The big trend in television right now is actors playing multiple roles in one show. We’ve had James Franco in The Deuce (playing brothers involved in the underworld, one of whom is trustworthy and serious and the other of whom is a huge screwup), we’ve had Ewan McGregor in Fargo (same, basically), and now we have J.K. Simmons in the new Starz drama Counterpart (as the same person in alternate realities, one of whom is a badass spy and the other of whom is a nerdy schlub). We also had Tatiana Maslany playing about two dozen characters on Orphan Black, a situation that probably makes her chuckle with amusement when any of the guys listed above discuss the difficulties of playing multiple characters on the same show. “Oh you only played two roles? How charming,” she probably says to them when they bump into her at Hollywood parties.
Anyway, the logical question this raises is: Who’s next? Who will be the next actor or actress to take on a dual-role in a prestige drama? Better yet, who should be? Well, luckily for you, I have compiled a list of options. It’s a good list. I am very serious about almost all of it. And even the parts I’m less serious about would still be fascinating. We’ve got 500 plus shows on the air. There’s room for at least a few of these. Let’s do it.
Reasoning: It’s very unfair, what the world has done to us. Last year at this time, we were inching toward having Carrie Coon on two shows at the same time, The Leftovers and Fargo. Which is great. The problem was that the former was preparing for its final season and the latter is an anthology series that reboots itself with a new cast every year, meaning we went from zero shows with Carrie Coon straight up to two and then back to zero. This is… less good, at least for our purposes here, which can best be described Get Carrie Coon On Television A Lot. Something must be done.
Suggestion: Carrie Coon stars as twin sisters — Brenda and Dina Sacramento — on opposite sides of the law in Miami. The bad one has a bunch of tattoos, including the Wu-Tang one Nora Durst had on The Leftovers, because no, I am not ready to let that go, thanks.
Reasoning: Jon Hamm played one of the most iconic characters in the history of televised drama and in the years since Mad Men ended he has done very little on TV beyond goofy guests spots in fun comedies and ad campaigns for cars and tax preparation tools. I mean this with all due respect, but what the heck? Let’s get Jon Hamm back on television. It’s time. The people need Hamm. Two Hamms, if possible.
Suggestion: Best of both worlds. One dramatic Hamm, like a Draper-type role where he broods handsomely and glares also handsomely, and one fun Hamm, like his doofus 30 Rock character. I’m thinking a cloning gone awry. Like someone wanted a second Serious Hamm because his character is that important to his company or national security or whatever, but 60 percent of his brain cells got fried in the experiment. I’d watch.
Reasoning: Because I am on the record as saying Jason Statham could improve any television show and leaving him off this list would make me a hypocrite.
Suggestion: Put him in the final season of Game of Thrones. Do it. It’s not too late. The episodes aren’t coming out until 2019. There’s plenty of time to write him in as brothers hired by Cersei to defend herself. Two Stathams and a Mountain. She’ll be unstoppable.
I will also, if the world refuses to give me this, accept a show where Jason Statham discovers he has a long-lost brother who lives in America. American accent, huge mustache. They find each other and bond and then the two of them take down Putin. Or something. We can figure it out. (And he does have some history with multiples roles, for what it’s worth.)
Michael B. Jordan
Reasoning: Michael B. Jordan is a legit movie star so on its face this idea seems a little out there. But, I mean, Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon just did Big Little Lies and McConaughey did True Detective, so who knows. The important thing here is that I would like it.
Suggestion: Two brothers, one a hotshot astronaut and the other a geeky NASA engineer, are our only hope against a meteor that is screaming toward Earth.