A relatively young network, the CW made a name for itself among young adults with shows like The Vampire Diaries, Gossip Girl, and of course, the DC universe of shows stemming from Arrow. The network offers something for everyone: dramedies, teen soaps, science fiction, fantasy, and even family dramas. Not everyone who tunes in to the network likes the same shows, but there’s one thing we can all agree on: we love to see which characters eventually pair up (and break up, and make up).
Not every couple on the CW is one for the ages. For every epic romance, there’s a meaningless fling. Likewise, for every couple that seems like a perfect fit, there’s one that the audience can’t wait to watch crash and burn. Some pairings help advance the story for a series, while others just seem to get in the way of the main plot. For everyone who waited with baited breath to see who managed to get their happy ending in One Tree Hill, and for everyone who’s waiting to see which superhero couples make it to the end of their series, this list is for you.
We’ve scoured our library of DVDs (and streaming sites) to put together the ultimate ranking of CW couples. Narrowing our search of their 60+ series (and counting), we’ve assembled The 20 Best CW Couples Ever (And The 10 Worst), Officially Ranked.
30 Worst: Dan And Serena (Gossip Girl)
Dan and Serena were like the Ross and Rachel of Gossip Girl. Pretty and popular, she had her own issues that made her overlook him. He loved her from afar - until he found himself right in the middle of her life.
It seemed like they gave one another exactly what they needed. The trouble was they only made one another more self absorbed and destructive. The final reveal that Dan was Gossip Girl, and essentially spent high school stalking his girlfriend and her friends, made this couple even weirder. Serena shrugging it all off and marrying him anyway made this pairing one of the CW’s worst.
29 Best: Logan And Veronica (Veronica Mars)
When viewers first met Logan and Veronica, he was the rich and popular center of high school drama while she was at the lowest rung on the social ladder. Her sarcasm and witty retorts could only be matched by his, but the hostility between them made it impossible to believe they’d end up together.
Eventually, the two discovered all that bickering actually masked their larger issues, and that they really did care for one another. They risked their lives for one another, solved mysteries together, and brought out the best in one another.
28 Best: Jefferson and Lynn (Black Lightning)
When Black Lightning premiered, Jefferson and Lynn were at a crossroads. Divorced, but still coparenting their daughters like champs, they didn’t see eye to eye on much outside of said daughters. Now, despite their differences, they’re very much a united front.
Lynn’s constant worry for her husband as he saved the residents of Freeland as Black Lightning initially drove them apart. Now, she’s a scientist working to do the same while Jefferson and both of their daughters don costumes. They discuss their problems maturely and rationally, and they’re always there for one another.
27 Worst: Kendra And Carter (Legends Of Tomorrow)
The legend of Hawkgirl and Hawkman is supposed to be epic. Their love for one another transcends whatever life they end up reincarnated into. Unfortunately, Legends of Tomorrow made it really difficult to get behind that idea.
While Carter seemed pretty intent on picking up right where he left off with Kendra in their previous lives, she wasn’t. When audiences first met her, they were under the impression she’d be romancing Cisco over on The Flash. Add her relationship with Ray Palmer to the mix, and the idea of her being forced into a “destined” relationship with someone didn’t sit well.
26 Best: Alex and Michael (Roswell, New Mexico)
One of the CW’s newest dramas reimagines an old WB series. Roswell, New Mexico pays homage to the WB’s Roswell, but adapts the show’s source material - a series of books called Roswell High. With the new series comes brand new iterations of relationships.
The one garnering the most praise is Alex and Michael. While Alex is the son of a military official whose father punished him for being gay, Michael is an alien who has always been able to pass for normal. They had a fledgling relationship in high school that we’ve seen via flashback, as well as a few encounters in the present. The audience is just waiting for more.
25 Best: Nikita And Michael (Nikita)
Nikita was plucked from rock bottom and trained to be a spy by the nefarious Division. Michael was her handler. Nikita discovering the organization’s corruption and going rogue drove a wedge between the two for a while and they spent more time shooting at one another than they did talking.
Eventually, Michael discovered Nikita was right about the corruption and he came to her side. They united in more ways than one as their partnership blossomed into romance. By the time the series ended, they’d both seen each other at their absolute worst, and still managed to become the good guys and save the day - together.
