<body><script type="text/javascript"> function setAttributeOnload(object, attribute, val) { if(window.addEventListener) { window.addEventListener('load', function(){ object[attribute] = val; }, false); } else { window.attachEvent('onload', function(){ object[attribute] = val; }); } } </script> <div id="navbar-iframe-container"></div> <script type="text/javascript" src="https://apis.google.com/js/plusone.js"></script> <script type="text/javascript"> gapi.load("gapi.iframes:gapi.iframes.style.bubble", function() { if (gapi.iframes && gapi.iframes.getContext) { gapi.iframes.getContext().openChild({ url: 'https://www.blogger.com/navbar.g?targetBlogID\x3d16149408\x26blogName\x3dThe+Blogulator\x26publishMode\x3dPUBLISH_MODE_BLOGSPOT\x26navbarType\x3dBLACK\x26layoutType\x3dCLASSIC\x26searchRoot\x3dhttp://chrisandqualler.blogspot.com/search\x26blogLocale\x3den_US\x26v\x3d2\x26homepageUrl\x3dhttp://chrisandqualler.blogspot.com/\x26vt\x3d7090024357285529333', where: document.getElementById("navbar-iframe-container"), id: "navbar-iframe" }); } }); </script>

« Home | Next » | Next » | Next » | Next » | Next » | Next » | Next » | Next » | Next » | Next »

The Blogulator Ten: Top 10 TV Actors I'd Like To See Get Regular TV Work

Behold! A new Qualler feature. Welcome to The Blogulator Ten: a place where, as an obsessive listmaker, I make a list of stuff that goes through my pop culture infested head on a monthly basis.

This month's inaugural topic: actors who need TV roles. These are actors who have flashed brilliance on less-than-stellar shows, or actors who were on excellent shows but haven't done much of anything lately. As TV has grown in prestige, and more and more actors stop gettin' all snobby about TV and realize that more good writing happens on TV than in most medium-budget movies, it's clear that there should be plentiful opportunities for actors everywhere. Well, Hollywood? I'm making it easy for you with this list of Ten.

10) Kerr Smith
Reason for needing a TV series:
Kerr Smith proved himself to be one of the fairly competent, likeable actors on Dawson's Creek. (Side note: who would have guessed that, now that James Van Der Beek has launched his website James Van Der Memes, that Katie Holmes would be the least likeable Dawson's actor alive?) Anyway, as Jack from Dawson, Smith was a magnetic actor that played well off of Michelle Williams, who also proved herself to be the only truly great actress on the show. And now that Life Unexpected is over, Smith needs a new job.
TV Pitch: Cast him as a young Christian Troy from Nip/Tuck on Glee. Clearly Glee could use a little Christian Troy. Then, I might watch it.

9) Miguel Ferrer
Reason for needing a TV series: As FBI agent Albert Rosenfield on Twin Peaks, Ferrer was a necessary thorn in Agent Dale Cooper's side (Kyle MacLachlan) and displayed some charming gruffness. Since then, he has had parts in NBC snoozefests like Crossing Jordan and Bionic Woman. (Fact: Crossing Jordan lasted 117 episodes and six seasons. What?!) Regardless, Ferrer is obviously a TV vet, but probably needs some kind of shakeup.
TV Pitch: Some kind of badass member of a biker gang that rivals SAMCRO on Sons of Anarchy, who had some connection to Jax's dad and movingly tells him something that changes the course of Jax's life. Oh, and Gemma (Katey Sagal) beats the crap out of him at some point.

8) Lindsay Price
Reason for needing a TV series: In the progressively-more-soapy later seasons of Beverly Hills 90210, the terrible (yet eminently watchable) acting of Brian Austin Green and Tori Spelling was nicely balanced by the grounded, spunky performance by Lindsay Price. Playing Janet, Steve Sanders' love foil and eventual baby-mama, Price displayed a level of smart, likable acting that seemed somewhat off-putting to the rest of the cast's occasional maudlin drama. Recently, price has been stuck on lame duds like ABC's Lipstick Jungle and NBC's Eastwick.
TV pitch: Minneapolis 55408. Price is the centerpiece of an OC-style soap dramedy, featuring a cast of Minneapolis style hipsters.

