The 10 best on-screen crushes of 2020 (so far)

Thus far, 2020 has an excellent track record with on-screen crushes.

Over the past six months, plenty of TV and film characters have won our hearts. Whether they seduced main characters center stage or existed on the periphery as background snacks, heartthrobs of all kind have filled our screens and made an otherwise tumultuous start to the decade enjoyable. We’re a long way from crowning the biggest fictional catch of 2020, but no reason we can’t check-in at the halfway mark to see who has got a fighting chance.

Listed in particular order (because wow, how dare you), here are 10 of the most swoon-worthy on-screen crushes we’ve fallen for this year. 

1. John Ambrose in To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You

Lara Jean was a fool! A fool, I say!

Lara Jean was a fool! A fool, I say!

Image: Netflix / Bettina Strauss

The case for John Ambrose McLaren as played by Jordan Fisher was made not with words, but with sounds. At a press screening in January comprised almost entirely of middle-millennials, Fisher’s turn as Lara Jean’s (Lana Condor) latest crush to unearth a love letter elicited gasps from his first moment on screen. The next 90-minutes of teen dream confection in the TATBILB universe were spent with this group of so-called adults cooing, crying, and squirming at every dazzling smile, kind gesture, and blazing look that John Ambrose gives Lara Jean. Fisher is so irresistible in the role that even his would-be film nemesis (played by Noah Centineo) only had good things to say. — Proma Khosla, Entertainment Reporter

Where to watch: To All The Boys: P.S. I Still Love You is now streaming on Netflix.

2. Clyde in High Fidelity

Jake Lacy, it is my sincere hope you get what ever you want. But this is *not* gonna work out for Clyde.

Jake Lacy, it is my sincere hope you get what ever you want. But this is *not* gonna work out for Clyde.

The biggest TV crush I’ve developed in a while was on Clyde, Jake Lacy’s character from Hulu’s High Fidelity. Lacy is known for playing the good guy, and boy was Clyde good. As Rob spent the season toying with his feelings, using him to get over her ex, and taking advantage of his car, Clyde remained a kind, thoughtful, emotionally intelligent nerd who liked talking about the Sopranos and occasionally being badass-adjacent. In Episode 5, Clyde pulled a move so freaking cute that I genuinely emitted a squeal over his crushworthiness. And though there’s a very low chance that he and Rob will work things out, I selfishly pray they do so that I can keep watching him on my laptop screen. — Nicole Gallucci, Culture Reporter

Where to watch: High Fidelity Season 1 is now streaming on Hulu.

3. Huntress in Birds of Prey

I mean, the costumes a l o n e.

I mean, the costumes a l o n e.

There are the heroes we love for their braun, the heroes we love for their brain, and the heroes we love because no matter how hard they try they can’t help but be hot, hopeless doofuses. Mary Elizabeth Winstead’s Huntress is one such lovable moron. Unspeakably tough, immeasurably sexy, and just terrible at branding (“I am not the Crossbow Killer!!”), Helena Bertinelli made the most of her delightfully awkward cinematic debut. From saving Harley Quinn to defeating Black Mask, this motorcycle-riding badass made her mark on the DC universe with impressive fighting and perfectly timed appearances. But leaning over a cheap margarita, trying to make a joke and failing miserably, is when I personally fell head-over-wing for this Bird of Prey. — Alison Foreman, Entertainment Reporter

Where to watch: Birds of Prey is available for rent and purchase on Prime Video, iTunes, Google Play, and YouTube.

4. Prince Frederick in Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt: Kimmy vs. the Reverend

Our Short King!

Our Short King!

Image: Courtesy of Netflix

Dan Radcliffe has been one of Hollywood’s reigning Short Kings for years, but in Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt: Kimmy vs The Reverend he expanded his repertoire to play a goofy, loveable take on Prince Charming. As Kimmy’s fiancé Prince Frederick, Radcliffe fit right in with the show’s zany humor and delivered some of the choose-your-own-adventure special’s best lines, proving once and for all that there’s nothing hotter than being absolutely hilarious. His tailored suits, manicured beard, and dreamy eyes definitely helped, though. They helped a lot. — Alexis Nedd, Senior Entertainment Reporter

Where to watch: Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt: Kimmy vs the Reverend is now streaming on Netflix.

5. Kim in Better Call Saul

Hi. We really, really, really need her to survive.

Hi. We really, really, really need her to survive.

For reasons I won’t get into right now, my biggest Better Call Saul crush is and will always be Mike Ehrmantraut. But Kim Wexler (played by the phenomenal Rhea Seehorn) has consistently proven to be one of the show’s most ferociously intelligent, talented, and capable key players. In Season 5 especially, she commanded the spotlight. Anyone who claims they don’t have a crush on Kim after seeing her throw beer bottles off a balcony, lawyer circles around everyone at her firm, and stand up to Lalo Salamanca in her living room is simply lying. Fans have yet to learn why Kim isn’t seen in Breaking Bad, but so help me if the writers harm her character in any way…I might never recover.  — N.G.

