Open Thread: Guest Actors

 Posted by on December 4, 2011 at 4:00 am  Season 1
Dec 042011

Today, AMC is rerunning New Amsterdam and 5G, and we meet Adam.

As a discussion topic, I’m inspired by the introduction of Adam Whitman to ask: Who are your favorite and least guests and recurring guests?


  22 Responses to “Open Thread: Guest Actors”

  1. I’ll start. I think that Mary Page Keller did a wonderful job as Annabelle Mathis in The Gypsy and the Hobo, but I really felt like a guest star from Roger’s past was a cheesy way to introduce the motifs she brought with her, particularly in an episode with so much emotional intensity.

  2. My favorite would have to be Anna Draper, a beautiful character and performance, climaxing with that perfect moment when she appears in The Suitcase.

    I love it when Peggy’s Mom appears, and the flashbacks with Archie Whitman are always great. And though I can’t say I actually enjoy Glenn Bishop, he’s so effectively creepy that I have to say he’s usually a highlight.

    Least favorite is probably Suzanne’s brother. Suzanne never engaged me in the first place, I didn’t care about her backstory, so when the possibility that he might return and cause Don trouble was suggested (the whole business with Don giving him his name and number in case he needed help), I was relieved that it led nowhere (At least so far. You never know.)

  3. Favorite Guest Characters:
    Jimmy Barrett
    Adam Whitman
    Anna Draper
    Conrad Hilton
    Dr. Faye
    Helen Bishop

    Least Favorite Guest Characters:
    Suzanne F.
    Lee Garner Jr.
    Bethany (from season 4)

    I’m sure there are others. lol

  4. Fave guests so far:

    Rachel Menken
    Dr. Faye
    Sally’s/Betty’s shrink, Dr. Edna

  5. My favorite recurring guests are Megan, Archibald Whitman, Faye and Suzanne.

    My favorite nonrecurring are Lane’s dad Robert, and the hobo in Hobo Code.

  6. Definitely loved Roy (Midge’s sexy Beatnik Beau) from Babylon and The Hobo Code.
    I liked the Utz’s too, felt sorry for them.
    I’m in the middle with Jimmy even though he was horrible to Mrs. Utz, I appreciated the fact that he knows he’s not in the same ‘strata’ as everyone he works for, and is having the last laugh knowing that he’s making money off of them. I also feel sympathy for Jimmy because he knows his wife is a cheat. But I was glad when Don punched him because he deserved it.
    Loved Fr. Gil –favorite scene when he plays his guitar furiously after being with Peggy, and the scene where he begged her to seek forgiveness. I hope we see more of him in the future, he might become a radical priest. When I was a kid in the 60’s and 70’s, Fr. Gil would have been the kind of priest we referred to as Father What-a-waste!
    I can’t think of any I didn’t like so far, they’re all so well written.

  7. I really enjoyed both Barretts and Faye Miller.

  8. Father Gill, forgot to add him to my love list, and the Utz’s were great too.

  9. Favorites:

    Grampa Gene
    Anita and Katherine Olson
    Stan Rizzo
    Bobbi Barrett

    Least Fav:
    Joey Baird
    The creepy guy at the stables who was in love with Betty, and the woman who subsequently slept with him
    I’ll concur with “Suzanne’s brother”

  10. My favorites are Francine, Anna Draper, Adam Whitman, Bobbie Barrett, and Miss Blankenship.

    Least favorite is probably Lee Garner, Jr.

    The one I’m most curious about: Abigail Whitman.

  11. @Deb #6

    I adore Lee Garner Sr

    Heh, I sense some John Cullum love here. :-)

  12. I don’t know with some of the characters if they would be considered “guests” or not. I’d say that characters like Kurt & Smitty, and Lois (all of whom I like a lot) are recurring characters, but not guest characters.

    I also don’t consider Rachel a guest character, especially since she was listed in the opening credits. But she was certainly a great character. Same with Duck.

    So if I think of the characters who I do consider “guests”:

    -I really liked Bobbi Barrett, and Conrad Hilton was very pivotal in Season 3
    -Eliot from Season 1 (Belle Jolie)
    -the guy who was the brother-in-law of the McCann Erickson guy — the one who directed the photo shoots that Betty did (in “Shoot”)
    -Helen Bishop
    -Ted Chaough (annoying, but still a good character in his own weird way)

    least favorite:

    Suzanne and her brother

  13. Deb and I are both huge John Cullum fans.

  14. The actors who played the Garners, Père et Fils, were both great, even if they didn’t quite sound like they were from the same neck of the South. But between them, Lee Jr had more to do, and did it very well.

    They are both despicable human beings, of course. The characters, I mean. I don’t know the actors.

  15. Anna for the simple fact that she loves Don. Need no more. Connie Hilton. Peggy’s mom is a scream. “You’ll get raped”. Good heavens. Archie Whitman is pure……..mendacity. Love Lois and Ida Blankenship. Joy and Uncle Willy. The Jet Set baby! Francine because she is played by Ann Dudek. Kurt, love his obliviousness and his curtness:-). Creepy Glen.
    Least favorites: Jimmy Barrett (never laughed at one thing he said, corny.) Grandpa Gene because he’s Betty’s father. Garner jr. Jane from Jane street. Despicable gold digging bimbo.

    • I didn’t really find Jimmy funny either, but I loved the way he could go from seething and bitter one moment (“I lie in bed and laugh at you”) to sunny performer the next (“Well, there she is! Have a swell evening, you two.”).

      apologies for probably not getting the quotes exactly right.

  16. Do you mean “favorite” as in what personalities we liked, what actors we liked, or for what they did for the story? I personally found the Barretts (both of them) monumentally annoying (for writing reasons, nothing to do with the skills of the performers), but I know they were pivotal characters.

    And I can’t say I liked Father Noseypants exactly, but his being there was totally worth it to hear Peggy tell him she didn’t buy his punitive God concept. And his Peter, Paul and Mary was pretty good.

    And Lois! Dear hapless Lois! I don’t know who was funnier, her or Miss Blankenship. Both of them just made me giggle nonstop, probably because I was almost as bad at secretarial work as they were. I did stop short of almost killing someone with a lawn mower, though.

    • Meowser, the purpose of the question is to spark discussion, so the ambiguity of “favorite” is up to you to decide. :)

  17. The character of Francine does not deserve to be played by an actor that good. How can a performer nail it every time? I cherish every frame Ms. Dudek appears in.

  18. Emelle- My favorite

    Least Favorite ( tie ) Betty’s horse ( name unclear )

    Jantzen Family

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