Please upgrade your browser for the best Refinery29 experience. Read more.

Saved! Access Favorites in your account profile. Removed from my favorites

9 Fictional Characters Who Should Not Be Your Financial Role Models

  1. Begin
    opener4
    Photo: Courtesy of HBO.

    SHARE IT

    comments
    See All Slides
    This story was originally published on September 4, 2015.

    You know to suspend disbelief when watching certain movies and TV shows about young and beautiful characters living in the big city. There's no way that recent college grad could swing that fancy apartment, but it's more fun watching her entertain her gorgeous friends in a huge loft than a cramped, windowless, roommate-filled, five-story walk-up similar to the one you live in.

    But, some people running around in the no-rules economy depicted on screen can't even hack it in that universe; they make the kind of decisions that could be turned into a FreeCreditReport.com ad. There are bad financial role models, and then there are these characters. Always make sure you're taking your pop culture money tips from Jack Donaghy, not Tracy Jordan (or Foxy Moneybags).

    Begin Slideshow
  2. <iframe src="//www.youtube.com/embed/LKJpXri0zwQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    SHARE IT

    0 Comments
    See All Slides
    0 of 9

    Mary Camden (7th Heaven)

    In the world of 7th Heaven, every teenage misstep is a direct bridge to lifelong ruin and misery, and Mary's brief run-in with credit-card debt collectors is no exception. You mean I can buy things now, and pay later? she realizes with the kind of wide-eyed disbelief normally reserved for Amish teens on rumspringa. Though the Camden parents tend to overreact, you have hit bottom when you're covering your bills with coins from your baby brothers' piggy banks.

  3. <iframe src="//www.youtube.com/embed/Dq6jS6uazUI" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    SHARE IT

    0 Comments
    See All Slides
    1 of 9

    Jules (St. Elmo's Fire)

    The '80s seemed like a time of wild financial abandon, when the money and hairspray flowed freely. But Jules should have known that borrowing money against her future paychecks was a bad idea that would lead to everything she owned being repossessed (except for the way-too-long curtains that were left to billow ominously as she had a total breakdown).

  4. <iframe src="//www.youtube.com/embed/ZYYCSEV-i1Y" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    SHARE IT

    0 Comments
    See All Slides
    2 of 9

    Rebecca Bloomwood (Confessions of a Shopaholic)

    You might think the worst decision Rebecca makes is spending thousands of dollars she doesn't have on designer clothes, but really, it's getting a job at a print magazine in 2009. (And encasing her credit card in something that's as easily destructible as ice.)

  5. <iframe src="//www.youtube.com/embed/8H-O4mdWLFQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    SHARE IT

    0 Comments
    See All Slides
    3 of 9

    Dewey Finn (School of Rock)

    A successful financial plan should never rest on your ability to win Battle of the Bands, no matter how skilled your guitarist is.

  6. <iframe src="//www.youtube.com/embed/cv01Mcdf8rI" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    SHARE IT

    0 Comments
    See All Slides
    4 of 9

    Ben Stone (Knocked Up)

    Actually, most of the men in Judd Apatow's movies aren't great with money (except the 40-year-old virgin — action figures were a solid investment), but Ben is a superstar of bad money management. He lives off a government settlement and doesn't even bother to check whether his get-rich-quick website idea already exists. Luckily, all his money woes can be handled in one "man-child grows up" montage.