In entirely un-Blaze-Heroineish fashion, Lori Borrill bursts into tears, drops to the floor, wraps her arms around Gil Grissom’s ankles and wails, “Pleeease don’t le-he-heeeave meeeee!”

Alas, it’s true. Gil’s gone. And millions of women across the world are left with no other option than to buy up nine seasons of CSI on DVD and spend the rest of our lives living in the past.

Yet, what’s worse than seeing him go is the fact that he’s left before I could ever really get a handle on why I loved him so much. I mean, think about it. The man loves bugs more than breasts, his most prominent character trait is emotional oblivion, and he’s a solid decade my senior (no, really, he is). One gets the distinct impression that life as Mrs. Grissom would involve lots of spoiled dinners, lonely anniversaries and cold showers. So why has he entered the hearts of so many women as an unwitting romantic lead?

I mean, does this honestly work for you?


I think we’re addicted to the challenge. Like our fascination with playboys and bad boys. When it comes to fantasy men, we seem to yawn over the ones who make life too easy on us. After all, what fun is it getting flowers from a guy who gives flowers to all his dates? We want to believe we’re that one-and-only, the uber-special someone who got the rebel to conform, the rambler to settle down, and Gil Grissom to drop his bug jar and come to bed. They aren’t reality, but when it comes to entertainment, who wants reality?

Unfortunately, now that this TV fantasy man is gone, I’ll have to find myself a new one. (I’m sorta eyeing Jon Hamm from Mad Men.)

But this brings me to the question: What TV heroes have you loved and lost over the years? Were you a Gil Grissom fan? What about Jason Priestly from Beverly Hills 90210? Were you all over Don Johnson during his Miami Vice years? Tom Selleck, Magnum P.I.? Or, if you’re as old as dirt like me, here’s a blast from the past: Paul Michael Glazer from Starsky & Hutch. (Oh, man. If there was a Tiger Beat with his picture on it, I owned it!) What TV heroes have you loved and lost over the years?

70 Responses to “TV Heart Throbs”
  1. Leslie Kelly Leslie Kelly says:

    Ooooh Lori, I was a major Starsky fan too! My Tiger Beat collection probably featured more covers with Sean Cassidy and Parker Stevenson, however. (The Hardy Boys…quiver…)

    Today, I still like boys. I admit it, I’m a wicked old lady. I absolutely adore those cute boys on Supernatural, especially Dean. The ultimate bad boy!

  2. Lori Borrill says:

    OMG, how could I forget Sean Cassidy? Those big brown eyes turned me into a puddle in front of the rabbit ears every week. Remember his song, DaDoRonRon? David Soul had a song out, too. (Don’t Give Up On Us Baby–Oh God, it’s in my head now!)

    I think that was a thing back then–TV heart throbs doubling as one-hit-wonders on the radio.

  3. Lori Borrill says:

    Heather, have you seen the SNL MacGyver skits they’ve been doing lately? They’re hilarious, especially one they aired during Super Bowl where they really had Richard Dean Anderson. He’s aging pretty good, if I say so myself. Of course, I’m old enough to remember him on General Hospital….

    Crap, I never realized I had this much 70’s TV trivia in my head.

  4. Anne Calhoun says:

    Great post, Lori! Let’s see…I had a bizarre thing for Jan-Michael Vincent from Airwolf in the 80s (he’s literally old enough to be my father so let’s not go there). No to Jason Priestley and yes, yes, yes to Luke Perry, LOL. I’m currently fascinated by Tahmoh Penikett from Battlestar Galactica and Dollhouse. At least he’s close to my age. πŸ˜‰

    • Lori Borrill says:

      Anne, Jan-Michael Vincent was huge! I wouldn’t call your thing bizarre at all! LOL As for Tahmoh, I’ll have to google that one. While I’m a plethorah of 70’s TV trivia, with every decade my viewing gets narrower and narrower. And DirecTV has all but ruined me completely. I’ve got 200+ channels, yet I still go straight for the Ace of Cakes rerun on Food Network that I’ve seen a hundred times. If the guy doesn’t cook or do carpentry on HGTV, I’m all but out of the loop!