7) Megan Mullally
Reason for needing a TV series: Come on. Who knew Megan Mullally was so incredibly versatile? I was not a huge fan of Will & Grace and her frantic one-note character Karen, and I was an even less big fan of her "Turn the Tub Around" commercial advertising I Can't Believe It's Not Butter or whatever. But this year, she was in BOTH Party Down and Children's Hospital (aka The Show That DoktorPeace Just Told Us All To Watch And I Was All "Uh, Duh Doktor, I Love That Show"). Anyway, Mullally was really frickin' hliarious in both things. And, she was in that amazing episode of Parks & Recreation.
TV pitch: Just make her a full time castmember on Parks & Recreation. That'll do.

6) Richard Jenkins
Reason for needing a TV series: As I have noted in my Six Feet Under retrospective blog posts, an episode of the series with Richard Jenkins appearing always qualified as a special episode. Something about the way Jenkins' ghostly character Nathaniel Fisher cut to the bone of our living characters' inner thoughts was always enough to steal any scene he appeared in. However, since being nominated for an Oscar for The Visitor he has played some bit roles in lesser films.
TV pitch: AMC spinoff of Mad Men that takes place in the 70s, and somehow involves the Nixon White House. Make it happen, AMC.

5) Cynthia Nixon
Reason for needing a TV series: I've watched plenty of Sex and the City in my life, thanks to Brigitte, and the one consistent to the series (other than Sarah Jessica Parker / Carrie Bradshaw being consistently insufferable) was Cynthia Nixon's winning performance as Miranda Hobbes. The only character that seemed to exhibit any level of subtlety throughout the series, I was reminded again last night while having the City movie on in the background of how she seemed to be the only one who displayed any sense of humanity, even in the general terribleness that was the first movie.
TV pitch: Nixon has been guest-starring on the latest Showtime Lady With An Attitude And Some Dramatic Stuff Too The Big C, so it would make sense to give her her own show on Showtime. Just, please make it less lame.

4) Blair Underwood / Zeljko Ivanic
Reason for needing a TV series: OK, so this one isn't quite fair. Underwood and Ivanic are, indeed, gainfully employed right now, together, on NBC's The Event, aka Throw Some Mythology At A Wall And See If It Sticks. Unfortunately, The Event is very Not Good At Being A Good TV Show. Underwood was unbelievable in the first season of In Treatment and Ivanic chewed scenery like no other on his memorable role in the first season of Damages, a show that never really regained its swagger after he (SPOILER!) shockingly blew off his own head at the end of that season. Two very capable actors on a very lame show.
TV pitch: Some intense mythology-heavy show, but on cable television instead, so they can swear and stuff.

3) Roma Maffia
Reason for needing a TV series: Maffia played anesthesiologist Liz Cruz for six agonizing seasons on Nip/Tuck, playing the role of the Only Person Who Talked Any Sense Into Drs. McNamara and Troy. Showrunner Ryan Murphy did his worst to give Maffia terrible storylines late into the season, like when he inexplicably had Cruz marry Dr. Troy because Dr. Troy had cancer, except that he didn't actually have it, despite Cruz being a lesbian!!!!! And then she had a baby or something stupid like that. Anyway, my point is, she was given all this truly terrible stuff to play, and yet she did it like a pro and somehow never made the Character Telling Main Characters The Stuff They Are Doing Is Dumb an annoying trope. Maffia deserves something better for being stuck on television purgatory with Nip/Tuck.
TV pitch: Whatever it is, it should be as far away from Ryan Murphy as possible. Maybe stick her on an ABC Family show, Huge style, not Pretty Little Liars style.

2) John Tuturro
Reason for needing a TV series: There was a time that John Tuturro was the awesome go-to character actor in a variety of excellent films. He was the best part of the underrated-because-it-came-out-the-year-of-Pulp Fiction Quiz Show, was a constant presence in movies by the Coen Brothers and by Spike Lee, and, in general, just an all-around awesome dude. Then, starting with his role in Collateral Damage in 2002, his movie career has taken a serious nosedive. Appearing in Anger Management, Secret Window (gah!), You Don't Mess with the Zohan, and, of course, the Transformers trilogy (sigh), it is clear that Tuturro is not getting the same quality acting parts he was once offered. Clearly, he could do better than being Pantsed by Michael Bay's idiotic version of Optimus Prime.
TV Pitch: Nerve Ball; Tuturro plays the nervous patriarch of a wealthy family living in Manhattan. His brother is a bigwig at a Fortune 500 company having some financial problems (topical!) A half-hour dramedy on HBO (obviously, with that punny title.)

