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Cover Story

The Recurring Irregulars

10 'Seinfeld' Visitors Not All There All The Time

May 10, 1998|SUSAN KING | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Why he thinks the character is memorable: "The only thing I could hazard to guess is that it was really perfect casting for me because there's a lot of me that's very much like that. I am the type of person who gets really unhinged when I lay down a few rules and follow them even though I don't treat people like that. It was definitely the most successful acting job I had and also the easiest."

What he's doing now: Thomas is auditioning for different pilots and just finished a movie called "Surface to Air." "I play this mad Iraqi colonel. I look strangely like Saddam Hussein. I did a great episode of "The Tony Danza Show," but I don't have to tell you where that {show} went."

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Name: Peter Crombie

Character: Crazy Joe Davola

Key trait: He develops an insane infatuation with Elaine and stalks her wearing a clown outfit when she doesn't return his affections.

Why he thinks the character is memorable: "I think it's a tribute to the writing. I felt like I was part of whatever that monster funny machine is and that is what people were responding to. I've always wanted to play a guy who couldn't quite get the medication right. He wasn't like a sitcom character. It was like I could play this thing virtually straight with just a little hair of a wink and it worked."

What he's doing now: Appeared as Frankenstein's monster last fall in the NBC miniseries, "House of Frankenstein." He's also set to do a feature, "My Dog Skip." "It takes place in the '40s in the south. I get to play a guy who terrorizes a kid and his dog. It's a family kind of a drama."

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Name: Mark Metcalf

Character: The Maestro

Key trait: Pompous beau of Elaine is actually named Bob but only answers to "The Maestro" because he is a musical conductor.

Why he thinks the character is memorable: "I'm an extraordinary actor! Isn't that the right answer? It was really well-written. The Maestro has severe neuroses. He's an artist and a mediocre artist. They are always the one who think they the greatest. The advantage to that kind of character is you can go way off the deep end {playing him}. He was a friend of Kramer's. That's how he came to this little circle. I thought anybody who is a friend of Kramer's has got to be almost as over the top as Kramer.

What's he up to now: Appeared last season on the WB's "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" and this season in ABC's "Teen Angel."

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Name: Danny Woodbine

Character: Mickey

Key trait: Kramer's "little person" friend is always fighting with Kramer after he gets Mickey into hot water.

Why he thinks the character is memorable: "I think people have it in their head that any friend of Kramer's is a friend of mine. In just about every episode I have done, Kramer screws with my life and I end up trying to take his. I think they love to see the physicality between the two of us.

What's he up to now: This season, Woodbine played the comic sidekick on the syndicated series "Conan." He's currently up for a comedy at Fox.

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Name: Reni Santoni

Character: Poppi

Key trait: The owner and chef at a pizza restaurant, he shocks Jerry when he doesn't wash his hands after using the restroom. He also has a bladder control problem and urinated on Jerry's sofa.

Why he thinks the character is memorable: "He has sort of an everybody's uncle kind of a thing who either gets drunk at a party or puts a lampshade on his head. With Poppi, it's carried to that Seinfeldesque extreme. People talk about the show being about nothing and it's really about everything, isn' it?"

What's he up to now: Recently completed a three-part episode of ABC's "The Practice" as a lawyer.

Times Staff Writer Booth Moore contributed to this story.

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