Take a look at Jane Lynch‘s IMDB page. She’s been in more than 162 movies, shorts, television shows and animated series since her career began in 1988. That doesn’t even count her commercial and theater work, which has also kept her busy.
We love the Lynch in pretty much anything, but some parts she was just born to play. Here are the roles she has rocked in her four-decade long career.
For those of us not lucky enough to see her live on Broadway in Annie, The Lynch performed “Little Girls” live on the Tony Awards earlier this month. Unsurprisingly, she was amazing in the role that was played by the legendary Carol Burnett in the beloved film adaptation. Jane plays the sleazy, drunk runner of an all-girls orphanage like she’d been doing it for years. Then again, she’s no stranger to the stage: She got her start in Chicago theater.
Sue Sylvester in Glee
Ryan Murphy said they wrote the terrifying cheerleading coach with a “Jane Lynch” type in mind. Lucky for them (and Lynch herself), she was not only available, but interested in coming on the show. Jane was well-known before, but her one-liners on the Fox comedy really catapulted her into consciousness.
Christy Cummings in Best in Show
All of her Christopher Guest roles are priceless, but Jane really nailed it with her obsessive dog show competition lesbian. Did you ever think you’d see a character like her in a hit comedy? No one could play it but Jane.
Joyce Wishnia in The L Word
Every town has their own power lesbian lawyer, don’t they? Joyce Wishnia was L.A.’s go-to legal guru and she knew it. She exuded confidence, even when she’s being given the brush-off from a pregnant woman living in her pool house or being dumped by a dean. Joyce just dusts that dirt off her shoulder because she’s got 99 problems and a GF ain’t one.
Dr. Linda Freeman in Two and a Half Men
The only reason to watch this show, ever, was when Jane appeared as Charlie Sheen‘s shrink. Jane has played a lot of therapists in her career, but this one she perfected, possibly because Charlie really needed some help.
Cindi Lightballoon in Arrested Development
Cindi was a devout follower of the George Bluth religion, which led to a brief prison-yard romance. It’s always funny to watch Jane play straight, but on a show like AD, it’s even funnier. Case in point: Lucille referring to Cindi as as “a redwood of a whore.”
Paula in The 40-Year-Old Virgin
Thank God Jane ignores gender assignments in scripts. The actress has said she frequently gets parts that are written for guys just by asking “Can this be played by a woman?” That’s exactly what happened with The 40-Year Old Virgin, where she played the sexually harassing boss to Paul Rudd, Steve Carell and Seth Rogen. So inappropriate, so hilarious.