5 Of The Bean Community’s Most Inappropriate Childhood Crushes

Words by Colette Fitzpatrick

(Compiled from a list provided by you!)

First loves are sweet, beautiful things that are tinged by rose-tinted nostalgia but first celebrity crushes can be something else entirely. We often find that we were drawn to a diverse and rag-tag crew. At first, you can’t even put a finger on what the feeling is; you just find your eyes following a character or actor or performer around the screen or stage or page. Eventually, you realise that it is the awakening of romantic interest and fascination. As the years go by, it becomes the norm to find a fave to stan and adore and fall in love with and then we look back on those that came before and wonder: wonder about ourselves and whether there is something seriously wrong…

Because we all have those skeletons in our closets, right? The early crushes that make little to no sense but were decided by purer, less self-conscious and self-editing selves and, therefore, have to be all the truer as a result? And some of them can be truly baffling, hard to cop to or, in some cases, truly bizarre. We asked our readers to pitch in and share our mutual shame and tell us about some of their most inappropriate childhood crushes and, boy, are you guys messed up…


1. Bowie in Labyrinth

Bowie, the problematic fave that he was, captured many of team Bean’s hearts in this film. Many of us weren’t even born when it came out but the first time we laid eyes on his coiffed hair, strong eye, billowy shirts and that damn codpiece, we were hooked. Can you say sexual awakening? Despite the worrisome relationship between the centuries-old Goblin King and an actual teenage girl, the questionable wardrobe choices and the fact that he was the villain of the piece, he somehow managed to make so many of us fall in love. I guess that’s pure charisma that translates even to kids who were oblivious to the legacy and cultural significance of the man in question…

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2. Arnold from HeyArnold!

When this pick came in, it was accompanied with the question: “Is Hey Arnold inappropriate?” And, to answer you: yes, Helga (we know it was you), loving the football-head is totally inappropriate, you weirdo. But, in pondering longer, we reckon quite a few of us had a soft spot for the grunge-clad titular character of our favourite nineties cartoon.


3. Jafar from Aladdin

The thing for villains continues! This one is an especially alarming pick as he is a seriously gross and problematic antagonist but I guess some of our bad life choices were already brewing away during childhood….


4. Fox Robin Hood from Disney’s animated Robin Hood

So, not only are our disturbed readers into cartoon characters with weird-shaped heads, apparently they have a thing for animated animals too. Good to know there are some furries among you lot, we’ll know to be careful now! I guess this illustrated heartthrob was too foxy for some of y’all to resist…


5. Sonic the Hedgehog

A second animated animal on the list…you guys really are showing us up. I guess the Bean freak flag is going to have to start flying even from this very early stage. The reasoning for this entry? “I think it was his attitude…still creepy, I know.” It’s good that you know. I guess sass and love conquer all things, even 2D, fictional, interspecies adoration.

Now that we all know too much about each other and ourselves, let’s console ourselves with the knowledge that we are not alone. The moral of the tale? 80s and 90s cartoon/games characters and villains were just too damn sexy for their own good…

If you’re looking for more fun reads, check out Emma’s guide to cruelty-free lipsticks you need in your life and the news that Team Bean has been losing it over lately

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