Q: I know she's done a lot since "Community" ended, but how did Alison Brie get her start?

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Adam Thomlison / TV Media

Early '10s NBC sitcom "Community" never quite made it to hit status — it became an icon of the "bubble-show" phenomenon, a show always on the cusp of being cancelled — but those who liked it loved it, and it launched a lot of careers.

Alison Brie, who played the somewhat mousy Annie, has had one of the best post-"Community" runs. She starred in another critically beloved sitcom, Netflix's "GLOW," and embarked on a big-screen career including starring in and producing her own films, such as "Horse Girl" (2020) and "Spin Me Round" (2022).

All this success has nearly eclipsed the fact that, prior to "Community," she had a regular role on one of the most respected drama series of all time: AMC's "Mad Men."

In her only major pre-"Community" role, she played Trudy Campbell, wife of central character Pete. She was on the show from its launch in 2007 and continued to appear as a part-time cast member after "Community" debuted in 2009.

As a quietly suffering wife in the show about the hypocrisies and small tragedies of 1960s America, the role might not seem like a natural step towards a sitcom gig, but it certainly offered a preview of the meatier work Brie would do after "Community."


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