The League is an American sitcom that aired on FX and later FXX from October 29, 2009 to December 9, 2015 for a total of seven seasons. The series, set in Chicago, Illinois, is a semi-improvised comedy show about a fantasy football league, its members, and their everyday lives.
The league creators jeff schaffer and jackie marcus schaffer on writing sitcoms seinfeld curb
Set in Chicago, the series revolves around six friends who participate in a fantasy football league. The show followed the friends, who would do anything to win, while also dealing with a variety of situations that occurred in their everyday lives.
Mark Duplass as Peter "Pete" Eckhart: Three-time league champion who separates from his wife Meegan (Leslie Bibb) in the pilot episode. Several episodes revolve around his interaction with women. Pete is known for tricking his gullible friends (particularly Taco and Andre) into making poor fantasy football trades (called "trade rapes"). He works in a cubicle in sales, avoiding doing actual work as much as possible, though in the Season 5 episode "The Automatic Faucet," he declares he is done with fantasy football and focuses solely on work - except for when he helps his boss set his fantasy football lineup, which actually earns him a promotion. He creates, and is commissioner of, the "Sacko", the "worst-team" trophy created during the episode "The Reunion". He still holds the North Winnetka High School pole-vault record. He once got a "Fear Boner" when he went to pick up Bears tickets from a man he met in the park.
Stephen Rannazzisi as Kevin MacArthur: An assistant district attorney, Kevin is the league commissioner from Seasons 1–3 as well as Pete's best friend. He returns to commissioner in season 5. Because he has difficulty competing in the league on his own, he often takes football knowledge from his wife, Jenny, for which the rest of the League teases him incessantly. Jenny eventually joins the league herself after Ruxin's brother-in-law Rafi leaves the league. At the beginning of the series, has never won the Shiva, the award given to the league winners (named after Shivakamini Somakandarkram: a high school classmate to whom Kevin lost his virginity). In college, he got a "Fear Boner" when somebody asked for directions who he thought was going to mug him. Kevin wins in the finale of Season 3, however the entire season is declared null by Ruxin due to collusion and lies, until Kevin agrees to give Ruxin the role of commissioner and let him have naming rights to his newborn. Kevin has been highnotized (hypnotized under the influence of marijuana) by his brother Taco. His best friend, Pete, and his wife, Jenny, have also similarly programmed him using dog-training techniques. Kevin has a young daughter named Ellie whose foul mouth comes from her parents, and a son born in Season 4's first episode and named Chalupa Batman by his Uncle Taco, but renamed Christopher Benjamin by his parents in the next episode. Rafi, Ruxin's brother-in-law, constantly calls him 'Brian' instead of Kevin.
Nick Kroll as Rodney Ruxin: A Jewish product-liability attorney, he is just as ruthless and obnoxious in the league as he is in the courtroom. He "out-kicked his coverage" with his wife, and therefore goes to great lengths to please her. He is constantly torn between his need to please his wife and his desire to crush his league opponents. In many episodes, and all of Season 3, Ruxin is extremely paranoid, often thinking that his opponents are "trying to get into his head," or that other members of the league are "in collusion" to cheat him, but his paranoid hunches have been correct on at least two occasions, in "Expert Witness" and "The Lockout". In the episode "The Bounce Test", he describes his own appearance: "I look like a Nazi propaganda cartoon of a Jew." He and Sofia have a son named Geoffrey ("Baby Geoffrey"). He hates being called by his first name, Rodney, preferring to be called Ruxin; his sister Rebecca (Lizzy Caplan) calls him the "Rod-man," and Taco sometimes calls him "Ruspin," two nicknames he finds equally unfavorable. He wins the league championship at the end of season 2. In high school, he had a reputation for dating large women, giving him the nickname "The Herdsman". He inherited his sarcastic nature from his father Rupert (Jeff Goldblum), who also prefers to be called Ruxin. After catching Kevin in his "clown car of lies", he declares Season 3 to be null and void and claims himself as winner via default, after miraculously healing (upon catching sight of Shiva) from the after-effects of a stress-induced stroke from discovering the collusion. He then agrees that the events of Season 3 of the television show—Season 7 of the league itself-—would count in exchange for becoming the new league commissioner and for the naming rights to Kevin and Jenny's newborn, the latter of which he trades to Taco for his #1 draft pick. He is commissioner only in season 4. Ruxin is a graduate of Northwestern University.
