June 4, 2010 -- They make your skin crawl. They get you to lunge for the remote. When we say their names, you say "ugh."
We're talking about the characters you hate, love to hate and loathe with all your being.
Entertainment Weekly has released its list of best characters in the past 20 years of pop culture, with Homer Simpson leading the pack. ABCNews.com has come up with 10 counterpoints, one of which also appears on EW's list; film and television characters that deserve status in the entertainment hall of shame because of either bad writing or all-around evilness.
Below, check out who ranks among the baddest of the bad, and share who you think should be added to the list in the comments section below.
1. Jar Jar Binks
Possibly the most loathed fictional character to arrive in the past 20 years hails from the "Star Wars" series of movies. The simple-minded, entirely computer-generated resident of the Planet Naboo from "The Phantom Menace," "Attack of The Clones" and "Revenge of the Sith" inspired an intense fan backlash and accusations of racial insensitivity. Jar Jar's bumbling stupidity combined with his exaggerated West Indian accent and Rasta appearance seemed racist to many, and his very presence in the film came across as a crass, unfunny play to attract more child viewers.
Reality TV twosome Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt made life hell for their fellow "friends" on MTV's "The Hills" and went to appalling lengths to score extra publicity, like moonlighting behind the counter of a Los Angeles Taco Bell in the name of world hunger. The newly surgically enhanced Montag just split from Pratt, reportedly to rehab her acting career.
In the epically bad "Battlefield Earth," John Travolta stands out for his cheesy performance as Terl, the security chief of a race of aliens that has enslaved Earth. With dreads that would seem outrageous at a Greatful Dead convention and a high-pitched cackle, Terl looked and sounded like a train wreck, and Travolta's acting didn't help. "Battlefield Earth" earned 2 percent approval on the movie review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, and swept the 2000 Golden Raspberry Awards, winning Travolta Razzies in both the Worst Actor category and the Worst Screen Couple (awarded to Travolta and "anyone sharing the screen with him.")
4. Carrie Bradshaw
Before you throw your cosmo at your computer, yes, Carrie Bradshaw inspired scores of women to open up about sex and relationships (and maybe don a pair of 4-inch designer stilettos while doing so.) But as a character, she never developed. The Carrie Bradshaw in "Sex and the City 2" is the same snippy, self-righteous Manhattan snob that she was during her worst moments in the HBO series. And, as evidenced by her dalliances in Abu Dhabi (we won't go into more details in case you haven't seen the movie), she still makes the same mistakes. Clearly, Sarah Jessica Parker has grown older. How can Carrie not?
5. Aubrey Fleming-Dakota Moss
Note to Lindsay Lohan, who played not one but both of these characters in "I Know Who Killed Me": never sign on to play the victim of a serial killer who also happens to have a twin sister whom almost no one else knows about who is willing to push her stripping career to the side to avenge her sister's death. Thanks to that ill-conceived plot, Lohan is still attempting to salvage her acting career.
6. Norbit-Rasputia Latimore-Mr.Wong
One actor playing two characters can be bad. One actor playing three characters, one of whom is morbidly obese, is just abysmal. See "Norbit" for reference. Good luck stomaching the (many) scenes in which Rasputia's zeal for sexual domination leads to a broken bed and a gasping-for-breath (not in a good way) Norbit.
Characters Made for Hating
Just his name sounds annoying. As the resident nerd and wannabe ladies man on the '90s TV series "Saved by the Bell," Samuel "Screech" Powers gave girls the creeps. He might have had a more endearing legacy had the actor who played him, Dustin Diamond, not amped up the "ick" factor as well. In 2006, Diamond released a too-dirty-to-describe-here sex tape entitled both "Screeched" and "Saved by the Smell."
8. Nikki and Paulo
Awkwardly introduced in the third season of "Lost" as if they had been there all along, Nikki and Paulo were supposed survivors of the Oceanic Flight 815 plane crash that was the catalyst for the plot of the show. They were clumsily shoehorned into major storylines, earning fans' ridicule. Eventually, "Lost" show runners, who realized that the characters were "universally despised," spent a whole episode exposing them as horrible human beings and then gruesomely killed them off by burying them alive.
9. Bella Swan
The heroine of the enormously popular "Twilight" series of books and movies has inspired as much hatred as she has devotion. The anti-Bella camp sees her as a terrible role model for young girls, in love with and constantly needing to be rescued by an aloof vampire boyfriend, Edward Cullen.
But popular culture is full of bad role models that make unforgettable and fascinating fictional characters. What makes Bella suck more than vampires is that she has little personality of her own and seems to live only for Edward. In a world full of super-powered beings, she is defined by being clumsy and mooning obsessively over her man.
10. Poochie "Simpsons" characters are reliably hilarious and justifiably beloved, and Poochie, a cartoon skateboard-riding dog who said things like "Catch you on the flipside, dudemeisters," was more of a meta commentary on marketing-department meddling than a truly bad character. In season 8, Poochie was added to show-within-a-show "The Itchy & Scratchy Show" at the request of the producers, who thought the cartoon was getting stale. And in a poke at the power of "hardcore fans," Poochie's unpopularity got him killed off after only his second episode, to the dismay of Homer, who was voicing him.
Who else belongs on this list? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.