Kinney says that, unlike Mimi,

"I get real quiet when I'm angry."

 

Kathy Kinney makes no secret about what is in her bag of

tricks: five shades of blue eye shadow, a

bottle of black liquid liner, false lashes,

scarlet blush, three shades of red lipstick

and (for cleaning purposes) a pack of

Chubs baby-bottom wipes. That cosmetic

concoction is what transforms the

amiable walk-on performance into a

regular role, "but they're always saying,

`You're such a pretty girl, Kathy. Why do you wear so much makeup?'

Because it works, of course. Sporting two islands of eye shadow that

nearly reach her hairline--and an attitude the size of Long Island--

Kinney plays a confrontational department-store assistant who is

coworker Carey's worst nightmare. The comic, combustive mix

between the supporting actress and the show's rumpled star has

turned Kinney into a fan mail target for everyone from Texas prison

inmates to New York City drag queens. It has also helped keep the

Wednesday night sitcom, now in its second season, in Nielsen's Top

20.

 

Kinney took to her war-painted character with gusto. In the second

episode, "I had to hand Drew this envelope, and as soon as I started to

hand it to him, I decided to cough on it," she says. "In that moment,

Mimi was born." Since then she has been impossible to ignore, telling

off coworkers with her trademark "bite me" retort while constantly

giving Carey the back of her hand and sometimes the bottom of her

boot.

 

The Only KathyKinney Goddess Page

PHOTO: Neal Preston/Outline