As the Arrowverse expanded on the CW, so did the number of romantic relationships. Some relationships lasted across more than one series, like Hawkman and Hawkgirl. Others barely lasted the length of an episode, and made as much sense as Felicity after too many espressos. Some relationships started with someone’s unrequited love blossoming into a marriage proposal, while others were doomed from the second someone put on a hood. A few couples had the classic hallmarks of the will-they-won’t-they relationships that have made certain TV shows, The X-Files, for instance, simply tantalizing to watch.
Amid all the bittersweet ups and downs of the most endearing relationships in the Arrowverse are some that are so annoying that they almost send viewers scrambling for the remote. The annoying relationships make no sense. Or they appear and disappear too quickly. Sometimes, the two people locking eyes and possibly lips have zero chemistry. Regardless of what’s wrong with these TV relationships, because they’re annoying, they ruin otherwise fantastic TV shows. No one wants the action to stop just to watch a couple of superheroes bumbling toward ecstasy.
CBR dissected each TV show to find the worst offenders when it comes to annoying relationships. These 15 couples from the Arrowverse made the list.
15. IT’S NOT YOU, IT’S ME
When Supergirl premiered, Kara was giving James her biggest puppy eyes, while Winn was mooning at her over James’ shoulder. Kara didn’t chase James, but everyone could see her feelings as clearly as if she were wearing a big sign on her chest. Meanwhile, Winn made his feelings known not only to James, who he saw as the competition, but also to Kara, which ended with some seriously awkward feelings.
Winn moved on, but for the entire rest of the first season, Kara kept her torch for James lit. Finally, after Lucy swanned out of National City, James and Kara confessed their feelings for each other. They were headed for a romance, except they weren’t. In the second season premiere, Kara abruptly decided to focus on being a superhero and kicked James to the curb. Her annoying change of heart came out of nowhere for a lot of fans.
14. MY BEST FRIEND’S GIRL
Arrow could be accused of being a soap opera. The CW superhero show spends as much time setting up and knocking down romances as it does villains. Finagling relationships is inevitable on a TV show with a relatively small cast, and Arrow is no exception. With the exception of only a couple of the characters, everyone has dated everyone else on that show.
One of the most annoying relationships was one that existed at the outset of Arrow. The relationship between Tommy Merlyn and Laurel Lance wasn’t meant to be the love to end all loves. It was only a plot device to create tension between Oliver, his best friend and his ex-girlfriend. Plus, when Tommy died, it gave Laurel some serious motivation for becoming a vigilante in her own right.
13. BEAUTY AND THE BEAST
Hooking up isn’t just for kids anymore. Married folks enjoy the occasional roll in the hay too, even when it’s with someone other than their spouse. In one of the most shocking plot twists Arrow ever served up, Malcolm Merlyn revealed that not only did he get it on with Moira Queen, the result of their tryst was his daughter, Thea.
No one wants to find out that their mother wasn’t as saintly as one hoped. Oliver and Thea were understandably devastated to find out their mother had betrayed their father. Moreover, the audience was annoyed that someone with as much class as Moira Queen would slum it with someone as smarmy as Malcolm. Of course, Malcolm’s paternity has provided plenty of emotional layers for both Malcolm and Thea, as well as a steady base for future plots.
12. YOU DON’T KNOW ME
One of the most intriguing aspects of a superhero’s story is that they have to keep their super-powered identity secret from so many people. The audience feels like their part of the superhero’s inner circle since they’re in on the big secret. However, for the superhero, keeping such a big secret can be a big strain, especially when it comes to romantic relationships. On The Flash, Barry has had more than one relationship that turned sour when he couldn’t reveal his other identity.
One of the most annoying relationships Barry had was with Linda Park. Their scenes were just one argument after another about why Barry couldn’t pay enough attention to Linda until, finally, Barry put Linda (and the audience) out of her misery and ended it. Their relationship didn’t serve any purpose other than ringing the clue phone for Iris that maybe Barry had more going on than she had previously realized.
11. WHEN A MAN LOVES AN A.I.
Legends of Tomorrow is another CW superhero show that spends a lot of time shuffling people in and out of romantic relationships. Some of those relationship spring from natural attraction, like in the case of Amaya and Nate. Others seem forced and only serve to give the writers something to do until they figure out where the show is headed. (More on that below.)
