TV's Most Polarizing Wives, From 'Breaking Bad' to 'Mad Men'

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This image released by AMC shows Anna Gunn as Skyler White in a scene from "Breaking Bad." The fifth season of the popular series premieres Sunday, July 15, 2012 at 10 p.m. EST on AMC. (AP Photo/AMC, Ursula Coyote)
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This image released by AMC shows Anna Gunn as Skyler White in a scene from "Breaking Bad." The fifth season of the popular series premieres Sunday, July 15, 2012 at 10 p.m. EST on AMC. (AP Photo/AMC, Ursula Coyote)

One major TV trend in recent years has been a focus on female characters that polarize viewers. These characters, often the wife of a main character, completely divide a show's fan base. Viewers love to debate about whether these wives are good for their husbands or the worst possible match. Here are four such TV wives; some TV fans love them, while others utterly despise them.

Skyler White, "Breaking Bad"

While almost no "Breaking Bad" fans would argue that Anna Gunn is a bad actress, opinions vary wildly about the use of her character on the show. Skyler is beloved by many fans, who see her as a woman trying to make the best of a bad situation. However, other fans argue that Skyler is unappreciative and a shrew.

The show's creator, Vince Gilligan, recently spoke out about the so-called "Skyler haters" in an interview with Vulture.

"With the risk of painting with too broad a brush, I think the people who have these issues with the wives being too [expletive]-y on 'Breaking Bad' are misogynists, plain and simple," he said. "People are griping about Skyler White being too much of a killjoy to her meth-cooking, murdering husband? She's telling him not to be a murderer and a guy who cooks drugs for kids. How could you have a problem with that?"

Betty Draper (née Hofstadt, later Francis), "Mad Men"

Oh, Betty -- fat or thin, she remains polarizing. Some fans are ardent supporters of Don's former wife, arguing that she did the best she could in a marriage where her husband was unfaithful. Still others argue that she was just as bad as Don, as she has cheated on both Don and Henry at this point in the series. She is generally too harsh on her children, but she remains sympathetic because she is so childlike herself.

Amy Pond, "Doctor Who"

Amy's husband was Rory, a man who literally waited 2,000 years to be with her, traveled across the stars to rescue her, and had been utterly devoted to her since they were kids. But because Amy could be so abrasive when speaking to him, many fans grew to hate Amy for mistreating such a kind man. However, plenty of other fans remained steadfast Amy supporters, arguing that her love for Rory was deep and true... even if she was dazzled by other men occasionally.

Lilith Sternin, "Frasier"

A classic example of a polarizing TV wife, Lilith was a good match for the intellectual Frasier. But while the two may have been intellectual matches, Frasier's wife raised fan ire when she cheated on him in the final season of "Cheers." However, throughout all of "Frasier," Lilith was arguably Frasier's most steadfast emotional support. She was always there with good advice for him, even when the two were conflicting.
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