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Why Max From Happy Endings Looks So Familiar

"Happy Endings," the underrated cult classic ABC comedy that ran for three low-rated but beloved seasons on ABC, is now on Netflix, where it's reaching a bigger audience than ever. People who didn't watch the hilarious "Friends"-indebted comedy the first time around are now being exposed to some of the funniest jokes that ever appeared in a broadcast sitcom — including gems like "There's no way Edward James Olmos likes to be called 'Eddie Jimmy.'"

Created by David Caspe, "Happy Endings" works because of the incredible chemistry of its hilarious ensemble cast, which includes actors who went on to even greater success after the show was canceled, like "New Girl" star Damon Wayans Jr. and "B***h Sesh" podcaster Casey Wilson. Every member of the cast brings something different to the table, and it all blends together in a deliciously complementary way. 

Arguably no one brought more to the table or had a bigger rise in prominence from the show than Adam Pally, who plays Max Blum, a slovenly slacker with a noncommittal lifestyle that contrasts with his type-A friends. Since breaking out with "Happy Endings," Pally has become an in-demand voice actor and TV producer, and has also appeared as an actor in many film and television projects in which you may have seen him. Here's why Max Blum from "Happy Endings" looks so familiar.

Adam Pally got his Marvel on in Iron Man 3

Adam Pally is best known for his TV work, but he's had small roles in a few big movies over the course of his career. In 2013, he appeared in "Iron Man 3" as Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) superfan Gary the cameraman. Gary modeled his haircut and goatee after Stark's trademark style, which doesn't really impress the Avenger ...and he really isn't impressed by Gary's Tony Stark tattoo either. However, he does need Gary's help to get more power from the satellite dishes on top of Gary's news van, so Gary's all right in Tony's book.

During an appearance on "The Late Show" in 2018, Pally jokingly told Stephen Colbert that he was disappointed he wasn't in "Avengers: Infinity War," and he was constantly trying to sell the Russo Brothers on a Gary the cameraman movie. Gary's superpowers would include the ability to frame out a boom mic better than anyone, Pally joked. "If one of the Avengers was like, 'We need to document this,' I'd be like, "Already doin' it.'"

Adam Pally helped make The Mindy Project great

After ABC canceled "Happy Endings" in May 2013 (via Entertainment Weekly), Adam Pally rebounded by almost immediately joining the cast of Fox's (and later Hulu's) hit romantic comedy series "The Mindy Project." In the show, he plays Dr. Peter Prentice, a bro-y OB/GYN who joins Dr. Mindy Lahiri's (Mindy Kaling) practice in Season 2. Despite his fratty antics, Peter has a heart of gold and becomes one of Mindy's best friends, advising her on her messy love life and hilariously making fun of her when her ego needs a little deflating ego. ("I can actually hear the cute sound you make when you sneeze," Peter once tells Mindy, imitating her extremely loud, not-cute-at-all sneezes.) 

Pally was a regular on the show for only Seasons 2 and 3, though he made guest appearances for the rest of its run. Peter moves away in Season 3, mostly because Pally simply got tired of network sitcoms. As he later revealed, Pally loved his time on "The Mindy Project," but he was never supposed to be on it for so long. 

"It was really only supposed to be one episode, and then it became three episodes, and then it became half a year, and then it became a year and a half, and then it became two years," Pally told the A.V. Club. "And I loved every second, and I'm indebted to Mindy for my career, really. She really breathed the second life into my career. At the time it was over, I had done five years straight of 22 episodes of network television, and I was a little burnt, and I wanted to do indie movies. And so I went and I did, and Mindy was totally fine with it — which, not a lot of bosses would be."

He tried Making History

To date, the only series in which Adam Pally has been the top-billed star is the short-lived Fox time-travel sitcom "Making History." In the series, Pally plays a facilities manager at Massachusetts college named Dan with a special "Will Hunting" thing of his own – he has a giant duffel bag that allows him to travel back in time if he climbs inside. And things are a lot better for him in the past – he has a girlfriend, Deborah (Leighton Meester), who's Paul Revere's daughter. Eventually, Dan realizes he has a responsibility to make sure history turns out right, so he, Deborah, and his history professor friend Chris (Yassir Lester) start traveling through time and having adventures that bring them into contact with historical figures like Al Capone (Tim Robinson).

The show was a critical success – it has a 92% "Fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes – but didn't catch on with audiences, and only ran for nine episodes in 2017. It was produced by Phil Lord and Chris Miller, and their involvement is why Pally agreed to do it so soon after "The Mindy Project."

"You can't say no to Phil and Chris," he told The A.V. Club. "It's like a weird Hollywood thing where if you do, you die right away."

Adam Pally stole the scene in The Mandalorian

You may not have realized Adam Pally was on "The Mandalorian," but that was him under a stormtrooper helmet in "Chapter 8: Redemption," the Season 1 finale, alongside "Ted Lasso" star Jason Sudeikis. Pally and Sudeikis played a pair of bickering bike scout troopers who briefly had possession of Grogu, who at that point was still just "the Child." After Grogu bit Pally's finger, he retaliated by punching the baby way too hard, which meant IG-11 (Taika Waititi) had to give him what was coming to him.

Pally told Seth Meyers that he really needed people to know that he didn't just go off and punch Baby Yoda; it was in the script. "But the first time I did it, I hit it too hard, because, I don't know, I was excited," he said. "So I clocked it. And like 30 people popped up like moles in [Whack-a-Mole], and everyone was like 'WHOA! WHOA! WHOA!'" Then, according to Pally, creator Jon Favreau came over and told him the puppet was very expensive, and as Pally is an actor, he only needed to pretend to punch the puppet. When Pally went back to do another take, everyone was on edge, so to cut some of the tension, he said "I just want everyone to know that Baby Yoda did say something antisemitic to me..." which also did not go over well.

Jim Carrey insulted him in Sonic the Hedgehog

Pally had a small supporting role in "Sonic the Hedgehog," the hit movie adaptation of the video game, as Wade Whipple, the Deputy Sheriff of Green Hills, Montana. He's the neurotic, easily overwhelmed sidekick to Sheriff Tom Wachowski (James Marsden), who has to talk him through simple tasks like the order of phone calls he should make to keep the town running after an electrical surge from Sonic's (Ben Schwartz) body causes a power outage.

Wade's most memorable scene in "Sonic the Hedgehog" is when Dr. Robotnik (Jim Carrey) shows up at the police station looking for Tom. Wade calls his boss and says there are a lot of government agents in dark suits, but they're not fun and charming like Will Smith in "Men in Black." Ultimately, Robotnik nicknames him "Officer Brainfart," and at the end of the movie, Wade leads the townspeople as they assist Tom and Sonic in fighting the maniacal robotics expert.

Pally is returning for the "Sonic" sequel, tweeting, "Officer brain fart back on the case" when the sequel was announced. This funnyman has a seriously stacked resume between film and television, and we can't wait to see what he does next.