Veronica Mars: Ranking Kristen Bell’s snarkiest roles
Fork yeah! Hulu’s Veronica Mars reboot happened and some fans could not be happier. Others are acting like their cars got vandalized. Nevertheless, the intervening time has been a great few years for Kristen Bell fans – and to celebrate we’ve ranked her most snark-laden roles.
A special mention goes out to Netflix Originals movie Like Father, which sees Kristen Bell as a woman unexpectedly reunited with her estranged father (Kelsey Grammer) after she’s ditched at the altar on her wedding day. It didn’t quite make our list, but we loved her in it regardless.
The movie looks to be exactly the sort of lighthearted yet heartwarming japes we need after a long mind-melting week of work. It also looks like the film will be utilizing all of Bell’s best skills – her adorable sincerity, her luminous charisma, and (most importantly) her sharp acerbic sense of snark.
We’re huge fans of the multi-talented actor and have been for a long time. Which is why we’re kind of the experts on what her greatest roles have been in her career so far. Here’s our ranking of our favorite sassiest and snarkiest performances from Bell so far.
14. Flora Anderson: Deadwood (2004)
The teenage conartist didn’t fare well in the mean streets of Deadwood. Turns out those old boys were wise to the tricks her and her brother were trying to pull and they were both savagely murdered for it. Welcome to f***ing Deadwood!
13. Sarah Marshall: Forgetting Sarah Marshall (2008)
Depicting an actress who plays a sassy on-screen crime fighter (hmm, sounds familiar somehow), Bell’s talents are woefully underused in this Judd Apatow production in which she plays a bitchy ex of Jason Segel’s everyday zhlub.
12. Nikki: Burlesque (2010)
People forget that Bell donned a darker look to star alongside Cher and Christina Aguilera in this musical flop that’s become a bad movie cult classic. But honestly? She’s kind of terrific in it!
11. Veronica Mars / Kristen Bell: Play It Again, Dick (2014)
Ryan Hansen’s web series spinoff of Veronica Mars helped to promote the release of the highly anticipated Veronica Mars movie. The show’s cast reunited for the quirky meta-series, playing versions of themselves clearly exhausted by Hansen’s determination to develop a Dick Casablancas spinoff.
Naturally, this meant Bell plays a caustic version of herself similar to her guest appearance in the show Ryan Hansen Solves Crimes on Television.
10. Kristen Bell: iZombie (2016)
Though her cameo is brief in the one episode of the Rob Thomas horror-crime comedy, it’s also stupendous. Particularly to hear Liv (Rose McIver) declare she’s always felt a “connection” to Bell before listening to the actor narrating an erotic audiobook.
9. Ingrid De Forest: Parks and Recreation (2013 – 2014)
One of many of Leslie Knope’s (Amy Poehler) bureaucratic foes, De Forest is mean, manipulative, and mercifully revealed to be inept – and Bell is pure comedy gold in the role.
8. Elle Bishop: Heroes (2007 – 2008)
A complex antihero with the power of electronic manipulation, Elle is deeply unstable but is also utterly captivating. A major part of that is thanks to Bell’s incredible charisma in the role – arguably the actor’s real-life superpower.
7. Uda Bengt: Party Down (2009 – 2010)
As the uptight leader of Valhalla Catering, Bell clearly delights in being able to fire off sharp, savage snipes against the poor hapless bastards of the catering team. Uda is a veritable nightmare, busting Ron’s (Ken Marino) balls at every opportunity and taking an unexpected shine to Henry (Adam Scott).
6. Anna: Frozen (2013)
If you don’t know every word to “Let it Go” thanks to your love for Bell, you’re either utterly lying or don’t have a ten year old niece you babysit all the time.
5. Kiki: Bad Moms (2016)
If there’s one thing we love, it’s seeing Bell getting down with her bad self and pushing her comedic skills to full capacity. Opposite Mila Kunis and Kathryn Hahn, the star parties like a mother and lets her sardonic side shine.
4. Chloe: Scream 4 (2011)
Scream 4 is easily one of the most fun horror films of the past decade, with a genius opening act that reveals a Stab film within a Stab film within a Scream film that catches the audience up on the previous decade of horror.
Bell plays a surprising Stab character who murders her bestie (Anna Paquin) for talking too much, telling her dying pal, “shut the fuck up and watch the movie.”
3. Gossip Girl: Gossip Girl (2007 – 2012)
As the voice of salacious blogger Gossip Girl (your one and only source in the scandalous lives of Manhattan’s elite), Bell is probably the greatest TV show narrator of all time. Every line drips with sass, snark, and sophistication.
We’re still disappointed a certain Lonely Boy (Penn Badgley) was revealed to have been the trashy blogger the whole time (and, frankly, confused), but we were at least happy to see Bell enjoy a cameo in the final episode opposite Rachel Bilson.
2. Eleanor Shellstrop: The Good Place (2016 – )
Fork yeah! The NBC comedy has only been on the air for two years, but we’re already completely taken with Bell’s complex portrayal of bad-girl-making-good Eleanor. The character is mischievous and selfish, but with the help of Chidi (William Jackson Harper) and Good Place engineer Michael (Ted Danson), she’s coming round to the idea of being her best self.
The character’s journey (and Bell’s depiction of her growth) is subsequently as funny as it is heartwarming.
1. Veronica Mars: Veronica Mars (2004 – 2007)
The sassiest, smartest, snarkiest teenage detective the world has ever seen, Veronica Mars is probably the role most fans fell in love with Bell for.
The self-proclaimed Marshmallow (as defined in the 2014 movie, at least) used her diminutive and adorable looks to her advantage to take down the crooks of Neptune and gain access to just about wherever the hell she wanted.