Since it made its debut in 2006, the CW has brought a variety of television shows into homes of its viewers every week. No matter what the genre – DC TV, drama, sci-fi/fantasy or dramedy – nearly every show has something in common: romance.
These are shows where fans are expected to care about the characters. If fans are going to do that, that includes their relationships, as well. While those relationships don't always have to be romantic, they often times are or there's at least one major couple on a show. Some shows have the classic love triangle, with the central character torn between two people important to them. To up the drama, the other two are usually friends or even related.
There are some couples that were planned from the beginning. There were others that weren't but ended up becoming extremely important to the series. There are even some couples that just don't make sense as an end game due to other events in the series. However, that didn't stop them, even if it meant an odd reaction to a big revelation.
There's even a couple that never got much screen time on a series, but without them, the show wouldn't (and couldn't) even exist.
Here are the 25 Most Important CW Couples Ranked.
25 Annie and Liam (90210)
90210 had more than its fair share of relationships over the years. Like most couples, Annie and Liam were on-again and off-again. They had their problems and they had other relationships when they weren't together. It even took a few proposals before they made it official. There were confessions of love that went unanswered (or unheard). There was a big gesture after a summer without contact after he left to figure things out at sea. After that was when she rejected his second proposal. (It didn't help that he was involved with someone else.)
However, nothing says "I love you" like taking a bullet in a fight with a con artist for someone, which was what happened with Annie in season 5. Still, that didn't mean it was smooth sailing for the couple after that. He missed out on how she (still) felt about him because he didn't read the end of her book.
The two did end up together at the end of the series, thanks to another big gesture on his part: stopping her plane and proposing. "I'm not taking no for an answer this time," he told her. Well, he didn't have to worry about that. She said yes.
24 Catherine and Vincent (Beauty & the Beast)
She was the beauty. He was the beast. He was also the one that saved her life the night that her mother passed (She was working as a bartender and called her mother when she had car trouble). It was years later that the two officially met, when her work as a police detective led her to him. After that, it was a whirlwind of mysteries, conspiracies, military experiments, romance and more beasts.
They never had it easy. Catherine was used as leverage against him. He chose Alex over her and her father kidnapped him.
However, Beauty & the Beast was an updated fairy-tale. As such, the main characters deserved a happily ever after. That meant the series could only end one way and it did. They were together (and married), but there was, of course, a twist. They were thought to be dead and there was even a funeral! Their friends attended it and mourned them.
As was fitting for the couple, their happy ending saw them in Paris, where they reunited and caught up with their friends. They even still chased down bad guys, together (Although, given their history, going after a guy who stole a woman's purse was small potatoes).
23 Dan and Serena (Gossip Girl)
Young girls dream of marrying a prince, a doctor, a superhero … the person behind a gossip site that posted horrible things about them? That was what happened on Gossip Girl. The series finale revealed that the title character was none other than Dan (There were many, many reasons why that didn't made sense). He had wanted to be part of the world of the elite. He not only found a way in, but he also managed to get away with what he did and get the girl.
Rather than be angry about it, especially after everything that GG had posted about her over the years, Serena got over it in a matter of seconds (In fact, she pretty much laughed it off and saw no reason for any of them to be mad). She even called the site "a love letter" to all of them. Well, that love letter worked, though maybe an actual love letter, one only for her eyes, would have been a better idea.
Despite the ups and downs over the years and their other relationships, Serena and Dan did get married in the end. For them, that was their happily ever after, never mind the whole world knowing personal details about their lives.
22 Wade and Zoe (Hart of Dixie)
The attraction between Wade and Zoe was there from the beginning, when she first moved to Bluebell. However, it took quite some time for the two to get together and stay together. Though they did seem to be on the right track right from the start, kissing in his car, that didn't last. They even gave a casual relationship a try. That also didn't last, either. Then, they did become a couple, but Wade cheated on her. It wasn't easy, but they managed to come back from that, though it took them living separate lives for a bit.
Zoe even left Bluebell for a while, but she did return. Then, it was just a matter of her convincing him that she wanted a real relationship. She found out she was pregnant and they did get back together. Still, there were some mishaps, including a failed proposal. That didn't stop them from getting married, while Zoe was in labor. Even under those circumstances, they exchanged romantic vows.
