Star Trek: The Next Generation
Parents: Lieutenant Commander Worf & Ambassador K’Ehleyr
Star Trek: The Next Generation was instrumental in opening the world’s eyes to the possibility of acceptance and cohabitation with alien intelligences. Oftentimes those relationships bore children and few were as intolerable as the son of the legendary Klingon Starfleet Officer Worf than Alexander Rozhenko. Born 3/4ths Klingon and 1/4 Human, Alexander had it rough from the start, finding it difficult to fit in anywhere.
He didn’t know his father until he was a year old and his mother was assassinated shortly after he found out. After that, Worf left him on Earth to be raised by his adoptive grandparents. This rocky beginning gave way to all manner of misbehavior including pathological lying, kleptomania, fire setting, and general obnoxious belligerance that constantly tested Wolf’s honor, drove him to his parental edge and caused all manner of problems for the crew of the Enterprise-D. While Alexander and his father eventually made peace with their relationship, his earlier antics made it clear that Alexander would always be a child apart.
Parent: Moya, Leviathan
One of the more fascinating concepts in Farscape was Moya, a massive living ship called a Leviathan. The crew, with her permission, made Moya their home and her gentle lulling and cetacean-like serenity were always a welcome sight in the show. When the diabolical Peacekeepers (a militarized force of aliens called Sebaceans who resemble humans and essentially control the entire sector with an iron fist) hatched a plot to create a special weapon, their target was the peaceful Moya. The resulting modifications to Moya’s internal systems led to the great ship giving birth to a weaponized hybrid, part Leviathan, part Peacekeeper Warship.
Talyn was smaller than other Leviathans, but was armed to the teeth with an array of fantastically powerful cannons. He also possessed the natural Leviathan ability to Starburst, Farscape’s version of lightspeed jumping. His abnormal heritage led to a severe personality defect that left Talyn paranoid, tempermental, and quick to anger, mercilessly threatening and/or killing anything that disturbed or displeased him. Talyn ultimately proved his worth and earned his mother’s love, but the death toll he left behind would never be forgotten.
Parents: Angel & Darla
Joss Whedon’s Buffyverse is constantly rife with conflict and drama, but few brought the brutal teenage angst like Connor, the impossible offpring of vampires Angel and Darla. Brought into the world through a cosmic conspiracy, Connor really never stood a chance. Less than a month old, Connor was kidnapped by Angel’s 18th-century nemesis, vampire hunter Daniel Holtz, and taken to the Hell dimension Quor’Toth. There he was raised by Holtz for nearly twenty years, molded into a killing machine, and upon his return (mere days later in Angel’s dimension), he nearly killed his father. From there the ball rolled downhill, with Connor forever torn between his love and loyalty to his “father” Holtz, the reality of his birth, his brutal tutelage in Quor’Toth, the conflicting images of his vampire father, the actual love offered by the people of Angel Investigations, and the fact that he was an obnoxiously hormonal teenager.
In this strange world, Connor consistently tried to kill Angel (sinking him in a steel coffin to the bottom of the ocean once), betrayed nearly everyone he knew, caused massive damage at every turn, slept with Angel’s love Cordelia, skirted the edge of ending the world, and tried to ultimately kill himself, Cordelia, and a host of hostages with homemade bombs. Connor could never truly be at peace and so to finally help him, all of reality had to be altered to give him the start he needed to live a normal life. Parents will move Heaven and Earth for their kids, but Connor proved sometimes it’s just not enough.
The Twilight Zone
Parents: Mr. and Mrs. Fremont
Little is known about little 6-year old Anthony Fremont. His parentage, the circumstances of his birth, or even how he came to be what he is. Then again, in The Twilight Zone, everything is up for grabs and you’re lucky if you even make it out in one piece should you find yourself there. In Anthony’s world, that of Peaksville, Ohio, he is the undisupted ruler. His whims and fancies are the same as any six-year old’s, only Anthony’s whims come with dire consequences for those that displease him. Anthony possesses power on a God-like scale, able to read minds, transform anything into anything he desires, and “wish” things away to The Cornfield, what is certainly Anthony’s manifested imagining of oblivion.