1) Claire Danes
Reason for needing a TV series: Oh Claire, how you broke our hearts when you (arguably) were the reason for My So-Called Life lasting only one (albeit glorious) season. Life, that ahead of its time teen drama with so much angst per square inch, was also the launching pad to the career of Jason Katims, the showrunner extraordinaire of these parts of 2010 #1 show of the year Friday Night Lights and another current fave Parenthood. Danes, meanwhile, was obviously awesome on Life and recently took home an Emmy and a Golden Globe (not that Globes mean anything, but still) for her title role in HBO biopic Temple Grandin. Claire, we love ya, but judging by your output in Hollyweird, your skills are best used on television, in a medium where your subtle skills can be slowly but surely showcased with the leading role of some prestige drama. And she looked mighty fine at the Globes last week, so the that will help in Doktor's Hottie Count.
TV Pitch: Lead role, drama. Doesn't matter what it is. Just make it happen.

Labels: , ,

  1. Blogger Audio | 10:58 AM |  

    I've never been able to get past the "Romeo+Juliet" factor with Claire Danes.

    Personally? I would say the entire cast of Kings needs a new show, together, with the same writers, about the same thing, and, oh f*** it, I just want another season of Kings. F***ing NBC.

  2. Blogger qualler | 2:16 PM |  

    Good point, Audio. Kings was an interesting premise and had a pretty awesome cast. I would say the same thing about Deadwood, though unfortunately the window of opportunity to finish that series off is closed.

    What is it about Danes in R&J that you don't like? I would point to Leo as an example of an actor who has shown his chops. If anything was wrong with that movie, it was Baz Luhrmann, who admittedly has a style of filmmaking that I'm not a huge fan of, but I understand his supporters, too.

  3. Blogger Old Man Duggan | 4:18 PM |  

    Screw Claire Danes. She and Billy Crudup were fucking while he was married to a pregnant Mary-Louise Parker. Both are forever on my shit list. NO ONE HURTS MY MLP!

  4. Blogger qualler | 4:33 PM |  

    Iiinteresting. I did not know this fun fact about Claire. Maybe some of these tidbits are why she has been a nonfactor in acting roles the last many years. Considering MLP is also a candidate for Doktor's Hottie Count, maybe Claire isn't as worthy of a #1 spot on a Blogulator list as I originally thought...

  5. Blogger chris | 5:17 PM |  

    I had no idea there was any connection between Danes, Crudup, and Parker. Crazy!

    And while I don't hate as much as our two commenters, nothing about Danes besides MSCL has struck me as extraordinary, so you're on your own, Qualler. Sorry. And she looked bony and apathetic at the GGs, so no thx.

    Also, I must have some catching up to do w/ Dawson's Creek because Kerr Smith always seemed like a terrible actor to me in his character's first season. He also was unmemorable in My Bloody Valentine -- straddling that line between campy bad and just bad.

    Big time agreements on Turturro, Ferrer, and Jenkins though!

  6. Blogger DoktorPeace | 5:45 PM |  

    Just replace Claire with Tawny from Even Stevens and we'll all be happy.

  7. Blogger nicole | 6:24 PM |  

    She's done it before, but I still wish Lisa Kudrow could find a great series with some staying power. She's such a great actress and hilarious. All of the rest of the friends, including Matthew Perry who I previously loved, can go away :)

  8. Blogger qualler | 7:20 PM |  

    Lisa Kudrow should have work, too. Good call. She was on HBO's "The Comeback" for a season. LeBlanc is also on "Episodes" on Showtime now where he plays kinda a meta-version of himself about the TV biz (not dissimilar to "The Comeback") and Courtney Cox is surprisingly awesome in "Cougar Town". I really think how awesome actors are depends on the writing.

  9. Blogger qualler | 10:46 AM |  

    @Chris: If I may, I would point out that I think actors have the ability to shine (or not shine) based on the context of their show, the writing of the character, and the chemistry of the actors.

    Example: the UK version of Skins, season one, is quite entertaining and quite a bit more serious-minded than I expected it to be. More importantly, the cast generally works together very well. The MTV version, meanwhile, is in many ways an exact replica of the UK version, except for putting in American actors who have absolutely no chemistry. As a result, the writing that sounded witty and smart in the UK version sounds idiotic and boring in the MTV version.

    Long way of saying, I think Kerr Smith and Claire Danes have shown that, given the right roles and right writing (DC for Smith, MSCL and Temple Grandin for Danes), they could shine.

leave a response