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    29 Actors Who Gave Amazing Performances On Teen TV Shows But Didn't Get Enough Credit

    Bethany Joy Lenz as Haley James Scott on One Tree Hill was extraordinary.

    We asked the BuzzFeed Community to tell us which actors from teen TV shows were so good but got zero credit for it. Here are some of the best responses:

    🚨Warning: There are some massive spoilers ahead!🚨

    1. Dylan O'Brien as Stiles on Teen Wolf

    Void Stiles telling Stiles and Lydia, "You can kill the Oni. But me? Me? I'm a thousand years old. You can't kill me"
    MTV

    "He is one of the best actors on this show and he really got to shine as Void Stiles in Season 3B. He was truly the star of the show and his acting was top tier."

    mollball03

    2. Bethany Joy Lenz as Haley James Scott on One Tree Hill

    The CW

    "Joy carried this show on her back in terms of acting performances. The depth she brought to Haley was phenomenal. This is particularly seen during Seasons 5, 7, and 9, when Haley deals with Nathan's depression, her mother's death and her own depression, and Nathan's kidnapping, respectively. Her depiction of Haley's depression was so heart-wrenchingly raw and sincere without being cliché. Toward the end of the series when things started to get quite ridiculous, it was Joy's weekly performances that kept the show grounded."

    haleyhastings2003

    3. Sophia Bush as Brooke Davis on One Tree Hill

    Brooke standing with words like "Not pretty enough" and "not talented enough" written on her body and around her
    The CW

    "Brooke Davis was such an iconic role. Brooke wasn't even supposed to be a main character, but Sophia was so amazing that One Tree Hill basically became 'the Brooke Davis show.' Sophia helped make Brooke a multi-dimensional character as she went from a stereotypical cheerleader and spoiled brat to something more."

    giovanapaesm

    4. Ncuti Gatwa as Eric Effiong on Sex Education

    When Eric told his dad that he's proud to be who he is and doesn't want to change
    Netflix

    "Ncuti Gatwa amazed me in Sex Education. The confidence he brings to Eric is astounding. Watching Eric stand up for what he believes in and who he is was beautiful."

    viqui543

    5. Brandy Norwood as Moesha Mitchell on Moesha

    Moesha sitting in her new car and making up a scenario where a boy doesn't like her because of the car she drives
    Warner Bros.

    "Brandy was able to depict Black teenagers in a way that was rarely portrayed on TV. She was headstrong, but not angry, intelligent, flawed, funny, layered, typical, and realistic. Her character allowed so many young Black people to see themselves. I think the entire cast was perfectly chosen, but I applaud Brandy for showing the most growth throughout the series. Due to the fact that the cast was Black, the show was pigeonholed as a 'Black show for Black people,' when in reality, the issues the teens on the show faced were often issues not just Black teenagers related to. The series paved the way for shows like That's So Raven, The Famous Jett Jackson, and One on One. Brandy deserves more recognition. Period."

    mj2005

    6. Troian Bellisario as Spencer Hastings on Pretty Little Liars

    Spencer in Radley after finding out that Toby could be "A"
    Freeform

    "Spencer was consistently the strongest character and Troian carried this show on her back for seven seasons. Spencer was always the most invested of the liars in catching 'A,' and she managed to make even the wackiest storylines believable. Troian deserved all the awards."

    georgea4cf7567f5

    7. Brandon Flynn as Justin Foley on 13 Reasons Why

    Clay telling Justin that he saved his life and Justin saying that he loves Clay right before he dies
    Netflix

    "I really love Brandon Flynn on 13 Reasons Why. Justin had amazing character development and ended up as one of my favorites by the end of the show. I'm still heartbroken over how dirty they did Justin in the series finale!"

    jillt013

    8. Kristen Bell as Veronica Mars on Veronica Mars

    Veronica crying and Logan telling her that she's not a killer and needs to give him the gun
    Warner Bros.