24 Worst: Adam And Cassie (The Secret Circle)
The Secret Circle featured a group of teenagers learning about their family legacy of witchcraft. Outsider Cassie and circle member Adam had an instant attraction. That would be all well and good if they weren’t so boring together.
Adam was already in a relationship with the sweeter than sweet Diana. He and Diana seemed like a perfect fit, which threw a wrench in the audience rooting for Cassie. He and Cassie also didn’t have much chemistry.
Part of the drawback is that CW cancelled The Secret Circle after one season. We don’t know if Adam and Cassie could have progressed into a more likable couple, and we never will.
23 Best: Walt And Bennet (The Carrie Diaries)
Set in the 1980s, The Carrie Diaries chronicled Carrie Bradshaw’s life before she met Samantha, Charlotte, and Miranda. It wasn’t Carrie’s exploits that garnered the most interesting stories for the show.
Carrie’s friend Walt had a bit of an identity crisis in high school as he realized he wasn’t actually interested in his own girlfriend. Instead, Walt was more interested in a boy who showed him attention at a party. The relationship that followed between Bennet and Walt provided The Carrie Diaries with a fantastic coming out story that was handled with more grace than the audience might have expected.
22 Best: Baze And Cate (Life Unexpected)
Baze and Cate might be the most dysfunctional pairing to end up one of the CW’s best couples. After hooking up with Baze in high school, Cate chose to give their daughter what she thought would be a better life, allowing her to be adopted. 16 years later, Lux came back into their lives to attempt to emancipate herself.
The audience got to see Baze and Cate try to navigate their teenage memories and drama as adults. The two clashed, but underneath it all, there were genuine feelings for one another and their daughter. They became an unconventional family - one that managed to work through their issues and stick together.
21 Worst: Bash And Kenna (Reign)
No relationship popped out of nowhere like Bash and Kenna. A lady in waiting to the queen of Scotland, and the illegitimate son of the king of France, they each had their own quest for power and acceptance. Unfortunately for them, King Henry decided that involved marrying each other.
During the time he went mad as a result of poison, Henry forced his son to marry his own mistress. The two ended up with land and titles, but trapped in a relationship that neither of them really wanted. They tried, but Kenna’s scheming for social climbing and Bash’s need to help everyone else made them ill fitted for one another.
20 Best: Alex And Maggie (Supergirl)
Alex was always the big sister who didn’t need alien superpowers to save the day on Supergirl. That’s why when she started to become a little lost, the audience wanted to see just where she was going. As it turned out, Alex had spent her entire life not realizing that she wasn’t being true to herself.
When Alex met Maggie, things became clearer for her. Supergirl fans got a coming out story that remained true to life even with aliens, superheroes, and clandestine government groups as a part of it. Though she and Maggie didn’t last, they had a heartfelt and mature arc to realize why they had to part.
19 Best: Luke And Lorelai (Gilmore Girls)
It was clear, even from the earliest days of Gilmore Girls, that Luke and Lorelai had something special. He understood her bantering and pop culture references, even if he didn’t want to, and he also fed her perpetual need for caffeine.
It might have taken them years to get to the point where they could even admit their feelings for one another, but they got there eventually. Of course, they did still have real relationship problems - like communicating with one another - but that just made them all the more realistic in the picture perfect fictional Stars Hollow.
18 Worst: Peyton And Blaine (iZombie)
iZombie imagines a world where humans and zombies coexist. That makes for some unconventional relationships. One of those was that between Peyton and Blaine.
Peyton doesn’t have the best track record of handling the whole zombie thing. After all, she skipped town for a few months when she found out her best friend was one. She still somehow ended up hooking up with a “recovering” zombie struggling from some memory loss. Even if Blaine, supposedly, didn’t remember everything he did, Peyton knew he was a sociopath, and still fell into a relationship with him. The whole thing was creepy.
17 Best: Vincent And Catherine (Beauty And The Beast)
When a modern retelling of Beauty and the Beast hit TV screens, a beast living in the sewers wasn’t exactly going to fly. Instead, he became the product of a military experiment and his “beauty” was in law enforcement.