Where to watch: Better Call Saul Season 5 is available to purchase on Prime Video; Seasons 1-4 are now streaming on Netflix.

6. Mr. Knightley in Emma

Oh, sir. May I say, your bottom is exquisite.

Oh, sir. May I say, your bottom is exquisite.

It’s practically a requirement that a Jane Austen adaptation comes with a swoon-worthy romantic hero in Regency clothing at this point. In Autumn de Wilde’s Emma, that hero is Johnny Flynn as Mr. Knightley. The Mr. Knightley of the book is described as handsome, but he’s also pedantic and older than Emma; Flynn’s Knightley is younger and more passionate than pedantic, fully acknowledging his own flaws as he grows alongside Emma to become a better partner. De Wilde also gave Flynn Emma’s only nude scene, which refocused the gaze of the film on men as the objects through which women in the early 1800s achieved social and financial stability…or just let the audience get a good, long look at Knightley’s butt. — A.N.

Where to watch: Emma is available for rent and purchase on Prime Video, iTunes, Google Play, and YouTube.

7. Connell in Normal People

If you can't make it work with Marianne, please consider also not making it work with me.

If you can’t make it work with Marianne, please consider also not making it work with me.

The literary and television worlds have fawned over the sexy morons of Normal People long enough. And yet, I cannot help but word-vomit something for you now to convey the unwavering attraction I  feel for Paul Mescal’s Connell. I know that smokin’ hot Irish boy is destined to be with Marianne; they’re perfect together and my desire to see them live happily ever after is what keeps me coming back to their star-crossed love story. Still, I cannot help but imagine the exquisite joy of being Connell’s one and only. Fail to ask me to the Debs, Connell! I won’t even tell your mom! — A.F.

Where to watch: Normal People is now streaming on Hulu.

8. Mohan in Never Have I Ever 

Never have I ever had a sex dream about a flashback ghost.  **WE ALL LOSE**

Never have I ever had a sex dream about a flashback ghost.  **WE ALL LOSE**

Image: LARA SOLANKI/NETFLIX

Among its many strengths, Mindy Kaling and Lang Fisher’s Never Have I Ever offers a wealth of crushes for viewers to choose from — but the most irresistible by far is Mohan (Sendhil Ramamurthy), the father whose untimely passing sets the show in motion. Mohan appears in flashbacks and visions to daughter Devi (Maitreyi Ramakrishnan), making two things immediately clear from the first episode: (1) He was a loving husband and father who relished life and exuded joy, (2) He was insanely fine. No disrespect to Devi’s loss but my condolences to the Vishwakumars extend to any friends who may have quietly spent years thirsting from Mohan from afar. Part of his perfect portrayal is that we inevitably sanctify the dead, but Devi’s memories of her father show just how devastating his loss really is — and again, that he was a bona fide snack I’d like with my afternoon chai. — P.K.

Where to watch: Never Have I Ever is now streaming on Netflix.

9. Alex in Homecoming Season 2 

Of the two Janelle Monáes in this show, this is the one I like less.

Of the two Janelle Monáes in this show, this is the one I like less.

Image: Ali Goldstein/Amazon Studios

(You’ll notice I’ve said “Alex” and not “Jackie” — brace for spoilers if you don’t know why.) Going into Homecoming Season 2, I knew I’d end up having a crush on whoever Janelle Monáe played; after all, I always do. But I’d be lying by omission if I failed to admit just how far I fell for Alex, one of the two roles Monáe played for the series. A take-charge fixer with excellent fashion sense (if not, upstanding moral character), Alex Eastern made some truly terrible choices in this show but she made them out of love and she did it with style. Do I want my memory erased? No. But if it was a consequence of this sexy, powerhouse trying to help me? Well, I guess that’d be just fine. 

Where to watch: Homecoming Season 2 is now streaming on Amazon Prime Video.

10. The entire cast of Hollywood

Send help of any kind, we beg of you.

Send help of any kind, we beg of you.

Image: SAEED ADYANI/NETFLIX

Sometimes a show comes out and there’s one standout crushable character. Many shows have more than one, anticipating that people with different tastes might find another archetypal character more attractive. Then there are shows like Hollywood, or no, maybe just Hollywood, that overwhelms the crush-o-meter with such an intense concentration of gorgeous people each episode begins to feel like a personal attack. Everyone in Hollywood is hot. Patti LuPone is hot, Darren Criss is hot, Jeremy Pope, Samara Weaving, Laura Harrier, Dylon McDermott with a mustache is hot, Holland Taylor is hot, the background extras are hot — the entire cast looks like they were wished to life by a horny sculptor who spent his or her entire life perfecting the human form and also had an unlimited costume budget for top tier 1950s lingerie. What I’m trying to say here is, send help. I’m crushed by the level of crush in this show. — A.N.

Where to watch: Hollywood is now streaming on Netflix.

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