The Russian Doll cast features Natasha Lyonne, Charlie Barnett and Greta Lee. This info article contains minor spoilers and character details for Leslye Headland, Natasha Lyonne and Amy Poehler’s Netflix series. Check out more streaming guides in Vague Visages’ Know the Cast section.
Russian Doll follows Nadia Vulvokov, a New Yorker who gets trapped in a time loop. She bonds with a fellow lost soul, Alan, and investigates a way to resolve their existential conflict. The drama escalates in season 2 as Nadia finds a subway portal to 1982 and then makes her way to World War II-era Budapest. Meanwhile, Alan explores his sexuality while walking the streets of 1962 East Berlin in his grandmother’s body. Here’s every main performer and character in Russian Doll.
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Russian Doll Cast: Natasha Lyonne as Nadia Vulvokov
Character Profile: A New York City software engineer who tries to close a time loop in season 1. She finds a portal in season 2 and walks around 1982 Manhattan in her mother’s body. Nadia also explores her Hungarian heritage in a 1940s Budapest timeline and ultimately returns to the Big Apple with her baby self.
Lyonne’s Resume: Vivian in Slums of Beverly Hills (1998), Megan in But I’m a Cheerleader (1999), Jessica in American Pie (1999), Nicky Nichols in Orange Is the New Black (2013-19), Suzette in Big Mouth (2018-21)
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Russian Doll Cast: Charlie Barnett as Alan Zaveri
Character Profile: Nadia’s friend, a depressed man trapped in a time loop. He kills himself in season 1 and then reawakens on the worst day of his life. Alan takes over his grandmother’s body during a 1960s Germany timeline, in which he develops romantic feelings for a male revolutionary.
Barnett’s Resume: Ken Lee/Prince Escalus in Private Romeo (2011), Peter Mills in Chicago P.D. (2014-15), Gabe in You (2019), Ben Marshall in Tales of the City (2019), Eric Payne in Ordinary Joe (2021)
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Russian Doll Cast: Greta Lee as Maxine
Character Profile: Nadia’s life-long best friend. She’s a performance artist who possesses unique trivia knowledge. Maxine travels to 1982 Budapest in season 2 and tries to hook up with the grandson of a Nazi captain.
Lee’s Resume: Kai in New Girl (2014-15), Ruby in Wayward Pines (2015-16), Hae-Won in Sisters (2015), Amy Lee in Money Monster (2016), Stella Bak in The Morning Show (2021)
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Russian Doll Cast: Rebecca Henderson as Lizzy
Character Profile: Nadia and Maxine’s friend. She’s an artist who offers life advice and emotional support. Lizzy appears sporadically in season 2.
Henderson’s Resume: Anna in Mistress America (2015), Goldberg in Westworld (2018), Dr. Ellis in Werewolves Within (2021), ADA Catherine McCaw in Inventing Anna (2022), Olivia in Single Drunk Female (2022)
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Russian Doll Cast: Elizabeth Ashley as Ruth Brenner
Character Profile: A New York City therapist who enjoys backgammon and Humphrey Bogart movies. She was a close friend of Nadia’s mother in the past. Ruth offers advice to Nadia and gets sick in season 2.
Ashley’s Resume: Andrea Glassen in Windows (1980), Dallas in Stagecoach (1986), Freida Evans in Evening Shade (1990-94), Diane Freed in Happiness (1998), Aunt Mimi in Treme (2010-13)
Russian Doll Cast: Annie Murphy as Young Ruth Brenner
Character Profile: A younger version of Ruth in a 1982 timeline. She first appears in season 2. Young Ruth is a smoker who unknowingly hangs out with Nadia (who takes over the body of her mother, Nora).
Murphy’s Resume: Jill in Blue Mountain State (2010), Alexis Rose in Schitt’s Creek (2015-20), Morgan in The Plateaus (2015), Angela in Crank Yankers (2021), Allison McRoberts in Kevin Can F**k Himself (2021), Herself in Murderville (2022)
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Russian Doll Cast: Sharlto Copley as Chez
Character Profile: Nadia’s father, a con artist. He shows up in season 2 during the 1982 timeline. Chez impregnates Nora and tries to steal a bag of Krugerrands.
Copley’s Resume: Wikus Van De Merwe in District 9 (2009), Murdock in The A-Team (2010), Chappie in Chappie (2015), Jimmy in Hardcore Henry (2015), William Sawyer in The Last Days of American Crime (2020)
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Russian Doll Cast: Chloë Sevigny as Lenora Vulvokov
Character Profile: Nadia’s mother. She first appears in season 1 and has a more prominent role in the second installment. Nora gets pregnant in 1982 Manhattan; Nadia takes over her body and investigates their bloodline.
Sevigny’s Resume: Lana Tisdel in Boys Don’t Cry (1999), Jean in American Psycho (2000), Nicolette Grant in Big Love (2006-11), Sarah Wilson in We Are Who We Are (2020), Lynn Roy in The Girl from Plainville (2022)
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The Russian Doll cast also includes Jeremy Bobb (The Knick, The Outsider), Ritesh Rajan (Star Wars: Rebels, Stitchers), Yul Vazquez (The Outsider, Severance), Brendan Sexton III (Boys Don’t Cry, El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie) and Dascha Polanco (Orange Is the New Black, In the Heights).
Q.V. Hough (@QVHough) is Vague Visages’ founding editor.