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10 Best TV Couples That Will Have You Swooning and Saying ‘Have Mercy’

Find out which iconic TV couple sang 'Forever' at their wedding and which of them actually ended up together!

Let’s be honest: TV lovers out there claim that it’s the plot that keeps them invested in a series — whether it’s a period drama like Bridgerton or ensemble comedy like Cheers — or that character arcs are what excite us. But it’s time to come clean and admit that it’s really the swoon-worthy relationships between the best TV couples that we’re all rooting for (shocking, we know).

There is simply nothing quite as thrilling as a TV romance. From the eventual dramatic admission of undying love and passionate first kisses to messy breakups and trying to win the other back, little compares to fictional love.

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man and woman dancing
Milo Ventimiglia and Mandy Moore (2016) Island Ave. Productions

Whether they lived the will-they-wont-they trope for multiple seasons or jumped right into a relationship, the best TV couples have been through the emotional wringer and still pull it together for a happily ever after. Mostly.

Some of these fan-favorites might be a surprise while others are expected, but each of them fought their way through challenging obstacles and earned a spot on this list, so dive into the world of TV romances and take a look at the best TV couples from over the years.

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10. Mr. Big and Carrie in Sex and the City: Best TV couples

Woman caressing mans face; best tv couples
Sarah Jessica Parker and Chris Noth in Sex and the City (1999) Star Productions

Easily one of the most dramatic TV relationships is Mr. Big (Chris Noth) and Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker) in Sex and the City. From not wanting to commit to a relationship to moving on with others, Big and Carrie pull through and always make their way back together.

Although the duo had their ups and downs throughout the series, they nonetheless manage to last through six seasons of dating, followed by their being married in two movies and one episode of the reboot, And Just Like That… Sadly, Big dies from a heart attack at the start of the latter, but despite that sad ending, he and Carrie are still one of the best TV couples.

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9. Cory and Topanga in Boy Meets World

Girl resting head on boys shoulder
Ben Savage and Danielle Fishel in Boy Meets World (1995) Michael Jacobs Productions

A couple meant to be since the sixth grade, everybody loves Cory and Topanga in Boy Meets World. Played by Ben Savage and Danielle Fishel, the middle school best friends turned lovers were very different early on, Cory initially feeling Topanga was weird and her thinking he was trying too hard to be cool. Yet their opposite qualities eventually drew them together.

The couple married in the seventh season of the show after years of back and forth, proving themelves to be one of the best TV couples. And even though Cory and Topanga deal with their differences throughout their relationship, they always manage to make it work. As Fishel puts it, “They balance each other out. It’s what makes them a good pair.”

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8. Alice and Ralph in The Honeymooners: Best TV couples

Man driving bus woman chasing it; best tv couples
Jackie Gleason and Audrey Meadows (1955) Graphic House / Staff / Getty

One of the great classic couples is none other than Alice and Ralph Kramden of The Honeymooners. This 1955 sitcom pair, portrayed by Jackie Gleason and Audrey Meadows, provide what feels like a genuine glimpse into married life. After 14 years of marriage, the couple may not be in the “honeymoon” phase, but there’s no question that husband and wife love each other.

Although fans only got one season of the hilarious duo — beyond the many skits performed on The Jackie Gleason Show — Alice and Ralph of The Honeymooners will go down in history as one of the best TV couples. As Ralph would frequently say to Alice, “Baby! You’re the greatest!”

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7. Derek and Meredith in Grey’s Anatomy

Man and woman looking at each other; best tv couples
Patrick Dempsey and Ellen Pompeo in “Grey’s Anatomy”

Derek and Meredith were the couple that was always meant to be even when they didn’t know it themselves. Starting out Grey’s Anatomy as a one-night stand, and them not realizing Derek was Meredith’s superior at her hospital, their love was tested time and again.

But Derek (Patrick Dempsey) and Meredith (Ellen Pompeo) are always pulled back together — even when his ex-wife returns or her dark past takes over. But when Meredith says, “Pick me. Choose me. Love me,” or Derek proposes to her in “their” elevator … swoon. There is no argument that McDreamy and Meredith aren’t meant for each other — even if he did tragically die in season 12 (something that is still hard to talk about).

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6. Luke and Lorelai in Gilmore Girls: Best TV couples

Man holding woman, skating
Scott Patterson and Lauren Graham in “Gilmore Girls” (2005) Bros. Television

“I’m all in,” was the line that got fans of The Gilmore Girls in a tizzy as it meant Luke and Lorelai were finally ready to commit to each other after four seasons of wondering. Scott Patterson and Lauren Graham portrayed the lovebirds, who begin as just friends — or, as Lorelai would put it, a coffee-addicted nuisance to Luke.

