5 Cast Additions That Took TV Shows To New Heights
Who is your favorite?
It is no secret that no matter how well-written and twisty the plot of a TV series, it is the characters and the dynamic between them that draw viewers in the first place. Cast choices can make or break a show, especially those that come later in the project's run.
Here are five characters who burst onto their shows after Season 1, changing the course of their history and literally saving them from oblivion.
Ben Wyatt & Chris Traeger (Adam Scott & Rob Lowe)
Parks and Rec
When two new cast members appeared at the end of Parks and Rec Season 2, many viewers were concerned because similar additions came during the worst seasons of The Office, and these two mockumentaries felt very similar.
But the arrival of Ben and Chris became the breaking point for the show and helped it break away from being just a spin-off of The Office. For many viewers, Parks and Rec pretty much starts when Ben and Chris show up. Without them, the show might never have made it past Season 3.
Frank Reynolds (Danny DeVito)
It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia
Can you believe It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia once existed without Dennis and Dee's eccentric father? Danny DeVito was added in Season 2 and for many viewers, the show pretty much started then. They even skip Season 1 when re-watching.
The behind-the-scenes story proves that the actor literally saved the sitcom. Apparently, FX told the creators to find a big name for the cast or the series would be canceled. So the addition of DeVito not only shaped the show as a one-of-a-kind project, it was the reason it didn't get axed.
Leon Black (J. B. Smoove)
When J. B. Smoove joined the cast of Curb Your Enthusiasm in Season 6, the show was already great and could have continued on that path, but the character of Leon and his dynamic with the protagonist Larry David took it to a whole new level.
Fans can't get enough of the characters' unlikely friendship and Leon's bizarre life wisdom that he routinely offers Larry.
Emily Prentiss (Paget Brewster)
Prentiss' arc on Criminal Minds has been a twisty and exciting one. She joined the BAU in Season 2 as a potential spy on the team, but became an inseparable part of it and eventually its rightful leader. The arc of her fake murder and then surprising return made many viewers stick with the show.
Today, many fans are certain that it was only Prentiss' full-time return that saved Criminal Minds from cancellation after the exit of Thomas Gibson's Aaron Hotchner, and she single-handedly carries the revival series, Criminal Minds: Evolution.
Woody Boyd (Woody Harrelson)
When Nicholas Colasanto and his Cheers character Coach died during the course of Season 3, many viewers felt the show would never recover from the tragic loss. But the addition of Woody Harrelson's Woody Boyd in Season 4 helped ease the pain and change the flow of the sitcom for the better.
Woody quickly became a fan favorite and one of the show's most memorable characters. The role also introduced the world to the genius that is Harrelson, and for that we will be forever grateful.