Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Who's That Lady? - It's Mary Lynn Rajskub!

Partners in Crime Edition

Fletch of Blog Cabins and I have finally been given the opportunity to to partner together to present two thespians, a That Guy and That Gal, who've recently partnered together onscreen in the film Sunshine Cleaning. See how that works two ways, eh? Check out Familiar Face - Unknown Name for the latest inductee while I present my special lady below.


Nearly everyone can recognize Jolie's or Johansson's, um, talents from across a crowded theater, but what about the woman playing their best friend, mom, or even Pilates instructor? Here I shine a spotlight on those actresses that live in the shadows and ask the question:

Who's That Lady?
Mary Lynn Rajskub

First things first; it's pronounced Rice-Cub! Mary Lynn Rajskub is Michigan-born and raised. She earned a degree in painting from the San Francisco Art Institute. Mary Lynn also studied acting and music, which she's used to catapult into television and film roles. Her mad guitar skills have come in handy as one half of the comedy duo Girls Guitar Club. When not adding to her list of IMDB credits (currently at forty-eight), she still squeezes in time to paint and exhibit her art.

3 Unforgettable Roles
Road Trip - Seann William Scott couldn't completely pull the wool over Blind Brenda's eyes. He may have stolen her school's shortbus, but not before she gave him the one-finger salute for feeding her dog and generally being a douche.

Mysterious Skin - As Avalyn Friesen, I instantly recall that dowdy, front-buttoned, potato sack of a dress she wore. Ms. Rajskub seemed nearly as timid as her outward appearance suggested. But Brian discovered more than he was searching for during his brief encounter with Avalyn.

Sunshine Cleaning - Mary Lynn portrays slightly paranoid phlebotomist Lynn, who is befriended by the troubled Norah. Norah tries to bond over the similar family histories, but Lynn makes it abundantly clear that she's not looking for that kind of empathy.

Honorable Mentions: The character of Zelmina the cult member nearly won out for unforgetttable role, but I couldn't show that much love to Dude, Where's My Car? Still, I can almost hear the popping sound of her jacket when I picture her.
Ms. Rajskub has played Chloe O'Brian on 24 since Season 3, though I'm sorely behind on that series. The role my wife always remembers is Pam, the pageant assistant from Little Miss Sunshine, playing alongside fellow WtL? inductee Beth Grant.

Saw it, but even I don't remember her in it!
Mary Lynn Rajskub's been appearing in television and film since 1996 so there's a good chance you've seen her and didn't even know it. There was more than one credit that furrowed my brow when I tried to recall her role in the production.

Films: Sweet Home Alabama, Punch-Drunk Love, The Anniversary Party, Magnolia, The Truth About Cats and Dogs

(I don't recall her Magnolia or Truth About Cats and Dogs roles for good reason; she 'appeared' as a voice. Hey, a credit is still a credit!)

Mary Lynn Rajskub is the woman you call when you need 'that look.' 'That look' says:

I am not amused
Why are you talking to me?
You think you're much funnier than you are.
I would squash you underfoot if I had a big enough boot

You know, THAT look. She's also great at playing the nerd, or the slightly off-keel girl.
If you want to know more about her career, be sure to check out her IMDB and
Wikipedia pages. You can also be a total geek like me and follow her on Twitter!

Mary-Lynn Rajskub has one project that will be released this summer. I don't know who Helen is in Julie & Julia, but it's a safe bet she's a friend or relative of Julie or Julia! I can hardly wait for this to release.

Large Association of Movie Blogs


  1. Of the ones I've seen, I don't remember her in any of the ones you cited as forgotten, either.

    Nice to finally learn the pronunciation of her name. :)

    Mysterious Skin...that's the one with Joe Gordon-Levitt, yes? I need to see that...

    I'd forgotten about her role in Dude, Where's My Car? Hal Sparks was memorable in that, too. Super dumb movie, but at least it's fun. What'shisname Herman from Office Space is even in it. Good times.

    Can't wait for our next Partnership!

  2. Mysterious Skin is w/ JGL. It's a strange but good flick. I was obligated to see it for the Trach and JGL.

    As silly as I remember Dude being, I kinda want to watch it again. I'm mad you remember the other Michael Bolton being in that!

  3. I friggin love Mary-Lynn Rajskub! She's kickass on 24. She's super funny on any talk show appearance she makes. She's hot as hell. She was also on Mr. Show with Bob and David, the best sketch show on HBO in the 90's.

    Yeah, I said it.

  4. I haven't seen the mentioned movies that she played in. Moreover, like most people, I only remember seeing Mary Lynn Rajskub on 24. I didn't notice her that much during the third season since her role wasn't as flashy as it is now. However, on season four, I started to appreciate her talent since the scriptwriters took the smart decision to give a more important place to Chloe in the story. I'll always remember her ability to simulate all kind of feelings only with her eyes.

  5. @Jason Soto & Anh Khoi Do- I need to catch up on my 24 season so I can see more of her, especially when her role gets bigger. Sounds like MLR's eyes stimulate very specific feelings for you Jason.

    @blake- What?! I only got two noms! I even did my part nominating you. If we're pointing fingers, I say Fletch got ALL my other LAMMY votes!

  6. Well, you got all the votes where you were an option. Then Fletch got most the others.

  7. If those silly horror bloggers were more involved, none of us would have gotten any votes. So I guess we can thank them for not being a part of the community. ;)

  8. I loved her before, but loved her even more in Sunshine Cleaning. Good one! Btw you should know that your blog icon is my favoritest.

  9. Thanks! Glad you liked both (my post and my icon). This has been a very popular WTL. Even Rajskub approved! I don't know how I'll top it.

  10. If I recall correctly, in Sweet Home Alabama, she played an old classmate who worked at a bank. She was the one who clued Reese's character into how much was in the joint acct. The others I do not recall.

  11. Hey Magee! Too funny that you'd remember her in the role as bank teller.