Skip To Content
  • Best of 2021 badge

25 Infuriatingly Bad TV Show Storylines From 2021 That Should Have Never Left The Writers' Room

Almost cancelled my Netflix subscription because Nadia and Guzmán broke up in Elite.

We asked the BuzzFeed Community to vent about the absolute worst TV show storylines they watched in 2021. Here are the best answers!

🚨 Warning: Spoilers ahead! 🚨

1. The absolute dumpster fire that was Season 4 of Elite.

Netflix

"It didn't make any sense."

lovedorra1999

2. Including Nadia and Guzmán's break up, as well as the ridiculous love triangle between him, Samuel and Ari.

Netflix

"Nadia and Guzmán have been through so much together and are one of my favourite couples. Then, they broke up because of the whole long distance thing, resulting in Guzmán turning back into the asshole he was in Season 1. Plus, there was the love triangle with Samuel and Ari — all his character development went out through the window. Ugh, I miss Season 3 Guzmán."

courtnie13

3. The introduction of Yuri's character in Season 2 of Girl From Nowhere.

Netflix

"Ever since Yuri ended up on the show and got Nanno's powers by accident, things have gotten so chaotic to the point that it's hard to watch. She's like Blofeld from the James Bond film Spectre, where she's doing multiple misdeeds and ruining other people's lives just to spite Nanno. Her actions almost feel like what happens constantly in real life, where those in the law abuse their power. What's worse is that since Girl From Nowhere hasn't renewed for a third season, I can't even rewatch it because I don't know if Nanno will ever be okay because of that snake."

 —tanyam44ab2253d

4. The writers teasing a potential romance between Link and Jo in Grey's Anatomy — which could ruin their friendship.

ABC

"The worst storyline of 2021 is happening right now in Grey's Anatomy with Jo and Link. Grey's has never learned the concept of a platonic boy-girl relationship — I swear they [the writers of Grey's Anatomy] want every character to fuck each other. Okay, Amelia and Link broke up — we didn't like it, but we understood why it happened. But then why do they feel the need to make Link and Jo a couple?! A few seasons ago, Jo was saying how Link was like a brother to her when they were young. What happened? After Alex left, Link and Jo filled the void for me of a good platonic relationship — like what Alex and Meredith had. But they're going to ruin it with the stupid romantic storyline!"

itsmeshahbano

5. The missed opportunity with the time skip in Season 5 of Riverdale, which just resulted in characters splitting up and falling back into the same old patterns — aka relationship whiplash.

Netflix

"When I saw this post, before even clicking on it the first TV show I thought of was Riverdale. Seriously, everything about this show is ridiculous, but I absolutely hate the way they handled splitting up the characters post-time jump with that awful cheating storyline and then still trying to force Barchie as a ship — even though they've shown many times why they don't work."

kielilougheedj

6. Oh, and while we're on the topic of Riverdale, the bizarre explanations for some seriously weird storylines, like the whole "Rat King" and "Mothmen" situations.

The CW

Monique B

"Just when a Riverdale plot line starts to get interesting, it seems like the writers fizzle out — or they don't map it out properly. Initially, it seemed like the Mothmen would be linked to UFOs, aliens or something supernatural (hello Chilling Adventures Of Sabrina!), but then they basically nerfed that idea. Instead, we had the Mothmen being Dreyfuss and the other inbreds, without any explanation of the encounters that Jughead and Tabitha were investigating.

Also, the Rat King storyline — don't get me started on that! I can't believe that someone in the writer's room pitched an idea where Jughead would have a rabies-induced hallucination after he was swarmed by rats AFTER he fell down a sinkhole. LIKE WHAT IS EVEN GOING ON HERE?!?!"


7. And if that wasn't bonkers enough, there's Cheryl starting her own cult and convincing everyone to sacrifice Archie for the good of the town — by ripping out his heart in Season 6.

Netflix

"What the hell has been going on with Cheryl's storyline and her ministry/sainthood or whatever thing in Riverdale? Plus, the town is now under an alternative universe 'curse' or some nonsense. Literally, I don't even know — this show is a disaster."

kielilougheedj

8. The lacklustre LGBTQ+ representation in Loki, especially after the character's bisexuality was confirmed.

Marvel / Disney+ / @iamkateherron / Via Twitter: @iamkateherron

"When I first watched Loki, I loved that they had him openly reference his bisexuality — but then I thought about how sad it is that one throwaway comment gets us excited and that's due to a lack of representation. You had Loki and Sylvie confirmed as bisexual, but then went nowhere else. I didn't get their relationship becoming romantic at all and it'd have been amazing to show Loki's gender fluidity and sexuality more. It just felt like throwing the LGBTQ+ community a minuscule bone and expecting us to just be grateful."

slytherinshark

9. And let's not forget about the Infinity Stones being used as paper weights by the Time Variance Authority (TVA).

Marvel / Disney+

"After we were robbed of a funeral and literally got 30 seconds of the OG5 grieving her, Natasha fans were slapped in the face *again* when it was revealed that her death was for nothing because the Infinity Stones aren't even rare — they're being used as paper weights by the TVA in Loki. She's dead, stop taking a shit on her grave. It was cruel and hurtful."

constanvee

10. The messiness that was Season 2 of Outer Banks — which included some ridiculous plot holes and decision-making by the characters.

Netflix

"Season 2 of Outer Banks was trash! I could only watch, like, two episodes. Idiotic characters, idiotic storyline, idiotic trash."

shayasantoro

11. The half-modern, half-period format in Jupiter's Legacy, which completely ruined the pacing for the modern characters to develop and progress.

