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Adam Scott Cast in HBO's The Wonderful Maladys with Sarah Michelle Gellar

Why I Love . . . Adam Scott

It's not that surprising anymore to wake up to the news that actor Adam Scott has another job. For years, he was one of my favorite "that guy"s in Hollywood, playing a brief love interest of David Fisher's on Six Feet Under (remember "happy holidays from the Fisher-Coopers"?) and popping up in small roles everywhere from Veronica Mars to Knocked Up to Art School Confidential.

But with today's news that Scott's been cast in HBO's The Wonderful Maladys as Sarah Michelle Gellar's character's ex, I figured it was time to take a broader look at why I'm loving Scott so much these days. It's not just that he keeps showing up in TV shows and movies I like — though that's true, too, starting with HBO's Tell Me You Love Me last year and continuing with Party Down this year.

It's that he might be my favorite Hollywood jerk.

I mean, not him, per se. I'm sure he's a very nice guy. But he's somehow able to play horrible people in a way that makes me squeal with delight even when I know I shouldn't be rooting for his character. I'm not sure there's anyone in Hollywood right now who does self-centered, righteous confidence better than Scott; it's something in his dry line delivery, and it makes me laugh (or, in the case of Tell Me You Love Me, squirm uncomfortably) every time.

In this recent interview, Scott talks about playing the ultimate jerk: Derek in Step Brothers. He mentions that Adam McKay and Will Ferrell created a character who was awful from the start, then encouraged him to be more and more horrible, the worst person he could imagine. Maybe it's scary that he's so successful at it, but it sure is fun to watch.

So, while there's no confirmation that Scott's character in Maladys is a jerk, my fingers are crossed. It just seems like that would be best for all of us.


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