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11 Actors Who Are Much Better Looking Out Of Character

By Joanna Robinson | Seriously Random Lists | March 20, 2013 | Comments ()


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"Much better looking" is certainly a subjective qualification and your mileage may vary but, in my opinion, these fine looking folks aren't styled to their finest when they're in character. Let me know if you disagree.

Mireille Enos: It's easy to forget that under 100 pounds of sweaters and severe ponytails and soul-sucking plot lines Mrs. Alan Ruck here is a completely vivacious and adorable lady.
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Elisabeth Moss: One of the points of Peggy Olson is that she's gotten ahead not because of her looks but because of her talents. And while she's gotten a cuter, kickier wardrobe of late, the 60s hair is not doing her any favors. So, to recap, Christina Hendricks has never looked finer than when she's poured into her Sterling Cooper Draper-iest clothing, but Elisabeth Moss? She can do better.
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Amy Poehler: We love our Leslie Knope. She's adorable. But the pantsuits and the somewhat aggressively coiffed hair? I just think Poehler looks much better a little more laid back.
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Emilia Clarke: Putting aside the desert dirt and various wounds the Khaleesi has sported, I think we can all agree that Emilia Clarke looks better out of that damn blonde wig. I mean, look at her.
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Bryan Cranston: Listen, if chrome domes and tighty Walter Whities are your thang, I won't argue. But the man is almost Jackman-esque here.
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Laura Carmichael: Lady Edith is depicted as downright trollish on "Downton Abbey," but the fact of the matter is she's actually quite a cutie. Okay, yes, the prongs of her zipper are holding on for dear life, but the girl is not the had they paint her to be.
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Gillian Jacobs: Jacobs has also gone brunette for the past few months or so and I could be in the minority but I think it's a MUCH better look for her ivory skin. The Britta blonde washed her out.
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Alexander Skarsgard: Not that Skarsgard isn't a looker on "True Blood," he obviously is. But isn't he better-looking without the ashy vampire make-up? It isn't doing Vampire Bill any favors either.
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Lena Dunham: Dunham may not be a classic pin-up and she certainly could use some help when it comes to picking formal wear for awards shows. But, unlike Hannah, she appears to regularly shower and she knows where her pants are. That's a step in the right direction.
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Busy Phillips: Laurie on "Cougar Town" is supposed to be a hot piece. And she is. But she wears a hell of a lot of makeup and her fashion sense is more Blanche Devereaux than I would like. She's a gorgeous girl no matter what, but I think she looks better a bit more subdued.
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Chloe Sevigny: I mean. It's not exactly hard to top her "American Horror Story" character.
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Comments Are Welcome, Douches Are Not


  • Mr. E

    This is Margaret McPoyle from "It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia". Game, Set, Match.

  • Kate at June

    I...I like the blonde wig.

  • Laura Carmichael looks good both in real life and as Lady Edith. Her expression every time they make a comment about her life in the show is almost like, "I'm not even ugly. What the fuck are they even going on about?"

  • John W

    Blonde or brunette, Gillian Jacobs is hot.

    Also Amy Poehler is hot in and out of costume.

    Emilia Clarke she is what Cheech would say...so too much.

  • Skyler Durden

    ...Are you kidding me? 6+ hours in and 85 comments and NO ONE brought this lovely maiden up? Shame! Shaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaame!

    /I'm not even going to tell you who it is.

  • toblerone

    +1000. Gwendoline Christie is stunning (and oh so very tall).

  • dizzylucy

    Vampire Bill is so hideous to me, I'm always surprised when I see Stephen Moyer off screen and he looks so normal. And thank you for the Skarsgard photo.

    I've often wondered about the styling on Parks & Rec, because they put Amy and Rashida in some pretty terrible clothes, but I guess it's so they seem regular. Amy's toned down her hair color lately though and it looks really great.

  • Jezzer

    I can't get past how brave Lena is being in that picture. Seriously, everybody drop what you're doing and stand up and clap for Lena. Brave, brave Lena.

  • That is a ridiculously cute photo of Amy and Adam. Yep, I can call them that. They're my buddies.

    And sometimes on that show they'll have Leslie dress up and she looks *stunning*. The wedding episode, obviously, but there's lots of other little moments.

  • Kristen Mc

    I always find Daniel Day Lewis infinitely more attractive IN character. Gangs of New York DDL is hot as hell. He's a bit stabby and dirty, but I can overlook such things.

  • Let's not even mention Last of the Mohicans, because just thinking about it makes my lions go all a-riot.

