The Most Memorable Career Criminals in TV History

Source: Courtesy of Sky UK

Vinnie O’Neill
> Show: Brassic
> Played by: Joe Gilgun

Vinnie O’Neill (Joe Gilgun) was born into criminality, following in his father’s footsteps of breaking into safes. Despite his law-breaking ways, O’Neill is the show’s protagonist and anti-hero, gaining the sympathy of audiences through his challenging backstory, ongoing struggles with bipolar disorder, and display of emotional intelligence.

Source: Courtesy of American Movie Classics

Walter White
> Show: Breaking Bad
> Played by: Bryan Cranston

Many consider Walter White (Bryan Cranston) to be one of the greatest anti-heroes of all time. Afflicted by cancer, White, a high school chemistry teacher, turns to cooking meth as a means to support his family. Audience members watch as White becomes an increasingly ruthless criminal as the show unfolds.

Source: Courtesy of American Movie Classics

Gus Fring
> Show: Breaking Bad
> Played by: Giancarlo Esposito

The owner of Los Pollos Hermanos, Gustavo “Gus” Fring (Giancarlo Esposito) moonlights as a narcotics distributor in both “Breaking Bad” and its prequel, “Better Call Saul”. Some paint Fring as the perfect villain, maintaining a seamless public image while committing ruthless crimes. Fring is positioned as the nemesis of Walter White, though the two collaborate in some instances.

Source: Courtesy of Fox Network

Doug Judy
> Show: Brooklyn Nine-Nine
> Played by: Craig Robinson

Though criminal Doug Judy (Craig Robinson) and Detective Jake Peralta (Andy Samburg) are arch-enemies, “frenemies” might be a more-apt descriptor. Judy, an expert Pontiac thief, is pursued by Detective Peralta throughout the series. The two characters participate in comedic misadventures, all while maintaining a love-hate relationship.

Source: Courtesy of CBS

J.R. Ewing
> Show: Dallas
> Played by: Larry Hagman

J.R. Ewing (Larry Hagman) appeared in every episode of the original “Dallas.” Ewing is viewed as a morally corrupt man, engaging in bribery, blackmail and manipulation. However, the show presents duality in Ewing’s character, demonstrating to viewers his loyalty to some family members. By the end of the original series, tragedy befalls Ewing, garnering sympathy from some viewers.

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