Hi, I’m new and feeling foolhardy enough to jump right in. I love the balance of discourse here. You can take yourself seriously but do not have to which is how I like to live my life.

I like T.V…a lot. I am trying hard not to dignify it with all sorts of evidence that I also have depth in many areas and do not sit around all day watching, but it’s tough.

ANYWAY, I like good characterizations on TV and find that oftentimes, actors which I have become quite loyal to do not get the recognition they deserve. So here is my list of underrated television characters and actors as well as a short list of those I perceive to be overrated.

What’s your list?


Richard Schiff- Sure, he got his emmy, but when the show essentially lost him, it lost its soul, I think. His Toby Ziegler was so sharp and funny and tragic all at the same time. I used to call it Toby’s West Wing, and when the character went south, I did too. I hear that CJ is being rushed into Concannon’s arms in the show which is sad because the chemistry between Schiff and Allison Janney was something else.

Robert Sean Leonard- I probably need to relax here because House is only in the middle of its second season, but he is priceless as House’s best friend, Wilson. They don’t give him much to do, but he plays the hell out of what he gets. He’s also created a character with depth who has layers I am really curious about.

Kathryn Erbe- I get that she’s Vincent D’Onofrio’s sidekick on Law and Order CI, and the show revolves around his ‘take no prisoners’ acting style, but what little meat they throw into her cage, she chews it up in style. She acted the hell out of this little piece they gave her in “Wee small hours” last fall. I like her snarky comments and would love to see her do more.

Jorja Fox- Yes, I am intrigued with the crush she has on her boss, Gil Grissom, but there is something raw about her. She takes interesting risks every time they give her something to do that’s not about forensics. I like her courage.


Geena Davis- I don’t get this, I don’t get it one bit. She looks like an aging chipmunk which should not be a consideration here, but she bugs me. She’s so being acting presidential the whole time that I have no idea what kind of character she’s playing. She’s good and kind and strong and whatever. It’s boring.

Marg Helgenberger- It’s her love affair with lip gloss and botox I suppose. She always gets an emmy nod, but I have no clue what it would be for. Her presence on screen holds no interest at all for me.

Well, these are my thoughts. Do you have underrated or overrated character/actors to add to this list?


Just want to add a couple of submissions I forgot about earlier.

In the Overrated Category, I would like to add:

Sela Ward- She guested on House, and it was nothing but painful. Like Marg Helgenberger, she requires soft lighting such that I feel like I’m watching a dream sequence every time they come on the screen. Her eyebrows do the lion’s share of emoting for her, and how she never ended up playing a vulcan in the Star Trek franchise is beyond me.

In the interest of not only picking on women in the 40’s and 50’s of which I am one; I bring to you the case of Eric Close- He stars on Without A Trace. It is like watching paint dry when he is in a scene. It is eating a piece of dry toast. It is like sex with…you get the point.

However, in the underrated category, I put Enrique Murciano also of Without a Trace. He is tons of quirky, jerky fun. I don’t know how else to describe him. He is just fun to watch.

Love to hear from you.


Tom Selleck - Vastly underrated.

A master of drama, action, and comedy - Thomas Magnum was a constant mix of all three. His ‘Western’ roles have been outstanding and very well acted. His work in Friends was better than anyone expected and was very, very good. And his turn as Dwight D. Eisenhower in the History Channel’s Countdown to D-Day was brilliant.

Emmy, Golden Globe. 12 Emmy/Golden Globe nominations.

He has the entire package, and he’s had it for over 30 years.

Gotta agree 100% with Tom Selleck.

In the underrated category, I’d add The Rock. He wasn’t exactly great in “The Scorpion King,” but he wasn’t bad. Then I caught his performance in “The Rundown” and was amazed. If he can get a really good script, I think he would really spread his wings, so to speak.

If you wanted to see The Rock camping it up, in a good way, you should watch the Get Shorty sequel (whose name eludes me right now - might be Be Cool). If it weren’t for The Rock and Vince Vaughn, the movie would have been unwatchable. Instead, it was watchable, but only when they were on screen.