It’s Steve Carell’s 51st birthday today, and we are all celebrating because, everybody loves Steve Carell. We know this to be true because your mom would invite him over for dinner if she could, and you’ve thought about what it would be like to hug him at least once or twice. But what about his best characters? While lovable, The Office‘s Michael Scott was a jerk, as seen in the often clumsy emotional abuse he’d inflict on his employees in effort to validate his less than pristine personal life. Yet his questionable behavior kept people watching.
This summer, Carell plays a straight-up jerk with zero redeeming qualities in The Way, Way Back, and reprises his role as the evil villain Gru in Despicable Me 2. So far, both films have been successful, proving once again that moviegoers enjoy seeing Carell play against type. But has he been more successful playing a mean dude, or would we rather see him the way we imagine him to be in real life — how we hope he’d act towards us if we bumped into him at Starbucks on a busy Wednesday morning?