Paul Scheer as Dr. Andre Nowzick: A bald, rich plastic surgeon whose naïveté makes him the brunt of many jokes. He wears what he believes to be trendy clothing, for which he is mercilessly mocked by his friends. He tries to be cool by using current slang, particularly the jargon of hip-hop culture, but he is constantly rebuked by his friends and others, such as professional football player Chad Johnson. Andre wins the Shiva at the end of Season 1 after entering a committed relationship with Shivakamini Somakandarkram (the namesake of the league trophy). In the Season-2 premiere, Andre renames the trophy "the Dre" which is quickly renamed by the rest of the crew as "the SheDre" (A hybrid of "Shiva" and "Dre"). The worship of a false god in "the Dre" results in bad luck, which is nicknamed "Draids". His Draids result in the worst record in the league and he quickly falls from first to worst. As the recipient of the Sacko, he is subject to innumerable punishments ranging from embarrassing to cruel. For instance, in the third season, he is locked out of his apartment while Dirty Randy (Seth Rogen) creates a low-budget porno based loosely on Andre's life. Andre's sister Heather (Sarah Silverman) has had sex with everyone in the league except Andre, Jenny, and Ruxin. Andre was engaged to his interior decorator Trixie Von Stein (Jayma Mays) but their marriage is ruined by the other members of the league. Andre also starts a wine bar known as Menage a Cinq with Russell, another member of the league, but this fails when Russell's sex addiction breaks out and he has sex with Manchego cheese. In season 7, Andre begins dating, and then later marries, Pete's ex-wife Meegan.
Jon Lajoie as Taco MacArthur: Kevin's younger brother, a perpetually stoned, unemployed musician. He doesn't care or know much about football, evident by his attempts to draft Canadian football players and his tendency to draft placekickers. He has won the league championship at least once in 2006, evident by his handwritten name on the trophy. He hooks up with women easily, and lives via handouts from his brother Kevin and "Eskimo family tree" (people who have slept with women he has slept with), making his own food (thousand-year-old eggs) and making his own personal hygiene products, such as deodorant. He also makes ringtones (Horse Orgasm or, "Horsegasm"). For one episode, Taco takes martial arts, specializing in use of a naginata (a long pole with a blade at the end) and studies of naginatajutsu. He means well but his acts of kindness usually have disastrous results. He is perhaps the most emotional member of the league, prone to crying when his feelings are hurt. In the unrated version of season 1, Ruxin claimed that the reason Taco is such a "frittata" is because they made him smoke marijuana when he was 8. Between seasons 2 and 3, Taco travels around the world and becomes a soap opera star in Algeria where he plays a stupid American. Taco enjoys keeping bongs (which he calls "guest bongs") in all of his friends' houses for him to use. In season 4, it is revealed that he owns the domain name dallascowboys.com, which Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones buys for $250,000. In Season 5 he turns his dead uncle's van into multiple unsuccessful small businesses. It is also revealed that when he is not high he is actually very intelligent, probably the most intelligent member of the League. In season 6, his Eskimo-Brother DataBase ends up making him a lot of money and he starts other business ventures after Mark Cuban buys it from him for 1.1 million dollars.
Katie Aselton as Jenny MacArthur (née Banger): Kevin's wife, who helps him run his team and has as much enthusiasm for the league as the actual members do during season 1. When Kevin loses a bet to Pete in Season 1, Jenny is forced to streak since she is clearly the manager for Kevin's team. In season 2, Jenny wants her own team for the league, but the members vote to give the vacant spot to Ruxin's brother-in-law Rafi; angered, Jenny seeks revenge by helping Ruxin draft instead. She is introduced into the league during that same season to replace Rafi and eventually loses to Ruxin's team in the Shiva Bowl. Her foul mouth is well equal to Kevin's and their daughter Ellie is already taking after them. At the end of Season 3, she tells Kevin that their second child is on the way. She gives birth to a baby boy in the Season-4 premiere. She defeats Andre in Season 5's Shiva Bowl.