The biggest obstacle for these two wasn’t the people after Vincent, or Catherine constantly ending up in harm’s way. Instead, it was her believing in the black and white of the law while he operated in shades of gray. The two eventually found a middle ground, and their way to each other.
16 Best: Annie And Liam (90210)
The 90210 sequel series, much like its predecessor, went off the rails a bit somewhere in the middle. With unseemly happenings, the dramatic storylines always had to one-up what came before them. One drama filled relationship that overcame it all was that between Annie and Liam.
The duo faced some serious communication and commitment issues. Rather than tell Liam how she felt, Annie wrote it in a book that Liam didn’t finish. Liam proved he wanted to move forward though when he stopped a plane from taking off and got down on one knee in the middle of the tarmac. Way to save your relationship!
15 Worst: Oliver And Sara (Arrow)
Arrow is a much different series now compared to when it first premiered. Part of that is due to the growth Oliver Queen experienced from playboy to husband. To get there though, he had plenty of rocky relationships. One that wasn’t so rocky, but still makes for the worst, was his with Sara.
Sara Lance became the first Canary. Before that, she was a partier like Oliver. The two of them paired up and snuck off on a secret getaway - even though he was dating Laurel at the time. When both became vigilantes, they hooked up again, even though Sara wasn’t even into him. It’s an odd pairing, to say the least.
14 Best: Clarke And Lexa (The 100)
The 100 takes place in a future where sexuality is the last thing on anyone’s mind. As a result, there are no coming out stories for anyone dating the same gender. In a post apocalyptic world though, there was still one pairing that made a huge impact.
Clarke was the leader of the teenagers that fell from the sky, while Lexa led the different Grounder crews on a radiation filled planet. Their people were deep in conflict, but they still managed to negotiate and fall in love. The couple was poised to take their people in a whole new direction - if the writers hadn’t gotten rid of Lexa so quickly.
13 Best: Oliver And Felicity (Arrow)
Comic book fans thought Arrow would be all about the relationship between the Green Arrow and Black Canary. Instead, Felicity Smoak stole the show.
She and Oliver had an extremely slow build of a relationship. While she crushed on him from afar, he brought her into his vigilante team for her tech expertise. Eventually, the two became real friends, and then more. They even left Star City behind to live out the simple life for a while. All of the obstacles thrown at them just give them another reason to bond closer together. Even when their relationship winds up strained, they end up stronger for it later.
12 Worst: Bonnie And Jeremy (The Vampire Diaries)
The Vampire Diaries went through a lot of relationships in its years on the air. Most fans argued about who Elena should end up with, but there was one couple that made even more fans angry.
Elena’s little brother Jeremy ended up pairing off with her best friend Bonnie for a little while. We can’t deny that both characters deserved to have a happy relationship. The problems stemmed from Jeremy still having feelings for a vampire-turned-ghost, and Bonnie’s storylines constantly being placed on the back burner. Their relationship, unfortunately, didn’t help the characters develop or move the story along.
11 Best: John And Mary (Supernatural)
Without the characters of John and Mary, it’s unlikely Supernatural would have its 15 season run. (It’s the only series still standing from the WB on the CW.)
When the series began, most of what we knew about John Winchester was colored by the fact that Sam and Dean didn’t have the best childhood experience. Over the course of the show, and with the reveal that Mary's family raised her as a hunter before meeting John, the backstory gave the audience a bigger picture. John and Mary’s love for one another is truly the epic romance on the show.
10 Best: Jane And Michael (Jane The Virgin)
Jane and Michael were the original romantic pairing of Jane the Virgin. Fans expected them to end up together early on. They were both truly supportive of one another’s choices and always tried to talk out a solution to their problems.
Of course, outside drama intervened. Jane developed feelings for hotel manager (and father of her baby) Rafael. Michael ended up faking his own demise for a case. Everything went a little crazy. With the series airing its final season though, fans have faith that Jane and Michael will find their way back to one another all over again.
9 Worst: Josh And Rebecca (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend)
Once Josh and Rebecca got together on Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, they certainly weren’t the worst of the worst. There were, however, a couple of red flags about their relationship.
Rebecca decided to uproot her entire life and move across the country to be closer to him. She did this because she still had lingering feelings for him. Then, she wasn’t upfront with him, but slowly wormed her way back into his life until they were dating. That’s not the healthiest way to form a relationship - which makes perfect sense since the show tackles mental health issues head on.
