Actresses Who Look Nothing Like Their Characters In Real Life

ADVERTISEMENT

In television, we love compelling characters that help us feel the storyline beyond the lines in their script. Sometimes actresses need elaborate makeup or costumes to help inform their character. Some of our favorite characters are so hidden in costume that we would never recognize the actresses themselves.

Jeri Ryan – Borg Seven Of Nine

Seven of Nine was an integral foil to Captain Janeway on Star Trek: Voyager after joining the crew of the Voyager. Her slick jumpsuit and ocular implant made her look unforgettable.

Jeri Ryan – Borg Seven Of Nine

Ryan became a hit character on Star Trek: Voyager even though she joined the show in the fourth season. For her work, she won a Saturn Award, which is awarded for excellence in science fiction, fantasy, and horror genres. In reality, she sheds her ocular implant and short haircut for flowing blonde hair and clear skin. After Voyager, Ryan jumped into David E. Kelley’s Boston Public  as frustrated lawyer Veronica “Ronnie” Cooke.

Melissa Rauch – Bernadette Rostenkowski-Wolowitz

Howard Wolowitz might have out-kicked his coverage when he married Bernadette Rostenkowski on The Big Bang Theory, but that does not mean Melissa Rauch looks or acts much like her character. As Howard’s quick-tempered and sharp wife, she never lets anything slide. She can influence her husband easily, even limiting his spending by giving him an allowance. Don’t let the glasses fool you, she is certainly no pushover and will not back down.

Melissa Rauch – Bernadette Rostenkowski-Wolowitz

When she is not wearing sweaters and bossing Howard around, Melissa Rauch keeps busy as a working actress, mainly providing her voice for animated series. Rauch became good at voices from mimicking her mother. She claims that the voice she uses as Bernadette is based on her mother. It must have been a shock for Rauch’s theater friends from growing up (she was a self-proclaimed “theater dork”) to see her listed in the Maxim Hot 100.

 

Mayim Bialik – Dr. Amy Farrah Fowkler

Amy entered the fold of The Big Bang Theory universe after Raj and Howard set up an online dating profile for Sheldon. In time, she moves away from being a girl that is Sheldon’s friend to being his girlfriend. She is similarly awkward, rational, and cold as Sheldon in the beginning, but clearly becomes invested in him, even if their relationship came with a “Relationship Agreement.” As a fun bonus, Amy can also play the harp.

Mayim Bialik – Dr. Amy Farrah Fowkler

Mayim Bialik has been floating through Hollywood since she was a child actress in the 1980s. She won a Young Artist Award for her work in Beaches in 1988. By the time she joined The Big Bang Theory in the third season, the show was a smash hit. Her real-life mimics her character in that Bialik earned her Ph.D. in neuroscience just like Amy. Bialik was nominated four straight years for an Emmy Award for Amy.

Renee Felice Smith – Nell Jones

Working as an NCIS analyst is no easy task. Although Nell Jones is one of the youngest members of the team on NCIS: Los Angeles, she is quite smart and has a knack for helping others. At one point we find out that she even knows how to read Arabic, although her specialty is in Spanish and South America. Eric can’t keep his eyes off her cute face and red pixie cut, thus beginning a period of unresolved tension.

Renee Felice Smith – Nell Jones

Renee Felice Smith’s first acting job came as a six-year-old in a Dannon yogurt commercial. Boy has she come a long way since then. Working with LL Cool J and Chris O’Donnell in NCIS: Los Angeles has made Smith into a star. NCIS is the biggest credit on her resume and she worked hard to make it count. She was only supposed to be a recurring character, but she wowed the producers with her acting enough to be added to the main cast.

Roxann Dawson – B’Elanna Torres

It’s not easy being half human and half Klingon; just ask B’Elanna Torres. Her mixed heritage led B’Elanna to react aggressively, especially as a youngster occasionally. Once she joined the crew of the Voyager on Star Trek: Voyager, Torres found herself a home, earning her way up to chief engineer. Although she has her pronounced Klingon features, Torres married a human, Tom Paris. They had a child together, which they named after Torres’s Klingon mother.

Roxann Dawson – B’Elanna Torres

Being a cast member in one of the biggest media franchises ever worked out quite well for Roxann Dawson. She was one of the first cast members cast and hit the ground running. There was a chance Dawson would have been even more unrecognizable as B’Elanna Torres. Her initial makeup was much more pronounced and included a set of fake Klingon teeth. She asked if they could make it more comfortable and make her more attractive. She now directs various episodes for television shows.

Amy Sedaris – Jerri Blank

For three seasons in the early 2000s, Comedy Central aired one of the greatest cult comedies in the network’s history. Strangers with Candy starred Amy Sedaris as Jerri Blank, a 46-year old that goes back to high school as a freshman. In each episode, Blank changed her look due to a massive collection of wigs and an exorbitant amount of makeup. Jerri thinks all of her efforts make her believe that she looks quite good, even though she is occasionally mistaken for an old man.