Nadine Velazquez as Sofia Ruxin, Ruxin's Latina wife. She is good friends with Taco—Ruxin's only friend with whom she gets along. Died in preparation for vaginal rejuvenation in Puerto Rico.
Jason Mantzoukas as Rafi, Sofia's deranged, obnoxious brother, aka "Bro-lo el Cuñado". Best friend and possible lover of porn director Dirty Randy. He shared a bed with Sofia until she was 18. He was an altar boy as a child, but had to quit after he raped a priest. He always calls Pete "Tall Guy" and believes Kevin's name is Brian. His residence has a large number of "load-bearing chairs" stacked up and has a "toilet-kitchen". Rafi stores a never-ending supply of hotdogs in his pants, referring to them as "pocket-dogs". He is a diabetic. He gets "murder boners" when practicing his MMA skills and gets a "War Boner" when playing paintball. He thinks that he is Baby Geoffrey's true father. Occasionally he has suggested that he and Sofia shared an incestuous relationship in the past (not directly denied by Sofia). Many times when he vomits, he defecates. Many times when he defecates, he orgasms. Ruxin's sarcasm led him to take on the role of Bobbum Man in real life. He is apparently killed by Dirty Randy in a duel. In Season 6's "When Rafi Met Randy," it is revealed Rafi was once a normal family man until Randy's business partner fell to his death on top of Rafi's wife and two sons, killing them all. After numerous suicide attempts, Rafi was checked into a mental asylum along with Randy. An over-zealous nurse subjected them both to shock therapy that would alter their minds to their deranged state. Randy revealed that he was responsible for the deaths of Rafi's family only for Rafi to be subjected to a partial lobotomy that made him forget them completely. It is also revealed how Rafi was returned to life via special means.
Alina Foley as Ellie MacArthur, Jenny and Kevin's young daughter. She has inherited her parents' profane language, which got her in trouble with her first grade teacher, Ms. Martin.
Janina Gavankar as Shivakamini Somakandarkram, a doctor who was the valedictorian of most of the league members' graduating high-school class. She is a urologist, specializing in genital reconstruction. Usually appears on the penultimate or season finales of the season, given that she is the "patron deity" of their league's trophy. They each present an item to the trophy, which contains a high-school photo of her. The only odd-episode-out is "The High-School Reunion" where she was present with the league, revealing that Pete's mother's windshield wasn't busted by a high-school friend, but rather by Kevin when he lost his virginity to Shiva. Shiva cursed the 2012 season of the league because they would not take her picture off the trophy. She also dated Andre towards the end of season 1.
Adam Karchmer as Geoffrey Ruxin, Ruxin and Sofia's son. Ruxin calls him "Baby Geoffrey".
Rob Huebel as Dr. Russell Deramo, a doctor and friend of the gang. He first appears in "The Draft", where he attends Andre's party. He returns in "The Kluneberg", where it is revealed that he moved to New York, but returned saying New York was too crowded and too full of "crazy people". He later reveals that he is a sex addict, and invites Jenny to join his league. He later replaces her with Rafi, allowing her to join the league. In Season 5, he is a member of Rafi's Domination League with "Dirty Randy". He is introduced into the league in Season 6 as a replacement for Ted.
Leslie Bibb as Meegan Eckhart, Pete's abrasive ex-wife. They fought constantly. After she gave away his lucky draft shirt, Pete realized that they were not meant to be together and they separated. They finalized the divorce, and she was left with only the house. She had requested their Benjamin Button DVD, presumably knowing that it contained a disc with a sex video she had made with Pete, but Pete had already sneaked into her house and stolen it, aided by Kevin; Pete never gives it back. She was later seen dating an older man named Ted. She returns in season 7, where it is revealed that she is now dating Andre, whom she later marries.