Netflix

"The origin story was really interesting and engaging, but the next generation were so cringey and rushed!"

thetimble

12. The entirety of the Gossip Girl reboot.

HBO

"It just sucks. None of the characters are likeable and it’s trying so hard to be scandalous."

panda_13

13. The frustrating decision by Lip to sell the Gallagher family home in the final season of Shameless.

Showtime

"Lip wanted to sell the house, even though the majority of the Gallaghers didn't. He wanted better living conditions for his OWN family, completely forgetting about his siblings. Plus, Lip didn't live there anymore and the house wasn't even in his name — so kicking out seven people because HE needed money was super selfish. It frustrated me so much." 

xdaniellax

14. The nonsensical and unexpected romance between Daryl and Leah in The Walking Dead.

AMC

"This whole arc builds on the supposed Daryl and Leah romance, which isn't believable at all. She got introduced in a random in-between episode in Season 10 — and  then suddenly Daryl and her are supposed to be 'star-crossed lovers' who reunite again and are forced to choose between 'love' and family. Ugh."

elise1617

15. The overwhelmingly uncomfortable fantasy racism scenes in Shadow And Bone, which didn't feel necessary — especially since they're included in the book series that the show is based on.

Netflix

"Within the first few minutes of Shadow and Bone, you have Alina, who is half-Shu, being called a 'half-breed' and 'rice eater'. And it doesn't stop with her either, with Inej, another POC character, dealing with microaggressions from white characters. Considering that none of this existed in the books, was it really necessary to include it in the on-screen adaptation? Personally, I don't think so — especially not if we're celebrating a more diverse cast by just having their characters subjected to racist subplots."

Isha Bassi

16. The references to COVID-19 in the latest season of This Is Us.

NBC

"They shoehorned a COVID-19 reference into the show whenever they could — even when it added absolutely nothing to the storyline. Showing the effect on Beth's business was well-handled though."

lucyt431e5c1a0

17. The argument between Coop and Spencer in Season 3 of All American, with him blaming her for the reason as to why he got shot.

Showtime

"This storyline wasn't bad, per se — it was just annoying because we ALL know Coop’s nosy, wannabe gangster ass is the very reason Spencer got shot. So, for her to be mad at Spencer was ridiculous. Not to mention their subsequent 'break up' and also Coop wanting to drop out of high school! You know what? It's Coop! Coop is the worst storyline of 2021."

laidedahunsi

18. The unsatisfactory ending to Season 3 of Castlevania.

Netflix

"It was such bad writing and I was left stunned and disappointed. After the very strong start, I couldn't get over how weak and awful the ending was!"

samantharosed

19. The lack of cohesion in Beard's standalone episode in Season 2 of Ted Lasso because it felt so jarringly different to the rest of the show.

Apple TV+

"Big fan of Ted Lasso (although I don't think Season 2 quite hit the high bar that the first season set), but one episode I absolutely couldn't stand was 'Beard After Hours' — which follows coach 'Beard' around London, on what I wrongfully assumed was just a hallucinatory nightmare. I kept waiting for the moment he 'woke' up and it would all prove to have been some kind of post-match day dream?? It just felt like a total waste of an episode and a ~quirky~ way of building out the supporting cast more. But 3/10, I really couldn't have given less of a fuck."

Julia Willing

20. Everything about the disappointing final season of Lucifer.

Netflix

"The final season of Lucifer was HORRIBLE. Lucifer and Chloe having a kid, Trixie being COMPLETELY IGNORED and just sent off to her grandmother's (despite the fact that she's just lost her dad) because Lucifer and Chloe are like 'Oh my god, wow, look at our edgy new daughter!' Then on Chloe's deathbed, in the future, her daughter with Lucifer was there, but adult Trixie was nowhere? Like, Lucifer's whole thing was about being abandoned by his father and then Chloe goes and abandons her daughter for her new boyfriend? It was so bad."

constanvee

21. The whitewashing of core characters in Fate: The Winx Saga, which made an already disappointing adaptation of the beloved cartoon series even worse.

Netflix

"It would have been such an easy win for representation, but instead the character of Musa, who is depicted as East Asian in the cartoon, and Flora, a Latinx character (who appears as Terra, Flora's cousin, in the Netflix show), were whitewashed. And for what? In a show about badass females, it's such a shame that POCs were chosen to be cast aside. Add this to the show's many key differences from the source material and this adaptation left a bad taste in my mouth. Yikes."

Isha Bassi

22. The severely underwhelming finale of American Horror Story: Death Valley, which had no stakes, twists or excitement.

FX

"It was such trash. I've never hated a show when it ended like I did with AHS: Death Valley."

Lindsey Courtemanche, Facebook

23. The twist ending of Squid Game, which saw Gi-hun decide not to board the plane and reunite with his daughter, but to hunt down the people responsible for the games instead.

Netflix

"Everything before that can stay."

howzitguy96815

24. The anti-climatic reveal of Carmel being not only the one to send threatening texts to Masha, but shoot her in Nine Perfect Strangers.

Hulu

25. And finally, Jean and Jakob's on and off again relationship that's slowly ruining both characters in Sex Education.

Netflix

"Jean and Jakob's story became one of the main plots in Sex Education and I didn't love it. Yes, it was interesting to see an adult couple among all this teen drama, but I came here for the teens, not soap opera mysteries like 'Whose baby it is?'"

Marusia

Note: Submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.

Do you agree with these opinions? Or maybe you've got more TV storylines from 2021 that you consider to be the absolute worst. Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

The year is almost over and we're looking back on 2021. Check out more from the year here!