Terrified of Laurie on “Euphoria”? Get to Know Martha Kelly
Image Source: Everett Collection
Laurie has officially dethroned Nate Jacobs as the most formidable villain on “Euphoria.” We meet the high-school teacher turned drug dealer in the HBO show’s season two premiere, when Fez does business with her following Mouse’s murder. Laurie reveals new layers every time she appears on screen: she became addicted to oxycontin in college after getting injured as an athlete, she fronts Rue $10,000 worth of drugs to sell, and, as we learn in episode three, she’s involved in some sort of sex-trafficking ring that she threatens to rope Rue into.
“If you screw me, I’ll have you kidnapped and sold to some real sick people. I always find a way to make my money back,” she tells Rue in a calm, monotone, nightmare-fueling voice. You definitely don’t want to cross her.
Although Laurie exudes pure, menacing evil on “Euphoria,” Martha Kelly, the actor who portrays her, typically stars in polar-opposite roles. A 53-year-old actor from California, Kelly has been performing standup comedy since age 25, appearing on “Late Night With Conan O’Brien,” NBC’s “Last Comic Standing,” and “The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson” through the years. She was even dubbed “Funniest Person in Austin” after winning Capital City Comedy Club’s annual contest in 2000.
Kelly made her acting debut in 2016 when her friend and fellow actor Zach Galifianakis asked her to costar as insurance agent Martha Brooks in his FX series, “Baskets.” Since then, she’s appeared on “Will & Grace,” “Corporate Animals,” and “American Gods.” She also played the tour guide in “Spider-Man: Homecoming,” which means “Euphoria” marks her second time working with Zendaya – so if Tom Holland winds up making a cameo after all, it’ll be a full-fledged Spider-Man reunion!
While we might not yet know what’s hiding behind Laurie’s padlocked door, two things are for damn sure: Kelly’s “Euphoria” performance deserves an Emmy, and we can expect more bone-chilling stares and sinister threats as season two progresses.