Seth Rogen as Dirty Randy – Rafi's friend, who works as a librarian and a pornographer. The reason he works at the library is for the infrastructure and says "it's a place where you can find desperate people and you can pay them in drugs and alcohol to work as part of the porn-production team." Before he was a porn director, he was homeless, kicked out of the military, a crack dealer, and a porn-location scout. He met Rafi in an asylum, an experience he describes as "very romantic". He believes that puns "are as vital to the porn business as they are to the pet shop and children's barbershop industries." He directed such movies as the controversial "Shitler's List" (the controversy was that it was shot in black and white), "Toe-Bangers 3" (The SEAL Team-Six member who shot Bin Laden found a copy of it in the compound, but the Government will not release the footage), "Dr. Andre Nodick," and "12.12.12: The Mayan Cockandlips" (filmed in the loft Deion Sanders bought from Andre). In Season 5, he is also a member of Rafi's "Domination League". He threatens Ruxin with a trident made from dildos. In Season 6's "When Rafi Met Randy," Randy is revealed to have been a successful businessman who accidentally knocked his partner off a construction building where the man crushed the family of a then-normal Rafi. The two were committed to the same mental institution where numerous shock therapy sessions resulted in their deranged states. When Randy realized he was responsible for the deaths of Rafi's family, he used another shock session to make him forget about them.
Brie Larson as Ashley, Baby Geoffrey's former au pair. She was hired partially due to her good looks. Pete quickly begins sleeping with her, which causes her to neglect her au-pair duties. Ruxin wants to fire her, but she ends up extorting him, threatening to tell Sofia that he was masturbating to her photo (he was actually wiping pee off his pants) unless he continues to pay her for doing nothing. In order to get her to quit, Ruxin enlisted Rafi to hit on her, which ends up backfiring when she brings Rafi into bed with her and Pete to do the "Golden Gate Bridge". Rafi eventually talks her into quitting and moving in with him, which is in Ruxin's home.
Ike Barinholtz as Frank "The Body" Gibiatti – Ruxin's high school rival. His sister, Gina Gibiatti, 'dated' Pete for a while. The Body gave (and still does give) the guys a hard time.
Jayma Mays as Trixie – Andre's interior decorator, then fiancée. She is allergic to his semen. She breaks off the engagement after discovering the Secret Draft on her wedding weekend, then blinding herself with Andre's semen-filled pee-bib while crying. At the end Taco calls her Pixie instead of Trixie.
Will Forte as Chuck – One of the league's two out-of-town members, a recovering alcoholic. Has the nickname, "Two-Nut Chuck". In the Season-5 premiere it is mentioned that he is in rehab again. In the Season-7 premiere it is revealed that he has testicular cancer.
Brooke Nevin as Lily—Kevin's co-worker and for a brief moment, Taco's girlfriend. Referred to by Kevin as a "goody-two-shoes".
Janet Montgomery as Ambrosia – Las Vegas stripper who has a vast knowledge in fantasy football.
Lake Bell as Brooke – Pete's girlfriend, and Kevin's ex-girlfriend. Nicknamed "The White Knuckler".
Alison Becker as Darcy - A practicing Wiccan Pete went out with on Halloween.
Jamey Sheridan as Ted – Meegan's new, significantly older boyfriend who has a heart attack at Ruxin's anniversary party.
Michael Hitchcock as Ed - A man Pete meets in the park. He offers Pete Bears tickets and gives him a Fear Boner because Pete thought he was gay, although he had a wife and a son.
Alia Shawkat as April – A courtroom artist and Taco's girlfriend.
Martin Starr as Stu Pompeu – Pete's high school rival, nicknamed "Box of Frogs". Pete believed that Stu broke his mom's car's window, (although it was actually Kevin and Shiva.) Stu offered Pete a high paying job, but Pete got revenge on him.
Lindsay Sloane as Lindsey Martin - Ellie's teacher who is also dating Pete. Breaks Pete's penis because of her constant kegel exercises.
Desi Lydic as Waitress—-Briefly hooked up with Peter during "The Marathon" episode.
Ray Liotta as Mr. Hudabega – Ruxin's boss, a germaphobe.
Keegan-Michael Key as Steve (Carmenjello) – A janitor Andre attempts to befriend after unintentionally upsetting him by calling him "Carmenjello," thinking that was his name, but finds out that it is the name of the janitorial service for which he works. Kevin takes a picture of skin and says "it's the perfect shade of cinnamon" which also offends him.
