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Actors Who Are Only Hot Because Of The Characters They Play

Updated June 14, 2019 23.1k votes 4.1k voters 80.9k views15 items

List RulesVote up the actors you think most benefitted from their character's appeal.

Before anyone starts sending Ranker nasty emails, let's stress that each of these famous people who play "hot" characters are ATTRACTIVE! (Except maybe for Bogart, but he more than made up for it with his innate smoldering.) They're all talented and more handsome/beautiful than 98% of the universe.

HOWEVER, by playing specifically charming, dangerous or flat out sexy fictional characters, these actors ratcheted up their attractiveness.  When you see regular Norman Reedus on the street, you might not swoon. Heck, you might instead choose to go to the other side of the street. Until you realize he's the The Walking Dead's Daryl, a character who brought more sex appeal to bows and arrows than Hawkeye, Legolas and Katniss Everdeen combined.    

The actors on this list, though physically quite striking, don't necessarily rank as the sexiest actors or actresses alive. It wouldn't be out of this world to suggest that maybe one or two are only hot because of their characters. But across the board, the roles they played increased their Q scores and how attractive we continue to find them.


  • Photo: AMC Network

    Daryl didn't start off particularly likable on The Walking Dead, or remotely handsome. In fact, he wasn't supposed to last anywhere near as long as he did. But something about the rough and tumble Norman Reedus made him much easier to like and harder to kill. Now you can't imagine this show surviving without him, even if we know everybody's expendable on that show. The actor himself is a fine looking lad, but give him a crossbow and a few years of grime and he becomes a heartthrob.

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  • Photo: BBC

    Take away the TARDIS & bow tie, and Matt Smith is still cute, if you're into a that kind of face. But when you add all his Who accoutrements, you've got a Doctor that sent Tumblr into a tizzy. He's nerd-hot and boy-like innocent at the same time and will be able to elicit girlish screams at any convention he blesses with his presence for the next 1,000 years.    

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  • Photo: HBO

    Adam Driver still has enough leftover heat from Girls that we'll almost forgive him for (SPOILER) killing (LAST WARNING) Han Solo; however, the former marine had a few things working against him on his road to sex-symbol status. Mr Driver started his acting career considerably later than his peers, and his face isn't, um, traditionally handsome.

    Not to mention that in season one, his character Adam Sackler might have been the creepiest boyfriend in the history of TV. Cut to a few seasons later, and Adam Driver still has the ability to make millennials swoon, even when slicing up his own dad.

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  • Photo: Vestron Pictures

    Nobody puts Jennifer Grey in the corner. Blessed with the genetics of Cabaret's Joel Grey, Jennifer was an adorable young actress when she snagged the role of Baby Houseman in Dirty Dancing. (The list of people who wouldn't want to twist and shout with Patrick Swayze is very small). Though she didn't parlay that part into many leading roles, she'll always be our beautiful Baby, who could fly through the air with the greatest of ease (after a sh*tload of practice). 

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