8 Best: Betty And Jughead (Riverdale)
There were those early season one Riverdale episodes that led some fans to believe we’d be watching the Betty-Archie-Veronica love triangle play out for seasons to come. Instead, the writers surprised us all by dialing into the natural chemistry between Lili Reinhart and Cole Sprouse, making Betty and Jughead the most stable couple on the show.
Betty and Jughead share plenty of family drama, but they present a united front to their parents and friends. They solve mysteries together, write together, and even dispose of bodies together. They’re a rock solid team.
7 Best: Barry And Iris (The Flash)
It took a long time for Barry and Iris to find their way from friends to spouses, but they’ve finally managed it. The two have one of the most solid foundations for a relationship of any of the CW series couples.
In The Flash, Barry and Iris spent their childhood raised side by side. They both grew up interested in academic pursuits, but also in helping others. Because of their history, they’re uniquely suited to understand one another. With the show’s introduction of their daughter from the future, their bond has only strengthened.
6 Worst: Archie And Mrs. Grundy (Riverdale)
If there’s one plot point that’s overstayed its welcome in teen dramas, it’s the arc that involves student-teacher relationships. Riverdale opened the series with Archie doing more than getting private music lessons from Mrs. Grundy.
To be fair, most of Archie’s relationships on the show have been shallow and short lived, but this one was clearly all about Mrs. Grundy manipulating a teenage boy to get what she wanted. It wasn’t just the show’s worst relationship; it was gross. Luckily, even the characters in the narrative called out the teacher’s actions and it didn’t last long.
5 Best: Stefan And Caroline (The Vampire Diaries)
While everyone was busy wondering if Stefan would end up with Elena, Caroline was busy becoming one of the most important characters in the series - and his life. After becoming a vampire and all of her worst (and best) traits amplified, Caroline Forbes became a much better human being.
With Caroline’s larger capacity for compassion and empathy came a growing friendship with Stefan Salvatore. That friendship grew into more, and the two discovered they really were perfect for one another. It’s a shame their relationship was so short lived as Stefan made the ultimate sacrifice to save his friends.
4 Best: Lois And Clark (Smallville)
It’s hard to picture Superman without his Lois Lane - even if he isn’t Superman yet. Smallville took its time introducing Lois Lane to its TV universe, but when it did, fans were in for a treat.
Lois and Clark spent a lot of time competing for stories, bantering with one another, and saving each other’s lives in sticky situations. Clark might have been the one with superpowers, but he and Lois were certainly on equal footing. Their relationship was one of the grounding elements in a show that featured more out-of-this-world elements as it continued.
3 Worst: Chuck And Blair (Gossip Girl)
When TV fans think of Gossip Girl, one of the first couples to come to mind is that of Chuck and Blair. There’s no denying the duo is iconic. That doesn’t make them the best.
Ed Westwick and Leighton Meester had great chemistry on screen, which translated well into the back and forth of Chuck and Blair’s relationship. The issue was the relationship itself. They brought out the absolute worst in one another when it came to the scheming, backstabbing, and lying to one another about literally everything. There’s also the matter of Chuck attempting to trade Blair for ownership of a hotel.
2 Best: Monty And Harper (The 100)
Relationships often take a backseat on a show like The 100. That, or one member of the pairing ends up lost because of dark circumstances. Monty and Harper are the exception to the rule.
The two bonded while held at Mount Weather in season two. They eventually started dating, or what passed for dating in the apocalypse since there was never really a chance to plan a date night. Every time dire events pulled them apart, they found their way back. In fact, they were the only ones to stay awake, living out their happy ending for years, while their friends were in stasis on a spaceship.
1 Best: Haley And Nathan (One Tree Hill)
They were the unlikeliest of One Tree Hill couples, but became the ones with the most staying power. Haley and Nathan proved that you can meet the love of your life while still in high school.
The cynics will say that a pairing like this would never work in the real world, but they certainly did for the show. They married while still in high school after a whirlwind romance. Nathan got Haley to be more adventurous, while Haley got Nathan to mellow out a bit. The two found a give and take that worked.
Who do you think the best CW couple is? The worst? Do our picks match up with yours? Let us know in the comments.