One really annoying relationship was so fleeting and so indulgent that it couldn’t help but annoy the audience. In the “Land of the Lost” episode, Sara and Jefferson enter Rip’s mind in an attempt to snap him out of the spell Eobard Thawne had put him under. In his mind, Rip encounters Gideon, the Waverider’s A.I., who has taken on an attractive woman’s form. Unfortunately, the writers couldn’t restrain themselves and wound up forcing the two of them into a quick kiss, making it seem as if they had been dying to smooch for a lifetime.
10. MAMA’S BOY
Kara Danvers spent a lot of the first season of Supergirl trying to get in Cat Grant’s good graces. Making sure her lattes were the right temperature and that her salads were made correctly just wasn’t enough. When she found out Cat had an estranged son whom she had left behind to pursue her career, Kara jumped on the chance to help get them back together.
Of course, Cat’s son Adam turned out to be very cute, and he and Kara hit it off immediately. In just two episodes, they hit it off, then broke it off, which was annoying and senseless. Kara’s whole plan to win over Cat backfired because, surprisingly, Cat liked the idea of Adam and “Keira” getting together and was upset when it fell apart. The whole fictional relationship seemed even more forced once fans realized that Blake Jenner, who played Adam, was Melissa Benoist’s real-life husband, whom she recently divorced.
9. TWO’S COMPANY, THREE’S A CROWD
Lucy Lane was the main reason James and Kara couldn’t be a couple in the first season of Supergirl. We didn’t even know James had a girlfriend until Lucy showed up in National City. She followed James from Metropolis to National City, hoping the two of them would be a better couple being out from under the cape of Superman. Of course, the audience, who was rooting for Kara and James, was pretty annoyed with her arrival.
What was more annoying, however, was that just as fans were getting to know and like Lucy, she left. Lucy spent the rest of the first season earning Team Supergirl’s respect, both as Cat Grant’s attorney and as an agent of the D.E.O. By the time Lucy announced she was breaking up with James, and even gave Kara her blessing to date James, the audience was rooting for her. As quickly as she came, she was gone, which was very annoying.
8. SHE’S A MANEATER
Winn is lovable, dependable and cute as a bug’s ear. Although he won the heart of the Supergirl audience, he couldn’t win the heart of Supergirl. Every time he looked longingly at Kara as she walked away, our hearts broke a little. He seemed to be doomed to singlehood.
Then, Siobhan Smythe became Cat Grant’s second assistant and up bubbled a toxic romance. While Winn was sneaking smooches with Siobhan, the audience was torn between being happy that he found someone, and being repulsed by his choice. We didn’t have to suffer long because, eventually, Siobhan’s true nature came out. Her tortured heart pushed her into becoming the Silver Banshee. Winn didn’t have to worry about whether or not they could make it work, because he was too busy worrying that she would kill everyone.
7. FAKE NEWS
Here’s another relationship that popped up out of nowhere, and disappeared just as quickly. Susan Williams was the much-despised news anchor in Star City. Her cynicism and snark put her at odds with Mayor Oliver Queen’s office. Thea, especially, detested Susan because the newswoman had a way of spinning negative headlines out of every soundbite.
Suddenly, Oliver was flirting with Susan. Their alleged attraction appeared out of nowhere. Next thing we knew, they were dating, if you could call a couple of drinks and a couple of hours in bed together dating. The only purpose their relationship served was to add interest when she flirted with exposing Oliver as the Green Arrow, but even that plot was dropped quickly with no explanation. After being kidnapped by Prometheus, then rescued by Oliver, Susan seemed to disappear into the background again. The audience was left wondering why the show even bothered with starting something with Susan.
6. MEET CUTE
Just because a fictional relationship has roots in the source material doesn’t mean its enjoyable to watch. Patty Spivot joined the meta-human team of the Central City Police Department because she had a personal reason for wanting to put metas away: Mark Mardon killed her father. Little did Patty know that not only was she working closely with a meta, she was also falling for one.