Amy Sedaris – Jerri Blank

Amy Sedaris left her wigs and makeup box at home after Strangers with Candy ended in 2000. In fact, while she has appeared on screen in both film and television roles, Sedaris has found a home as a voice actress. She currently stars on BoJack Horseman as Princess Carolyn, the feline ex-girlfriend of the titular character and has lent her voice to numerous popular animated series. Sedaris is the younger sister of author David Sedaris, and they frequently collaborate on projects.

 

Judy Greer – Kitty Sanchez

In the wacky world of Arrested Development, the only thing stable is chaos and crazy. As George Bluth Sr.’s assistant and lover, Kitty Sanchez became privy to damaging information about the family business which she attempted to leverage on multiple occasions. Kitty’s glasses seem to keep her severely crossed eyes hidden, but she likes to take her glasses off to seduce men. She also likes to leave a room shouting, “say goodbye to these,” before flashing her chest to a disgusted Michael.

Judy Greer – Kitty Sanchez

Audiences might not know the name Judy Greer, but they have certainly seen her face in one of the many comedy films and shows in which she has appeared. Between Arrested Development, It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, and Californication, she is no stranger to making people laugh. Judy will certainly be the one laughing if you thought she always looked like Kitty. Greer joined the Marvel Cinematic Universe in 2015’s Ant-Man and will reprise her role in an upcoming sequel.

America Ferrera – Ugly Betty Suarez

If you thought it was a nightmare having braces as a young teenager, imagine what it is like having metal works as a 22-year-old working for a high fashion magazine. In addition, Betty Suarez had little fashion sense of her own, living in a world in which she did not understand. She is constantly mocked for her appearance, but her work ethic and intra-office companions keep her motivated and undeterred by the rude remarks.

America Ferrera – Ugly Betty Suarez

Landing the role of Betty Suarez was a career-maker for America Ferrera. Not every 22-year-old receives such an opportunity. Ferrera was as good in the role as her character was hideous to her co-workers. She was so exceptional as Betty that she won the “triple crown” – an Emmy, a Golden Globe, and a Screen Actors Guild Award in the same year. Currently, America Ferrera stars as the floor supervisor on NBC’s sitcom Superstore.

 

Thesy Surface -Margaret McPoyle

A unibrow look is always going to draw the wrong type of attention. Margaret, the deaf-mute sister of the incestuous McPoyle brothers on It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, can’t seem to escape the havoc and ruckus that her brothers bring onto The Gang. Many of her 14 siblings have brutal unibrows, acne, and eczema like herself. Since she does not speak, Margaret can be found mimicking the actions of others. Although the gang is repulsed by her, Mac had relations with her.

Thesy Surface -Margaret McPoyle

The makeup team for It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia must put in hours of working making Thesy Surface look that bad in each of her appearances because she is stunning. How they make her look hideous so hideous is one of the mysteries of television. Surface was born in Chicago but grew up in London and got her chops acting in various London stage productions. She appeared at the famed Edinburgh Fest as a teen. Recently she began penning short stories and novels.

Millie Bobby Brown – Eleven

Nosebleeds and Eggos and psychokinesis, oh my. Stranger Things has dominated television conversation for its tribute to 80s science fiction and the incredible acting of its youngest stars. At the center of it all is Eleven, a young girl that escapes from the laboratory that helped her develop her powers. Her adventures with Mike, Lucas, and Dustin lead them to the discovery of an upside-down world of which nightmares are made.

Millie Bobby Brown – Eleven

Millie Bobby Brown does not need psychokinesis to yield her power over audiences. The 13-year-old British actress only needs a platform to put on a stunning display of acting. She helped wield Stranger Things into a cultural phenomenon and was at the center of it all. She was nominated for an Emmy for playing Eleven and received much critical acclaim. Brown will make her film debut in an upcoming sequel to Godzilla in 2019.

Sophie McShera – Daisy Mason

Living at Downton is not easy, especially as a kitchen maid like Daisy Mason. She is so timid that everyone takes advantage of her. They commonly would give her undesirable tasks knowing that she will not fight for herself. Working as a maid means dressing like a maid, wearing neutral colors and a bonnet. Daisy does gain enough confidence to ask Mrs. Patmore, the cook, to be brought on as an assistant cook.

Sophie McShera – Daisy Mason

Free of her lowly maid status, Sophie McShera has been an active actor in England for a decade. McShera has been aiming her whole life to be an actress, getting her first break on stage as a 12-year-old. In 2009, she joined the cast of Waterloo Road as a regular. Her next role in Downton Abbey became the most successful of her young career. Downton Abbey has helped her secure a handful of roles in TV and film.

Taryn Manning – Tiffany “Pennsatucky” Doggett

Orange is the New Black producers loved Taryn Manning so much that they gave her the role of Tiffany “Pennsatucky” Doggett without an audition. With her long dark hair and messed up teeth due to substance abuse, Pennsatucky is one of the main antagonists early in the show. By the fifth season, she begins to lose her bad girl vibes and becomes a protagonist. Since she shot an abortion doctor, it does not seem like Pennsatucky is dropping her orange jumpsuit anytime soon.

