Finally, I present to you my five favorite supporting characters on TV. They come from diverse shows, from network to cable, from American to British shows. It took me a while to choose my top 5, but I think I finally narrowed it down to my absolute favorites.

Violet Crawley - The Dowager Countess of Grantham – Downton Abbey

I am a huge fan of this extraordinary British drama. I even had some periods of serious hard core addiction during S1 and S2. My addiction has not been as strong lately as I am still mourning Sybil and Mathew’s deaths. I am not as excited about the new season as I used to be, but as long as Maggie Smith is still on board… I guess all is good in the world. The veteran actress steals every line, scene and episode. She is without a doubt a master at delivering all sorts of snappy comments and gets away with saying pretty much anything. Violet is the essence of Downton Abbey and the most fun part of the show, I don’t think anyone can disagree on that account.

JT – Beauty and the Beast

Did you really think I could do a best supporting characters list and not include JT from BATB? Of course not! He is one of my favorite characters on TV right now. I’ve said it before and I will say it again: Austin Basis is awesome! He was the best part of Life Unexpected and he is probably my favorite part of Beauty and the Beast and that is saying a lot because there are plenty of things I love about that show (starting with the writing and continuing with Jay Ryan’s voice). Anyway, JT is not only a great honest and relatable character, he is also the source of comical relief and has the most amazing and quotable lines [“We’re all gonna die. I’m gonna get a tums”]. JT was the one character I loved from the very beginning and I wouldn’t dream of having the show without him. He has all you could wish for in a sidekick/best friend character. Yet, another reason to love Austin, he was gracious enough to reply to this post on twitter:

Holder – The Killing

This was a last minute addition to the list; I previously had Nolan from Revenge on this spot, but… I decided to go with Holder instead. Unlike most people I actually liked The Killing, and Joel Kinnaman was probably the main reason. Mireille Enos never convinced me as the lead, but doesn’t even matter because Holder completely steals the show. What I like about this character is that it is impossible to put him in a box, it has many different sides and Joel’s performance is incredible. I just keep being fascinated by him and going back and forth between feeling attracted to him, scared and just pitiful. Best part of The Killing, and enough reason to get on board for Season 3.

Tyrion – GoT

I am not sure if Tyrion belongs on this list since Game of Thrones doesn’t really have leading and supporting characters. I guess Ned Stark was the main character in S1, but we all know how that turned out. Now, GoT is more of an ensemble show and Peter Dinklage actually gets top billing during the credits; however I don’t think he can be considered the lead, so … supporting character it is… and what an amazing one! Hands down my favorite part of Game of Thrones. Best lines, best arcs, best moral ambiguity. I have nothing but love for Tyrion. Does he steal every scene he is in? You bet he does! All his smart cunning is so fun to watch and, even though, he is not the most honorable character you can tell he has good feelings after all. I think Tyrion is one of the best characters in the history of television largely thanks to how he is written in the Ice and Fire series. Most of the best lines are taken straight out of the books. On top of that Peter Dinklage is perfect actor for the role; I can’t imagine anyone else as Tyrion.

Boyd – Justified
Apparently Boyd was supposed to die in the pilot of Justified, remember he got shot… like really shot, and it is not like Raylan to miss. I remember thinking it was bizarre he didn’t die. Turns out the producers thought Walton Goggins was so magnetic on his role, they decided to keep him around and Thank all the almighty gods they did! Boyd is simply the BEST part of Justified and that doesn’t mean I don’t love Raylan (Timothy Oliphante), because I do, a lot! But Boyd is incredible. This character is absolutely entertaining, enigmatic and complex. I could never get too much Boyd (or Venus Van Damme for that matter, but that’s another show). On a related note I really need to start watching The Shield!

And that’s it! I think this finally concludes my supporting characters run down

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Agree? Disagree? Am I missing someone? Let me know in the comments or on twitter @TVRepublik
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Alejandra spends her days watching TV, writing for TV, writing about TV. Hopefully, one day, she will get substantially paid for all three. Follow her on twitter @azannier

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  1. Loved your comments about Jt, BATB! It's absolutely true: he's the best sidekick character on the show! Funny and loyal, he stole our hearts from the very beginning! And he has so much in common with his portrayer, Austin Basis! Such a talent and a person! I love them both!

  2. I can't believe, you mention four of my favorite supporting characters! I didn't watch Downton Abbey, but I adore Maggie Smith so I must say five favorite actors! Austin is Austin ... big place in my <3. Thank you :)

    1. I guarantee that if you start watching Downton Abbey, the Dowager Countess (Maggie) will be your fav character. You should watch it! It is a great show, especially the 1st couple of seasons.

      And for the rest! I am glad you agree with me! And how can we not love Austin, right?

  3. Great list - Dowager Countess and Holder would be in my top three. The #1, though, is one you missed...Floki from Vikings. Gustaf Skarsgård totally steals every scene with this quirky character.

    1. Oh Floki! He is a good one! I may have written this list before I watched Vikings though.... he is definitely a scene stealer... Not sure if I would replace anyone on my top 5... but he is a fav of mine too.


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