Editor’s Note: This article is written by guest writer Harold Lang.
I don’t like football all that much and I really don’t understand the national obsession with fantasy sports leagues. Despite all of that, I am a die-hard fan of “The League,” a raunchy, no-holds-barred comedy on the FX network. The show is about a group of friends and their fantasy football league, and there is a lot of time spent discussing players and strategy but somehow it’s not tiresome even for someone like me. On one episode, an eight-way trade was proposed to correct everyone’s teams and it (looked to me) like the result of reading an advanced mademan manual on trade logistics.
Now into their fourth season, the show is getting a lot of notice. They’ve had cameos from enough pro-football players to staff a team (I think, I don’t really know how many people you need for a complete team) and now they’re attracting some pretty major stars for guest roles. Here, in no particular order, are the best (non-football) guest stars and what made their appearances great.
Rogen, famous for playing the raunchiest of stoners in a variety of films, is reportedly friends with many of the cast. So when it was time for the oft-mentioned but never seen character of Dirty Randy to make an appearance, Seth was at the top of a very short list. It should come as no surprise to faithful viewers that Dirty Randy, library employee and adult-film location scout, is introduced by way of Rafi the Bro-Lo El Cuñado.
Silverman stopped by for season three’s Thanksgiving episode to play Andre’s sister — another character with a rich backstory. Silverman managed to make Heather, who was a sexual mentor to Kevin and Pete during high school, hilarious and likeable despite being very open and sexually forward. I can’t imagine it’s an easy role to play but Silverman nailed it and I, for one, hope she’ll be back again in the future.
Speaking of Sarah Silverman and the Thanksgiving episode, we’d be remiss if we didn’t talk about how amazing Jeff Goldblum was on that same episode. Jeff joins us as Ruxin’s father, and we can tell Jeff did his homework because he plays Ruxin’s quirks as if they were his own and as if he’d been on the show for four seasons. The inherent joke about Ruxin being just like his dad would fall flat without such a spot-on performance.
SNL alum Will Forte stopped by in season four to play one of the out-of-town league members. Unfortunately for the main characters, his character, Chuck, is now sober and way less fun than he used to be. In true league fashion, however, it’s not long before things get hilariously out of hand.
Liotta was hilarious as one of the partners at Ruxin’s firm, a power player who fixated on the slightest sniffle as an indication of a major illness. To further his career, Ruxin protests that it’s “just allergies” but eventually must reveal — after a germy sneeze on the golf course leads to the use of an epi pen — that he is, in fact, sick.
T.J. Miller might not be a household name, but he was hilarious as an evangelical cult member who Ruxin befriends after it’s revealed that the only “vice” he can participate in is fantasy football.