No Ordinary Family and Caprica are bringing back teenagers with superpowers and attitude. But the Powell kids and Zoe Graystone would have to work way harder to be among the ten most obnoxious super-teens of all time. Here’s our list.
To win a place on this list, a teenager doesn’t just need superpowers and an attitude. You need the crucial attributes of excessive drama (preferably involving sulking, pouting and whining) plus a vapid, self-centered mindset that represents what Hollywood thinks all young people are like. Oh, and really bad hair.
Oh, and welcome back to Monday Hate, where we hate things because it’s Monday.
Adric (Doctor Who)
Superpowers: Super-rapid healing; mathematical ability
Why he’s annoying: God, where do we start? When he’s not whining, he’s pouting. He also occasionally steals random shit, just for amusement (although this character trait was written out after a few episodes, to replaced by compulsive eating.) The biggest problem with Adric seemed to be that when they introduced a younger, bouncier Doctor (Peter Davison), he couldn’t have the same mentor relationship with Adric that Tom Baker’s Doctor had. So instead, they became bickering siblings. Also, genuinely scary wig/hair.
David (Lost Boys)
Superpowers: Vampire powers.
Why he’s annoying: The best use of his vampire powers that Kiefer Sutherland’s rebel character can think of is to make Michael (Jason Patric) eat rice that looks scary and maggoty. Scary rice! Oh noes! We considered having Starchild from V in this slot, but would she have busted out with the line, “Maggots, Michael. You’re eating maggots. How do they taste?” Plus all the weird stuff he says about Chinese people. Oh, and the douchey hair.
West Rosen (Heroes)
Superpowers: He could fly, or something. We’ve tried to blot it out of our minds.
Why he’s annoying: Some people suggested Claire Bear was the most obnoxious super-teen from Heroes, but she actually had her moments, and was a sympathetic character at times. West, meanwhile, was just pure annoyance from beginning to end, with his whole gambit of trying to get Claire to slice off her toes and fake her death to mess with cheerleaders. He waved his freak flag in our faces a few too many times.
Superpowers: When she was a mutant, she fired plasma blasts, but now she has super-strength thanks to Night Thrasher’s technology
Why she’s annoying: Mostly due to the generic “So Cal Mall Girl” personality she spouted during much of the 1990s and early 2000s (“Dude, like totally.”) and the way she would complain if she had to travel outside the United States and eat non-American food. Her portrayal on the late 1990s animated series was especially vacuous and annoying. We recently read her solo miniseries, written by The Walking Dead’s Robert Kirkman, and she totally fails to show a well-rounded personality at any point. In more recent issues, writers like Matt Fraction have managed to improve her a lot, however.
Superpowers: He’s inherited a lot of his dad’s superstrength, speed and agility, plus he’s able to knock up his surrogate mom.
Why he’s annoying: Some people suggested Dawn as the most obnoxious teen in the Buffyverse, but Dawn didn’t really have much in the way of superpowers (except for the whole “key” thing.) And even if Connor never resorted to kleptomania and screaming “Get out get out get out!” at people, he definitely managed to set a new standard for moping and wigging out, especially in the show’s fourth season. And then there’s the whole sleeping with his dad’s girlfriend thing, and the ensuing double helping of angst. By the time Connor’s memories were erased, we were wishing it could be our memories instead.
Wesley Crusher (Star Trek: The Next Generation)
Superpowers: He eventually becomes a kind of pseudo-god with ill-defined Traveler powers.
Why he’s annoying: Sure, people complain about Wesley’s propensity for saving the Enterprise in every episode of the early seasons of TNG, and his contagious enthusiasm for being on board the Enterprise gets a bit much at times. But we like his moxie, and he wins 1000 points for helping Ashley Judd save everyone from the orgasmic video game. Still, the storyline in which Wesley becomes a super-being wins new records for obnoxiousness — from the moody, bratty Wesley being on the verge of flunking out of the Academy to his visit to the planet of the spiritual Native Americans, who help him go on a Vision Quest and discover his true path. It’s Dances With Travelers, man. (Technically, Wesley might not have been a teenager any more by the time he becomes a god, but we’re including him anyway.) Another excellent Star Trek example, of course, would be Charley X.
Superboy/Superboy Prime (DC Comics)
Superpowers: All of Superman’s powers, plus the ability to punch the walls of reality and bring people back.
Why he’s annoying: People talk about Superdickery, but Superboy has always been way more dickish than the grown-up version, using his incredible powers to lord it over the people of his tiny town of Smallville, who erect huge signs in his honor. When somebody figures out the incredibly obvious fact that Superboy is Clark Kent, since they both live in the same town of 500 people, Superboy always forces them to erase their own memory, risking severe brain damage. But it’s the Earth Prime version of Superboy who achieves monumental levels of dickery in Crisis On Infinite Earths and Infinite Crisis, especially after he’s trapped in a “Paradise Dimension” and gets pissed off at the suckitude of post-Crisis Earth, causing the aforementioned reality-punching. Then he goes around ripping people’s heads off. Jerk!
Anakin Skywalker (Star Wars Episode II: Attack Of The Clones)
Superpowers: He’s one of the most powerful Jedi, plus he’s an ace pilot and pod-racer.
Why he’s annoying: Ugh. So according to most Star Wars pages we read, he’s around 19 years old in Attack Of The Clones, which not coincidentally is when he’s at his most insufferable, with his smarmy courtship of Padme and his endless grouchiness about his master Obi-Wan trying to, you know, teach him and stuff. Plus the mass slaughter. Mostly, though, it’s the pouting. Anakin may not be a Jedi Master, but he’s a master of pouting.
Sam Witwicky (Transformers)
Superpowers: As played by Shia LaBeouf, Sam Witwicky has a special connection to the Allspark and his brain frequently contains hidden knowledge as well as genius powers. Plus he later receives the Matrix of Leadership.
Why he’s annoying: Sam is an obnoxious dweeb at the best of times, but when he gets his special Allspark powers and stuff, he gets a million times more twitchy and annoying. Not to mention the incredibly obnoxious “I won’t admit I really lurve you” thing he has going with Mikaela throughout most of the second movie. But mostly it’s just the way his mouth hangs open all the time.
Edward Cullen (Twilight)
Superpowers: General vampire powers. Sparkliness. Dark broody eyes.
Why he’s annoying: He’s the Jar Jar of teen vampires. He combines the stalker thing with the perverse sexually-withholding thing, for a perfect storm of sexual frustration and claustrophobic romance. (Claustrophobance.) When this proves not dramatic enough, he actually rejects Bella and moves away from her, and then decides to get the super-vampires to kill him, just to clinch the drama world championship.
Thanks to Dennis Woo, R.C. Schmidt, Richard Rosenbaum, Louis Peitzman, Hughes, Taylor Shechet, Jay Bushman, Amanda Davis, Patrick Adams, Joe Kinkopf, Dave Goldberg, Tim Carmody, Nicole K., Aldyth Beltane, Andrew Liptak, Nathan Mehl, Jay Tomio, Ken Appelbaum, Michael Wilson, Raanve, Serene and anyone else we forgot!