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Zach Galifianakis

Louie Anderson channels his mother for 'Baskets' role

Louie Anderson channels his mother for 'Baskets' role

Louie Anderson, the comic and author, is right now delivering one of the year’s great performances on “Baskets,” a melancholy FX comedy about a bitter man in search of beauty. That is Chip Baskets, played by series co-creator Zach Galifianakis, whose training in French artistic clowning has taken him no further than a rodeo in Bakersfield. Anderson, 62, plays his mother, Christine.

Although he is a man playing a woman, there is no gimmickry or irony in Anderson’s portrayal. Christine is Chip’s critic and protector; her disappointment in him is just the flip side of her hopes for him. Though a lazier show might make her a monster, in...

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