      • Anne Calhoun says:

        He would look amazing baking cakes, LOL. Actually, I love his character on BSG as much as I love his looks. He’s hotter than hot AND the guy who always does the right thing. Loyal, moral, standing up for what’s right…that so does it for me!

  5. Roberta Harwell says:

    I would have to say my TV heroes were Don Johnson, Luke Perry, MacGyver and George Clooney (ER). Gotta love them. Have a great day.

  6. Sayuri says:

    OMG! Leslie kelly loves Dean Winchester. But not as much as me. Get away from my TV boyf. LOL

    I recently lost Captian Mal from Firefly (aka Nathan Fillion) But as a wee girlie anyone remeber Micheal Praed from Robin Hood? Or Gilbert from Anne Of Green Gables? But mu ultimate has to be Mulder from the X-Files. Man, I loved David Duchovny but only as Mulder.

    • Lori Borrill says:

      Okay, no hair pulling gals. LOL!

      I loved Mulder. Especially since they never went the Moonlighting route and made him and Scully an item.

      • Sayuri says:

        OMG! You mentioned Monnlighting and it all came back. I loved Bruce Willis in that!

        • Lori Borrill says:

          I love him in everything. He’s one of those actors who never takes himself too seriously. I love that. And he and Demi raised their kids in Hailey, ID, where I have family. They tell me he’s just as funny and down-to-earth in real life, too.

  7. JulieH says:

    Jason Morgan on General Hospital will always be a huge crush for me. Crushes of old include Midnight Caller’s Jack Kilian (played by Gary Cole), McGyver, Probe’s Austin James (played by Parker Stevenson) Frank Hardy (also played by Parker Stevenson). Oh, and of course Timothy Hutton’s “Archie Goodwin” on Nero Wolfe. Now that was sexy.

    Hm. I think I see a trend. Smart men who can handle themselves. Go figure.


    • Sally says:

      I’m with Julie on Jason from GH. I’m also a huge Lucky from GH fan, too. *swoon* I also like Maks from Dancing with the Stars, the Winchester guys, and…and, and, and… LOL I could go on all day. I crush on just about any TV hottie with a Y chromosome. πŸ˜›

    • Lori Borrill says:

      Ooh, I’ve loved Timothy Hutton ever since Ordinary People. You know he’s on a new TV series, right? I haven’t seen it but it looks interesting.

      • JulieH says:

        He is! He plays a character named Nathan Ford on Leverage. I love the actor and the character has its moments, but in season one he was established as quite the drunk, which I don’t find attractive. It sounds like the show is going to tweak that aspect of his character. I think the viewers didn’t really respond well to it. But Leverage is a lot of fun.


        • Lori Borrill says:

          Hmmm, yet House pops Vicodin all day and I still think he’s dreamy. LOL!

          I’ll have to check that show out. I’ve seen commercials and it’s looked pretty good.

  8. maria says:

    I cringe now but Richard Chamberlain in Thorn Birds!

  9. Cari Quinn says:

    I loved Don Johnson on Miami Vice, and even bought a couple seasons on DVD. The early 90s were probably the last time I watched a lot of TV, so I’m hopelessly out of touch with the series – and heroes – that are on now.

    • Lori Borrill says:

      I’m with you, Cari. People get on loops and start talking about TV shows now and I’m lost (pun intended!). It’s not like it used to be when all we had were the networks and everyone watched the same thing. I kinda miss that unity. (But I wouldn’t trade HGTV for it LOL)

  10. Nancy Holroyd says:

    Scott Bakula of Quantum Leap, Jason O’Mara of Life on Mars, Geroge Clooney of early ER and the show he was on just before that (racking brain here)…Sisters! (Thank heavens for IMDB). Josh Hopkins of Pepper Dennis and now Private Practice, Nathan Fillion of Castle.

  11. I was a huge Starsky and Hutch fan too! I guess we’re all dating ourselves. Over the years… Pierce Brosnan on Remington Steele, David Boreanaz Angel and Bones, and I do like the chests on Dances with the Stars. Sawyer on Lost and Jack on Men in Trees (he was a visual for an entire book of mine) Sigh…

    • Lori Borrill says:

      I was wondering if anyone would mention Pierce. I’m still a total fan and think he’s aging as deliciously as Sean Connery. Have you seen the movie Matador? If you like Pierce and haven’t caught it, I’d recommend it. He’s really funny in it.

