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9 Unlikely Romantic Leads – Playful Heroes You Can Laugh With

9 Unlikely Romantic Leads – Playful Heroes You Can Laugh With | The Silver Petticoat Review
Photo Credit: Syfy

 9 Unlikely Romantic Leads – Playful Heroes You Can Laugh With

When it comes to romantic heroes we tend to favour a particular type. He’s often a Byronic hero, intelligent, serious, mysterious, handsome, morally ambiguous and often hiding something dark in his past. I love these characters as much as anyone. After all, Mr. Rochester is my all-time favourite romantic hero.

But today I’d like to celebrate a very different kind of hero, a type which I personally don’t feel get enough love. These are the unserious romantic leads, the ones that can laugh at themselves and are tremendously fun to be around. So here are nine examples of playful heroes because sometimes you want to spend time with someone you can laugh with.

#1 Peter Bishop of Fringe

9 Unlikely Romantic Leads – Playful Heroes You Can Laugh With | The Silver Petticoat Review
Photo Credit: FOX

The Peter we meet at first is quite cynical and resentful of being forced to work with his estranged father. However, as he worked closely with Walter, Olivia, and Astrid, he developed a bond with each and began to be more hopeful. He also began to see Olivia in a different light. Peter’s wry commentary on the continuing weirdness surrounding him contributed much to the humour of the show.

Joshua Jackson has an insanely likable quality which can’t help but translate into his performances. Jackson’s other famous role as Pacey Witter on Dawson’s Creek would also qualify at times.

Content Note: Fringe is rated TV-14 for violence and unsettling imagery (think X-files).

Where to Watch: Amazon Video and DVD.

#2 Malcolm Reynolds of Firefly

Mal - 9 Unlikely Romantic Leads – Playful Heroes You Can Laugh With | The Silver Petticoat Review
Photo Credit: FOX

Captain Mal Reynolds is not a man who can stay serious for any length of time. Embittered by his time fighting for a lost cause, he pretends to be a self-serving criminal with no sense of honor. However, he is fiercely loyal and protective of his crew, with his own unique set of principles.

Content Note: Firefly is rated TV-14 for non-explicit sexuality and violence. Some profanity.

Where to Watch: Hulu, Amazon Video and DVD.

RELATED POST – The Top 35 Lovable Rogues in Film and Television

#3 Henry Tilney of Northanger Abbey

Mr Tilney; 9 Unlikely Romantic Leads – Playful Heroes You Can Laugh With | The Silver Petticoat Review
Photo Credit: ITV

Unlike Austen’s much more famous heroes who have a penchant for seriousness, Mr. Henry Tilney is sociable, jovial, self-deprecating and has even been known to enjoy Gothic novels. Of course, this is much to Catherine Morland’s delight as she is also an avid reader of popular novels such as The Mysteries of Udolpho. Like Catherine, we are instantly charmed by his quick wit and easy-going temperament.

Content Note: There is no explicit content in either the novel or its adaptations.

4# Flynn Carsen of The Librarians

Flynn; 9 Unlikely Romantic Leads – Playful Heroes You Can Laugh With | The Silver Petticoat Review
Photo Credit: TNT

While Flynn certainly embodies aspects of a more traditional romantic hero, his idiosyncrasies have a tendency to overwhelm everything else. Of course, this only serves to make him more lovable. Ezekiel Jones and Jake Stone also qualify on occasion.

Content Note: The Librarians is rated TV-14 for mild profanity. The rating seems a bit harsh for this particular TV series.

Where to Watch: Amazon Video and DVD.

RELATED POST –Romantic Moment of the Week – The Librarians’ Eve and Flynn – Their Romantic Adventure

#5 Chuck Bartowski of Chuck

Chuck; 9 Unlikely Romantic Leads – Playful Heroes You Can Laugh With | The Silver Petticoat Review
Photo Credit: NBC

Despite being played by the extremely handsome Zachary Levi, Chuck is about as far away from being a typical romantic hero as it is possible to be, at least at first. Through his adventures with Sarah and Casey, he becomes a hero in his own right. However, he never quite loses his nerdy, goofball charm.

Content Note: Chuck is rated TV-14 for mild sexuality and violence.

Where to Watch: Amazon Video and DVD.

RELATED POST – Typing Fictional Characters: Chuck The TV Series

#6 Dave the Laugh of The Confessions of Georgia Nicolson Series

Unlikely Romantic Leads Dave the laugh
Photo Credit: HarperTeen

Dave the Laugh began his role in the series as someone Georgia dated to make Robbie jealous. After the events of the first book, he and Georgia became increasingly good friends. It gradually becomes clear that Dave still has feelings for Georgia and whether she likes it or not she can’t seem to stop thinking about him.

Content Note: The books are aimed at people in their early to mid teens. Nothing explicit. Some innuendo.

#7 Hatter from Syfy’s Alice

Hatter; 9 Unlikely Romantic Leads – Playful Heroes You Can Laugh With | The Silver Petticoat Review
Photo Credit: Syfy

Not altogether trustworthy at first, Hatter is the eccentric guide who helps Alice find her lost boyfriend Jack. However, Jack is not exactly who he claimed to be. During their journey, Hatter and Alice find themselves falling in love despite themselves.

Andrew Lee Potts has a knack for making oddball characters much more appealing than they have any right to be. Conner Temple of Primeval being a prime example.

Content Note: Alice is rated 12 in the UK. Nothing explicit.

Where to Watch: DVD

RELATED POST – TV Mini-Series Review: Alice – An Imaginative Update to Lewis Carroll’s Masterpiece

#8 Andrew Prichard of Classic Alice

Andrew; 9 Unlikely Romantic Leads – Playful Heroes You Can Laugh With | The Silver Petticoat Review
Photo Credit: Kate Hackett Productions

Andrew begins Classic Alice as her close friend with an adorably obvious crush on our heroine. Loyal, funny and passionate, Andrew is one of many reasons to check out this original, fun web-series.

Content Note: No rating but there is nothing explicit in this web-series.

Where to Watch: Youtube

RELATED POST –Web Series Adaptations: An Exploration

#9 Fox Mulder of The X-Files

Mulder; 9 Unlikely Romantic Leads – Playful Heroes You Can Laugh With | The Silver Petticoat Review
Photo Credit: FOX

What list could be complete without the frequently goofy Fox Mulder? While Dana Scully had her own comedic moments, it was often Mulder’s job to bring levity to a show that could venture into some quite dark places. He brought a special charm and silliness to the show which was missed during his long absence. It’s no wonder Scully (and half the audience) fell for him.

Content Note: Rated TV-14 for occasional sexuality, violence, and unsettling imagery.

Where to Watch: Amazon Video, DVD and Hulu.

RELATED POST – Romantic Moment of the Week: The X-Files – A Romantic Mystery Solved as Scully Fights to Save Mulder

Do you enjoy spending time with heroes who make you laugh? Who is your favorite? 

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By on July 31st, 2017

About Elinor Cackett

Elinor is a writer and semi-recent graduate of English and Creative Writing at Aberystwyth University. She has been writing ever since she could hold a pen but her love affair with fiction started when the entirety of David Eddings’ 'The Belgariad' was read to her at age four. She currently has a couple of books and half a dozen short stories on the go. She spends her free time writing, analysing media and knitting very colourful scarves.

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