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opinion | PATRICK GARVIN

TV love triangles audiences love to love

By Patrick Garvin | Globe Staff

As TV's new season kicks off next month, there will inevitably be the usual intrigue, plot twists, and, of course, love triangles. It’s unlikely, however, that this fall’s romantic entanglements will stick like those in "My So-Called Life" did when the show debuted 20 years ago this month. Whether Angela Chase should be with brooding hunk Jordan Catalano or sweet-if-nerdy Brian Krakow, it’s hard to find a 30-something today without an opinion. (Team Krakow all the way.)

But what is it about love triangles that makes us take sides? Why do we favor underdogs, dark horses, or, in rare exceptions, prom kings? Maybe it’s that we root for chemistry or maybe, as in real life, it simply comes down to which mate is more likable. Here are some of the most debated TV pairings since that golden era. The bold line is how the pairing should have, obviously, gone.

Warning: This contains many huge spoilers, the biggest of which have been redacted. Click on the redacted items to view the spoilers.
Beverly Hills, 90210
1990–2000
Melrose Place
1992-1999
My So-Called Life
1994-1995
Friends
1994–2004
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
1997-2003
Dawson's Creek
1998–2003
Sex and the City
1998–2004
Felicity
1998–2002
Gilmore Girls
2000–2007
Smallville
2001–2011
The O.C.
2003–2007
Veronica Mars
2004-2007
Lost
2004–2010
Battlestar Galactica
2004–2009
The Office
2005-2013
Grey's Anatomy
2005-present
How I Met Your Mother
2005–2014
True Blood
2008–present
Glee
2009–present
The Vampire Diaries
2009–present
The Good Wife
2009–present
Revenge
2011-2015
Once Upon A Time
2011-present
Scandal
2012-present
Orange Is The New Black
2013-present

Patrick Garvin/Globe Staff

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