  12. Jill James says:

    Okay, menopause is bad enough, but what does it say about me getting hot and bothered just thinking about those boy crushes of old? I was so in love with Starsky and Hutch. Shaun Cassidy (Hardy Boys), Matthew Starr (don’t remember who played him and Lukus the wolf boy (I remember doing a petition in high school to demand the network bring him back when he was cancelled.

    • Jill James says:

      I checked, it is Lucan the Wolf boy, with Kevin Brophy playing Lucan. 77-78 seasons.

    • Lori Borrill says:

      OMG, petitioning to bring the show back? I think you rank as top fan!

      I came close with a Fox series, John Doe, starring Dominic Purcell. I was CRAZY about that show (and him–he’s on Prison Break now–totally not hunky without hair). But Fox cancelled it, and we never got to learn the mystery. It–seriously–was the last show I watched on Fox. I’m still mad at them for that!

  13. I don’t have TV now, but I used to be a big CSI fan. What happened to Gil? Why is he gone from the show???

    I found Gil and Warrick both quite appealing, though Gil was certainly the confusing one to be attracted to. I thought Sara’s attraction to him was a nice little bit of tension in the early shows.

    • Lori Borrill says:

      Gil’s gone…whaaa. He’s left the show, though they didn’t kill him off, so he could come back for a guest appearance occasionally. I think he’s a producer of the show, so hopefully the quality and the writing will remain.

      I loved all of them, Warrick, Nick, Gil. I even liked Brass in his kinda fatherly way. Thank goodness for Spike TV. They air reruns and I actually caught a few episodes from the first season a while back. They were all so young!!

  14. Way, waaay back now when I was a very little girl and still hated boys…there was a tv show called Maverick in glorious black and white with James Garner as Bret. One of the most handsome men on tv.

    Then, over on Rawhide was Clint Eastwood…and on Gunsmoke was a very young, very buff Quint played by Burt Reynolds.

    Note the western theme…days ago I said I love cowboys, here’s the proof. I may have been young enough not to like boys…but men had definitely caught my eye. πŸ˜‰

    I mourn the loss of Gil Grissom, too…and for that matter, Warrick Brown! I LOVED him…all messed up with a gambling addiction and a too-quick marriage/divorce and his beautiful eyes. (U)

    I’m really trying to like the new version of CSI, but I wish they’d do more with Catherine as a strong leader…she should be used more.

    • Lori Borrill says:

      Ooh, I used to watch Maverick in reruns all the time. I loved James Garner, and his brother Brett Maverick (Jack Kelley?). That and the Rockford Files (imagine having a crush on a guy who lives in a crappy trailor on the beach. LOL!).

      I wonder if the big TV westerns will ever come back. Remember The Wild Wild West with Robert Conrad? I loved that show, caught it a couple years ago on some cable network and realized how horribly unrealistic and hokey it was. He actually wore a purple suit. LOL

      • I loved the Wild Wild West….and I was going to mention it, but I kept thinking I had the wrong name for James West. I knew it was a Conrad…but couldn’t quite recall his first name.

        But I did love the show…so quirky and I loved all the gadgets and the disguises.

        And it was Jack Kelly as Bart Maverick.

        thanks for the reminder!

    • JulieH says:

      I will forever have a crush on James Garner. From Maverick to Rockford Files and beyond. There’s just something charming and sexy and sincere and rugged about him.


  15. katie says:

    Lori…I am all about the carpentry men, also. Carter can; Ty Pennington; and the cooks (Bobby Flay, Michael Chiroleli-totally butchered his name, Duff)…why is that? My husband does neither carpentry nor cooking….maybe that is why. My current obsession though is Gilles from Dancing With the Stars….I still have yet to process any of his dances. My husband laughed at me and said, “and women say MEN are superficial”. LOL. πŸ™‚

    Have a great Easter weekend, everyone!

