Dream Casting: Ten Television Actors I Wouldn't Mind Seeing Swapped In or Out

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Dream Casting: Ten Television Actors I Wouldn't Mind Seeing Swapped In or Out

By Cindy Davis | Seriously Random Lists | February 21, 2013 | Comments ()


Wherein, I dreamed a dream...

1. Kristin Bauer van Straten in for Keri Russell as Elizabeth Jennings, "The Americans"


I tried to like this show, I really did. The reviews heard round the webworld rang out in unanimous raves, and yet, I know there are others who laugh alongside me. There are minor problems (silly, terribly choreographed fights, bad disguises) that can be tweaked or done better, but the biggest problem can hardly be overcome: Keri Russell is simply not believable as a kick-ass Russian spy. Bauer van Straten ("True Blood's" Pam) has both charisma and chutzpah; she'd be the perfect Natasha to Rhy's Boris.

2. Michael Rooker in for Ron Eldard as Colt Rhodes, "Justified"


I admit to never having been an Eldard fan, so when I read he'd be joining the cast this season I had myself a good little groan--turns out my misgivings were...justified. His Colt lumbers; he gasps out his every line, and other than being adept at the required violence, he's a waste of the character. Boyd deserves better and so do we. Much as we love our Merle Dixon, he's likely not long for the "Walking Dead" world, so I'd love to see Rooker make his way to Harlan County where he can play with guns and words.

3. Rutina Wesley in for Danai Gurira as Michonne, "The Walking Dead"


And speaking of wasted characters, how about our girl, Michonne? Is it all the fault of the actress? Certainly not. But lordy, this girl has no life in her. Rutina, on the other hand, has the capacity to glare with feeling, and I'm willing to bet she wouldn't put up with her character doing nothing more than hacking up zombies with nary a word.

4. Michelle Dockery in for Lena Headey as Cersei Lannister, "Game of Thrones"


From the first season of HBO's "Game of Thrones," people took note of Headey's wooden Cersei--and granted, she has improved over time. But while she's managed to capture the character's sardonic side, Headey's take has never fulfilled my vision of Cersei; she's just slightly too old (commence your screaming, dear commenters), I don't find her compelling in any way, nor so stunning that men would fall at her feet. Dockery's acting style is much more natural. She has a way of drawing in the viewer with a grace and beauty befitting the Lannister queen, and she's also wonderfully adept at that regal condescending-speak of which Cersei is so fond.

5. Aaron Paul in as a Guy Who Gets to Live, "The Walking Dead"


This is just a completely frivolous dream-casting wish. With the main group of survivors dwindling by the week, sooner or later some newbies will have to be brought into the fold. Please, dear television gods, let Paul be one of those people. I have visions of "Die, zombie bitches!" dancing in my head.

6. Elisabeth Moss in as Lady Cora's Heretofore Secret Step-sister, "Downton Abbey"


Likewise, with "Downton" characters dropping like flies, the Crawleys could use an upstairs injection of beauty and talent like the lovely Miss Moss. I don't know what the Season Six plans for Peggy Olsen are, but since *spoiler ahead,* swipe to see: Peggy took a job at another firm, there'd be no big issue with letting Moss leave the show. Moss would be perfect as Martha Levinson's love child.

7. Katey Sagal in as a Feminist Secretary Who Shakes Things Up, "Mad Men"


And if we send Peggy packing, who better to shake up Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce than a thoroughly modern Katey? Come on now, we'd all die happy if we got to see Sagal leave Gemma's bleached streaks and biker clothes for a pencil skirt and a button-down blouse. Joan would cry at the competition and Roger Sterling just wouldn't know what to do.

8. Denis O'Hare in for Michael McElhatton as Roose Bolton, "Game of Thrones"


This is a case of there's nothing really wrong with MacElhatton--I'd just love to see O'Hare in the role. He brings an inherent wicked deliciousness to his every performance, and I'd love to see that intensity raging through some of the upcoming *NO SPOILERS in the comments, please* seasons.

9. Keri Russell in for Emily Kinney as Beth Greene, "The Walking Dead"


I'm not cruel, people--I won't leave Keri jobless. She's a perfect fit to play Beth Greene. The role needs expanding, especially since regulars have been dropping like flies, and Emily Kinney has zero presence. Keri could kick up the demure sister thing a notch (she's great with characters who have a balance of innocence and inner strength), and become the dependable sister Maggie deserves.

10. Ron Perlman in as ..., "Game of Thrones"


After reading Katsing's City of Thieves review, I felt to compelled to try it as my first audiobook outing. Penned by "Game of Thrones" showrunner, David Benioff, the book is read by Ron Perlman; as I listened, the first thing that popped into my head was that Ron Perlman would be right at home on "Game of Thrones." Turns out, he agrees. But what character should he play? In a Facebook discussion, I posed the question and our own Genevieve Burgess suggested Doran Martell's Captain of the Guard, Areo Hotah--which is a great idea. I'd just love to see him with a bigger part. Any suggestions?

