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Gary Michael Cole (born September 20, 1956) is an American screen and voice actor.


Works


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Tropes that apply to his works include:

  • The Comically Serious: Whenever he plays The Stoic in a comedy. Best exemplified with Lumbergh and Kent.
  • Creator Backlash: Seems to be averted for the most part, but according to a writer on Crusade (who didn’t seem to get along with him), he refused to return for their attempted revival on Sci-Fi. Given the show's frustrating Troubled Production, one could reasonably assume it was a factor in this.
  • Hidden Depths: His animation roles are usually characters that don't appear to be what they initially seem, in one way or another.
  • Hostility on the Set: According to Crusade show writer Janet Greek, Cole told the crew that he wouldn't return for their attempted series revival on Sci-Fi, and she thinks that he was one of the show's problems and should have been fired (although it would seem she was having a bad day when she said this, as she takes it back in a later interview). Given the show's Troubled Production due to heavy Executive Meddling, there might be some reason for this. However, JMS doesn't seem to think ill of him and Cole was willing to do an interview for the show's artbook.
  • Ink-Suit Actor: Mayor Jones greatly resembles him.
  • Leslie Nielsen Syndrome: He mainly did drama roles until Office Space (and before that, The Brady Bunch Movie, kind of) brought him into the comedy genre that he now does alongside his drama roles.
  • Memetic Badass: Go to the YouTube comment section of any clip of a late '90's or early 2000's show/movie that he's in and there will probably be comments applying quotes from Lumbergh there, even if the show/movie is more serious. For example, if his character is being hostile towards someone, there'll probably be a comment like "[other character] should've filed those TPS reports."
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • Mostly from Office Space: "Hey, X, how's it going?", "I need you to file those TPS reports...", "Did you get the memo?", "Yeah... um, I'm gonna have to ask you to ___, if you would, that would be greeeaaaat..." (which is probably the most common quote out of these that you'll see in meme template), etc.
    • His hair, for some reason.
  • The Stoic: His live-action roles are usually being a quiet Deadpan Snarker and a bit of a manipulative bastard that is sometimes shown to be Not So Above It All.
  • Those Two Actors: With Tim Matheson, thanks to A Very Brady Sequel, where Matheson played a con-man that claimed to be the presumably dead Roy Martin, Carol's late first husband, while Cole played Carol's current husband, Mike Brady. They typically play characters who are enemies or rivals to each other. According to Matheson, they're friends in real life and Matheson has brought Cole on to at least one show with him (that being Hart of Dixie).
    • In The West Wing, Matheson plays President Bartlet's first Veep, V.P. Hoynes. After a sex scandal, he's replaced by Cole's character, V.P. Russell. The two share scenes in "La Palabra" and "Requiem".
    • Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated has Cole play Fred Jones Sr. while Matheson plays Brad Chiles, though the two never share any scenes. In a bit of a reversal of their roles in A Very Brady Sequel, Fred Sr. kidnapped Fred Jr. from Brad, who is Fred Jr.'s real father.
    • In The Good Fight, Cole plays Diane's boyfriend. Later, Diane gets rather close to Matheson's character. At one point, they even ask if they know each other.
  • Typecasting:
    • He's either involved in politics, a moron, a teacher, the dad of the protagonist, hiding a Dark Secret, and/or has some dysfunctional personality problems that are either Played for Laughs (usually Comedic Sociopathy) or Played for Drama (ex. Parental Neglect).
    • Inverted in the early part of his career — Jack Killian, who he made his name as, was a kind, heroic guy, but most of his later serious roles were as villains or very ruthless good guys.

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