    • Lori Borrill says:

      Oh, I was so in love with Ty back in his Trading Spaces days. And Carter Osteraus (butchered that name too LOL). Why–WHY??–hasn’t that man made People Magazine’s Sexiest Man Alive issue? And though I wasn’t too crazy about him at first, I’m kinda getting into the blond guy who hosts Over Your Head (Eric Stromer). His humor is chiseling away at me.

      I’m in the same boat. Hubby ain’t handy at all. Maybe that’s why I gravitate to them. We always want what we don’t have, huh? I suppose if hubby was a nail pounder, I’d be eyeing the white collar suit guys. (Though I eye them too).

      Yes…now that I talk my way through it…we are basically superficial. LOL!

  16. katie says:

    I also love the nerdy political journalists….why?

    • Lori Borrill says:

      Mmmm, and Alton Brown. Some day I want to write a romance featuring a nerd. I know they’ve been done, but mostly those are suave, rich heroes disguized as nerds, which IMO is kinda cheating. I want a real, Gil Grissom kinda nerd. Or, like you said, political guys. Stephen Colbert is the first one who comes to mind, though finding a heroine he loves more than he loves himself would be kinda hard. LOL!

  17. Cheryl McInnis says:

    I loved, loved, loved John Stamos when he played Blackie on GH. Then Uncle Jessie on Full House ( he was the only reason to watch that show, lol). Then Tony on ER.
    I really hope one of the networks comes up with a good place for him soon, so I don’t suffer too long!

    • Lori Borrill says:

      Isn’t he dreamy? I spent 20 years hooked on all the ABC soaps, AMC, General Hospital, Ryan’s Hope, OLTL. Then my son was born and I pretty much had to give them all up!

      And hasn’t he been married to the same woman forever? That always scores points with me when it comes to celebrities.

  18. chey says:

    There are so many. Jack Bauer, Remmington Steel, the guys from 21 jumpstreet, prison break, Dallas

    • Lori Borrill says:

      I had a gynormous crush on Dominic Purcell. I don’t know who he plays on Prison Break, but as Fox’s John Doe he had hair and was gorgeous. LOL!

  19. Tori Lennox says:

    Parker Stevenson (as Frank Hardy), John Schneider (as Bo Duke… okay, as Pa Kent, too πŸ˜€ ), John Lansing (from The Kids from CAPER), Joe Penny as Nick Ryder on Riptide, Pierce Brosnan as Remington Steele. I fear the list could go on and on. I’m a fickle girl. *g*

    • Lori Borrill says:

      LOL, mine could too. In fact, I hadn’t realized how many TV hunks I’ve had crushes on over the years until everyone started bringing up names. Man, no wonder I write romance! LOL

  20. Jen says:

    …wait…I’m still laughing over getting him to drop his bug jar and come to bed. πŸ˜‰

    Anyone remember the Big Valley? My sister was all over Heath. Me? I wanted the other two — depending on my mood — Nick, the bad boy, and Jared, the straight-laced one. See, already I was getting into trouble. And I had me a thing for Bruce Willis when he was on Moonlighting — god, the sexual tension, and how can you resist a smartass with that smile? Anyone see So You Think You Can Dance last season? He’s not a movie star but that guy Twitch was smokin’ hot…and way younger than me. Hey, what can I say?

    • Lori Borrill says:

      OMG, Lee Majors. And Richard Long, who was also a Maverick boy.

      I’m seriously thinking we need to bring back the TV westerns. HBO’s Deadwood just didn’t quite have the right idea when it came to giving us sexy male cowboys.

    • Jen, OMG….Jared…what can I say? And he wore black (cool title that)

  21. Estella says:

    Tom Selleck is THE MAN!

  22. Carol says:

    Who can forget Bobby Sherman from Here Come the Brides? I hear he’s now a paramedic on the LA fire dept. so he’s still a “smokin” hunk!

    • Lori Borrill says:

      I’m beginning to think we’re all the same age here, LOL. My sister is still in love with Bobby Sherman to this day. Blue eyes, dimples….sigh. Didn’t he have a hit song too? Maybe I’m thinking of Bobbie Vinton.

      • Carol says:

        He had several hit songs but his most notable song was Julie Do You Love Me which I still proudly have on vinyl. Somethings are just worth keeping.