Cindy Davis, (Twitter) can be replaced, but (sorry!) not recast.

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Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not

  • Three_nineteen

    The whole point of Kerri Russel's character in The Americans is to not look like a badass. Her mission is to fit in with regular Americans - she is not supposed to look like the movie version of a Russian spy.

  • Frank Berrodin

    Oh man Rooker would be perfect for Justified.

  • Yocean

    Is Ron Perlman too old to play Victarion Greyjoy? I mean he is supposed be younger brother Balon and Euron and uber viking.

  • BlackRabbit

    Orrr....Terrance Mann for either Bolton or Greyjoy. He's so fun. Most of the Dresden Files tv folk need more work.

  • QballK

    Keri Russell has been fantastic in every episode so far and the fight scenes are just fine so I really don't under stand the criticism and it feels as if you were setting out not to like the show in the first place thus have created a self fulfilling prophecy.

    But regardless I really didn't quite like the morally repugnant turn the writers decided to take with Keri's character in last nights episode.

    I mean she murdered a fucking security guard.

    That's not bad ass its fucking horrible.

  • Mel C.

    Agree with you there. I hadn't seen the most recent episode before my first comment. I wondered when (or if) they would have the Jennings kill innocent people. It definitely changes things.

  • NoPantsMcLane

    Is that Michael Rooker's face photoshopped on to The Terminator?

  • SnowMan

    Aaron Paul should totally be in "The Walking Dead." That show seriously needs an actor who could bring some kind of life to it (no pun intended).

    Plus, he could still be Jesse Pinkman. After all, the Governor mentioned Heisenberg as one of the people who died in the assault on Woodsbury, so it's completely feasible that Pinkman would be around too. Heck, maybe a contaminant in the lab affected one of the batches of blue meth, and that's what caused the zombie apocalypse!

  • Lovezoid

    Read this:


    I love the idea that its the same universe.

  • SnowMan

    Thanks for suggesting that blog. I didn't watch "Breaking Bad" until last summer, so I had missed that blue meth Easter egg on "The Walking Dead." Very cool.

  • Lovezoid

    Pretty awesome right!

  • Marc Greene

    Why in the sweet name of Zeus would anyone ever take Emily Kinney out of any role? Keri Russell couldn't pull off 17 years old if you put handles on it.

  • John W

    Ron Perlman = The Hound.

  • Nadine

    I don't know if he's on any shows to swap from but Rami Malek should be in Justified as a Crowder. Shit, he's baby faced enough he could play Boyd's bastard son.

  • sean

    I'm sorry but Rutina Wesley cannot fucking act. She is quite beautiful, but an awful actress.

    And really, Ron Pearlman in anything is fine with me. Preferably something with him as the star. Or as the big bad in next season of Justified, assuming someone doesn't cast Michael Rooker in that part. Or even better...both of them as a team.

  • Req

    Isn't Keri Russell a little old to play Maggie's YOUNGER sister?

  • celery

    Ron Perlman would have made Stannis something to look forward to. Alternately, he'd have made a great Mance, or even Barristan Selmy, though he'd have to look a bit older.

  • upstate

    I think he's just about perfect, age and appearance-wise, for Barristan the Bold. Right about 60, obviously creaking a little bit but more than capable of using steel.

  • Blake

    2. Michael Rooker in for Ron Eldard as Colt Rhodes, “Justified”

    Throw in some Ray-Bans and you've got Arnold Schwarzenegger from Terminator 2 in that pic.

  • delle

    I have also been underwhelmed with Lena Headey's portrayal of Cersei, and I am intrigued by the thought of what Denis O'Hare might make of Roose Bolton because I am also underwhelmed with the current actor's portrayal of that character as well; he just doesn't seem capable of giving the same emotional impact (read shivers) that the character gave in the books.

    Love love love the thought of Ron Perlman being on the show! I pondered who I would have liked to see him cast as, but I kept dismissing parts because they were too peripheral. But for some reason Black Walder popped into my head, because I think he could really bring that part (albeit a small one) to life.

    But I have been long steadfast in my belief that the part of Sandor Clegane should be played by Michael Wincott...anyone else out there agree with me?? Nothing against Rory McCann but I started reading the series back when the second book was published and I have always pictured Michael Wincott in the role...he would be perfect as the raspy-voiced, eternally angry and tortured Sandor!

  • Mel C.

    I disagree with you wholeheartedly about Keri in The Americans. She believably kicks major ass. Not sure which fight scenes you're referring to, but I haven't found any of them to be poorly choreographed.

