Desktop Girl of the Week: Darby Stanchfield


That was all I could say last night when Darby Stanchfield made her appearance on "How I Met Your Mother" as Marissa Heller, the woman who may have lived in Ted's apartment prior to Ted and Marshall moving in. Stanchfield was drop dead gorgeous, and for the life of me, I couldn't place where I'd seen her before. Hell, to be honest, I couldn't even remember her name.

Well, the credits rolled at the end of the episode and I paused, and I still couldn't place the name "Darby Stanchfield", but I couldn't stop saying it either. Darby Stanchfield. I mean, she'd have to have a name like that, wouldn't she. Look at her. She's not a Jane Miller or an Anne Williams. Of course she's Darby Stanchfield. That might be the most awesome name of any Desktop Girl of the Week I've ever selected.

Once I finally stopped repeating her name (seriously, just say "Darby Stanchfield". It's fun to say, isn't it?) I hit up her IMDB page, and it turns out that Darby Stanchfield has been popping into my life on a regular basis.

I most recognized her from her guest appearance on "Castle", where she played Castle's ex-wife and Alexis's mother. She was amazingly beautiful in that episode too, and I'm 99.9% certain I did the same "wait for the credits and pause" thing to find out who she was back then. While it's unlikely that Marissa Heller will become a recurring character on HIMYM (though I'm rooting for her to be the mom... please... maybe?), she could definitely pop up again on a "Castle" episode in the future.

I can't say this with certainty, but it's likely that the first thing I saw Darby Stanchfield in was "Happy Anniversary", a Season 2 episode of "Angel". In that episode, a scientist named Gene was building a machine so he could freeze time and live forever in a perfect moment with his girlfriend Denise, who was about to break up with him. Darby Stanchfield played that girlfriend, and did so with incredible hotness. The fact that she was so far out of Gene's league is what made his quest so believable.

Of course, if you're not an "Angel", "Castle" or "How I Met Your Mother" fan, you may have seen Darby Stanchfield in her recurring role on CBS's short-lived series "Jericho" (I didn't) or in her most recent recurring role, as Helen Bishop -- Don and Betty Draper's neighbor -- on "Mad Men". It's hard for someone to stand out on "Mad Men", particularly when acting opposite January Jones for most of her scenes, but she does a solid job of doing so. However, Helen hasn't shown up on "Mad Men" since late in Season 2, so who knows if we'll see more Darby Stanchfield in the future.

The most amazing thing about Darby Stanchfield, besides her incredible looks (and beautiful red hair)? She's 39. I never would have guessed that based on seeing her last night on HIMYM. She doesn't look a day over 30. It must be that Alaskan air she grew up in. Whatever it is, I know I'm going to keep an eye out for more Darby Stanchfield guest appearances in the future.

As always with DGOW, I’ll provide a widescreen (1680x1050) image for downloading. If you want to see past DGOW, then just check the archive album.