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Here's Why Isabel From Meet The Fockers Looks So Familiar

It was 2004, and America had Focker fever. All the Gaylord papas and Focker moms were chomping at the bit for a follow up to Meet the Parents, the suburban comedy from four years prior which saw Ben Stiller spray painting a cat and Robert DeNiro calling more attention than usual to his nipples.

And so, in the wake of the historic success of Meet the Parents, a trilogy was developed. The Empire Strikes Back of the series arrived in the form of Meet the Fockers, in which, as was ominously foretold in the first motion picture, Greg Focker introduces his soon-to-be in-laws to his very own parents, played by Dustin Hoffman and Barbara Streisand. Two familial dynamics collide as the buttoned-down Byrnes clan butts heads with the free-spirited Fockers. In a particularly cringey sequence, we learn that Greg's first dalliance came courtesy of the family housekeeper, Isabel, who has since given birth to an astonishingly Greg-like young man.

Isabel is played in the movie by Alanna Ubach, and even if you don't recognize her name right off the bat, there's a good chance you've seen (or heard) her before.

Alanna Ubach almost married Frank Reynolds, the lucky so-and-so

In 2011, Alanna Ubach made a memorable appearance in the premiere of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia's seventh season. The episode, titled "Frank's Pretty Woman," follows Frank Reynolds (Danny DeVito), who — not knowing how much time he has left — decides to get real weird with it, following the pragmatist's path to third-act romance by planning to propose to Roxy, a sex worker with a foul mouth, a debilitating alcohol addiction, and a fondness for crack cocaine.

It's a sad fact that Roxy, played expertly and unsettlingly by Ubach, is not long for this world. A combination of controlled substances and the excitement inherent in being proposed to by the former Oswald Cobblepot leads to her untimely demise on the floor of Frank and Charlie's apartment. She will forever be remembered for her charming dialogue, literally not a single complete sentence of which can be quoted here.

Ubach worked miracles in Helen Keller vs. Nightwolves

There are roles that performers go their whole lives hoping to play. Anne Sullivan, the eponymous Miracle Worker in the story of Helen Keller, is one such part, portrayed over the years by names like Anne Bancroft, Patty Duke, and Alison Pill.

2015 saw Ubach putting her own spin on the story of the woman who gave a voice to a misunderstood child in the thoughtful arthouse piece Helen Keller vs. Nightwolves. Written and directed by FDR: American Badass scribe Ross Patterson, the picture came courtesy of the early-to-mid-2010s cultural push toward taking classic stories and adding Spirit Halloween monsters and Tarantino-esque geysers of blood. Taking its place alongside Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, the film reimagines Helen Keller's disabilities as the result of a nightwolf attack. "What is a nightwolf," you ask? Watching the movie is the only way to know for sure. It's all roughly as tasteless as you're probably imagining, but if you're in the mood for 75 minutes of Helen Keller jokes punctuated by extreme violence, it's really the only game in town.

Ubach was a bone-afied treat in Coco

Being an actor is a wild ride. One day you're teaching Helen Keller how to more efficiently kill nightwolves, the next you're voicing a beloved Pixar character with no obvious associations to any bloodthirsty cryptids.

Coco, if you're unfamiliar, is the story of a 12-year-old boy named Miguel who lives with his great grandmother, the titular Coco. Miguel's dreams of becoming a musician are generally looked down upon around the family home, as Coco's mother, Mamá Imelda, was married to a real cad who abandoned his family in pursuit of his own musical career. Reputations — even the ones that are just based on vocations — are a tough thing to shake.

One accidental trip to the Land of the Dead later, Miguel finds himself in need of a family member's blessing in order for him to return to his life, and one is offered to him by the long-deceased Mamá Imelda, voiced by Alanna Ubach. Miguel turns the offer down, as he would have to promise never to play music again in exchange for the boon. Family is hard.

Imelda goes on to rescue Miguel and reconcile with her lost husband through the magic of the studio's patented tear-inducing storytelling technique. Miguel manages not to die. All in all, the story of a pre-teen transported to a world full of skeletons still winds up being one of the least messed up Pixar stories to date.

Ubach's kids aren't alright in Euphoria

Once per generation, movies and television shows feel the need to remind parents that their teenagers exist in a violent haze of promiscuity and whatever alleged demon drug the kids are into these days — marijuana, or canned air, or satanic D&D nights, or what have you. The eighties had The Outsiders, the 2000s had Thirteen, and in 2019, ten episodes of Euphoria dared to ask "What if we made it really uncomfortable to look at Zendaya for a while?"

Based on the 2012 Israeli miniseries of the same name, HBO's Euphoria tells the story of a young woman with a laundry list of personality disorders and a predilection for chemical tomfoolery. And no troubled teen drama would be complete without a hard-drinking parent figure back home, in this case played by, you guessed it, Alanna Ubach. The tumultuous relationship experienced between the show's mother and daughter was one of several difficult-to-watch elements that struck a chord with viewers and helped to secure an 82% critical approval rating for the series on Rotten Tomatoes, on top of a litany of GLAAD, Emmy, and People's Choice Award nominations.

Following a pair of very special episodes released at the tail end of 2020 and the start of 2021, Euphoria is set to return for a second season at an indeterminate point in the near future.