  • Calm your lions.

  • Stop making me think of Last of the Mohicans!

  • That is a service to you as a friend.

  • Lemon_Poundcake

    HILF. That is all.

  • Boston Red

    Eden Sher...

    Of course, she's 21 in real life & only playing an awkward 16 year old.

  • John W

    Probably the most underrated comedic actress on TV right now.

  • DeltaJuliet

    Holy crap....I knew she didn't looked like Sue in real life, but still. Wow.

  • Uriah_Creep

    I thought of her right away when I read the title of this post ("Sue Heck!!"), but I wouldn't have posted because I didn't want to seem like a perv. Thanks for breaking the ice.

    Eden Sher

  • toblerone

    She's 21? Wow. I was blown away by Kaitlyn Jenkins (Boo from Bunheads).

  • Long_Pig_Tailor

    Oh god, that pic of Kaitlyn Jenkins is making things weird for me. What am I supposed to do when Bunheads comes back? I'm pretty sure she's playing not even old enough to drive, dude. So awkward.

  • Guest

    I know... It's crazy and I feel the same about Bailey Buntain too.

  • Long_Pig_Tailor

    Holy crap. I'm glad I don't watch The Middle, because if I did, I expect I'd feel really weird and kinda pervy right now.

    But I don't, so I can just be all, "Daaaaaaaaaayuuuuuuuuuum,"

  • becks

    If we're talking about people who look a lot better as their characters next then I want to vote for January Jones/Betty Draper. She looks like Grace Kelly when she's styled for the show and like a disheveled, homely mess every time I see her in candids.

  • dizzylucy

    I agree - she's so beautiful on the show and the 60s styling really suits her, and then I see her in real life and feel confused.

  • $27019454

    The second I saw this headline I thought "Vampire Bill." That vampire makeup and the Hager-knit manager pants he wears in recent seasons are heinous wretched. Have you seen that man in real life? Bangety bang bang. BANG! KAPOW! T

    I usually don't like the actor, preferring the character they play, but in his case, it's quite the reverse, as Lizzie Bennett would say.

  • theotherone

    Emmy Rossum - Shamless

  • Long_Pig_Tailor

    Point taken, I suppose, but I kinda have a thing for her disheveled, hot mess look on Shameless. But I'm weird; it's like, the less a girl is trying, the more interested I am. Probably because it sends a positive message re:self image or personality.

  • kushiro -

    Watching the last few episodes of Community, every time Britta and Annie were on screen together I almost completely ignored Alison Brie. Gillian Jacobs is looking THAT fantastic.

  • toblerone

    Gillian / Britta has always looked fantastic. She is what I will miss most when Community ends because I don't think we will get to see her the same way again.

  • toblerone

    Look how LOVELY she is!

  • DarthBrookes

    Yes. I've always loved Alison Brie/found her gorgeous, but I'd fall IN love with Gillian Jacobs. Brie is very impressive, very talented, perhaps even a little too perfect. Jacobs has a certain weirdness to her, that's somehow both humanising and unusual. She's my favourite on the show.

  • Long_Pig_Tailor

    I'm kinda wondering what happened there. Not that I thought she looked bad in earlier seasons, but I often just didn't pay her all that much attention. But yeah, man, this season? It's just all, "How you doin', Britta? Oh, hey Annie."

  • Kate at June

    Her face stopped changing?

    I don't know. Its really weird, the first season of Community, I would get confused because she looked different to me EVERY SINGLE EPISODE.
    Now, her face remains constant.

  • Long_Pig_Tailor

    Hmm. I think I see what you mean. I guess that's some kind of makeup or hair department issue? Actually, maybe also costuming; she's got to be the one with the least consistent style.

  • kushiro -

    I mentioned this at Warming Glow a couple weeks ago: the scene where Britta calls Jeff from his father's place, and she's on the sofa...I just kept replaying that because she looked unbelievable.

  • Long_Pig_Tailor

    Guh. Totally. Season 4 may be inferior in a bunch of ways, but they're definitely not Brittaing Britta's look.

  • fracas

    Maybe it's the blu rays, but Khaleesi's white wig looks terribly silly and fake. I hate it. It makes me dislike her almost as much as A Dance with Dragons did. Well, no not really, nothing could make me dislike her more than that.

    And Lady Edith does look pretty on the show, but the problem is that her sisters are gorgeous. It's stiff competition.

  • toblerone

    Counter Argument: Benedict Cumberbatch - Looks awesome in Sherlock everything else not so much.

