There are a lot of secret siblings on television.
Plenty of TV shows tend to build their foundation on common tropes such as the cringe-worthy love triangle trope and the long lost sibling trope.
If you need to stir up some drama, especially in a campy teen series, there’s no better way than by bringing in a secret sibling that’s jealous, scorned, vengeful, broken, betrayed, looking for a family, or all of the above.
Some secret siblings are introduced in a sensical way with the serious laying some breadcrumbs leading up to the introduction.
Other reveals come out of left field and frustrate audiences by appearing as mere plot devices thrown in for the sake of it.
And sometimes, the trope works well as the secret siblings become pivotal to the storyline and the main character’s development.
We’re looking back at some of our favorite secret siblings on television. Which ones would you add to the list?
Chic/ Charles – Riverdale
On Riverdale, Betty and Jughead’s first half brother (yes, they’re still dating), Chic, was a poser but stirred up enough drama to make the fandom collectively hate him. Eventually, we meet the real Charles, an FBI agent, who bonded with Betty over her mother’s time at The Farm.
Unfortunately, Charles turned out to be just as crazy as Chic. The two were revealed to be lovers who are plotting something against the family that abandoned them.
Scott Rosson – Gossip Girl
Scott appeared in the second season of Gossip Girl as the love child of Lily van der Woodsen and Rufus Humphrey thus making BF and GF Serena and Dan half-siblings.
Everyone tried to keep Scott a secret for as long as they could but eventually, the secret sibling was outed by the one and only Gossip Girl. XoXo.
Adam – Dynasty
Adam, the kidnapped child of Blake Carrington and Alexis Carrington, appeared early on in Dynasty but was quickly revealed to be a fake hired by Alexis to get her hands on the Carrington money.
The real Adam Carrington makes his way to the Manor, though, he’s equally as deranged and way more dangerous as his predecessor. He had his brother, Steven, committed in Europe after thinking he was having “hallucinations,” shoved his mother’s face into the fireplace, and continues to sabotage his half-sister, Fallon, daily all while hoping to gain his father’s love.
Ari and Ziva – NCIS
After Ari murdered NCIS agent Kate Todd, everyone believed that Ziva David was simply his Mossad control officer. It’s only after Ziva kills Ari to save Gibbs that we find out that he was her half-brother.
It’s a storyline that took place during NCIS Season 3 and has had repercussions that have lasted until present day NCIS Season 17!
Zelena – Once Upon a Time
Zelena, aka the Wicked Witch of the West (from the Wizard of Oz), arrives in Once Upon a Time Season 3. She is Regina Mills’ (the Evil Queen) half-sister, who was abandoned as a child and wished dearly for a family. Her jealousy over Regina consumed her and led to plenty of magical wars before the sisters mend their relationship and lived happily ever after.
Anezka – Jane the Virgin
Yael Groblas pulled double duty on Jane the Virgin to portray the main character Petra and her long lost twin, Anezka. Anezka was a “shy mouse” who grew up in an orphanage in the Czech Republic before being brought to America by their evil mother, Magda.
Though it seems like she wants a genuine relationship with Petra, she’s later revealed to be conspiring with Magda to steal Rafael’s money and flee the country.
Maggie and Meredith – Grey’s Anatomy
In the Grey’s Anatomy Season 10 finale, we learn that Maggie and Meredith are half-sisters. Their mother, Ellis, had a fling with Richard when Meredith was very young.
They put Maggie up for adoption, but when she got older, she learned her late mother was a top-notch surgeon at Grace Seattle Hospital. While the sisters had a strange relationship at first, they later came around and developed a friendship.
Adam was revealed to be John Winchester’s son on Supernatural, yet it was more shocking to find out that John was actually a better father to Adam than our boys, Dean and Sam. It’s no surprise that they left him in hell. The resentment is real.
Wally – Flash
The Flash Season 2 introduces us to Wally, who is revealed to be Iris’ long lost brother from her estranged mother. Wally hesitates to embrace the familial unit, but eventually joins Team Flash and becomes Kid Flash
Alex Drake – Pretty Little Liars
The PLL family tree was more complicated than the Game of Thrones one and there was plenty of surprise sibling reveals including Alex Drake as “AD” in the series finale.
Alex is the daughter of Mary Drake and Peter Hastings, and Spencer’s identical twin sister. While Spencer was given to her biological father and his wife, Alex was given up for adoption to an orphanage in the UK where she plotted her insanely complex revenge.
Charlotte DiLaurentis – Pretty Little Liars
Like I said, the family tree is very complicated. Charlotte was born “Charles” and transitioned into the character we know as CeCe. Though she is the biological daughter of Mary Drake and Pastor Ted, she was adopted by Jessica and Kenneth DiLaurentis (Jessica’s sister is Mary).
This makes her Alison and Jason’s biological cousin and adoptive sister (and she had a romantic relationship with Jason!), and also, the biological half-sister of Spencer Hastings.