Taryn Manning – Tiffany “Pennsatucky” Doggett

Fortunately for Taryn Manning, she does not share the same rotten teeth and generally poor hygiene with Pennsatucky. Outside of her work on Orange is the New Black, Manning uses her pearly whites to annunciate through a career as a pop singer. One of her songs, “Send Me Your Love,” rose to number one on the US Dance Charts. She broke through as an actress with her work in Hustle & Flow and appeared in a handful of Sons of Anarchy episodes.

Hannah Murray – Gilly

Game of Thrones’ world of dragons, regicide, and political posturing could not run without characters like Gilly. Gilly is a young Wildling living beyond the Wall that by the looks of it seems fragile but is quite inquisitive regardless of her low intelligence. She falls for Samwell Tarly, connecting with him on their shared pasts with terrible fathers, and names her son after Sam for his help and bravery looking after them. Currently, Gilly and Sam are awaiting news from beyond the Wall, her old home.

Hannah Murray – Gilly

British actress Hannah Murray became an award-winning actress before she joined the cast of Game of Thrones. Murray received much acclaim for her role as Cassie Ainsworth on teen drama series Skins, taking home a BAFTA Audience Award for her part. Hygiene has never been a big deal in the Seven Kingdoms, but Murray lets herself shine once she washes off all of that Westeros grime. Outside of television, Murray received praise for her work in Martine, an Off West End play.

Elisabeth Moss – Peggy Olson

Across the 1960s (or six seasons of Mad Men), Peggy Olson showed that women could rise from lowly secretary jobs to become department heads in the conservative world of advertising agencies. She came to Sterling Cooper as a wide-eyed, innocent Brooklyn girl with little understanding of the man’s world she was entering. Peggy is very much a product of the 50s in her appearance and attitude. That is, until she begins working for Don Draper and lives through the 60s.

Elisabeth Moss – Peggy Olson

Not only did Elisabeth Moss play Peggy Olson, but she also brought the character to incredible heights. In a cast of incredible actors, Moss always stood out as one of the most impressive. She was nominated six times for Emmy Awards and won two Screen Actors Guild awards for Peggy. After Mad Men, Moss scooped up two Emmy for Lead Actress in a Drama and Outstanding Drama series for The Handmaiden’s Tale in which she starred and produced.

Uzo Aduba – Suzanne “Crazy Eyes” Warren

She might not have the greatest social skills or awareness, but Suzanne “Crazy Eyes” Warren is quite smart and full of energy. Crazy Eyes has a history of violent outbursts and mental illness but can be an incredibly warm friend. At first, we see her wearing bantu knots in her hair and a crazed look on her face due to her big eyes and grin. Suzanne is easily one of the show’s most fascinating characters.

Uzo Aduba – Suzanne “Crazy Eyes” Warren

Due to the show’s changing distinction, Uzo Aduba has won Emmy awards in both the comedy and drama categories for Orange is the New Black. She is the only person to do so for the same character. It is a testament to the incredibly powerful work Aduba turns in each season. Before joining Orange is the New Black, Aduba made her mark on the stage. Her onscreen credits are limited, but Suzanne has put her in demand.

Francesca Curran – Helen Van Maele

Season four of Orange is the New Black introduced an interesting subplot with protagonist Piper Chapman inadvertently starting a White Power group. Skinhead Helen Van Maele is one of the White Power followers which joins Piper’s group. She is easily recognized by her shaved head and face tattoos. We do not know much of her backstory, but she clearly has an affinity for violence against women of color at Litchfield and has only seen her screen time increase.

Francesca Curran – Helen Van Maele

Skinhead Helen might be filled with racial hatred, but Francesca Curran is nothing like her character. Curran trained in musical theater at the American Musical and Dramatics Academy. The only thing she currently shares with her character is a shaved head. Curran shaved her head for the role and wears a collection of wigs to cover her bare scalp in public. The 23-year-old does not have other big acting credits and sits through hours of makeup to get the desired look for Helen.

Naomi Grossman – Pepper

Get ready to scream when watching American Horror Story‘s various anthology volumes. It is ok if the sight of Pepper makes your skin crawl. Pepper was the first character in the show to appear in multiple seasons giving audiences two seasons to learn about her background before she joined the freak show for Elsa Mars’s sideshow. Grossman had no idea what role she was auditioning for when she arrived. In the end, she nailed the role of microcephalic Pepper.

Naomi Grossman – Pepper

Pepper might suffer from microcephaly, but Naomi Grossman is just an actress that committed to her role, shaving her head for the part. American Horror Story fills a void in horror television, but Grossman’s initial plan was to make it as a comedian. She was part of The Groundlings improv group in Los Angeles and had dreams of making it on Saturday Night Live. Grossman has appeared in many short films, but none of her roles are as memorable as Pepper.

ADVERTISEMENT