With Casey Wilson returning to TV in Marry Me, one of the best new sitcoms of the season, it’s easy to forget she breezed through Saturday Night Live for two short seasons before being let go by Lorne Michaels. Since then, Wilson has packed her credits with a number of hilarious TV shows (Happy Endings for one), writing credits (Bride Wars, Ass Backwards), and notable film appearances (Gone Girl).
And for the uninitiated, this is your guide through the hilarious career of one of TV’s standout actresses.
It should go without saying that this is Wilson’s most prominent and funniest role on TV. As Penny, Wilson took all the hang ups of late twentysomethings unwilling to accept adulthood and flipped it into a hilarious mantra: Year of Penny. Season two of the show is when Wilson and the series, as a whole, shines.
Starring Wilson’s Marry Me co-star Ken Marino, Burning Love is a witty parody of The Bachelor reality series. The show skewers the obnoxious nature of a group of women competing for one man’s love. Wilson appears on the series in the fourth season as Aunt Pam, who offers Julie (June Diane Raphael) and Mike (Marino) much-needed counseling.
The film didn’t make much of a dent in the box office but it did allow Wilson and Raphael to shine as a pair of dimwitted best friends. While there are obvious comparisons to Romy and Michelle’s High School Reunion, the film stands up on its own thanks to its stars’ unique comedic styles. The film was the pair’s second attempt at screenwriting — the first being Bride Wars starring Anne Hathaway and Kate Hudson — and yielded much better results.
Up Next: A look at Wilson’s more serious side
One of the best parts about Comedy Central’s recount of historical events is the collection of stars who act out the drunken narrative on screen. Wilson has appeared in two episodes of the show, first as Dolly Parton and later as Dolley Madison, in a story about the country’s First Ladies alongside Courteney Cox and Alia Shawkat.
The Hotwives of Orlando
Any fan of Bravo’s long-running Real Housewives franchise must watch Hulu’s parody. Wilson stars as Tawny St. John, a mix of Orange County’s Gretchen and Tamra. She’s both tawdry and slutty while utterly hilarious. While the series feels rushed at times, when the ladies are together they keep things from going off the rails.
While Wilson has appeared in a number of films, her most recent — and a standout for a non-starring role — was in Gone Girl. In the film, she plays Noelle Hawthorne, an unsuspecting best friend to Amy Elliot Dunne (Rosamund Pike). While the straight role may be surprising for fans of the actress, it’s not the first time she’s shined in smaller parts. Wilson proved she can restrain herself in such films as C.O.G. with Jonathan Groff.
Can’t get enough of Wilson or her former Happy Ending co-stars? Click through the gallery to find out where to watch them on TV this fall.
Marry Me makes its debut on NBC on Tuesday, Oct. 14 at 9/8 C. [Photos: ABC, Comedy Central, Gravitas Ventures, Getty, Hulu, Twentieth Century Fox]
Adam Pally on The Mindy Project
Happy Endings star Casey Wilson
Damon Wayans Jr. on New Girl
Happy Endings star Eliza Coupe
Happy Endings star Zachary Knighton
Happy Endings star Elisha Cuthbert
Happy Endings creator David Caspe
Marry Me makes its debut on NBC on Tuesday, Oct. 14 at 9/8 C.
[Photos: ABC, Comedy Central, Gravitas Ventures, Getty, Hulu, Twentieth Century Fox]