    Dark vs Blond or Red? (He's naturally "Auburn", his words).

    Thoughts? There is an actual blog on his hair.

    http://whatisyourhairdoingbene...

  • LIZARD PERSON.

  • Long_Pig_Tailor

    That makes sense. On V, the lizard people were super-bangable overall. It's a shame the Cumberbatch can't keep the skinsuit on quite as well as the others, though.

  • Tinkerville

    That Amy Poehler and Adam Scott picture made my heart swell to the point where my chest almost exploded.

  • BlackRabbit

    Huh. That's Bryan Cranston? I really thought it was Iain Glen for a moment there. And I'm all in the redhead Emma Stone and brunette Emilia Clarke camp. Now I'm puzzled, though-what else have I seen Laura Carmichael in recently?

  • Natallica

    And what about people who is BETTER looking in character? Viggo Mortensen as Aragorn would be first on the list

  • TheGreatUnstainer

    Behold my shallowness...

    Morena Baccarin as Adria? Curse my male gaze. Morena Baccarin as anything else? Meh.

    Natalie Portman in Black Swan? Weirdly yes. Natalie Portman in anything else? Meh.

    Famke Janssen as Jean Grey? Swoon. Famke Janssen as anything else? Meh.

    Actually, I think the list of people who are more attractive when they play one particular character is significantly longer than the alternate list -- particularly if they're voice actors.

  • DeltaJuliet

    Not Famke Janssen as Xenia Onatopp?

  • Gabs

    Sorry, I got lost on the part where Famke Janssen = meh... she's so gorgeous my brain melts.

  • I've never found him attractive outside of those movies. But DAMN there's something about the hair, the dirt, the sweat...oof.

  • kkirkpat

    I only find Hugh Jackman hot as Wolverine or the Drover. None of this clean shaven, shiny hair, tuxedo crap.

  • pumpkin

    I agree. Rowwwww on Wolverine.

  • $27019454

    I'd hit VIGGO so hard in anything: Hidalgo, LOTR...even Witness. I think VIGGO is the only exception to my rule(ish) that I usually think the character is attractive rather than the actor. I am SO looking at you Mr Darcy, er Colin Firth.

  • Leelee

    I would bang Aragorn like a screen door in a hurricane, but have very little interest in Viggo Mortensen.
    Actually, scratch that. I would hit STRIDER like the wrath of god, and someone else can have the cleaned up King Aragorn version.
    To the shock of no-one it would appear I like my men scruffy and covered in mud.

  • foolsage

    Really? No love for Viggo in "A History of Violence"?

  • Natallica

    Love is one thing... lust is another

  • mb

    yes yes yes yes YESSSSSSSSSSSSS to all of this, I have finally found MY PEOPLE. I saw FOTR a ridiculous number of times in the theater and had neither read nor cared about LOTR before the point when I first saw Aragorn in his mud-caked leather, swingin' that sword.

  • She’s a gorgeous girl no matter what, but I think she looks better a bit more subdued. ...WWW.Makecash65dollareveryhouronthecomputer.qr.net/j6Yk

  • $27019454

    DAMMMMITTT!

  • Natallica

    And while we're in the Tolkien cinematic universe: regular Richard Armitage = meh, but Thorin Richard Armitage = Smolderingville

  • pthalio

    My lady parts are confused by attractive dwarves

  • WHAT? Have you even seen North and South?! fie! Fie I say!

  • Mrs. Julien

    NETFLIX! It's on Netflix!

  • Kala

    Thank goodness. I felt like a mega-perv when I saw The Hobbit. I had never seen Armitage in anything before, but I all I could do was sit and wonder why a goddamn dwarf was making me feel funny in my pants parts.

  • foolsage

    Aidan Turner on the other hand looked about as good in "Being Human" as he did in "The Hobbit".

  • Hollyg

    That's because Aidan Turner's sexiness has no "off" switch.

  • MrsAtaxxia

    COSIGN. Strider for life. Cleaned up Aragorn doesn't really do it for me either... too velvety I think.

  • howardthedeck

    Lauren Cohan?

  • Kate at June

    On Supernatural, yes. On TWD, nope.

  • All the upvotes.

  • I dunno. There's something very hot about Maggie whaling on zombies.

  • toblerone

    Maggie is HOT. PERIOD. Even a zombie apocalypse can't change that.

  • pajiba

    SECONDED.

  • toblerone

    Emma Stone:

    Redhead vs Blond? I think we all know which is better.

    (Yes, Emma is a natural blond, blah, blah blah).

