James Cromwell, American Horror Story Asylum, Ellen Barkin, The New Normal, Max Greenfield, New Girl

Fox; Trae Patton/NBC; Byron Cohen/FX

It's time to talk turkeys—and we don't mean those lovely little birds you'll soon be cooking up for Thanksgiving dinner.

We're referring to those jerky guys and gals who engage in all sorts of bad behavior all over the small screen—and often escape, at least for a time, unscathed. In honor of the approaching holiday, we humbly present our five picks for TV's Top Turkeys of 2012.

American Horror Story, James Cromwell, Jessica Lange

Byron Cohen/FX

Dr. Arthur Arden (James Cromwell), American Horror Story: Asylum: He's fond of fine wine and Chopin, but what this (former Nazi?) doc really likes is conducting unethical experiments on the inmates at Briarcliff. Without anesthetic. (Bet that made Shelly enjoy her leg amputation!) A man with a frighteningly disturbing hatred for women—how many has he tried to rape now?—this dude's sicker than most of the patients he's "treating." 

The Walking Dead, David Morrissey

Gene Page/AMC

The Governor (David Morrissey), The Walking DeadThe charismatic leader of Woodbury will do anything to protect his post-apocalyptic town and its residents, and his "heroic" efforts make him a hit with the ladies (see, most recently, Andrea). But viewers know that underneath his smooth exterior, The Gov is swimming in sadistic secrets, from the floating decapitated heads he keeps in an oversized tank in his apartment to his zombie daughter Penny.

Talia Balsam, Homeland


Cynthia Walden (Talia Balsam), Homeland: Don't let the ladylike pearls fool you: The vice president's wife isn't afraid to get her hands dirty. After learning son Finn and Brody's daughter Dana were involved in a fatal hit-and-run accident, Cynthia swiftly switched into cover-up mode, paying off the family of the victim. Clearly, she plans to let nothing get in her way of becoming our nation's next first lady. 

Ellen Barkin, The New Normal

Trae Patton/NBC

Nana (Ellen Barkin), The New Normal: She's been called the "female Archie Bunker," and it's easy to see why: Nana's a conservative, racist homophobe who never misses an opportunity to spew her bigoted venom. (Something tells us she's never going to totally come to terms with her daughter serving as a surrogate for Normal's same-sex couple.) Nana's one redeeming quality? Her unimpeachable love for both Goldie and Shania. 

Max Greenfield, The New Girl

Autumn Dewilde/FOX

Schmidt (Max Greenfield), New Girl: There's a reason he's constantly contributing to the douchebag jar: Jess & Co.'s self-absorbed roomie often says the most outrageous, inappropriate things. And yet, we still can't help but love him. Maybe it's because, even when Schmidt happens, his heart is usually in the right place. 

Now it's your turn: Who do you consider TV's top turkey? Hit the comments and let us know!

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