Almost every popular television show has a star. With the exception of breakthrough ensemble sitcoms like Friends, a successful show usually centers around a charismatic and interesting protagonist (although even on Friends, one can make the argument that the arc of the series revolves around Rachel Green more than anyone else). While the Carrie Bradshaws and Jerry Seinfelds of television are great, I think there has been a lot of overlooked talent throughout TV history. Here are just a few supporting characters who I think upstage their more "important" counterparts:
1. Meredith Palmer of The Office
Everyone loves Michael Scott. Well, everyone but the people who work for him, that is. Pam and Jim Halpert are a close second and third for most popular main characters on the US version of The Office. For me, however, I always was the most entertained by Supplier Relations representative Meredith Palmer. Sure, she's a bit wild and sure, she doesn't have a filter--but that's what makes her so unique! I particularly enjoyed this clip of Meredith's hair catching on fire during the annual Dundler Mifflin Christmas party.
2. Dr. Leonard Green of Friends
As one of the most successful sitcoms of all time and one of the shining treasures of the 90s, Friends had not only a stellar ensemble cast but also an excellent assort of recurring characters. One of these characters was Rachel's father, Dr. Leonard Green. I still haven't found anything funnier than Dr. Green's witty insults directed toward Ross, except for maybe the time he and Ross teamed up to roast Rachel.
3. Mona Lisa Saperstein of Parks and Recreation
If you've seen The Office all the way through, you've probably also watched and enjoyed fellow mockumentary Parks and Recreation. Personally, I was thrilled to see one of my favorite actors, Ben Schwartz, playing Tom Haverford's best friend Jean-Ralphio. However, I was even more ecstatic when my favorite actress of all time Jenny Slate stepped in to play his twin sister Mona Lisa. Jenny Slate was amazing on Kroll Show and in the indie film Obvious Child, but nothing compares to her effortlessly one-upping Jean-Ralphio's flamboyance on Parks and Recreation.