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Why Bruce Chutback From Rick And Morty Season 5 Episode 5 Sounds So Familiar

Season 5, Episode 5 of Adult Swim's animated hit "Rick and Morty," "Amortycan Grickfitti," featured yet another memorable guest character voiced by a recognizable actor. And he's really not someone you would expect to show up on "Rick and Morty," which makes his guest spot even more fun.

In the episode, Morty (voiced by Justin Roiland) and Summer (Spencer Grammer) spend an evening hanging out with the extremely cool new kid in town, a disaffected dude named Bruce Chutback, who has his own theme song that goes, in part, "Just transferred in, hasn't done anything embarrassing yet, unlimited potential." Morty and Summer want to impress Bruce, so they take him on a "Ferris Bueller's Day Off"-inspired joyride in Rick's sentient car spaceship — against their better judgement, because the car goes rogue and takes the kids along on a violent adventure of her own that she'll blame on them. It's too intense for Bruce Chutback, who says the night does not "cut the Chut." Eventually, they realize that Bruce actually isn't particularly cool, he's just aloof enough for them to project their own insecurities onto, and also he wears the same pants two days in a row. So Bruce will not be joining the crew.

Bruce is voiced by Darren Criss, an Emmy-winning actor, singer-songwriter, and voice actor best known for his many collaborations with superproducer Ryan Murphy. Here's where you've seen him before.

Darren Criss will always be Blaine from Glee

Darren Criss' breakout role came when he joined the cast of Ryan Murphy's hit musical dramedy series "Glee" in its second season in 2010. On the show, he portrays Blaine Anderson, the lead singer of the Dalton Academy Warblers, a rival show choir to McKinley High's New Directions. He's a charismatic, confident young man who has extraordinary vocal ability. He is openly gay and proud, which inspires New Directions member Kurt (Chris Colfer). Blaine helps Kurt stand up his bully, and encourages him to transfer to Dalton Academy. Eventually, they fall in love, and both transfer back to McKinley. Over the course of the show, their relationship is tested many times, and they break up and get back together more than once. But they do end their story happily ever after in Season 6.

Criss is very appreciative of how much "Glee" changed his life. "Glee's world presence catapulted my life to an entirely different level, and gave my career the opportunity to carry on in the way it's been able to for the past decade," he wrote in an Instagram post celebrating the 10th anniversary of his debut on the show that's still almost as popular on streaming six years after it ended as it was when it was on.

Darren Criss was chilling on American Crime Story

Ryan Murphy changed Darren Criss' life again by giving him the lead role on the acclaimed FX limited series "American Crime Story: The Assassination of Gianni Versace." Criss won an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie, beating bigger names like Antonio Banderas, John Legend, and Benedict Cumberbatch.

On the show, he plays Andrew Cunanan, a disturbed young man who killed five people in a three-month span in 1997, including the fashion designer Gianni Versace. He plays Cunanan as a grandiose, insecure pathological liar with a difficult life and a lack of empathy. Criss' performance is excellent, alternately terrifying and pitiful. He admirably walks the delicate line of making you understand and feel sorry for Cunanan without making him a sympathetic character.

Criss told Variety that he tried to always keep the mood on set light when the cameras weren't rolling in order to keep himself and the rest of the crew from getting depressed by the show's dark subject matter. "I think that's almost a self-preservation method of getting out of Andrew's skin and his mind, but to me, it lives and dies between 'action' and 'cut,'" Criss said. "I guess I'm lucky in that sense, that it never really followed me home."

Darren Criss went to Hollywood

Criss teamed up with Ryan Murphy once more for another Emmy-winning limited series, 2020's "Hollywood." The period piece drama imagines a Golden-Age Hollywood after World War II where people of color and LGBT people are allowed to thrive. Criss plays Raymond Ainsley, a half-Filipino aspiring director who helms the film "Meg," which ends up revolutionizing Hollywood with its onscreen and behind-the-scenes representation.

Criss, who served as an executive producer on "Hollywood," is also half-Filipino, and told The Wrap that some of what Ainsley goes through as a white-passing person of Asian descent is similar to experiences he himself had as he tried to reconcile how the world sees him with how he sees himself. "Ryan wanted to make it more true to who I was, as he did with a lot of the actors," he said. "So I said, just know that when you're dealing with Asian identity, it's a big one. And I think if we're going to make it simple enough for people to understand, we have to root it in the fact that Raymond is scared of being other-ed. That's really what it boils down to for everyone."