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Why Sheriff Nedley From Wynonna Earp Looks So Familiar

Sadly, viewers are seeing the last season of Wynonna Earp, the western-style supernatural show with a butt-kicking heroine that galvanized fans when it seemed in danger of dying off. It's been quite a ride, though, for the cast of supporting characters that help Wynonna (Melanie Scrofano) win the day. That includes four tumultuous seasons for recurring character Sheriff Randy Nedley. 

Over the course of the series, this lovable and heroic former chief of police in Purgatory has become pivotal to the story. Among other things, he got turned into an ogre for 18 months, and finally retired — but somehow, he's still getting drawn into the troubles that Purgatory experiences, as he supports Wynonna in her quest to end the Earp curse. As Nedley actor Greg Lawson explained to The TV Junkies, "For these few years, and four seasons, Nedley doesn't really do anything so much as that he has things done to him." In Season 4, the actor says, Nedley is enjoying a rather "eventful road to retirement." And he's also been able to deliver one of the most relevant lines in the series: "Nobody f***s with our family."

Why does Greg Lawson seem so familiar, though? It's safe to say that his Wynonna Earp character is his longest-running TV job, and the one that has brought him the most attention as an actor. However, it's quite possible that you've seen him in a few other projects.

In Heartland, Greg Lawson played a probation officer who brings new folks into the cast

The long-running Canadian drama Heartland has been on the air since 2007, focusing on the workings of a horse ranch that Amy (Amber Marshall) and her sister Lou (Michelle Morgan) are trying to keep operational in the wake of their mother's death. In the pilot episode, fans are introduced to Ty Borden (Graham Wardle), ranch hand and future love interest for Amy, who's working there as part of a probation program. 

His probation officer is Clint Riley, played by Greg Lawson. In addition to appearing in the pilot episode, Lawson appears as a recurring character on more than a dozen episodes of the show. After observing Heartland's success with Ty, his character returns over the years with other problem children for the Flemings to foster and comfort — and to refresh the cast. A show with that kind of longevity needs some new blood to add conflict once in a while, right? If you'd like to catch his turns on the series, past seasons of Heartland are currently watchable on Netflix. 

The actor last posted on social media about shooting for Heartland in October 2020, so it's still a recent and possibly current gig for him. Hopefully fans will see him again on the show, and he seems just as happy to reprise the role: when he was interviewed for the Tales of the Black Badge podcast, he referred to Heartland as "good, wholesome family entertainment."

In Klondike, Greg Lawson played a veteran during the Alaskan Gold rush

Klondike was the Discovery Channel's first scripted program, a three-part miniseries covering the Alaskan Gold Rush of 1895. The narrative followed six strangers and their fight for wealth in a frontier town that's populated by characters from unscrupulous businessmen to native tribes witnessing the destruction of their traditional lands. Based on the novel Gold Diggers: Striking It Rich In The Klondike by Charlotte Gray, it was described by executive producer Ridley Scott in Deadline as featuring adventures "as epic as the landscape, where ambition, greed, sex and murder, as well as their extraordinary efforts to literally strike it rich, are all chronicled by a young Jack London himself."

In the 2014 TV miniseries, Lawson played an ex-military sharpshooter named Goodman, who has come to the area to join the Gold Rush and has staked a claim near Bill's. The film also starred Richard Madden as Bill and Augustus Prew as Byron, along with Ian Hart, Conor Leslie, Abbie Cornish, Tim Roth, Sam Shepard and Tim Blake Nelson. A Hollywood Reporter review praised the film for its strong acting performances, dramatic dialogue and epic, sweeping vistas.

Greg Lawson has had many small TV roles over the years

Greg Lawson has been acting on screen since 1994, but it's worth noting that his stage career, mostly in Shakespeare plays, spanned 30 years before he even got started on TV, as was noted during his interview with the Tales of the Black Badge podcast. Since making the shift to the small screen, though, Lawson has steadily appeared in plenty of TV shows, albeit usually in minor roles. These have included playing a banker in Lonesome Dove: The Series, as well as playing Sam Rock on the 2003 TV movie Hollywood Wives: The New Generation, and a three-episode role as Reverend Alistair Rainey on the 2017 series Damnation. He also played Ed Woolcott in the 2009 Lifetime TV movie Northern Lights, pictured above.

Most of his roles have been small — he often plays authority figures of some kind — but every character has been memorable, and his steady acting, memorable personality, and talent has shined through every part he's played. Hopefully in the future, thanks to his Wynonna Earp fame, he'll have bigger and better roles ahead.