"You are the piece of me that's always been missing," she told him. With him, she knew true love. (She also blamed him for her labor pains.) She turned his world "upside down" and made him "a better man," he said in turn.
They were pronounced husband and wife just before she was wheeled into the delivery room.
21 Nikita and Michael (Nikita)
They met in Division, where he was the trainer and she was the recruit. Though they kissed, he said he couldn't move on until he had avenged his wife and child. They then later crossed paths when she set out to destroy Division. At the time, he couldn't shoot her, but she left him with a wound to his shoulder. Though on different sides at first, they did occasionally work together. She was the one to show him the truth about Division, but it wasn't easy even after that.
They risked their lives on a daily basis. He even had to die to be saved from a toxin at one point and it was her voice that brought him back. How many couples can say the other person's voice got his heart beating again? Getting engaged wasn't even easy for this couple, as Michael had to take a moment during a mission to retrieve her ring (Would you expect anything else from them...).
After everything they'd been through and had to overcome, Nikita and Michael deserved their freedom (which they got) and to be together (which they were). The end of the series finale saw them relaxing on a beach, married.
20 Rebecca and Josh (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend)
This relationship might not have been the healthiest. Considering how it started and then how Rebecca followed Josh across the country, it's not even one that can be considered very romantic. However, without it, there wouldn't be a show.
Rebecca and Josh spent a summer as boyfriend and girlfriend when they were 16, before he broke up with her on the last day of camp. When she saw him 10 years later in New York, she was inspired to quit her job and follow him home to West Covina, California.
Without these 'crazy' moments, there wouldn't be a show.
However, she did eventually get the guy. She didn't even lose him (right away) after confessing why she moved to California. Eventually, he even proposed. Was there ever a question as to whether she'd accept? Unfortunately, it wasn't meant to be, as he left her at the altar.
Her obsession with him was not healthy, hence the show's title (Plus, moving across the country for a guy she dated when she was a teenager at summer camp was a stupid move). In fact, the series addressed her personality disorder and tried to treat her in season 3, after the end of their relationship.
19 Anissa and Grace (Black Lightning)
At the beginning of Black Lightning's first season, Anissa was dating Chenoa. Though it had been a year, she had yet to meet Anissa's friends or family and wanted more. Anissa's dismissal was a clear sign they wouldn't last.
However, the first season also introduced Grace Choi, who Anissa met while researching genetic mutations as she struggled to understand her powers. Grace introduced her to comics and cosplay. Anissa joined her at a party, where Chenoa confronted her on the dance floor. They moved their conversation outside and the next time Anissa saw Grace, she told her their relationship was over.
With the introduction of Grace comes the possibility of The Outsiders, just like the comic she was reading when she and Anissa met. In the comics, the two women are together, but they've just started to get to know one another on the television series.
Grace was only in a couple episodes in season 1, but hopefully that changes in season 2. The two had a very cute meet-cute. She seems like she'd be open to what being part of Anissa's life means. Also, bringing in that aspect from the comics would be a smart move, especially after the tease with the comic.
18 Jane and Rafael (Jane the Virgin)
You know the story. Girl meets boy. Girl and boy share a kiss. Boy never calls. Five years later, girl and boy meet again. Boy is married. Girl has a mishap at the doctor and ends up pregnant with boy's baby.
Jane was accidentally artificially inseminated and ended up pregnant with Rafael's child. At the time, both were involved with other people. They fell in love, but it didn't last, thanks to scheming and a revelation about why Rafael's mother left him.
From there, Jane got back together with her ex-fiance. The two got married, but then Michael died. With that, the love triangle seemingly came to an end (or was at least not a factor anymore).
Jane and Rafael eventually reconnected. However, the season 4 finale revealed that Michael is seemingly still alive (Since this is a telenovela, there are plenty of explanations). Furthermore, Rafael had been hiding him. Now, it's just a question of what happens next. Is the love triangle back? Is Jane and Rafael's relationship strong enough to make it through this?
They've been just friends and co-parents. They've been romantically involved. Whatever they are to each other, Jane and Rafael's relationship has become one of the most important parts of the series, all stemming from a doctor's mistake.
17 Lucas and Peyton (One Tree Hill)
"Peyton Sawyer will become Peyton Scott," Lucas wrote in the eighth grade, though he didn't speak to her until their junior year of high school. In season 6, his wish became true.