But after years of playful banter and major fights, Luke and Lorelai finally pulled it together enough to give their relationship a go. And while it takes a while to get there, the two seemingly balance each other out. Graham explained their relationship, saying, “His gruffness brings out her, sort of, flirtatiousness. There’s a chemistry there … she lightens him up and he roots her a little bit, but it took a while to get there.”

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5. Jack and Rebecca in This is Us

Man and woman holding hands; best tv couples
Milo Ventimiglia and Mandy Moore in “This is Us” (2020) Island Ave. Productions

This tried-and-true romance is a part of the This is Us foundation. Brought to life by Mandy Moore and Milo Ventimiglia, Jack and Rebecca have a heartfelt passion that truly lasts for generations. And their love at first sight fairytale is the epitome of an iconic TV romance, because despite their issues, Jack and Rebecca get through it all.

Sadly, it is shared early on that Jack dies an untimely death, but audiences get to see their love story unfold from the very beginning via flashbacks. And although he’s dearly missed in the present, we’re lucky to get a swoony Jack and Rebecca for as long as we do.

And don’t even mention when they were reunited on the train in the second to last episode. As Rebecca is headed towards the caboose of the train, which represents the end of her life, she finds Jack waiting, the assumption being that the two will spend eternity together, which is, as Ventimiglia put it, “wonderful and beautiful.”

4. Lucy and Ricky in I Love Lucy: Best TV couples

Woman and man in love; best tv couples
Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz in “I Love Lucy” (1951) Productions

The gold standard for all TV couples to follow is none other than Lucy and Ricky Ricardo from I Love Lucy. Portrayed by the married in real-life Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, this TV couple revolutionized the world of television and could drive each other crazy in one moment, and be truly loving the next. The genuinely hilarious comedy and love between the two changed the portrayal of couples on the small screen.

A housewife looking for opportunity and an immigrant singer/performer trying to make his way, this couple broke barriers. Lucy and Ricky were rather unconventional, but their real-life love bled through to make them one of the best TV couples.

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3. Ross and Rachel in Friends

man and woman together
David Schwimmer and Jennifer Aniston (1995) Productions

“We were on a break!” is a very notable line from Friends, and that special nugget came from one of the best TV couples, Ross and Rachel. This sweet romance portrayed by David Schwimmer and Jennifer Aniston, which bloomed from a high school crush, turned into one of TV’s most cherished relationships.

Sure, there were plenty of instances that tore the two apart, like when Ross cheated on Rachel or when he married Emily, but their 10-year on-and-off romance persevered through all of that, culminating in them welcoming a daughter in season 8.

Fans were understandably torn on whether Ross and Rachel truly belonged together after everything that had happened between them, but there’s no doubt that this sitcom couple was meant to be. Besides, who among can say they didn’t rewind multiple times when Rachel said, “I got off the plane” in the series finale?

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2. Sam and Diane in Cheers: Best TV couples

Man and woman holding hands on plane
Ted Danson and Shelley Long in Cheers (1993) Productions

As odd as it is to say — given the nature of this list — one of the most incompatible couples in TV history is the infamous pairing of Sam Malone and Diane Chambers. This hilariously insane couple, portrayed by Ted Danson and Shelley Long, captivated audiences for years. Despite their completely contradictory personalities, Sam and Diane follow the addictive opposites-attract trope as one of the best TV couples and in many ways set the stage for others to follow.

Their intense attraction was sometimes overpowered by the petty insults they threw at each other, but fans were always rooting for the two to get together, the pure hostility between them only making their undeniable chemistry even more exciting. Sadly, the couple doesn’t end up together, but the journey to breaking up made it all worthwhile.

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Of course, there are some major mishaps (like when Sam proposes, Diane refuses and he demands that he jump off the row boat they’re on), but there is still something so thrilling about this coupling. The will-they-or-won’t-they banter lasts for multiple seasons, even after they’ve gotten together, making Sam and Diane one of the best TV couples. 

1. Jesse and Becky in Full House

Woman hugging man; best tv couples
John Stamos and Lori Loughlin in Full House (1994) Franklin Productions

Who could have predicted that an Elvis-loving, leather-wearing rockstar and a sweet country girl turned news reporter would have what it takes to last for the long haul? Well luckily for fans everywhere, that’s exactly what we got with Uncle Jesse and Aunt Becky on Full House.

Even though he was a bit of a player when audiences met Jesse Katsopolis (John Stamos), it didn’t take him long to grow up when Rebecca Donaldson (Lori Loughlin) came around. Aside from a few missteps he made along their journey, Uncle Jesse and Aunt Becky grew into one of the most beloved and best tv couples of all time.

Everyone knows Jesse was enamored with Becky from the very start, but she was more interested in being friends (at least for a little while). Once he finally won her over, their relationship blossomed. From the song “Forever” being sung by Jesse at their wedding to the predictably sweet “Have Mercy” after every kiss, Jesse and Becky fans were swooning worldwide.

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