10 Disturbing Backstories Behind Your Favourite TV Characters

9. Alex Karev - Grey's Anatomy

Peter Bishop Fringe

If you've ever watched a single episode of Grey's Anatomy, you already know the series is filled with characters whose backstories are anything but happy. That's certainly true for Dr. Alex Karev, who had a difficult childhood, to say the least.

Alex had to become an adult when he was only seven years old. That was the age when he was forced to take care of his family due to his father's destructive alcoholism. While that alone would be enough to grant him a place on this list, it's only the beginning.

Alex's mother was schizophrenic, so she wasn't mentally stable enough to care for the family, which consisted of Alex, a brother, and sister (he later found that he had a half-brother). His mother's health ended up landing Alex and his siblings in the foster system, and after five years, he was in 17 different foster homes.

When he was 15, he lost his virginity to a school nurse, and he wasn't able to go to his high school prom due to his father's abusive terror going on at home. Eventually, he changed his last name to Karev, which was his mother's maiden name. He did this to disassociate himself from his father.


Jonathan is a graphic artist, illustrator, writer, and game designer. Jonathan retired from the U.S. Army in 2017 and enjoys researching and writing about history, science, theology, and many other subjects. He writes for ScreenRant, CBR, NerdBastards, Listverse, Ranker, WhatCulture, and many other sites online. You can check out his latest on Twitter: @TalkingBull or on his blog: jonathanhkantor.com