Lucas and Peyton's relationship was anything but easy. Before they even had a chance to be together for a first time, he got involved with her best friend, Brooke.
That didn't stop them from having a brief affair. Then, Lucas even decided to do everything he could to get back together with Brooke, but that didn't stop Peyton from having feelings for him. The love triangle affected the girls' friendship on more than one occasion. Still, Brooke pushed her friends together in season 4. Their relationship that time started with Lucas' memorable line to Peyton, "When all my dreams come true, the one I want next to me, it's you."
Lucas and Peyton once again split after high school and he even almost married someone else (That wedding didn't happen, thanks to a passage in his book that revealed his feelings for his ex).
Their relationship wasn't exactly the best, especially when other people were involved, as he kissed her while he was dating two other women. However, they did get their happily ever after, leave Tree Hill and were still together when Lucas briefly appeared in season 9.
16 Stefan and Caroline (The Vampire Diaries)
Though Caroline was interested in Stefan from the beginning, he only had eyes for Elena in the early seasons. Once the show moved on from the central Stefan/Elena/Damon love triangle for good, that changed.
Steroline was the definition of a love story of friends becoming more. They were there for each other during tough times, even before their relationship turned romantic. She helped him when he lost his memories, while he helped her as she dealt with losing her mother, even giving her space when she needed it.
What cemented these two as a couple that could not be forgotten after The Vampire Diaries ended was his list of the ways that loving her had changed his life and he promised to wait until she was ready.
If anyone deserved a happy ending, especially after their on-again, off-again relationship, it was them. Sadly, they didn't get one. They did get married and it was a beautiful ceremony (It was even a June wedding, a nice call-back to the pilot). However, Stefan sacrificed himself to save everyone, so Caroline became a widow the same night she became a wife.
Her story may not be over, but what was arguably her most important relationship is and too soon.
15 Archie and Veronica (Riverdale)
It was attraction at first sight. Veronica walked into Pop's and Archie promptly forgot that Betty was talking to him. It was the beginning of what should have been the classic Betty/Archie/Veronica love triangle.
There was some of it in the first episode. Betty struggled with her feelings for Archie and He and Veronica shared a kiss during a game of 7 Minutes in Heaven. However, by the season 1 finale, the series seemed to have firmly picked a side. It was Archie and Veronica. Like when most shows leave behind a love triangle, the series was better for it.
Their relationship hasn't been easy, but when are any romances on a teen drama?
They may be the most physical of the Riverdale couples, but that's not all there is to Varchie. There is love there, even though she couldn't respond to his "I love you" right away. They've managed to get through quite a few problems. She paid for his father's medical bills, while he's gotten a bit too involved in her father's business, especially for a teenager. Now, she's backing his father for mayor, even though Fred's running against her mother.
If they can stick together through her parents' shady business practices and the mayhem of the town, they should (hopefully) continue to be just fine.
14 Luke and Lorelai (Gilmore Girls)
They were the definition of a will they/won't they couple for the first few years of the series. Fans watched them banter over coffee (which he sometimes refused to serve her) and be in other relationships, yet still be important parts of each other's lives. The end of season 4 saw them finally taking the steps to becoming more, with a dance at his sister's wedding and a kiss on her inn's porch.
However, her love of coffee (especially his) couldn't be enough to sustain a relationship. Fans loved their banter and ,fortunately, that didn't change just because they got together. Unfortunately, it couldn't last, as Luke found out he had a kid and kept it from Lorelai.
Then, for some reason, after they broke up, Lorelai not only got back together with her ex (Rory's father), but she also married him. Even that couldn't last and, by the end of the series finale, Luke and Lorelai were back on track. It helped that he stayed up all night to make sure her daughter's graduation party went off without a hitch, even in the rain.
That was how their relationship ended on the CW. Thanks to the revival on Netflix, fans were able to check in with the people of Stars Hollow. That included seeing Luke and Lorelai finally get married.
