. But, I actually think Bay gets a bad wrap, especially in later seasons. Daphne has a little miss perfect image, but Bay’s the one whose choices consistently have more integrity.
12. Daphne Vazquez, Switched at Birth
Daphne has a Rory Gilmore desire to bank on her newfound sense of entitlement. Plus, you can only get in trouble with the law so many times before you become unsympathetic.
13. Lindsay Weir, Freaks and Geeks
Lindsay represents all of the times you are embarrassed about your own high school behavior. We have all realized we should have stayed home and handed out candy with our mothers on Halloween (which would have meant so much to mom), but instead we did something stupid and shameful with friends we may now regret having ever made. Oh to be 15 again … not.
14. Carter Wilson, Finding Carter
Carter is awful. Elizabeth is not the bad guy here, people! This shouldn’t be surprising though — Carter was raised by a psychopath, after all.
15. Amy Juergens, The Secret Life of the American Teenager (OK, basically every character Brenda Hampton ever created)
Brenda Hampton’s characters are some of the most immoral and unadjusted teens on television. Even when they aren’t downright dumb like Amy Juergens or poorly written rebels with ridiculous motivations, like Adrian Lee or Mary Camden, they are obnoxious because they are unrealistic goodie two-shoes, like Lucy Camden. PS Remember how dumb it was that Grace’s dad died because she had sex?
16. Becca Moody, Californication
It’s no surprise that Becca turned out this way when her parents were so screwed up. Somehow, Becca annoyingly always seemed both 7 and 16 years old at the same time.
17. Sansa Stark, Game of Thrones
Sansa is currently killing it on Game of Thrones, but do you remember when she thought Joffrey Baratheon was so dreamy?
18. Catherine Meyer, Veep
While Selina Meyer isn’t mother of the year, I don’t know why Catherine expects so much, or anything for that matter, from her mother. Selina doesn’t have time. She is the freaking vice president/president for god sakes.
19. Lady Edith, Downton Abbey
While Mary may have needed help moving a lifeless body, Edith is hands down the most tiresome Crawley daughter. Though, her evolution into a strong feminist character made for great TV. By the end, we were rooting for Edith.
20. Kaylie Hooper, 30 Rock
To quote her hilarious nemesis Jack Donaghy, Kaylie was both vicious and vulnerable at the same time. No wonder the same brain that brought us Mean Girls also brought us this hilarious and honest teen character. Speaking of which …
21. Xanthippe Voorhees, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Another great Tina Fey teen girl character, the brutal Xanthippe Lannister Voorhees often rebels against what’s good for her with hilarious, absurd burns.
22. Effy Stonem, Skins
Honestly, I stopped watching Skins when it became all about Effy. The original cast was outrageous, but the irreverent, unapologetic Effie was too much to handle.
23. Tina Belcher, Bob’s Burgers
Tina is angsty in the most amazing way possible. Her daydream about Quickie Kiss It is one of the most adorable looks into a teenage brain that desires romance/sex without actually grasping what it desires. Awkward Tina is awkward all of us.
24. Jane Rayburn, Bloodline
Your dad says don’t hang out with your insanely creepy uncle, and what do you do? You go out on a boat with him! Don’t you know that’s how your aunt died?
25. Angela Chase, My So Called Life
Angela your mom came to your rescue when your reckless friend OD’d. You should reevaluate your choices and who the stable influences actually are in your life.