    "Kristen Bell is obviously amazing in The Good Place, but the complexities she brought to the role of Veronica were amazing. The show had a great cast overall, but no one was as good as the leading character. She deserved more credit when the show was originally airing."

    gulloannabeth

    9. Naya Rivera as Santana Lopez on Glee

    Santana coming out to her grandmother and saying that she loves Brittany
    Fox

    "Sadly, it wasn't until Naya's tragic death that she really got the mainstream recognition that she deserved. Her performance was a powerful testament to the reality of growing up part of the LGBTQ community and the strength that it can require."

    got30p

    10. Amber Riley as Mercedes Jones on Glee

    Mercedes singing "I Will Always Love You"
    Fox

    "I think Amber Riley was really great. Her singing slapped, but she never got to show it off because Mercedes was always sidelined for Rachel. Amber and Mercedes deserved more."

    emihaha13

    11. Rider Strong as Shawn Hunter on Boy Meets World

    Shawn begging with God to make sure Mr. Turner is okay and survives his accident
    ABC

    "Shawn had some of the most tragic storylines, including his parents abandoning him and his dad dying, and Ryder played all of them brilliantly. He portrayed the emotions so well and it felt so genuine."

    loststarspace

    12. Zach Gilford as Matt Saracen on Friday Night Lights

    Matt crying over his dad and saying he hated him but he doesn't like hating people
    NBC

    "The fact that Zach didn't get an Emmy Award for his work in 'The Son' is a travesty."

    jennr4ab11fa64

    13. Hunter Schafer as Jules Vaughn on Euphoria

    Rue asking Jules if she wants to get high
    HBO

    "Hunter Schafer in Euphoria should've been nominated for an Emmy alongside Zendaya. She wasn't though and I'm mad."

    sabinemitkus2

    14. Jacob Elordi as Nate Jacobs on Euphoria

    Nate screaming and crying while his dad pins him to the floor
    HBO

    "One of Jacob's last scenes in Season 1 when Nate is having a fit after a fight with his father featured some of the most realistic and best acting I have ever seen!"

    youhotbabe

    15. Sarah Michelle Gellar as Buffy Summers on Buffy the Vampire Slayer

    Buffy telling Angel she loves him and to close his eyes before stabbing him and sending him through a portal
    Warner Bros.

    "Sarah Michelle Gellar in Buffy was incredible. She conveyed the strength of a slayer perfectly with the vulnerability of a high school girl. Your heart broke any time hers did and, as an actor, Sarah worked around the clock for this role. She didn't get enough recognition!"

    joanneb447c2e55a

    16. Marie Avgeropoulos as Octavia Blake on The 100

    Octavia covered in blood during a battle saying, "You are Wonkru, or you are the enemy of Wonkru. Choose"
    The CW

    "Marie managed to be equally compelling as a sheltered teenage girl, a tribal warrior, and a brutal dictator."

    mangoforpresident

    17. Lindsey Morgan as Raven Reyes on The 100

    Raven telling Finn, "I'm so scared" and then screaming during surgery
    The CW

    "Lindsey's performance after Raven was shot and almost couldn't walk again was absolutely breathtaking. She even did an amazing job acting possessed in Season 3. Lindsey gets no recognition because she isn't on a super popular show, but she’s an incredible actor."

    laylawall

    18. Joshua Jackson, Meredith Monroe, and Kerr Smith as Pacey Witter, Andie McPhee, and Jack McPhee on Dawson's Creek

    Pacey and Jack begging with Andie to open up the bathroom door and come out
    Warner Bros.

    "Joshua Jackson, Meredith Monroe, and Kerr Smith's memorable performances truly go hand-in-hand during Season 2. There was the incredibly mature, restrained, and compassionate work they all did when Jack came out of the closet. And then, when Andie dealt with her mental illness. All three of them did a fantastic job of showing how academic and family pressures can create a whirlwind of issues for teenagers. All three of them gave nuanced and mature performances in what could have been a very 'after school special' kind of storyline!"

    mattyc3

    19. Madelaine Petsch as Cheryl Blossom on Riverdale

    Cheryl coming out to Toni in Pop's and revealing she had a crush on her friend Heather growing up
    The CW