13 Chuck and Blair (Gossip Girl)
Chuck and Blair didn't exactly have a storybook romance or even wedding. That didn't mean they weren't clearly the endgame on Gossip Girl. Howver, that also didn't ean that their relationship didn't have its problems. A picture of the couple could probably easily be put next to "dysfunctional" in the dictionary. He basically traded her for a hotel and, if they could get past that, they could get past anything. She married someone else (a prince), even though she and everyone knew how she felt about Chuck at the time. However, when it came time for the two to truly be together, she was all in – and she let him know it, too. She was there to fight for him like he'd fought for her.
Really, nothing says "I love you" (or "three words, eight letters," as they put it) like Blair agreeing to a rushed wedding. It had to be official before he was brought in for questioning about his father's tragic fall from a roof. On this show, "relationship goals" included being willing to stand by each other through everything, even a police investigation.
Plus, their son's adorable. Who didn't love seeing Henry Bass in that little suit in the series finale after the time jump to Serena and Dan's wedding?
12 Haley and Nathan (One Tree Hill)
"Always and forever," they said, but no one thought they'd make it. Well, those people were wrong.
He started getting close to her to mess with his brother, but he fell in love with her instead. She saw past his tough act and got his jersey number tattooed on her back to remember how she felt about him. He'd been with many girls, but he was her first – and only after they got married, at the end of season 1, in their junior year of high school.
They hit more than their fair share of rough patches. There was the musician who briefly got between them and her tour. There was that time he turned to a loan shark and Haley was the one who ended up injured as a result of Nathan going against him.
There was even his accident and subsequent injury that changed him for the worst, along with Nanny Carrie who caused problems in their marriage. Nathan was even kidnapped in the final season and Haley had to face him possibly never coming home.
Despite all of that, Haley and Nathan did get their happily ever after, with multiple rain kisses, two children and many memorable lines. "Don't say I never gave you anything," he told her. They were One Tree Hill's best couple.
11 Rory and Jess (Gilmore Girls)
When Jess first came to Stars Hollow, Rory had a boyfriend. That didn't stop them from innocently spending time together, especially since the two shared a love of books.
After he was driven out of town following a car accident, she was so happy when he returned that she greeted him with a kiss. However, she was still with Dean. She was also still jealous when she saw him with Shane, his new girlfriend.
Eventually, Rory and Jess got together, but their relationship was anything but easy.
The town didn't like him because they saw him as a bad kid from New York, while Rory was beloved by the entire town. He stopped going to school and instead picked up extra shifts at work, and when it all came crashing down, he left town. That was the end of their relationship, but it wasn't the end of the two of them being in each other's lives, however. He told her he loved her (and then drove off) when he returned to Stars Hollow the following year.
Though they never rekindled their relationship, he was arguably the most important man in her life. He was also her boyfriend who showed the most growth over the years. He was the one to get Rory back on track after she dropped out of Yale and he also helped her out in the revival, and the end of it suggested that their story may not be over (despite her being pregnant with Logan's baby).
10 Clark and Lois (Smallville)
It took a long time for Lois and Clark to get together, even though Smallville was clearly headed in that direction for a while. They were an iconic comic book couple, but what works on paper doesn't always work well on-screen. In this case, it did.
It helped that neither had a previous relationship that could have lasted. Clark and Lana's on-again, off-again relationship lasted much longer than it should have. Really, it should have ended for good around the time Lois first showed up, in the series' fourth season. The series played with Clark and Chloe, but they were never going to be more than friends. Fans did wonder if she was going to one day become Lois, given her journalism background.
The best thing that Lois' relationship with Oliver Queen did was set up her to kiss the Green Arrow while Clark was wearing the suit. It was a nice tease for fans as they kept waiting to see Lois and Clark's relationship deepen. It was because fans got to watch those two become friends, banter and work together that it was even sweeter to see them finally be together in the last two seasons of the show.
9 Betty and Jughead (Riverdale)
The couple that solves crimes together, stays together. Like most residents of Riverdale, Betty and Jughead deal with some pretty crazy stuff. The pilot introduced her as the good girl next door. He was the loner she recruited to work on the school paper. That was just the beginning.
Jughead was the one to help her find answers about her sister in the first season. From the moment he assured her she wasn't crazy and kissed her in her bedroom, there was no going back. Betty and Jughead became a couple fans rooted for, even though some expected the series to return to the Betty/Archie/Veronica love triangle. It did, only briefly, when the couples were broken up. Their relationship has hit a few rough patches. He joined the Serpents and she broke up with him on the Black Hood's orders (through Archie, of all people).
