85: Sharpe: Richard Sharpe (Sean Bean)
On TV there is a distinct lack of characters who are willing to get things done by any means necessary, but Sharpe was certainly one of them. Based on Bernard Cornwall’s novels, Sharpe was brought to the screen by Sheffield’s own Sean Bean, who gave the character a grit and determination not to fail that has rarely been matched since. A humble soldier in Wellington’s army, Sharpe rose up the ranks due to the fact that he was hard as nails, kicking the living hell out of his opponents and then going back and making out with a succession of beautiful women looking for ‘a bit of rough’. Mix all this in with a badass attitude and the fact he’s played by SEAN BEAN, and you’ve got yourself the ultimate hero.
84: The Mighty Boosh: Old Gregg (Noel Fielding)
It’s a tribute to the talents of Noel Fielding that Old Gregg is in this list, as he only ever appeared in one episode of the Mighty Boosh, the one that bore his name. However Gregg has become a phenomenon, a character who is widely recognised and loved. With his catchphrase “I’m Old Gregg!” and his passion for Baileys drunk out of a shoe, Old Gregg is a half-man half-fish monster, although he suffers considerable brain damage due to his “downstairs mix-up” – work that one out for yourself. Old Gregg is a very dark character though, as it transpires he kidnaps people and then forces them to love him. Howard, who gets kidnapped by the fishy foe, finds this out when he engages in an inspired duet with Old Gregg; “Do You Love Me?”
83: Pride and Prejudice: Mr Darcy (Colin Firth)
Two words define this character: wet shirt.
82: The Avengers: John Steed (Patrick Macnee)
The epitome of the English Gentleman, John Steed was everything that is great about our fair isle. Never caught without an umbrella, newspaper and his trademark bowler hat, he was the ultimate in sophisticated crime-fighting. His witty one-liners, mocking everything beneath him, were best put to sue in his verbal spars with his partner Emma Peel, with whom he shared a distinct sexual chemistry. But he would never allow himself to reveal that; it’s not the English way! He could handle himself well in a fight, with his umbrella serving as a weapon on more than one occasion, and afterwards (and this is the true reason he’s in the list) he would always stop for tea and biscuits. What a gent.
81: The OC: Seth Cohen (Adam Brody)
The inventor of Christmukah (a mix of Christmas and Hanukah, obviously) comes into our list as the sole representative of his show, where a group of rich Californians went through a series of melodramatic relationships and everyone had a dark secret. The reason he makes this list is that in the midst of the insane storylines he was a rock the show could cling to. Whenever things were going depressingly, they could rely on bringing in Seth to make some dorky comment and bring humour back to the show. And for being the sole ray of light in an otherwise entirely disheartening half-hour, he fully earns his place in the list.