The amount of cute that emanated from the screen when Barry and Patty shared a scene was almost tangible. That much “aw, shucks” and “who me?” on the screen at the same time was nearly unbearable. Throw in the fact that Barry had to hide his alter ego from Patty, and their relationship became impossible. Luckily, Patty was sacrificed to the TV gods to pave the way for Barry and Iris to get together. Otherwise, Patty’s boundless cock-eyed optimism would have derailed the darker stories The Flash has been telling.
5. BORN TO RUN
The relationship between Oliver Queen and Sara Lance was annoying on a couple of levels. For starters, she was supposed to be dead. Arrow had the audience shed many a tear over her demise. Quentin and Laurel frequently used Sara’s death to bludgeon Oliver into depression when he seemed to be enjoying himself too much. After Arrow brought her back to life, those scenes had no bite.
Secondly, their relationship smacked of ambivalence for a couple of reasons. Clearly, neither of them were very interested in the other. They rolled around together more to scratch an itch than to explore a deeper romance. Also, Sara turned out to be in love with Nyssa, so why bother bunking with Oliver at all? Having Sara fall into Oliver’s arms as soon as she was back in town kind of undercut her feelings for Nyssa. While revealing her true feelings for Nyssa was quite a story twist, it made Sara’s time with Oliver pointless.
4. WEIRD SCIENCE
Ronnie Raymond and Caitlin Snow were supposed to be the perfect couple before the particle accelerator explosion turned Ronnie into half of Firestorm. By all accounts, the two of them were madly in love and looking forward to a long and rosy future together.
Then, their world exploded, literally, and the two of them wound up in a weird limbo. When Ronnie was around, they still gave each other the eye, but neither of them made a move to rekindle any kind of flame. They fell into a relationship that was more like brother and sister than old flames. Over on Earth-2, Killer Frost and Firestorm looked hot and heavy, but back on Earth, they had no chemistry. Although Caitlin claimed Ronnie had been the love of her life, she seemed to suffer only a little when he took flight and left Central City. Even his second death didn’t seem to affect Caitlin all that much.
3. TAKE THESE BROKEN WINGS
On Legends of Tomorrow, the relationship between Kendra and Ray Palmer was so annoying that echoes of their annoying romance still bounce around the Waverider. The two of them had little reason to get together, other than Ray’s obvious attraction to Kendra. Kendra seemed to be with Ray out of pity, because she rarely showed any enthusiasm for being with him. Even after living as husband and wife for a year, the two of them could hardly hold hands without breaking out in a sweat.
Plus, Kendra was tied, for all of eternity, to Carter. Just because he was dead in this life didn’t mean she wouldn’t seem him again — and again — in her future lives, so why bother with Haircut when she clearly had no interest in him? Thankfully, everyone was put out of their misery when, just was inexplicably as she loved Ray, she disappeared from the Legends.
2. LOVE HURTS
The entire premise of the first season of Legends of Tomorrow hinged on Vandal Savage’s love for Kendra that she didn’t return. He went on a rampage through all of time, past and future, to amass enough power to kill Kendra and her true love, Carter. He also wanted world domination, but even that was fueled by his desire for revenge.
However, the only glimpse we ever saw of this psychopath showing Kendra any affection was in a brief flashback that showed his discovery of Chay-Ara and Khufu as lovers. He had the kind of affection for her that smarmy villains throughout entertainment history have had for their victims. They say there’s a fine line between love and hate, but watching Vandal Savage look at Kendra like a lion looks at his next meal was downright nauseating.
1. ‘SHIPS THAT PASS IN THE NIGHT
Without a doubt, the most annoying relationship in the Arrowverse is Oliver and Felicity, known affectionately to ‘shippers as Olicity. From the moment the quirky, yet gorgeous, Felicity Smoak let loose with a torrent of gibberish in the presence of Oliver Queen, some fans felt that the fates had spoken, that Oliver and Felicity were meant to be together.
Other fans, however, don’t see how Felicity and Oliver make sense as a couple at all. The two of them give off an older brother / younger sister vibe. Plus, she and Ray had much more in common than Oliver and Felicity. As for Oliver, he and Laurel have always seemed to understand each other, and support each other, on a much more equal level. Arrow should stop teasing ‘shippers, and stop torturing everyone else, by ending Olicity once and for all.
Who do you think is the most annoying couple in the Arrowverse? Tell us in the comments!