  • Gretchen

    I agree. She is one of the things I love most about this show. Her acting is very subtle, and her character has an air of mystery about her. Very well-cast, IMO.

  • Mel C.

    Yes to the subtle acting. I especially feel like her character is mysterious after last night's ep. Is she playing Phillip? I hope not!

  • ed newman

    This list would be a total waste without Ron Perlman at the caboose. I'm particularly disgusted with the thought of Aaron Paul wasting his talent on a throwaway show like TWD, but nearly all your choices would either waste the actor, fail to improve the show, or both.

  • Judge_Snyder

    I believe Areo Hotah is a Summer Islander. Was thinking something like Colin Salmon for him.

  • Nittanian

    Hotah is from Norvos, one of the more northern Free Cities.

  • Meggrs

    Ooooh, Colin Salmon! Yes yes yes. And Barristan Selmy for Ron, as well. So, so, delicious.

  • Cree83

    Michelle Dockery isn't too young to play book Cersei, since they all seem to reach adulthood by 15 and it would be feasible for her to have a 13 year old by her early 30s. But then she'd look out of place among the Sean Beans and the Peter Dinklages (he's her younger brother) and then they'd have to recast THOSE parts to younger actors, and then Richard Madden would be too old to play the son of whoever was cast as Ned and Catelyn, which would mean Richard Madden would no longer be on my TV for me to look at, and then where would we be???

  • BWeaves

    I think Michelle Dockery is also too wooden, and well, too BRUNETTE to play Cersei. Nothing bothers me more than blonds with brunette eyebrows and the wrong skin coloring. (And yes, Dany bothers me for this exact reason, but I understand white eyebrows and eyelashes wouldn't photograph well.)

  • Muhnah_Muhnah

    Rutina Wesley's body. Jesus.

  • I want to meet her trainer... or have her be my trainer, only I would have a hard time concentrating, because I'd just want to touch her in wonder. But she'd kick my ass, so I guess I'd learn to concentrate right quick.

  • zeke_the_pig

    This. A thousand times this. I've found The Perfect. I henceforth retreat into a fantasy world of my own making. Nice knowing you lot.

  • Lauren_Lauren

    Her muscle tone is insane.

  • Matt C.

    I, unfortunately, cannot separate my complete hatred for Tara Thornton from the actress who plays her.

  • JCR

    I think that's because she's a horrible, horrible actor.

  • foolsage

    Fair enough; that character is incredibly annoying. But hot damn is Rutina a gorgeous woman.

  • Natallica

    I feel an insane urge to touch her tummy

  • BWeaves

    I agree. I've never seen or heard of Rutina Wesley before, but that photo. Wow! Chocolate was the first thing to come to mind, and I mean that as the best compliment ever. Silky, satiny, muscley, chocolate. Damn, that is a fine looking woman, and I'm a straight gal. Oh, god, I hope that didn't come off sounding racist. I think she's beautiful in a way I've never seen before.

  • Muhnah_Muhnah

    It's alright, I'm black and I've never been offended by people comparing me to chocolate. I mean...it's delicious. And really, it's nothing sexual, but from a purely aesthetic point of view, her body is fucking insane.

  • She's so smooth. I want to do...something untoward. DAMN Rutina.

  • Muhnah_Muhnah

    It's all toward, Julie. Let your freak flag fly.

  • Strand

    Fancy film actor notwithstanding, I always thought Charlize Theron would have been the perfect Cersei, then I found out she loved the show and can't unsee it. Her hammy evil queen was one of the better parts of Snow White.

  • Yes, so much better idea than Dockery. She's just not ...

  • Tinkerville

    Damn. That would have been perfect on so many levels.

  • Muhnah_Muhnah

    Oh great. I was totally fine with Headey, but now I desperately want Theron in the role. You've ruined my life!

  • Rocabarra

    Dear lord, Denis O'Hare as Roose Bolton is GENIUS!!!! And Ron Perlman as Areo Hotah is pretty awesome too. Though all my wildest dreams would be fufilled if Oded Fehr played Oberyn Martell.

    Also, I kinda like Lena Headey's Cersei. I think she and Nikolaj Coster Waldau have great chemistry.

    My god, I cannot wait for season 3!!!

  • Conor

    As great as I think O'Hare is (and that's quite a lot), I think he might be just a tad too colourful or charismatic for old Roose.

    The lord of the Dreadfort is supposed to be cool, calculating and pretty dour, which I think McElhatton nails.

    Although, if you fancy seeing him in a... somewhat different light:


  • BendinIntheWind

    YES, Oberyn!

  • Strand

    Naveen Andrews is my dream Red Viper but I can live with Fehr too.

  • MrsAtaxxia

    I have been seeing Oded Fehr as Oberyn since the show started. He is so perfect. Hearty second to this emotion.

  • KatSings

    Man ALIVE do I want Ron Perlman on that show.

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