Jennifer Armstrong
November 23, 2007 AT 05:00 AM EST

John Slattery’s familiar gig

Bill Kelley
Sex and the City
The NYC politician who romanced Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker) ”could’ve been called Mr. Bigger,” says Slattery. One of her most famously kinky suitors (let’s just say he was mad about Carrie’s bladder), Slattery’s tenure was short-lived. ”The producers said they should’ve kept [Bill] around for a while. And I loved doing it. I’ve known Sarah forever, and we shot in my neighborhood.”

Dennis Martino
Slattery’s cool cockiness makes him a natural third in romantic triangles, most memorably as the no-nonsense high school principal who almost stole away Carol (Julie Bowen), Ed’s true love. ”Yeah, I play the d— head who spoils everything, then leaves,” Slattery sighs. ”But it’s perfect for somebody with a short attention span. Signing on to an open-ended TV show scares me.”

Victor Lang
Desperate Housewives
Mayor Lang’s official powers wooed Gabrielle (Eva Longoria Parker), but Slattery has flexed his political muscle many times before. Besides his role on SATC, he also played Walter Mondale in the miniseries From the Earth to the Moon and a political consultant on K Street. ”They see you do one thing and think, ‘That guy can play a politician!”’ he says. ”It has nothing to do with me. I am not a leader of men.”

Roger Sterling
Mad Men
He plays the womanizing, boozing ad-firm boss, but had auditioned for the part of up-and-comer Don Draper (Jon Hamm). ”I was like, ‘What? You want me to play the old guy?”’ But now he likes his complicated character so much that he’s ruing AMC’s short, 13-episode seasons. (He’ll be back for season 2.) ”I finally find a [role] I want to keep playing,” he says, ”and it ends so quickly.”

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