Bill Hader’s 12 Best Characters Ranked, From Stefon to Vincent Price (Photos)
Bill Hader’s gift is that he’s better impersonating oddballs like Vincent Price and James Carville than doing another Schwarzenegger. He’s a deep movie buff (“Documentary Now”), obsessed with corny TV (Vinny Vedecci), and he can play either the love interest to Amy Schumer (“Trainwreck”) or a total creeper (Keith Morrison). That mix of relatable and weird makes him perfect to play “Barry,” a Midwestern assassin who has a change of heart to become an actor. Ahead of the show’s premiere on HBO this Sunday, TheWrap decided to look back at the characters that made Hader an “SNL” all star.
Hader’s Price is likely as good as anyone’s, but “SNL” never really knew what to do with it. He looks hilarious with a perpetually arched eyebrow and an obviously stuffed crow sitting on his shoulder, but then the rest of the cast could never do obscure Old Hollywood figures as well as he could.
The real joke of Hader’s absent minded, curmudgeonly reporter Herb Welch is how he hits everyone in the mouth with the microphone. Hader makes it seem involuntary. It gets old, especially when each sketch ends with Welch sprouting back to life, but they’re worth it just to see Welch find a new way to berate Jason Sudeikis.
All he ever did during Kenan Thompson’s “What Up With That” sketches was sat there, wave, nod and smile. It produced plenty of choice gifs, so we’re glad he’s such a good sport.
“It’s pronounced Berdman.” “Bidmen.” “Bi-mn.” This hilarious mystical Aussie is weird even for “Portlandia” standards.
As Pete Holmes once joked, doing a thick Italian accent is literally the last socially tolerated stereotype. But of course Vinny Vedecci isn’t just Hader doing an accent. He’s brimming with charm even as he smokes a thousand cigarettes and condescends to everyone from Robert De Niro to Seth Rogen.
Hader was destined to play Scaramucci. His over-the-top New Yorker isn’t really an “impression,” but Hader is a better Mooch than even The Mooch himself.
Hader gives a masterclass performance in this pitch-perfect homage to Spalding Gray during an episode of “Documentary Now.” Hader’s one-man-show might be more captivating than funny, but there aren’t many comedic actors who can show this much dynamic range.
It’s hard to top James Carville doing his “cajun style” self on “30 Rock,” but Hader nails Carville’s exaggerated sniggering and was crazy enough that the writers could sneak in some pretty ruthless Rush Limbaugh fat jokes.
Hader first experimented with this character as “The President of Hollywood” during the Comedy Central Roast of James Franco. His baritone glad-handing in a bright red ’80s track suit killed. So he brought a version of it back for the Season 2 finale of “Documentary Now,” and it goes to show how lived-in and complex each of Hader’s characters are. It’s not a send up of one person in particular (namely producer Robert Evans) but feels like a portrait of every studio elite Hollywood has tried to move past.
What a hilarious creep Hader’s Keith Morrison is. His sinister smile, his scintillating oohing and aahing; it’s a wonderful way of satirizing the idea that some people get sadistic pleasure from their own trash TV.
I’ve lived in Los Angeles less than three years and have already become a total Californian, instinctually bringing up traffic news and directions in every conversation. Somehow Hader found a way to make his face in these sketches especially flat, dumb and downright punchable, and he has more fun contorting his West Coast accent to inscrutable pitches than anyone.
Yes yes yes yes yes. The genius of Stefon can’t be summed up with one thing. He’s got everything: the ridiculous green shirt, the sexually explicit puns, the absurd clubs named after nonsense words, and the gleefully offensive things he does to “midgets” (his word, not ours). Most “Weekend Update” characters just have ONE joke good enough to run into the ground. Stefon’s been back over a dozen times and always finds new inappropriate nightlife recommendations. He’s a complex enough character that you can imagine him getting married to Seth Meyers. Stefon’s hands over his mouth may just be to hide Hader’s giggling, but it’s made Stefon forever endearing.
Related stories from TheWrap:Bill Hader on His ‘Terrible’ Anxiety Shooting ‘SNL’: ‘I Actually Had a Doctor Say, You Should Drink’ (Video)Bill Hader Broke (Again) as Stefon During ‘SNL’ Return — But This Time It Wasn’t His Fault (Video)Bill Hader, Fred Armisen Reveal One Film They Won’t Mock on “Documentary Now”
Source: The Wrap