Bill Hader’s 10 best performances of all time (so far)

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1. Barry

Original Release Date: Season 1 premiered on HBO on March 25, 2018, and Season 2 on March 31, 2019. HBO has officially renewed it for a third season.

Critical Review: Barry has received critical acclaim, with Season 1 getting a 98% on Rotten Tomatoes and Season 2 getting a perfect 100%. It’s so far received 30 Primetime Emmy nominations and won Outstanding Lead Actor for Bill Hader and Outstanding Supporting Actor for Henry Winkler. Hader’s performance was also nominated for a Golden Globe award in 2019.

About the Role: Probably the role no one could have ever imagined Bill Hader playing until they saw it. Playing the title character of Barry Berman (a.k.a. Barry Block), an ex-marine turned hitman, turned struggling actor. In the series, Hader shows off his trademark humor while he simultaneously pulls off a tremendous performance of a broken killer who may or may not be a sociopath.

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Barry may be a murderer but he’s impossible to hate. Adorably awkward as well as cold-blooded, his stage name of “Block” perfectly sums up his personality when around other human beings; a large unmoving block. Yet when in the presence of danger, he’s energized to a very concerning level of comfort. Largely compared to Robert De Niro’s character in Taxi Driver, Barry’s ability to kill comes naturally to him and he hates himself for it.

What’s interesting about the character is that he’s good at something he hates but bad at something that he loves, two actions that require the opposite in a person. He desires a life as an actor because acting demands emotion in order to imitate life, while murder requires nothing but indifference. Hader is the star of Barry as well as the co-writer and executive producer alongside Alec Berg. He also directed several episodes.

Simply the Best:  Barry is a dark comedy series about a hitman from Ohio who travels to L.A. for a target only to find himself joining an acting class. The class is taught by Gene Cousineau (the great Henry Winkler), and in the class, he meets aspiring actress Sally Reed (Sarah Goldberg) who he strikes up a relationship with.

His new colorful path leads him to question his career choice while he continues to deal with his irritating criminal associates (Stephen Root and Anthony Carrigan) who always seem to want something from him. Sometimes I think Barry is really about what people would do if they had a hitman at their disposal, and also the dangers of Facebook because everyone that tracks Barry down does so through Facebook. Moral of the story, don’t go on social media.

One of the best things about the show is Barry’s frenemy, NoHo Hank (Carrigan). Probably the nicest mobster in all of creation, and the show itself is one of the greatest shows on TV today.

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What’s your favorite Bill Hader performance? Leave your comments below.