    "Madelaine Petsch has the some of most cringe-worthy lines on Riverdale, but she still gives it her all and puts everything she has into her character. In general, the cast of Riverdale doesn’t get enough credit. They’re all carrying the show right now, and just because the writing is dumpster-worthy, doesn’t mean the acting is."

    lilithstormgoddess

    20. Nina Dobrev as Elena Gilbert/Katherine Pierce on The Vampire Diaries

    Katherine revealing herself to John and cutting off his fingers
    The CW

    "Nina played three different characters on The Vampire Diaries (with essentially four personalities if you count the time Elena shut off her humanity). However, instead of her getting credit for her versatility, people just go on and on about how much they hate Elena."

    anda_panda

    21. Kat Graham as Bonnie Bennett on The Vampire Diaries

    Bonnie stopping the hellfire
    The CW

    "Bonnie Bennett ended up being the MVP of this show and Kat truly gave it her all in every single season. I feel like her performance is often overshadowed by some of the others, and it deserves so much recognition. Bonnie had some of the best storylines and they remain iconic because of Kat."

    noradominick

    22. Chris Wood as Kai Parker on The Vampire Diaries

    Kai saying he had to prove that his family was right about him and that's why he decided to kill Jo at her wedding
    The CW

    "In the beginning you absolutely hated and distrusted Kai due to him being a sociopath, however as his character developed, you couldn't help but love him. The range that Chris has is so interesting to watch. He continued to portray Kai as the evil person that Kai was meant to be, but he threw in these new feelings that his character had never felt before."

    hayesgabby19

    23. Leighton Meester as Blair Waldorf on Gossip Girl

    Blair asking Chuck to say "Three words. Eight letters"
    The CW

    "Leighton took a one-dimensional mean girl and turned her into a lovable and vulnerable character simply by acting in such an honest way. I know the show isn't great, but it would be much worse without her, and no one appreciates that."

    emmaloveschocolate

    24. Rudy Pankow as JJ on Outer Banks

    JJ crying in Kie's arms in the hot tub after revealing how much he hates his dad
    Netflix

    "100% Rudy as JJ. JJ wiping away years of trauma in a hot tub was simply incredible and one of the best scenes from Season 1."

    oggabooga

    25. Keir Gilchrist as Sam Gardner on Atypical

    Sam and Zahid reuniting and Sam saying, "You may have unhomied me but I never unhomied you"
    Netflix

    "I’m watching Atypical now and I was so surprised to find out that Keir has gotten ZERO recognition for his role! He deserves at least an Emmy nomination! Also, this whole series is so underrated! It’s so good!"

    pauloyanagi

    26. Caleb McLaughlin as Lucas Sinclair on Stranger Things

    Netflix

    "Okay, Lucas is the most underrated character on this show and he needs more screen time! Everybody always talks about Millie Bobby Brown, Finn Wolfhard, and Gaten Materazzo, but Caleb should get more attention."

    yessirbrebre_26

    27. Mischa Barton as Marissa Cooper on The O.C.

    Marissa telling her mom, "Do you? Do you really wanna know what's on my mind?" then screaming and throwing a chair
    Fox

    "Mischa Barton gets criticized a lot, but she actually poured a lot of herself into creating an iconic character. Don't lie, when Julie asked what she wanted and Marissa threw a chair into the pool and just screamed...we all felt that."

    jessicat4fbb3029f

    28. Eric Osbourne as Miles Hollingsworth on Degrassi

    Miles crying in the hospital
    CTV

    "Eric Osbourne absolutely killed it as Miles Hollingsworth on Degrassi. He tackled serious subjects, like abuse and addiction, and really brought Miles' complex character to life. His character was also excellent bisexual representation. He doesn't get enough credit for his performance."

    kellymartinez

    29. And finally, the entire cast of The Society

    Seacia Pavao / Netflix

    "Kathryn Newton was incredible as usual, but all of the other up-and-coming young actors were amazing too! They are all so talented and I can't believe this show got canceled. I sincerely hope we manage to save it."

    sylviaplath

    Are there other teen TV actors whose performances deserve more recognition? Tell us in the comments below!

    Some submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.

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