I’ve always been really good with face recognition. I’m that person who, while watching movie trailers, pokes my moviegoing companion and whispers “that’s the guy from [insert movie or tv title here]!” Like, all the time. Sometimes an actor will just look familiar, so I’ll look him or her up on IMDB (as I tend to do while I watch shows) and realize they played a surprisingly different character on another show. I love it when I make these connections, whether I make them on my own or with the assistance of IMDB or a friend.

Some of my recent favorite examples of “wait…he/she played THAT guy/gal?!” are below (spoilers for some shows…consider yourself warned).


Glenn Fleshler played the spaghetti monster/incestuous murderer on True Detective…but did you know he also played George Remus (he of the “refers to himself in third person” ilk) on Boardwalk Empire?

GlennYeah. Also? He played the Hasidic man with whom Charlotte had an affair on Sex and the City.


I know, right?!

Along the same lines, the (half?) sister of True Detective‘s spaghetti monster is played by the same woman who played Patti, the Guilty Remnant leader, on The Leftovers. Here’s Ann Dowd:


Ann Dowd also played the lead role in a great but disturbing movie based on true events called Compliance, also starring Dreama Walker from Don’t Trust the B**** in Apt. 23 (RIP, B****).

Speaking of The Leftovers, precocious teen Aimee—who doesn’t seem to own a bra—is played by Emily Meade, who also played Pearl, an opiate-addicted hooker on Boardwalk Empire.

EmilyWhile watching Sherlock recently, I knew that Lara Pulver, the actress playing Irene Adler, looked familiar. Trusty ol’ IMDB told me that she also played Claudine, Sookie’s fairy godmother (LOL FAIRIES) on True Blood. You’d think the top image below would be from True Blood due to the nudity, but nope—that one’s actually a screenshot from Sherlock.

PulverAlso from True Blood is William Sanderson as Sheriff Bud Dearborn, who played perpetually put-upon, soliloquy-spouting E.B. Farnum in Deadwood (which I watched years after True Blood premiered…I’m always behind on TV).

SandersonAlfred Enoch, who plays Wes “Waitlist” Gibbins on How to Get Away with Murder, also played Dean Thomas in the Harry Potter films (and has also popped up in one episode each of Sherlock and Broadchurch, both of which I’ve watched in the past month).

EnochAwww…look at that adorable little face.

While we’re on HTGAWM, Katie Findlay, who plays Wes’s shady drug-dealing girlfriend Rebecca Sutter (STOP IT with those cornrows, please!), also played murdered girl Rosie Larsen on The Killing.


While watching Top of the Lake recently, I immediately recognized one of the actors as the main character from The CW’s Beauty and the Beast (which I haven’t watched, but have seen plenty of ads for). I’m guessing Jay Ryan’s heavily tattoed meth-maker and all-around Kiwi shithead in Top of the Lake is a far cry from his character in BATB.

RyanLast (for now) but not least is Andrew Lincoln, Rick Grimes from The Walking Dead. This one’s pretty common knowledge, but in case you’ve been hiding out in your doomsday bunker, Lincoln played Mr. “To Me, You Are Perfect” in Love, Actually.

LincolnThat’s it for now. I’m sure more will come to mind and will pop up as I watch ALL THE SHOWS ALL THE TIME!