The little boy has seemingly taken Peaksville out of the world (or taken the world away from Peaksville), cut it off from any form of communication or travel (radios, T.V.s and cars refuse to work), and holds its residents hostage, kept around solely to please him and serve him as he demands. The precocious child lacks virtually any empathy, not understanding why other children won’t play with him after he sent several of his previous playmates to The Cornfield. He’s quick to temper, oblivious to others needs, and finds singing incredibly distasteful, his mouthless Aunt being an example of this. Controlling every aspect of his “world”, Anthony is the monster of the piece, ensuring that no one will ever displease him, too young to understand real fear and hate, and too young to ever truly care.
Charles “Charlie” Evans
Once again Star Trek makes the list by bringing us the one of the worst kids of them all. While not technically a child, as Charles arrived on the scene at age 17, his mind and faculties didn’t seem to age along with him. The only survivor of a transport crash on Thasus, a desolate and inhospitable world, at only 3 years of age, Charles would have met a grisly end were it not for the intervention of the planet’s inhabitants. To assist his survival, The Thasians gifted the child with incredible psychic abilities such as Telekinesis, Telepathy, Psychometry, Physical/Mental Warping abilities, and Matter Transmutation. After 14 yeasrs on Thasus, Charles eventually made his way off planet aboard the Antares and later found himself on the Enterprise, captained by James T. Kirk.
Charles immediately showed signs of mental instability, lack of empathy, and an inability to take responsibility for his actions. His time on Thasus had developed him into a survival focused individual with the emotional faculties of a young child. With a full grasp of his abilities, but no comprehension of the value of life, Charles destroyed the starship Antares and her crew when they attempted to warn the Enterprise about Charles and his abilities. Spock noted that Charles had no regard for life whatsoever, but Kirk argued for his lack of social acclimation in his raising being the culprit. Evans continued to raise hell on the Enterprise until the crew were able to overwhelm and defeat him. Shortly after, the Thasians returned, having discovered Charle’s departure, and reclaimed him. Noting that he would never be able to live a normal life, the aliens left with Charles in custody, returning to their world, hopefully to never trouble the galaxy again.
Game of Thrones
Parents: Jamie & Cersei Lannister
Arguably the worst of the worst, Joffrey holds the distinction of being the only child on this list unworthy of any sympathy. Though, like his younger siblings, born into difficult circumstance (notably the incestuous coupling of his mother and her twin brother Jaime), Joffrey was inherently lacking in the sweet nature of his brother Tommen, or the compassion of his sister Myrcella. Instead, Joffrey was the antithesis of anything kind and congenial in all of Westeros. Other than the twisted devotion of his mother, the young man earned the enmity of all he crossed, his arrogance, cowardice, and sadistically malevolent nature a curse upon the Lannister name. And when his step-father Robert tragically died, things only got worse.
Joffrey was a spiteful King, driven by only his basest emotions. From the abuses he showed to his subjects, to the Stark family, defilement of religious artifacts, customs and historical texts, his uncle Tyrion, and the degrading of all who opposed him, many believed that a dark time was soon to befall King’s Landing under his rule. A vicious and cruel brat, few called him a tyrant, his cowardice as well-known as his childish wrath. He truly feared his grandfather Tywin and he also feared death, but his supreme arrogance from being King drove him to push others to their breaking point, preferring their submission to their allegiance. His behavior earned him a place on Arya’s kill list and even his uncle Tyrion at times was forced to slap him across the face to force any sense from his emotional antics.
And ultimately, Joffrey met the end his psychopathic, sadistic, cruel, and arrogant behavior warranted. Concluding a cunning conspiracy, Joffrey was poisoned at his wedding feast, when the strangler, a lethal poison that eliminates a person’s ability to breathe, was slipped into his wine. Blood leaking from his eyes, his throat clenched like a vice, his face purple from strain, Joffrey left the world, one of the few whose fate was actually deserved.