3 Best and 3 Worst Kristen Wiig Projects

Kristen Wiig is a comedic gem. From her time on Saturday Night Live to starring in Bridesmaids, she’s often at the top of anyone’s list of favorite comedic actors. Her latest endeavor is Apple TV Plus’s Palm Royale, which received average reviews from critics and audiences. However, its star-studded cast, iconic performances, and glitz and glam make it part of Kristen’s expansive catalog of underrated projects.

While she may be known for her more comedic roles, Kristen takes on every type of project from dramas to period pieces, and they often have a quirky or indie feel to them. While her most popular roles are always appreciated, there are plenty of Kristen’s films and series that are underrated. So we want to celebrate with three of her best and worst projects.

Best: ‘Bridesmaids’ (2011)

It’s pretty obvious that Bridesmaids is one of Kristen Wiigs’ best projects, considering that it was her breakout into the film industry after her time on Saturday Night Live. But it was also at the forefront of proving that women can be just as hilarious and silly as men, if not more, and that we also have an appreciation for some potty humor. It was one of the first times we saw Kristen as a romantic interest as she used her acting chops to convince us that she’s more than a comedic goofball.

Worst: ‘Sausage Party’ (2016)

It’s a hilarious movie to some, but to others, it’s just a grotesque animated piece of filth. I won’t lie, I’m definitely in the first camp, but as far as an objectively good or bad Kristen Wiig project, Sausage Party does not hold up in comparison to her other more meaningful works. It has little underlying message, unlike many other projects that incorporate a great deal of heart and existential questions.

Best: ‘Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar’ (2021)

Kristen takes her comedic and character acting talents in the highly underrated Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar, although The Hollywood Reporter rated it as one of the best films of 2021. Between the visual aesthetic of pastels and florals to the fish-out-of-water plot putting two best friends outside of their midwestern comfort zone, Barb and Star is relatable, silly, and thrilling. Its side plot of a murdery mystery along with Jamie Dornan singing and dancing (yes, you read that correctly), make this film unlike any other, emblematic of Kristen’s best work.

Worst: ‘Bless the Harts’ (2019 – 2021)

Despite Kristen’s voice-acting abilities, Bless the Harts is another animated project that doesn’t do her justice. She plays matriarch Jenny Hart and despite the show’s star-studded cast with Maya Rudolph, Ike Barinholtz, Jillian Bell, Kumail Nanjiani, and more, it didn’t quite live up to its potential. It becomes a simple caricature of a Southern family, although it had much more emotional depth than typical adult-animated series. This led to its cancellation — the lack of potty humor and low promotion led to low ratings and its ensuing end. But perhaps animation isn’t the best medium for Kristen and her cohorts’ high-level humor, so as a whole, it just never fully jived.

Best: ‘Saturday Night Live’ (2005 – 2012)

Perhaps it’s too obvious to include, but Kristen Wiig will always be most beloved for her iconic roles on Saturday Night Live. She successfully helmed SNL’s transition from a retro sketch comedy show into its modern-day era of kooky humor with characters such as Gilly, the Target lady, Surprise! Sue, and too many to name. Her successor, Kate McKinnon, made it possible for Kristen to move onto other things but even today, over a decade later, Kristen’s presence on the sketch show is still missed.

Worst: ‘Wonder Woman 1984’ (2020)

Typically when Kristen Wiig is an executive producer on a project, it can be underrated but definitely worth watching. But when she’s not involved in the creation and is simply acting in it, the films and series fall short. Wonder Woman 1984 is an example of that — Kristen takes on the role of sidekick turned antagonist, and despite her nearly pitch-perfect performance from the awkward Barbara Minerva into Cheetah, the rest of the film falls flat due to its repetitive plot and abundance of plot holes.

Jamie Lerner is a writer, comedian, and musician who’s been writing about television and movies since she reviewed Mean Girls for her fifth-grade school newspaper.