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The greatest 'What We Do in the Shadows' cameos: Mark Hamill, Wesley Snipes, and more
There have been a lot of familiar faces within What We Do in the Shadows, and we have our favorites.
The fourth season of FX's hit comedy What We Do in the Shadows has aired, and over the course of those four seasons it's become clear that there are a lot of familiar faces lurking in the shadows along with, well, the familiars. To that end, SYFY WIRE is looking back at all the cameos that have graces the show since it premiered in 2019. At the time, it was a gamble to see if mainstream audiences would get the spin-off series of Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi's cult mockumentary of the same name, just with a different cast of vampires living in Staten Island, New York. Turns out, they did and the show has been able to attract a bevy of major talents to show up and play in their sandbox.
SYFY WIRE presents our list of favorite cameos broken down by all four seasons:
Evie Russell (Vanessa Bayer)
Colin Robinson's worst/best girlfriend ever, Evie Russell was the emotional vampire who almost topped Colin at his office draining game. She was a true master of manipulation and their office showdown remains a series highlight to this day.
Garrett and Vasillika the Defiler (Dave Bautista and Alexandra Henrikson)
"The Trial," which might be the most cameo-filled episode of the show, came during the first season of the series when Clement and Waititi called all their friend favors to get them to appear in this particular episode, which featured vampires of note through time and pop culture as part of the Vampiric Council. Two vampires who are served judgment by the Council are Garrett and Vasillika the Defiler. Garrett turned a baby into a vampire, a BIG no-no, and Vasillika ended up defiling just too darn much.
Viago von Dorna Schmarten Scheden Heimburg, Deacon Brucke, and Vladislav the Poker (Taika Waititi, Jonathan Brugh, and Jemaine Clement)
The series tied itself officially to the original movie's mythology with the appearance of the three New Zealand vampires, Viago von Dorna Schmarten Scheden Heimburg, Deacon Brucke, and Vladislav the Poker, when they show up at the Vampiric Council to help render a verdict on the Staten Island vampire's sin of murdering Baron Afanas (Doug Jones).
Wesley the Daywalker / Wesley Sykes (Wesley Snipes)
Maybe the biggest shock of the Vampiric Council cameos was Blade himself, Wesley the Daywalker / Wesley Sykes. Pre-pandemic so before it was vogue, the Daywalker (or half-vampire) ends up Skyping into the Council meeting to levy his verdict. He then has a verbal spar with Danny the vampire (Danny Trejo) who accuses him of being a vampire hunter. Good times.
Wallace (Benedict Wong)
A necromancer who can bring bodies back to life, the gang goes to them after they accidentally kill their latest Familiar, Topher (Haley Joel Osment). Always happy to see Wong in a comedic role, his character ends up grifting the vampires and accidentally brings Topher back as a zombie.
Jim the Vampire (Mark Hamill)
Mark Hamill shows up as Jim the Vampire in "On the Run," helping to make the classic episode, even better. Laszlo skips town because of a long-owed debt and makes a new life in Pennsylvania as bar keep, Jackie Daytona. Watching the two eventually face off awkwardly inside the pub is true magic.
The Guide (Kristen Schaal)
Technically, she also made a cameo in "The Trial" episode in Season 1, but the character became recurring in Season 3 when the Staten Island vampires become the leaders of the Council. As the envoy of the Vampiric Council, she can barely stand these guys but she slowly comes to tolerate them by season's end. Watching Schaal modulate that arc, slowly, across the season is perfection.
Jan (Cree Summer)
What a joy to see Cree Summer brainwashing Nandor through an '80s workout regime. As Jan the vampire cult leader, she is also the scammer head of the hilarious Post-Chiropterean Wellness Center.
Donal Logue, Contessa Carmilla De Mornay and Dominykas the Dreadful (Donal Logue, Khandi Alexander and David Cross)
A heavy-hitter cameo episode of the season, "A Farewell," reveals the big twist of Colin Robinson's 100th birthday ritual with the big guests of Donal Logue, Contessa Carmilla De Mornay and Dominykas the Dreadful. As a delegation of Old World vampires, they arrive to inspect the group's impact as the new Vampiric Council to great effect.
Toby and Bran (Randy and Jason Sklar)
All season long, the house renovation series, Go Flip Yourself, was teased as the favorite series of Laszlo and baby Colin. It wasn't until the episode, "Go Flip Yourself," do the brothers actually show up in a show within the show to flip the Staten Island mess of a mansion. The Sklar brothers perfectly capture the vapid host vibe as they ingratiate themselves (one, very briefly) with the vamps and try to sell them on the most ridiculous home improvements ever.
Simon the Devious (Nick Kroll)
Technically a recurring character since Season 1, Simon the Devious reappears in Season 4 having played the longest con ever to get Laszlo's cursed hat back. When he reveals, Scooby Doo style, that he literally pitched, sold and produced Go Flip Yourself just so he could get inside the mansion to get the damn hat, there's never been a stupider prank to ever exist. And Nadja is thrilled.
Jim Jarmusch (Jim Jarmusch)
Love his movies or not, director Jim Jarmusch proved he can certainly get a laugh as he appeared as himself, alongside fellow director Sophia Coppola and her husband, Thomas Mars of Phoenix, to enjoy Nadja's vampire club in "Freddie". After watching his two friends get murdered, he is non-plussed in his dry way about how effective the special effects are in the club in terms of convincing him how dead his friends look. Hope Jim got another ride home that night.
What We Do in the Shadows seasons 1 through 4 are available on FX and Hulu.
Looking for more vampire TV? Watch the upcoming Peacock Original Series Vampire Academy when it premieres on Sept. 15.