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13 recurring actors from Bryan Fuller's 'Fullerverse'

By the time they have their third or fourth show on the air, most successful television showrunners have a favorite crop of actors they continually draw from. Joss Whedon and Shonda Rhimes often revisit familiar faces when casting their projects, as does Bryan Fuller. He’s most known for Dead Like Me, Wonderfalls, Pushing Daisies, pilots turned one-off TV movies Mockingbird Lane and High Moon, and, currently, Hannibal.

Fuller frequently recasts the same talented actors in his projects—sometimes even to play the exact same role on multiple shows. His imaginative and visually inspired works are all generally assumed to take place in the same universe, with company and brand names also often popping up across multiple series.

As we anxiously await the third-season premiere of Hannibal this Thursday, June 4, on NBC, let’s take a look at 13 actors and actresses who have made multiple appearances in the Fullerverse.

Lee Pace
Aaron Tyler on Wonderfalls and Ned on
Pushing Daisies

Fox and ABC

Before landing the starring role as the pie maker with the power to bring the dead back to life (with many caveats), Lee Pace proved himself as a supporting actor when he played theology-scholar brother and occasional confidante to the main character, Jaye.

Caroline Dhavernas
Jaye Tyler on
Wonderfalls and Alana Bloom on Hannibal

Fox and NBC

It’s fascinating how different these two characters are. Sarcastic Jaye begrudgingly “surrenders to destiny” when various animal figurines start cryptically urging her to help people, while serious psychologist and FBI consultant Alana becomes wrapped up in one of TV’s most disturbing love triangles. Honestly, Alana is so far beyond the help of a cow creamer.

Raúl Esparza
Alfredo Aldarisio on
Pushing Daisies and Dr. Frederick Chilton on Hannibal


Esparza must long for the days when he was simply a traveling antidepressant salesman with a crush on Olive Snook. When we last saw Dr. Chilton, a self-proclaimed “”collector of psychopaths,” he was being shot in the face as an unwitting victim of one of Hannibal’s master plans. Fuller has confirmed we have not seen the last of the unfortunate doctor, who will surely be back with a renewed appetite for vengeance.

Beth Grant
Marianne Marie Beetle on Wonderfalls, Pushing Daisies, and Mockingbird Lane


First appearing as Jaye’s muffin-baking neighbor, Marianne later appears to compete against Ned in a bake-off, and again in the pilot of Mockingbird Lane, making her the only character so far to appear on three separate Fuller shows. Have we ever learned if The Mindy Project‘s Beverly enjoys baking?

Neil Grayston
Ethan on Dead Like Me and Alec on Wonderfalls

Showtime and Fox

After serving as an intern of George’s whom she didn’t treat so kindly, Grayston finally found some power of his own as the awkward assistant manager of the titular Wonderfalls gift shop, where his favorite pastime was criticizing Jaye’s work ethic—or lack thereof.

Ellen Greene
Vivian Charles on Pushing Daisies and Mrs. Komeda on Hannibal


One of Chuck’s eccentric aunts, Vivian was a social shut-in with an eye-catching wardrobe and one half of the formerly successful synchronized swimming duo The Darling Mermaid Darlings. Perhaps Mrs. Komeda should consider becoming a shut-in as well, considering her current social calendar involves attending Hannibal’s dinner parties.

Eddie Izzard
Grandpa on Mockingbird Lane and Dr. Abel Gideon on Hannibal


This popular comedian first played a delightfully dark version of Lily Munster’s vampire father. If Dr. Gideon had shared Grandpa’s murderous instincts, he may have lasted longer and avoided literally having himself for dinner—thanks, of course, to Dr. Lecter.

Ellen Muth
Georgia Lass on Dead Like Me and Georgia Madchen on Hannibal

Showtime and NBC

The similarities between these two characters extend far beyond their names. Dead Like Me protagonist “George” is a grim reaper, while Georgia Madchen is a creepy killer who suffers from Cotard’s syndrome, which makes her hold the delusion that she is dead. Considering the two last names even mean the same thing in the languages they’re derived from, this seems to be a very intentional nod.

Diana Scarwid
Karen Tyler on Wonderfalls and Mother Superior on Pushing Daisies

Fox and ABC

Apparently the mothering type, Ms. Scarwid portrayed not only oblivious family matriarch Karen on Wonderfalls, but the head of the nunnery that Olive (Kristin Chenoweth) briefly flees to on Pushing Daisies.

Gina Torres
Lila Robinson on Pushing Daisies and Bella Crawford on Hannibal


A cult-TV favorite and frequent visitor to Joss Whedon’s shows as well, Torres had a mysterious turn as a gorgeous con artist and mother of Emerson Cod’s child before becoming a patient of Hannibal’s (and wife of Special Agent Jack Crawford) who is dying of lung cancer.

Molly Shannon
Dilly Balsam on Pushing Daisies and “Mother” on Hannibal


This comedian displayed some killer instinct on both of her Fullerverse appearances. As co-owner of Bittersweets sweets emporium, she happily resorted to kidnapping and bribery in her mission to put Ned’s Pie Hole out of business. She became 20 times creepier as a serial kidnapper of young boys who coerced them to kill their old families so they could be all hers.

Chelan Simmons
Gretchen Speck-Horowitz on Wonderfalls and Hannibal

Fox and NBC

To think Gretchen’s biggest problems were once planning a high school reunion and coming to terms with the fact that her seemingly perfect marriage wasn’t so perfect after all! On Hannibal, she picks the wrong drugstore and ends up being held hostage in the trunk of a car by a diabolical pharmacist. She survived, and probably moved back to Niagara Falls, where life was much more whimsical.

Jewel Staite
Goth Girl on Dead Like Me and Heidi Gotts on Wonderfalls

Showtime and Fox

After a brief turn as a record-store employee turned on by grim reapers, this Firefly favorite earned a larger role as Heidi, Eric’s ex-wife, whom everyone loved to hate for complicating his budding relationship with Jaye.


Which recurring actor/character has been your favorite? Is there anyone from a previous Bryan Fuller show you’d like to see pop up on this season of Hannibal? Let us know!

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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