The Best Mark Wahlberg Impersonations — A Professional Opinion
What does Mark Wahlberg have in common with Jimmy Stewart, John Wayne, and Christopher Walken? Well, in addition to being fine actors, all are favorite subjects of impersonators. It’s easy to see why the star of the new Transformers movie — with his Boston accent, cocked head and piercing squint — is so fun to mimic.
We’ve rounded up the best-of-the-best Wahlberg impressions, and called on comedian Daniel Van Kirk (whose own sturdy Wahlberg-channelings can be seen on various YouTube videos and Doug Benson’s Doug Loves Movies podcast) to offer his expert judgment, via our Wahlberg-ized rating system:
(1) Max Payne-ful
(2) Some Pain, Some Gain!
(3) I Dirk Dig-It
(4) The Almost-Perfect Storm
1. Andy Samberg
"Say hi to your mother for me." It was on a popular Saturday Night Live sketch — “Mark Wahlberg Talks to Animals” — that Samberg forever stuck those words on Wahlberg’s back. (Who cares if the actor never uttered that line.)
Daniel Van Kirk Says: “Like the first guy who did a Christopher Walken impression, Sandberg kicked open the door for everybody else to follow. Slightly out of breath, raising his voice at the of the sentence, and getting high-pitched when he’s mad. Andy killed it.”
2. Ike Barinholtz
The comic actor does Wahlberg in the summer hit Neighbors, in our Q&A from SXSW, and while promoting Mindy Kaling’s book Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?
Daniel Van Kirk Says: “What Ike Barinholtz lacks in voice, he more than makes up for with the perfect squinty face and his humor. Ike is one of the funniest actors working today, with jokes like, ‘He’s not blood, he doesn’t count’ and ‘Go see this book.’ I could watch him do this character all day, even if the voice isn’t spot on.”