One simple “helllloooooo” from their thin lips and before you know it they have managed to take off your pants and relieve you of your parents? hard-earned inheritance. And that's just the men. As for women, well that's a totally different matter.
To quote one dictionary, a cad is an ?ill-bred man, especially one who behaves in a dishonourable or irresponsible way towards women?. Not exactly the first words on every woman?s date card, but for the supposedly ?fairer sex? cads play an important part of how they view romantic love, thanks to the novels of Thomas Hardy and Jane Austen.
Inside every hard-headed woman breathes a giddy young girl desperate to be relieved of their corseted morals by a few carefully-chosen words. As Dorothy Parker once said: ?Serves me right for putting all my eggs in one bastard.? They crave the attentions of a Daniel Cleaver before they decide for to settle for something far simpler, and, well, more boring.
And, of course, cads aren't all bad. After all, he won't hog the bathroom in the morning; he will always keep you topped up with drinks; plus you\’ll always have plenty of ammunition when you meet up with your mates for a wine-fuelled barrage of men-bashing.
Men, of course, know this. But, while some find acting like a dissolute, freeloading drunk comes second nature, growing a pencil-thin moustache, dressing up in a Tattersall-check waistcoat and introducing yourself to every ?delightful creature? in the room with a kiss on the hand does not give you a membership card to the cads club.
There is even some suggestion that, thanks to the rise of the Tories, cads are back on the march in the UK ? surely something to be celebrated in these politically correct times.
Here are some of our favourites. Enjoooooyyyy. Ding dong.
19. Don Draper from Mad Men
18. Frank Sinatra
He only had blue eyes for the next lady.
17. Mick Jagger
God knows how the midnight rambler does it, but hats off to him.
16. Leslie Phillips
British actor in his eighties and still charming the incontinence pants off women of a certain age.
15. Alan Clark
The late Alan Clark was a rare politician indeed: a Tory MP that was actually likeable. Not that he was a decent person ? far from it. A serial womaniser, he once bedded not only a judge?s wife, but also his daughter? and then his other daughter. Unsurprisingly, the judge called for the controversial Conservative MP to be ?horse-whipped?. There is even talk of a resurgence of cads among the Tory party, with names such as the ?bouncing baronet? Sir Dai Llewellyn, agriculture spokesman James Gray and Zac Goldsmith being bandied around. We prefer to call them Tory tossers.
14. Errol Flynn
13. Daniel Cleaver/ Hugh Grant
The dastardly Cleaver is by far the most interesting character in Bridget Jones. Hugh Grant once admitted the character was not much of a stretch. If that is the case, Grant should be on this list too.
11. Dick Dastardly
10. James Hewitt
The fact that he now comes across as some tit in a blazer and an Austin Healey should be forgotten. Princess Diana adored him – so who are we to disagree? The question is whether his caddishness will live on at the heart of the Royal Family?
9. Michael Caine in Alfie
Forget balding pretender Jude Law, Michael Caine?s performance as the East End womaniser is simply brilliant.
8. Sergeant Troy from Far from the Madding Crowd
Victorian super-cad with a very big sword and ego to match.
7. James Hunt
6. James Bond
It seems odd to have a list which includes both Terry Thomas and 007, but still.
5. Mr Wickham from Pride and Prejudice
As far as I remember, he gets paid off twice for ?corrupting? young women. Proof if ever you need it that cads do prosper.
4. Willoughby in Sense and Sensibility
3. Vicomte de Valmont from Dangerous Liaisons
Vicomte?s fantastically corrupt character is so well-written it even made John Malkovich look like a believable lothario.
2. Sir Harry Paget Flashman
1. Terry Thomas
Mention the word cad and the image of Terry Thomas smiling like a Cheshire cat instantly appears. The cad upon which all other cads are judged.