31 of TV's Most Beloved Captains

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The words,"O Captain! My Captain!" evoke feelings of inspiration and admiration, leaders who spark fire in the hearts of their followers and brave the good fight to win the day.

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For decades, television has offered us the best of the best -- men and women who stand tall in order to lead the way. Sometimes, they fall. Sometimes, they rise again. Always, they leave a legacy of honor and service.

Whether law enforcement/military, scientific explorers, in retail, or freedom fighting across time and space, our captains have earned our hearts and salutes with their passion and fortitude


1. Malcolm Reynolds -- Firefly

Malcolm Reynolds -- Firefly
Browncoat Prime, Malcolm Reynolds may have lost the war against the Alliance but he never stopped opposing them with his merry gang of Big Damn Heroes. From train heists to shindigs, heaps of trash to hearts of gold, Reynolds led his crew through Reavers and hands of blue against all odds and that made them mighty.

2. Nathan Hale Bridger -- Seaquest DSV

Nathan Hale Bridger -- Seaquest DSV
The seaQuest vessel was a dream come true for Bridger who had conceived the idea of a revolutionary type of submarine but abandoned the work upon the death of his son. When both son and wife had passed, he was enticed back and took command of the seaQuest as well as a contentious crew made up of both military and science officers. And a talking dolphin. Saving the world was an annual event aboard the seaQuest, it seems, and Bridger managed it with clear-sightedness and adaptability.

3. Kate Beckett -- Castle

Kate Beckett -- Castle
Over the eight seasons of Castle, we get to see Beckett at every stage of her police career (even leaving the force for a period of time). This all leads to her eventual promotion to the rank of captain. Her relationship with her detectives is one of respect and loyalty, won over years of camaraderie and support.

4. Raymond Jacob Holt -- Brooklyn Nine-Nine

Raymond Jacob Holt -- Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Calm, cool, and maybe a tad robotic at times, Captain Holt is the gravity that anchors the Nine-Nine when it would go spinning into the Phantom Zone. Although he holds his members to high expectations, his expectations for himself are just as high. Having faced challenges in his career due to his race and his homosexuality, he is forced to continue playing a rigged game as the politics of the police hierarchy repeatedly force his hand.

5. Killian "Hook" Jones -- Once Upon a Time

Killian "Hook" Jones -- Once Upon a Time
Initially written as a supporting character, this exciting and dynamic representation of the well-known villain, Captain Hook, quickly won the hearts of viewers and Emma Swan as well.

6. James Gordon -- Gotham

James Gordon -- Gotham
Canon tells us that he will be Commissioner Gordon one day but we know him best on Gotham as Jim Gordon who is promoted to Captain just as the crazy hits the fan and the city needs evacuating and patrolling. In that order. Described by the man who knows him best as "the last honest man in a city full of crooked people," Jim Gordon is both what Gotham wants and what it needs.

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Firefly, Star Trek: Discovery, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Once Upon a Time, Gotham, Law & Order: SVU, Futurama, Doctor Who, The Rookie, Stargate SG-1, Arrow, DC's Legends of Tomorrow, The Last Ship, Downton Abbey
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