  23. Wow. Reading all these posts is giving me flashbacks. Tom Selleck, tick. Pierce Brosnan as Remington Steele, tick. George Clooney (dreamy sigh), big tick. My biggest TV crush was for a cartoon character. I’m not sure if North America ever had ‘Battle of the Planets’, but it was my favourite cartoon when I was a tween and the leader of the G-force team, Mark, was the man of my tween dreams. Maybe it was his big, shiny Japanese anime eyes. Or his muscular animated legs. Or the fact that he had a little romance going with Princess, the only lady in the team…

    • Lori Borrill says:

      Well, no one will ever be able to say Blaze authors are dull. A crush on a cartoon character? LOL The scary thing is I can totally see that. I’m not familiar with that particular cartoon, but we’ve got plenty of animated superheroes who would be quite Blaze-worthy.

      Hmmm, maybe we could talk Brenda into giving Blaze Manga a try….

      • Tawny Weber Tawny Weber says:

        Oooh, did anyone ever see Howls Moving Castle? Christian Bale does the voice of Howl and I crushed on that cartoon character in a huge way!!! Yummmmy. Nice mom that I am, I even bought the DVD for my daughter, so she could watch it over and over and over. Even when she didn’t want to LOL

    • Sayuri says:

      I used to love G-force…twas awesome.

      I had plenty of cartoon crushes as a kid too. Ulysees, Dungeons & Dragons..and probably the most cringeworthy Prince Valiant! LMAO!

  24. Pam P says:

    I watched all those old westerns, too, my first crush as a girl was Clint as Rowdy Yate; another was Robert Fuller on Wagon Train. Later loved Don Johnson as Sonny Crocket and Clooney on Sisters, Pierce as Remington Steel. Edd Byrne as Kookie on 77 Sunset Strip, Ricky Nelson crooning on Ozzie & Harriet.

  25. Julie Miller says:

    I loved pretty much all the guys on the Magnificent Seven tv series. I had different scenarios for me to play the heroine with each one. Josiah (Ron Perlman) and Ezra (Anthony Starke) were my favorites. A tortured soul and a bad boy. Perfect romantic heroes.

    Tom Selleck as Magnum, P.I. Anyday. Back in college I had his Chaz poster taped to my bathroom door. Now, he rules the tv Westerns (and Jesse Stone). He’s just gotten better and better over the years.

  26. Laure says:

    I think my first tv crush was wrestler “Rowdy” Roddy Piper. Nope, Hulk Hogan never did it for me. Apparently I knew early that there’s just something special about a guy in a kilt. πŸ™‚ There was also Alex Keaton (Michael J. Fox) from way back in “Family Ties.”

    Still crush on several wrestlers — AJ Styles, John Cena… yum. Mourning the demise of “The Dead Zone” and its psychic hero Johnny Smith. Loved “Early Edition” and Kyle Chandler, who is also wonderful in “Friday Night Lights” but I still miss his Gary Hobson and the cat. Sully from “Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman” (also a soap alum) Named one of my dogs after Sam Beckett from “Quantum Leap” back in the day.

    Right now I’m enjoying BBC’s version of “Robin Hood.” Robin’s a bit young for me, but still, that daredevil charmer thing he’s got going on is cool. And the villainous Guy of Grisbane’s brooding dark side is hot, too. And rejoicing seeing Nathan Fillion on “Castle” since I”ve been in love since his Joey Buchanan days on “One Life to Live.”

  27. kh says:

    like jason priestly and grant show from melrose
    scott baio (U) πŸ˜› (H)

  28. Penney Wilfort says:

    my TV heroes is Alan Rickman and Johnny Depp. And Dr. House don’t know his real name?
    Penney (F) (C)

    • Lori Borrill says:

      Penney, I love House. He’s another one of those I can’t figure out why. He’s cold and sarcastic, not to mention a drug addict. Back to that challenge thing again, I guess!

  29. When I was a kid, I had a huge crush on Ellery Queen. I can barely remember the show, but I remember Jim Hutton. Funny that now I’m enamored with his son Timothy on Leverage. πŸ™‚ I have so many heroes on the TV now, but some of my favorites in the past were Angel And Michael Vaughn (Michael Vartan) on Alias. πŸ™‚


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