The slew of brilliant TV from the US has given us hours of pleasure, so doff your caps for the ball breakers and heart stakers who have held their own with the alpha males and won hearts and minds in the process...
April Buchanon – Eastbound and Down
When Kenny Powers says ‘she’s more than just a pair of tits with legs’ then you know he must have it bad. Played by the comic actress, Katy Mixon, April is Kenny’s childhood sweetheart who he fucks over in a thousand different ways across the three series of the show. While she’s obviously got two big reasons for her inclusion on this list, it’s more down to the fact you could empty a bottle of tequila, dance naked in a thunderstorm and nick a Corvette before popping home for a bit of slap and tickle and a hundredweight of fried chicken. One warning though, Kenny claims to have ‘a cock like a Burmese Python’, so you might have your work cut out.
Gloria Pritchett – Modern Family
It would be easy to just write Sophia Vegara here in size 36pt and be done with it, but that would do a disservice to her comic timing. Most of her mis-pronunciations are ad-libbed, and she keeps the rest of the cast guessing as to exactly how she earned her money before marrying Jay. Brilliantly killed a rat by chopping its head off with a shovel and left the head ‘as a warning to other rats’. Bravo.
Gemma Morrow – Sons of Anarchy
In the opening scene of the first episode of series 5 of the batshit mental Hell’s Angels drama, patriarch Gemma is seen thrusting, Rottweiler-style, onto the rod of an unnamed man. Within minutes she’s pointing a gun at him and calling him a ‘spick pimp’, proving that her split with Clay hasn’t in anyway dampened her spirit. Sobering up, she realises that the dalliance was her idea and then doesn’t flinch when told that the two Playboy centrefold escorts slumped naked on a sofa were introduced at her request. In a show that is often cartoonish both in plot and portrayal, Katey Sagal delivers the most consistently brilliant and believable performance of the cast as she sees off porn stars, groupies and nut jobs to retain her title as Queen of Charming. Gemma skins up like a pro, goes like an angry rattlesnake and would probably slit your throat for whispering sweet nothings. What’s not to like?
The crossed legs, the power suit, the husky voice, she’s got it all and then some
Dr. Jennifer Melfi – The Sopranos
She might not be the only woman to send Tony over the edge across the six seasons of the greatest TV show ever made, but she is the one that got away and, for my money, edges out Ade and innumerate other goomahs as the sexiest woman full-stop, let alone Mother. I’ve read shameless poppycock that claims the scenes between her and Tony become a drag and slow the show to a halt, but that’s obviously bollocks spouted by fuckwits. The crossed legs, the power suit, the husky voice, she’s got it all and then some.
Winona Hawkins – Justified
Relatively unknown in the UK, Justified is a rollicking Southern that centres around the dysfunctional relationship between US Marshall Raylan Givens and career criminal Boyd Crowder, played by Timothy Olyphant and Walton Goggins. From moonshine-brewing hillbillies to meth-dealing militants and beyond, every character is incredibly well drawn and the dialogue crackles with a wit that ensures even Timothy Olyphant (Givens) doesn’t get out-acted by a wardrobe. Winona Hawkins – Givens’ ex-wife / girlfriend / pregnant fiancée / runaway lover – played by Natalie Zea, stops every scene she is in with her innate sexiness. With a Southern twang, a potty mouth and a hip jutting walk that undoubtedly launches a thousand pricks from Lafayette to La Jolla every week, Winona is the kind of Mum that would make you pretend to be friends with the sweaty kid from next door just to watch her baking cookies.
Pam Swynford de Beaufort – True Blood
You either love or hate True Blood and I fucking love it. Pam – played by the similarly named Kristen Bauer van Straten – is a nut. Hopelessly devoted to Eric, her maker, she spends the first four series stealing the best lines and being a general cunt to everyone in Bon Temps and its surroundings until, early in series 5, she is persuaded to turn Tara who has just died at the hands of Alcide’s mental ex-wife. Despite showing a highly individual approach to motherhood, namely dressing Tara up in bondage gear and making her work the pole at Fangtasia, they form a genuine bond forged by death and loneliness only to ruin it* by ferociously necking in the final episode. As vampires go like the clappers, I can only imagine the fun to be had with a 110-year old, ex-madame MILF bloodsucker and her hard-bodied daughter / lesbian lover stripper sex slave who share a love of corsets.
*make it miles better
Within a few episodes of meeting her she marries and shags a huge half-man half-horse King
Lucy Danziger – Boardwalk Empire
There are several reasons for which you could call Nucky Thompson mental, but trading in sultry chanteuse Lucy for dowdy, god-fearing misery Margaret Schroeder easily knocks pairing purple wingtips and a brown suit into second place. Achingly-beautiful model Paz de la Huerta smashes it out of the park as the damaged Lucy, and you get much more of a sense of her character’s back-story by just observing her demeanour and delivery than you ever do from Kelly MacDonald’s incessant moaning. Purists might argue for son-shagger Gretchen Mol, but if any further proof were needed, the scene in Season 1 where Lucy goes unashamedly bollocko in front of an embarrassed Margaret should do the trick.
Daenerys Targaryen – Game of Thrones
The fantasy opus divides opinion in a similar way to True Blood and the fact that I think its ace either tells you that I have no shit filter or am like a kid at Christmas waiting for all sorts of incredibly weird shagging. Daenerys, played by Emilia Clarke, has perhaps the most insane story arc which is no mean feat in a tale of madness. Within a few episodes of meeting her, she casts off her status as meek companion of her narcissist brother, marries and shags a huge half-man half-horse King and becomes Queen of his Dothraki tribe when he dies. Then it gets really weird when she walks into his funeral pyre with three unhatched dragon eggs and emerges, unscathed, with three dragons she calls her children. That she’s unnaturally beautiful is clear, but it is the way she portrays a ruthless power as her journey back to Kings Landing twists and turns that gives her true sex appeal.
Joan Harris – Mad Men
And there you were thinking I’d forgotten her. So much has been written about Christina Hendricks’ ridiculous curves and balls out attitude that I’m not sure I can add much. Our Editorial Assistant tried to argue with me as I was writing this, claiming it was all about January Jones. I tried to explain that it was about sex appeal and imagining how much fun you could have but he just walked off shaking his head, the berk. I think our gaffer, James, summed it up best. “What are you going to have more fun with, a rake or a bouncy castle?” Indeed.
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