Sometimes, a one-off reference to some unseen goofball takes on a life of its own. A life so vibrant, no actor on Earth could hope to embody it. At that point, writers have two options: keep up the bit, or completely ruin it by casting the character, or worse, giving it a spin-off.

Here are a few characters who started off too small to be cast, but became larger than life:

Vera Peterson CHEERS CRACKED.COM Norm's horrid wife is, apparently, the reason he's at Cheers every waking moment. She's a perennial punching bag, but actor George Wendt's actual wife, Bernadette Birkett, was gracious enough to appear as Vera's voice and body on occasion.

Heather Sinclair DEGRASSI CRACKED.COM Heather was a popular punching bag for the other characters, to the extent that her entire character was defined via bathroom gossip. Writer Matt Huether said they considered roping in some famous blonde actress to make a climactic cameo, but ultimately decided against stunt casting, perhaps because we didn't really want to see the real her.

POTUS VEEP CRACKEDO Though he's eventually named as President Stuart Hughes, he spent a few seasons being referred to as simply POTUS, and is never actually seen on screen. Creator Armando lannucci once said that, if he had to cast POTUS, he'd go with Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Eckley DiMeo THE SOPRANOS CRACKED.COM Early on in the series, the incarcerated Big Man was still a force in the family he organized and ran in the 1950's. As Tony congealed into a bona fide monster mobster, there was less need for an off-screen puppet master.

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Robin Masters MAGNUM P.I. CRACKED.COM Masters is a novelist who, for some reason, lets Magnum and his 'stache crash at his place for the whole series. There's a theory that says Higgins was also Masters, but then why would they lug in Orson Welles to voice Masters from off-screen?

Mrs. Columbo COLUMBO CRACKED.COM The world built around Columbo's unseen wife is enough for a whole second series. In fact, they actually made a spin-off called Mrs. Columbo, but when fans revolted, they renamed her Mrs. Callahan and called their short-lived show Kate Loves A Mystery.

Angela Valentine LEAVE IT TO BEAVER CRACKEDO Angela is the scarecrow upon which the writers projected the most bizarre bits of ubiquitous childhood lore: she pukes in the back of the bus, eats glue, and organizes a peep show to exhibit her 6th toe.

Dr. Kahn SALUTE YOUR SHORTS CRACKED.COM The familiar voice that would announce the day's activities at the beginning of each episode, Dr. Kahn was voiced by series creator Steve SLAVKIN.

Lars Lindstrom THE MARY TYLER MOORE SHOW CRACKED.COM Lars is the lothario husband of Mary's landlady, Phyllis. He's implied to be a real jerk, but he is the reason Betty White appeared on the show, as his mistress. So... thank YOU for your service?

Diane TWIN PEAKS CRACKED.COM Agent Dale Cooper is always recording his thoughts and shipping them off to Diane at FBI HQ. They could have had him recording for his own notes, but creating a phantom listener makes his monologues feel more intimate. Speaking of intimate: Cooper actually flirts a bit with an off-screen Diane when he visits HQ.

Bob Sacamano SEINFELD Kramer's eccentric buddy comes up in conversation due to his various maladies, and inventions no one asked for. Bob Sacamano is the actual name of a Seinfeld writer's friend- or, ex-friend. They had a falling out when Kramer described the character's accidental castration.

Maris Crane FRASIER CRACKED.COM Niles' first wife is described as many things: coat rack-like, plastic surgery-addicted, and completely lacking pigmentation. EP Peter Casey said that, even if they had to cast her, I don't know if we could ever find anybody that could match all those things.

Nanny MUPPET BABIES CRACKED.COM In a world full of freak-schnozzed monster infants, it's very possible that Nanny's face is an indescribable Lovecraftian horror. It's also possible that she's a stand-in for the countless anonymous knees we all encountered as babies.

Richard Nygard PARKS & RECREATION CRACKED.COM Chris Traeger often credits his healthy habits and attitudes to his therapist, Dr. Richard Nygard. But there's an in-universe theory among his friends and coworkers that Richard Nygard is just... Traeger psyching himself up in the mirror.
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