Search Menu

Top Boy Band Picks of All Time

Top Boy Band Picks of All Time

I'll be upfront about this. I'm a BSB girl, always will be. That's not to say I don't appreciate Justin Timberlake for being a precious unicorn of hotness and talent—but *NSYNC had a larger proportion of members who dressed horribly. Like, three out of five members looked stupid kind of all the time. It wasn't always the same three members … but still. No dice.


There are so many boy bands we all love to love to love. Every era has one! And while we could argue for hours over who has the best SONGS … who's got the time when there are so many episodes of Game of Thrones to watch? Besides, when it comes to the best boy band photos—well, I think those visuals can speak for themselves. There are no winners here. They're all champions.

The Jackson 5
Oh yeah, I said "OF ALL TIME" in the headline right? So we're gonna get in the Delorean and hit the way-back button for some of these bands. The Jackson 5 was so much more than a boy band—they were a family band! (One that pointedly ignored their sister Janet, but I digress.) They hit it big with "I Want You Back" in 1969 and just kind of killed it for awhile on the pop charts. They wore sparkles, sparkles and more sparkles but I chose the swirly tuxes just because I like to keep things a little more formal whenever possible.

The Monkees

Another oldie-but-goodie, The Monkees was assembled in 1966 for the sole purpose of being a TV show. The point of said TV show was that The Monkees were wanna-be Beatles, but then they actually become a band. Member Mickey Dolenz described it as, "The Monkees really becoming a band was like the equivalent of Leonard Nimoy really becoming a Vulcan." When I read that on Wikipedia, I guffawed. But then I listened to "I'm a Believer," and aww. Cute. So in most of their pics, The Monkees look like your run-of-the-mill hipster boys. It's actually kind of creepy. I think it would take me less than a minute to scout out a dude in Brooklyn in nearly identical clothing. Even the weirdest one on the left looks like he's from Monty Python and ALSO Williamsburg. Cray. I think they might be flying in this picture.

Never heard of Menudo? Oh chicas, let's discuss. Well, first of all … they had this totally EPIC boy band run from 1977-1990. Plus, there was a Menudo 2: Look Who's Menudo-ing Now? from 2007-2009. To be fair, their puppet masters just brought in new blood when members got too old or became lame or grew weird beards or weren't Ricky Martin enough. But still, they're the immortal sparkle vamps of the boy-band world. They also apparently released two feature films, Menudo: La Película and Una Aventura Llamada Menudo. And if we can glean anything from the cinematic masterpieces From Justin 2 Kelly and Spice World, basing a movie on a music act is kinda always a good idea. But we're here to judge pics, not break down language barriers and Netflix movies about Menudo. Wowza. That's a lot of shiny pants.

New Kids on the Block
I'm gonna go out on a limb. New Kids on the Block is the most attractive boy band ever. Why? Well, there really was only one guy who at the time wasn't considered conventionally good looking (sorry, Danny). But even he's looking real good these days. This is them now. Foine. I did manage to find a horrible picture of them, of course, because that was my promise to you. I'm gonna pull through. Anyway, NKOTB hit its peak in the late '80's to early '90's and were the catalyst of me hating my sister when she got to go their concert and I did not because she was older. I went to a church fair instead. Not the same, Mom. Where was I? I picked this picture because Joey looks like an awkward magician and Jordan's feeling sassy in his overalls.

Backstreet Boys
Oh man. I love them based on "I Want it That Way" alone, but they've got mad hits. BSB is the best-selling boy band of all time! Who knew? And apparently, they're still active?  I mean they did issue the warning: "As long as there be music, we'll be coming back again." But that makes me nervous so imma just pretend they don't exist anymore. Or better yet, BSB, don't stand in a field or on a shiny floor and try to be adults. Go into a haunted house and do a big choreographed dance with ghouls and goblins for all eternity and everyone will like you again. No? Then this group photo is what we'll remember you by. Two-fifths of the band have used hot tools on their hair. Someone's wearing Dockers. It doesn't make sense at all. I mean, tell me why? TELL ME WHY!

Ugggh, ok. *NSYNC is the Peeta to BSB's Gale. *NSYNC "won" in that their individual members are doing better post-megafame. I mean, I don't know that for sure, but one is Justin Timberlake, one is on Broadway like a lot and I think one went to space … sooo, I think it's safe to hand this big victory over to Justin & them other boyz. And secret time? I'm Team BSB 4eva until "Bye Bye Bye" comes on … and when that happens, everyone's gonna need to step aside because it's gonna get real sweaty and real dance-y and real ridiculous. But all that aside, I still stand by my previous critique on *NSYNC. They looked dumb like always. Not even Justin could get out of this one alive. Too much bad hair. Too much. Joey Fatone knows. Look at his face.

One Direction
Are they robbing a store in these hooded jumpsuits?! Of course not. They're being adorable and comfortable and Irish. They're making us feel good about ourselves! I mean, maybe every time we're weirded out because we own a Slanket or can eat an entire pint of Ben & Jerry's Greek yogurt in one sitting … maybe it's just cuz we don't know we're beautiful … right? Yeah, that's surely what it is. Anyway, jumpsuits! They're so cute, I can't even begin to poke fun at them. I want to go to Ireland and go on a swingset with them or chase some sheep or something. Jump on a trampoline? Blow-dry our side-swept bangs? All those things.

Do you have a favorite boy band?

Topics: Music, Life
Tags: crushes, musicians, funny things, boy bands, one direction, backstreet boys, the jackson 5, sync

Write your own comment!

About the Author
Chrissie Gruebel

Chrissie Gruebel is a bunch of things separated by commas, but more often than not, she’s a writer, comedian, and wearer of too many colors at once. Here she is on Twitter: @chrissiegruebel.

Wanna contact a writer or editor? Email