Derek – One Tree Hill
In yet another case where we meet the “fake” secret sibling before meeting the real one, a deranged and broken man named Ian poses as Peyton’s half-brother, Derek, to get close to her.
When fake Derek realizes that he’s losing Peyton, he tries to rape her but thankfully, Lucas and her real brother, Derek, a US Marine, come to her rescue.
Mark Your Calendars – Here’s When Everything is Premiering on ABC This Fall
ABC’s fall 2022 TV schedule has landed!
Along with some beloved fan faves returning (we’re looking at you, Abbott Elementary), there’s a handful of newbies hoping to make a splash — like Hilary Swank’s Alaska Daily.
And we definitely can’t forget about Celebrity Jeopardy, Bachelor in Paradise, Big Sky, and Grey’s Anatomy.
Excited enough? Good, you should be. Now, get ready to mark those calendars because here are all the premiere dates:
Wednesday, September 21
8:00 p.m. “The Conners”
8:30 p.m. “The Goldbergs”
9:00 p.m. “Abbott Elementary”
9:31 p.m. “Home Economics”
10:00 p.m. “Big Sky”
Friday, September 23
8:00 p.m. “Shark Tank”
9:01 p.m. “20/20”
Sunday, September 25
8:00 p.m. “Celebrity Jeopardy!”
9:00 p.m. “Celebrity Wheel of Fortune”
10:00 p.m. “The Rookie”
Tuesday, September 27
8:00 p.m. “Bachelor in Paradise”
10:00 p.m. “The Rookie: Feds”
Sunday, October 2
7:00 p.m. “America’s Funniest Home Videos”
Monday, October 3
8:00 p.m. “Bachelor in Paradise”
10:00 p.m. “The Good Doctor”
Thursday, October 6
8:00 p.m. “Station 19”
9:00 p.m. “Grey’s Anatomy”
10:01 p.m. “Alaska Daily”
WATCH: The New ‘Pretty Little Liars’ Is Dark AF
‘A’ is not messing around in the Pretty Little Liars spinoff Original Sin.
If you thought we’d seen the last of ‘A’… think again. The masked stalker is back to torment a new group of little liars on the HBO Max series.
The ten-episode season will debut Thursday, July 28 with three episodes. Two new episodes will follow on August 4 and 11, with the final three episodes debuting on August 18.
A new teaser for the series reveals the tone is going to be much darker than the original ever was, and that’s likely thanks to Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (Riverdale, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina) who serves as writer and co-executive producer.
Check out the teaser — complete with a new version of the intro song “Secret.”
Pretty Little Liars: Original Sin synopsis: Twenty years ago, a series of tragic events almost ripped the blue-collar town of Millwood apart. Now, in present day, a disparate group of teen girls — a brand-new set of Little Liars — find themselves tormented by an unknown Assailant and made to pay for the secret sin committed by their parents two decades ago…as well as their own. In the dark, coming-of-age, horror-tinged drama PRETTY LITTLE LIARS: ORIGINAL SIN, we find ourselves miles away from Rosewood, but within the existing Pretty Little Liars universe — in a brand-new town, with a new generation of Little Liars.
WATCH: ‘Boo Bitch’ Trailer Starring Lana Condor & Zoe Colletti is Hauntingly Hilarious
If we were to give you only one reason why Boo Bitch needs to be on your radar this TV season, it would be the title alone. Name a better show title… I’ll wait.
A close second? To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before star Lana Condor takes the lead as a ghost… sort of.
But despite the name, the series is anything but scary. The eight-episode live-action YA limited series is actually a haunting comedy that follows Condor’s Eric Vu, a play-it-safe high school senior who decides the change things up the same night she gets hit by a truck and winds up, well, dead.
Erika wakes up and finds herself standing over her own body, she realizes she’s now part of the undead. From nerd to ghost, it’s quite the transition, I might add.
But she’s not a ghost in the typical fashion. For starters, she can’t walk through doors, everyone can see her, and she can touch people, though, she’s not entirely sure if you can get pregnant while being a ghost, which is a fair question when you’re in high school and crushing! Are ghost babies a thing? Again, valid question, and good on her for being responsible when the possibilities are endless when you’re neither living nor dead.
She realizes she’s landed upon a “loophole,” ie. “I can stick around if I’m more famous in death than in life.”
Can Erika find a way to make something of her second chance and convince the universe that she deserves to be alive?
The series also stars Zoe Margaret Colletti as Erika’s best friend Gia, who gives new meaning to the word “ride or die.”
Condor defintiely dominates the spotlight as Erika, and the role allows her to show off a more comedic side to her acting, but Colletti, who is newer to the screen, presents as a promising sidekick. Colletti’s credits include Annie, Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, City on a Hill, and Fear the Walking Dead.
Boo, Bitch will be available on Netflix starting July 8.
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