‘The Bear’ Season 2 Cameos, Explained: What Is Their Significance?

The second season of The Bear had some fantastic cameos that left the viewers surprised, delighted, and shocked by their presence. They slip into the narrative, and right from their first scene, they are a part of this world. These characters who play the cameos are related to Carmy personally and professionally, which makes them an important part of the narrative. They were, in a way, a catalyst that started the chain of events leading up to the opening night of The Bear.


Spoilers Ahead

John Mulaney

The sixth episode of The Bear was a chaotic hell that had a maximum number of cameos, and most of them were related to Mikey, Natalie, and Carmy. John Mulaney as Steven, Cousin Michelle’s boyfriend, was a part of the old Italian Christmas traditional dinner. As Steven, the actor had nothing much to offer in the entire setup, but just like other characters, he was a witness to the noise and the chatter leading up to the tumultuous dinner. Compared to other cameos, his only contribution to the entire episode was to say grace right before a full-blown spat erupted between Uncle Lee and Mikey on the dinner table. His familiarity with the vibe of the family proves that he had known them for a while, since he wasn’t surprised by any of what went down. This was an interesting cameo where the character was just an audience for the drama unfolding in front of him.


Joel McHale

This American actor made a cameo of a few seconds in season one as Carmy’s abusive boss, the Executive Chef at the restaurant in New York City. His character is not named in the show, but it is understood that all the pain of professionalism that Carmy carries within him is because of this man. While stuck in the walk-in, his panic attacks make him hallucinate his ex-boss at his restaurant, demonstrating Carmy still thinks about his verbal abuse, and wonders if the man was right. Joel McHale’s cameo also did have a startling impact on the narrative.

Sarah Paulson

Sarah Paulson, as Michelle Berzatto, Carmy’s cousin, is also aware of the family dynamics. Her demeanor throughout the dinner and her pointing out the fact that Donna is not okay is proof that she can sense the tension brewing. Michelle provided Carmy some contacts for if he ever plans to work in New York. This implies that Carmy did take up the offer to work, which led to a chain of events that made him move back to Chicago. Sarah Paulson leaves an impact on the lead protagonists. It was her way of offering to help Carmy get away from this madness. Her performance is endearing because she comes across as an empath.


Jamie Lee Curtis

Jamie Lee Curtis is unrecognizable as Donna; Carmy, Natalie, and Mikey’s mother. She is a ticking time bomb that explodes right in the middle of the Christmas dinner. Jamie’s performance in the sixth and last episode is one of the best cameos on screen because as Donna she brings complexities to the table. Her anxiety and manic-ridden episodes could be the reason for Natalie being calm and Carmy and Mikey being hyper all the time. By the looks of it, they thrive on chaos because of their mother. This cameo is a great performance and a valuable addition to the show. We hope to see more of her in the next season of The Bear.

Will Poulter

We get to see this amazing British actor in the ‘Honeydew’ episode directed by Ramy Youssef, where he is introduced as Luca, the Copenhagen-based pastry chef and a mentor to Marcus. As we get to know Luca, we see the love he has for his craft and how much he struggles to remain relevant in this field. There is a sense of intimacy in the manner in which he shares his stories with Marcus; it seems as if Marcus is absorbing the words Luca lets out. This was one of the most impressive cameos and left a profound impact on the viewers.


Bob Odenkirk

The loudest cameo in the show goes to Bob Odenkirk as Uncle Lee. It seems like the actor is good at playing characters that let him scream his lungs out. It would remind everyone of his cameo in How I Met Your Mother as Artillery Arthur, who loved screaming at his employees. In The Bear, the sentiments are different, as is the setting. As Uncle Lee, it is not implied if he is related to the family, but he knows a whole lot of them, especially Mikey. The argument between Mikey and Uncle Lee was filled with disrespect, humiliation, and honesty. Bob’s cameo is also scary because, as Uncle Lee, his honesty cuts through the tension, which leads to a chain of ugly meltdowns. Bob is excellent in this show. We know we will not be seeing him in the upcoming season doing a full fledged character, but we hope to get to see another stellar cameo such as this one.

Olivia Colman

We saved the best for last because this is a cameo nobody expected after seeing Jamie Lee Curtis, Bob Odenkirk, and Will Poulter being spectacular in their limited screen time. The writer of this show keeps impressing us by dropping such amazing cameos. This proves how popular this show has gotten, and it deserves to have such talented artists on board to play characters envisioned by Christopher Storer. Olivia Colman as Chef Terry has a calming effect on the confused and low-on-confidence Richie. Her conversation with Richie about not letting her age stop her from resuming her career is enlightening. A mental block is something that can be broken only by the individual, and Olivia, as Chef Terry, conveys that brilliantly. Her name is only mentioned early in the episode Forks, and everyone wonders if the Chef is arrogant. Chef Terry turned out to be a quaint person. Her simple yet profound words not only had an impact on Richie but also on viewers.

Smriti Kannan
Smriti Kannan
Smriti Kannan is a cinema enthusiast, and a part time film blogger. An ex public relations executive, films has been a major part of her life since the day she watched The Godfather – Part 1. If you ask her, cinema is reality. Cinema is an escape route. Cinema is time traveling. Cinema is entertainment. Smriti enjoys reading about cinema, she loves to know about cinema and finding out trivia of films and television shows, and from time to time indulges in fan theories.

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