However, it looks like they're back together for good (or at least the near future) right now. Riverdale works well when these two are on good terms and solving mysteries, which there are plenty of in this town, together.
Let's just hope that stays true. It's not going to be easy, especially now. Betty's father just confessed to being the Black Hood, while Jughead is mixed up in crazy business with Penny and the Ghoulies.
8 Sara and Ava (Legends of Tomorrow)
When Sara was first introduced on Arrow, she was Oliver's girlfriend's sister and he cheated on Laurel with her. She went on that ill-fated boat trip with him and his father, where she, like Oliver, was thought to have died. She's never really had that much luck in the romance department.
She fell in love with Nyssa, Ra's al Ghul's daughter, in her time away, but their relationship couldn't be, especially since she wanted out of the League of Assassins. Then, she and Oliver briefly rekindled things in season 2, but that, too, couldn't last.
Since then, Sara's relationships could best be described as casual. However, Legends of Tomorrow season 3 introduced the Time Bureau and with it came Agent Ava Sharpe. While she disagreed with the Legends' methods at first, she did work with them several times.
She and Sara flirted and eventually became involved. They even took time off to go on a date in Star City, though it was interrupted by work, for both of them. Sara briefly broke up with her after she was possessed with the Death Totem to protect her. Ava even turned out to be a clone.
However, despite the complications, the love was there. At the end of the season, they were together again and it looked like Sara finally found someone permanent.
7 Clarke and Lexa (The 100)
Though their people were at war when the two met, Clarke and Lexa respected each other and had a common enemy in the Mountain Men. Over time, the two grew close, fell in love and got together.
It wasn't an easy road for them, considering Lexa was the one to order Finn's death. Lexa had lost someone she cared about too, she shared, and it had taught her that love was weakness. The two women fought together (and even escaped from a giant gorilla), though Lexa did betray Clarke at the end of season 2. She made a deal with the Mountain Men to save her people.
The two did reconcile in season 3, but just as they truly got together, Lexa was shot in the stomach. Though she tried, Clarke couldn't save her life and recited the traveler's blessing.
Showrunner Jason Rothenberg has since told Entertainment Weekly that "Lexa was the love of her life," but Clarke would move on. The survivors don't exactly have much time for romance on The 100. Still, even if fans do see Clarke with someone else in a significant way, they should be assured of one thing: that doesn't change what Lexa meant and still means to her.
6 Veronica and Logan (Veronica Mars)
When the series began, Veronica and Logan started out as enemies, though they were once friends. They disagreed about the circumstances surrounding the end of his girlfriend's life. There was plenty of drama between them, but their experiences made them people fans rooted for to be together. It took some time, but fans got their wish.
They kissed in the middle of the first season, but by season 2, she was dating someone else. Still, he saved her life a few times and the two did rekindle their relationship.
Plus, any good love story needs a memorable quote or two. "I thought our story was epic" fits that bill.
They weren't together when the series ended, though Logan was clearly pining for her. However, thanks to a fundraising campaign that reached its goal in less than 11 hours, Rob Thomas and series star Kristen Bell were able to produce a movie in 2013. It was released the following year.
In the movie, which took place nine years after the show's final season, Veronica and Logan were reunited. There hasn't been a sequel, but the couple lives on (and together) in a series of novels. Besides, how could you not love a couple whose ship name is LoVe? It's right there!
5 Barry and Iris (The Flash)
She's his lightning rod. Together, they're The Flash. Barry and Iris haven't had it easy. First, he confessed his feelings, but she was dating Eddie. Then, there was the matter of destiny, especially with a future by-line declaring her Iris West-Allen and their Earth-2 counterparts together. That's a lot of pressure to put on a couple!
He had feelings for her before the series even began. However, when he woke from his coma, following the particle accelerator explosion, she was dating Eddie. He had his share of relationships as well before they finally got together. Like most TV couples, it hasn't been easy for them. There was Barry running back in time and saving his mother, creating Flashpoint. There was Savitar, a time remnant of Barry who came back in time to kill Iris.