Sarah Silverman as Heather Nowzick – Andre's promiscuous sister. She has slept with Taco, Kevin, and Pete, as well as Ruxin's father.
Andre – "The Double Ent-Andres" (formerly "The Ooh, Ruxin Got Serveds", "The I Had Allergies", "The Twilight Breaking Dawn-dres" and "The James B-Andres") (replaces unknown 8th member in 2007)
Kevin – "Too Hot to Handle" (formerly "The Ruxin Looks Like a Middle-Aged Lesbians", "The Fighting MacArthurs", and "The Pleasures of Andre's Sister")
Pete – "The Shit Heads" (formerly "3-Pete")
Ruxin – "Jenny Top/Kevin Bottom" (formerly "Pete Top/Kevin Bottom", "The Kevin's Micro Dongs", "The MacArthur's Crotch Nubbs", "The Andre Cried While Watching "Jumanjis"", and "The Fear Boners")
Taco – "Password is Taco" (formerly "The Encino Men")
Vince (drops out in 2010)
Rafi (replaces Vince in 2010)
Jenny – "The Lady MacArthurs" (replaces Rafi midway through 2010)
Chuck – "Stephen Hawking's Cleats"—Out-of-town player
Ted – "The Balls Deeper"—Out-of-town player (dies in 2014)
Russell - "Seabiscuit Rip" -- (replaces Ted in 2014)
The Coin - (replaces Chuck in 2015)
BOLD means current league member.
– ‡ The Sacko Bowl was not introduced until the sixth season of league play or season two of the actual TV show. Whoever loses the Sacko Bowl wins the Sacko trophy, meaning they came in last place.
– ** Andre won the Shiva bowl in 2009 with the help of Ruxin, whose name is with Andre's on the trophy.
- † Taco "Won" the Sacko the first season, but it was overruled after the points had been counted, meaning that Andre was the first to win the Sacko, which started the trend "first to worst".
- * Due to Ruxin discovering the league colluded to keep him from getting the top draft pick and because he won the Sacko, Kevin was stripped of his championship and the 2011 season of The League was declared null and void, to be sent off by a Norse funeral. However, before the 2012 season, Kevin got his championship reinstated by trading his role as commissioner to Ruxin along with naming rights to his and Jenny's son. Ruxin did not receive Sacko punishment because his stroke, induced by discovery of the collusion, was seen as punishment enough. Ruxin later traded the naming rights to Taco in exchange for Taco's first round draft pick. Jenny gives birth to their son, and Taco announces the name, "Chalupa Batman MacArthur", which was quickly changed to "Christopher Benjamin". Later in season 5, it was referenced that Kevin earned his commissioner role back.
- § Ruxin failed to press the "Set Lineup" button before the first game of the week started, so Andre won by default.
- Note: Playoff format doesn't reseed.
The Shiva is the name of the trophy given annually to the winner of the fantasy football league. The award is named after Shivakamini Somakandarkram, their high school valedictorian to whom Kevin lost his virginity in Pete's mother's car while listening to Aerosmith.
When the series was given a pilot order several roles were cast, with Mark Duplass playing Pete Eckhart, Stephen Rannazzisi playing Kevin MacArthur, Nick Kroll playing Rodney Ruxin, Paul Scheer playing Andre Nowzick, Jon Lajoie playing Taco MacArthur and Katie Aselton playing Jenny MacArthur.
The League was given a series order on August 20, 2009 with six episodes. A second 13-episode season of The League premiered on September 16, 2010 on FX. On January 15, 2011, it was announced that the series had been picked up for a third season, which premiered on October 6, 2011.
On December 13, 2011, the series was renewed for a fourth season of 13 episodes which premiered on October 11, 2012.
On December 20, 2012, the series was renewed for a fifth season of 13 episodes and premiered on September 4, 2013 on the new FXX network.
On March 28, 2013, it was announced that The League was renewed for a sixth season which premiered on September 3, 2014.
On December 8, 2014, it was announced that the seventh season of The League, which premiered on September 9, 2015, would be the final season of the series.
Seasons 1, 2, 3, and 4 were also released on Blu-ray Disc in Region 1.