The Best of 2014: Underutilized Characters

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Everyone hates it when shows completely waste good characters. Here are the TV Fanatic staff picks for the most underutilized characters from 2014.

Whether it be ridiculous storylines or not enough screen time, we have all had the feeling of wanting more from these characters. 

1. Jimmy Palmer -- NCIS

Jimmy Palmer -- NCIS
Jimmy Palmer plays the role of assistant to Medical Examiner Donald "Ducky" Mallard on NCIS. Palmer is a generally happy married guy who seems to get saddled with a lot of clownish behaviour in rare episode side-plots. Yet we know that beneath all the goofiness he's actually a fairly intelligent guy who brings a lot of value to the NCIS team. Sadly, we rarely get to see that side of him.

2. Jackson Avery -- Grey's Anatomy

Jackson Avery -- Grey's Anatomy
Jackson Avery, Grey's Anatomy. The minimal screen time Jackson has been getting lately is mostly used watching him deal with board issues. As cute as it is seeing him shopping for baby supplies, we rarely get to see him rock the OR anymore. It seemed like there would be potential for a juicier story line when he joined the wounded Vet project, but so far it's been mostly Callie and Owen. Here's hoping for more Jackson in 2015!

3. Diane Lockhart -- The Good Wife

Diane Lockhart -- The Good Wife
Diane Lockhart has always been a supporting role on The Good Wife, but this season she has taken even more of a back seat to Alicia's run for State's Attorney and Cary's trial. Actress Christine Baranski is brilliant, and hopefully 2015 will be a chance for her to get Diane Lockhart more time in the spotlight.

4. Bonnie Bennett -- The Vampire Diaries

Bonnie Bennett -- The Vampire Diaries
Omg! BONNIE from TVD. It's taken her 6 seasons to get a halfway decent storyline and now she's stuck in some witchy prison world alone. Previously she's been trotted out when somebody needed a spell performed. Or she was dead. Then sort of undead. Now this. Poor BONNIE.

5. Jeremy Gilbert -- The Vampire Diaries

Jeremy Gilbert -- The Vampire Diaries
With the exception of the Vampire hunter storyline, Jeremy from The Vampire Diaries has been given very little to do besides pine after, be in a relationship with, or mourn the loss of Bonnie. It's time he got more of a story. I mean, if you're going to bring him back to life, at least give him something interesting to do! Otherwise, what a waste.

6. Jenny Mills -- Sleepy Hollow

Jenny Mills -- Sleepy Hollow
Every since Hawley came on the scene, it seems like Jenny's role within Sleepy Hollow has shrunk. And while Hawley has been a pretty polarizing character, it's common knowledge that Jenny is awesome. The last few episodes before the midseason finale had more Jenny and hopefully that trend will continue when it comes back.

7. Antoine Triplett -- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D

Antoine Triplett -- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D
Agent Antoine "Trip" Triplett, Season 2 of Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Trip started out interesting and full of potential when he first appeared in Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 1. Unfortunately, Trip barely appears at all in Season 2 and, when he does appear, he is heavily overshadowed by all the new cast members. His death in the mid-season finale episode should have been heart-breaking and tragic, but it barely makes a ripple and pretty much came across as a mild, "Oh, well, that's too bad. But, hey, at least Mack's alive!"

8. Dorian Gray -- Penny Dreadful

Dorian Gray -- Penny Dreadful
Dorian Gray of Penny Dreadful It's tough to evenly balance out storyline's for 10 or more characters (in 8 episodes), but the fabulously intoxicating Dorian Gray was only useful when he was seducing one of the other characters. Sure that's his preternatural gift and people are unnaturally drawn to him, but who did he sign his soul away to? How did he become so ridiculously wealthy and well-connected in Victorian London? They could have at least given us a peek at the portrait no? All the first season really gave us was a truly mesmerizing performance by Reeve Carney and tons of questions about Dorian Gray for Season 2.

9. AJ Gibbs -- Review

AJ Gibbs -- Review
Megan Stevenson as AJ Gibbs on Review-On the surface, Forrest McNeil's co-host had the chipper demeanor and the wardrobe capacity of Vanna White but there were undertones of ruthless ambition that could rival Network's Diana Christensen. With only 4 or 5 lines an episode it was difficult to get a handle on her but that's not to say she didn't leave us wanting.

10. J.T. -- Beauty and the Beast

J.T. -- Beauty and the Beast
J.T. is one of the best characters on The CW. He's the glue that holds all of the others together on Beauty and the Beast and yet there were some episodes where he was left out entirely. He finally got a love interest in the incredible Tess, so now he just needs more air time when the show returns, especially since he's the biggest supporter of BaTB!

11. Cole Lockhart -- The Affair

Cole Lockhart -- The Affair
Joshua Jackson as Cole on The Affair is probably the least explored of the main characters. Considering it's his wife cheating and his brother's death at the heart of the mystery, it seems he's been given the shaft. With the considerable range Jackson showed Fringe, I can only hope his part is expanded in Season 2.

12. Ralph -- Scorpion

Ralph -- Scorpion
Ralph introduced us to the fantastic characters on Scorpion BUT he has unfortunately not been utilized as much as we all thought he would. While the show is about Walter, we would also like to hear more about Ralph and actually add a personality to the kid instead of just throwing him in during the final scene of the episode.

13. Laurel Lance -- Arrow

Laurel Lance -- Arrow
Laurel Lance has gotten a very bad rap, much of which was due to the series decision to push her into a dire and unappealing personal space, while bringing her sister, newly created for Arrow, on as Canary. They couldn't count on Caity Lotz' appeal, but they should have known leaving Laurel out of the action wouldn't bolster faith in her future. It's not fair to fans, Katie Cassidy or the legend of the Black Canary.

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Best of 2014
The Vampire Diaries, Sleepy Hollow, NCIS, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Grey's Anatomy, Penny Dreadful, The Good Wife, Beauty and the Beast, The Affair, Scorpion, Arrow
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