They did finally get married in season 4, though their planned wedding was interrupted by Nazis. Their honeymoon, however, was interrupted by Ralph. Soon after that, DeVoe framed Barry for his murder, and the couple was separated when he went to prison. The couple has managed to get through all of that. After all, "we are The Flash," Iris told her husband. If a couple can get through a future version of one of them wanting to kill the other, they should be able to get through anything, right?
4 Oliver and Felicity (Arrow)
Arrow fans know the story. Emily Bett Rickards was only supposed to be in one episode, but everyone loved her. She became a series regular in season 2. There was obvious chemistry between her and Stephen Amell, and really, even without meaning to, their first scene together was a meet-cute, in a way.
Oliver kept returning to Felicity with awful lies (like spilled lattes on bullet-ridden laptops and energy drinks in syringes), but soon, he put his life in her hands and she helped save his life. They became friends and partners, but there was always the potential and hints that there could be more.
However, fans still expected Oliver to end up with Laurel, because in the comics, it's the Green Arrow and Black Canary. Once it became clear that wouldn't work on the show, the plan changed.
It was a rough road for the couple to get to where they are in season 6: happily married, believing in each other and facing problems as a family. They were engaged in season 4, but she ended it when she found out he didn't tell her he has a son. They briefly dated other people in season 5, and he even was the one to put the fatal arrows into her boyfriend when Prometheus tricked him.
Even after all that, their relationship is the strongest it's ever been.
3 Damon and Elena (The Vampire Diaries)
If TVD was known for one thing, it was the central love triangle of Stefan, Elena and Damon. The series began with Stefan and Elena meeting and falling in love, but as would soon be revealed, she had met Damon first. He'd just compelled her to forget it had happened. The love triangle dominated the show until she finally made her choice and picked Damon. It was never easy for them. He was the bad boy, while she was human (until she wasn't). He ended her brother's life, but fortunately, Jeremy was wearing the Gilbert Ring, so he came back to life.
Damon sired Elena, so there was a question of how much that influenced her feelings for him. When he (and Bonnie) were still on the Other Side when it disintegrated, she had Alaric erase her good memories of him so she could move on. Though they got back together, Kai cast a spell linking Elena and Bonnie together, keeping Elena in a coma as long as her friend lived. Even knowing that, Damon saved Bonnie's life.
Bonnie managed to find a way to break the spell, and Damon and Elena were reunited in the series finale. A flash-forward showed that the two got married.
Whether you rooted for Delena or Stelena, one of the best things TVD did was pick a side.
2 Alex and Maggie (Supergirl)
Before season 2 of Supergirl, it was revealed that a character in the DC TV universe would be coming out, and that turned out to be Alex Danvers. What followed was one of the best storylines the show has ever done, especially for Alex.
Alex and Maggie started out as friends, but they soon fell in love. By the end of season 2, their relationship was not only serious, but they went into the third season engaged. However, with the announcement that Floriana Lima wouldn't be back as a series regular, fans of Sanvers worried what that meant for the couple's future.
As they were planning their wedding, Alex realized that she wanted to have children. That wasn't something she could give up. It also wasn't something Maggie could change her mind about, as she didn't see them in her future. Rather than use unnecessary drama to break up the couple, they faced an issue that couldn't easily be resolved.
Alex's relationship with Maggie wasn't only important because it was part of the beginning of her coming out. It also set up Alex's future as a mother, and there has been speculation about how Ruby could play into that, given what's going on with Sam right now.
1 John and Mary Winchester (Supernatural)
John and Mary Winchester have never had much screen time together on Supernatural. (For some time, neither was alive. She has since been resurrected.) They weren't perfect together, and they couldn't even stand each other at first. However, Sam and Dean Winchester had to be born, even if that meant a little intervention from a cupid to push things forward.
Their relationship wasn't important because of what they meant to each other, though losing her was what kicked off his hunting. Instead, if Sam and Dean had never existed, there couldn't be a show (The end of season 12 and now in season 13 has even offered a look at a world where Sam and Dean didn't exist in the apocalypse world).
The best part of the show is the brothers' relationship. They're willing to die for the world, but more importantly, they're willing to die for each other. That hasn't changed, and there's no sign that that will ever change.
If not for John and Mary Winchester getting together and if not for Mary making that deal with Azazel to save his life, fans wouldn't have 13 seasons of Supernatural. That's arguably more important than any other relationship on the network.
Which of these do you love most? Let us know in the comments!