  • DominaNefret

    The girl is gorgeous, but she wears way too much makeup, and the makeup she wears is far too severe and doesn't suit her at all. Especially with the constantly straight ironed hair.
    I think this is especially evident with the blonde hair. She ends up looking far too mature for her age, and loses that cute spunk we all love. I think she ends up kind of looking like an alien with the gobs of makeup and paper straight blonde hair.
    Lights up hon! You are still a kid and you are gorgeous! The severe smoky cat eye isn't necessary unless you are on a catwalk or over 35.

  • Long_Pig_Tailor

    Honestly, while I'm not exactly preferring the blonde, it has definitely grown on me since she started doing it. I think she's one of those people where it kinda doesn't matter much. Some improvement with one over the other, but so much of the attraction on her end is straight personality/charisma that it's nearly irrelevant.

  • foolsage

    I definitely think Emma looks better as a redhead; it better matches her skintone and eye color. Having said that, she often looks pretty gorgeous in character, so I'm not sure that she qualifies for this list. :)

  • Guest

    Gwen Stacy does nothing for me, and it's the only reason she went back to blond.

  • foolsage

    I quite enjoyed Emma's take on Gwen Stacy, but fair enough. I like the character for what she meant to comics. She's not just a love interest; she was a catalyst for massive industry-wide changes. Every modern superhero movie was shaped, on some level, by the changes brought about due to Gwen Stacy, for instance.

    Aaaand that's all I ought to say; best to avoid possible spoilers since the movies might cover this.

  • Mr. E
  • BWeaves

    You need to add Ladies Maid O'Brien to the list. Downton Abbey definitely uglies her up.

    However, Lady Edith looks hot in the 1920's era clothes and hair styles.

    Also, skinny jeans need to die, now.

  • Kala

    YES. They are unflattering on every single body type, yet hordes of women (and some men - blagh) have convinced themselves that it looks amazing. I go to school and I am saddened by all of the lumpy asses I see walking around.

  • $27019454

    DIE. Everybody looks like a potato on toothpicks.

  • Tinkerville

    This is quite possibly the best description of skinny jeans I've ever read.

  • PDamian

    Many thanks for the shout-out for Laura Carmichael, who is quite cute and has legs to die for. And the producers at Downton finally let her shine this last seasons with at least a couple of pretty outfits and some very chic hats.

    And next, do an "actors who look better IN character than out." I've always thought that Christina Hendricks needs to hire whoever's dressing her for Mad Men as a stylist. On the show, she looks incredibly chic and pulled together; outside, her boobs just overwhelm whatever she's wearing.

  • Brooke Michelle

    She's seriously adorable.

  • Monica

    Is it because Gillian Jacobs looks like Allison Brie in that pic? I prefer the blonde, but I'm biased.

  • Joe Grunenwald

    My wife and I are rewatching THE WEST WING. Remember when Elisabeth Moss was all young and she had that gap in her teeth and she was totally adorable? And then she left the series for a few years and when she came back in season 4 she was a STONE COLD FOX, and she has been ever since.

  • toblerone

    Laura Carmichael = Michael Cera in Skinny Jeans,

  • theotherone

    Or a Barn Owl in Skinny Jeans.

  • dizzylucy

    And now I can't unsee that.

  • DeltaJuliet

    I never think Chloe Sevigny looks good. Ever.

  • foolsage

    I have nothing against her, but I also don't find her attractive or appealing. To each their own.

  • The Kitastrophe

    Yup. Could not agree more.

  • kirivinokur

    I think it's her clothes. I hate her clothes.

  • Long_Pig_Tailor

    Yeah, she seems to be one of those rare celebrities who either has no style, or no stylist.

    Or a bad stylist, I guess. Could also be that.

  • Boston Red

    Hence why she is often photographed without them.

  • PDamian

    Cosign. For the life of me, I can't figure out how she got her rep as a beauty/fashion icon.

  • John W

    Pretty good list. Add Lena Headey and you're list will be complete.

  • Though not in Dredd. She looked terrifying in that.

  • RilesSD

    Nope. It's a fact that Gillian and Emelia look better as blondes.

  • alwaysanswerb

    I have very complicated feelings about this. When she's gussied up with tons of makeup and doing the sexy photos thing, she completely rocks the brunette. However, I have to say, that I think when she does a more natural, light-on-makeup look (which is basically what she's rocking in Thrones), I actually prefer the blonde. It's more striking. When she has a lighter face with the brunette, she looks a little more generically pretty.

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