Because do I really have to explain?
On to the battle!
(Seriously, I don’t think I really have to explain.)
Physicality. If you put Benedict Cumberbatch and Simon Pegg in a room together and told me I could only have one of them, I would curl up on the floor in the fetal position and weep, unable to choose. In the end, though, I’d remember how much I love really tall men, and take the modern-day Sherlock home with me. (I’d put him on my collectibles shelf, of course.) Winner? Benedict Cumberbatch, by virtue of being taller than Simon Pegg. Er, I mean, Sherlock Holmes.
Loves his work more than anything else, except for one special person? Sherlock Holmes lives for the thrill of solving crimes, the more interesting the better. He doesn’t much care for the human race (like, who does, right, bunch of 50 Shades of Grey-loving bastards that they are anyway), except for his bestest buddy of all: Dr. John “Hobbit” Watson. Sgt. Nicholas Angel doesn’t exactly live for the thrill of solving crime, but he sure enjoys everything being all neat and orderly and, you know, solved. He got dumped by his fiancee because he loved his job more than her, and was destined to a life of lonely police work until he met that one special person, Danny Butterman. Winner? It’s a tie.
Is more badass? Until Sherlock Holmes bends a fire poker with his bare hands on Sherlock, I wait with bated breath for an action sequence better than the ones in the second episode of Season 1. On the other hand, Sgt. Nicholas Angel can do flips over fences and all sorts of wonderful stuff and I love him soooooo much! Winner? It’s a tie
Now please enjoy one of my favorite movie scenes ever:
Knows how to drive? I have seen no evidence that Sherlock Holmes knows how to drive, what with most incarnations of him living before there were such things as “cars,” and his most current incarnation taking cabs everywhere (I mean, if they even call them cabs in London, right? Ha, ha, ha, those funny Brits). Sgt. Nicholas Angel, though, can drive, and often does so. Winner? Sgt. Nicholas Angel.
Flips his coat lapel up frequently? You know who does such a thing frequently? Sherlock Holmes frequently does such a thing. I’m not sure Sgt. Nicholas Angel’s coat even has lapels. This doesn’t seem fair at all. Winner? Sherlock Holmes.
Defeats an evil cabal of town elders? Unfortunately for Sherlock Holmes, London is much too large to be under the control of an evil cabal of town leaders, which is a shame, because I think he’d have fun with that. Sgt. Nicholas Angel, however, SPOILER ALERT I guess, totally does defeat an evil cabal of town elders. And then the jail explodes. Winner? Sgt. Nicholas Angel.
Is a bit, shall we say, nit-picky? Sherlock Holmes once traveled all the way to, I don’t know, Belarus or someplace, to correct a criminal on the proper tense of death by hanging. However, Sgt. Nicholas Angel carries two pens with him at all times, God I love him, and insists on calling cops police officers and does all sorts of stuff by the book, because he is the best and I love him. Winner? It’s a tie.
Faked his own death? Sherlock Holmes faked the hell out of his own death, what with pretending he’d died in a plummet from Reichenbach Falls and all, fooling the world, his own best friend, and all of Arthur Conan Doyle’s readers. Mostly this is because Sir Doyle really did kill off Holmes, and retconned him back into existence, but faked his own death it is! Sgt. Nicholas Angel didn’t actually fake his own death, but he pretended to be dead when Danny stabbed him, so that kind of counts, right? Winner? It’s a tie!
The ultimate, tie-breaking question: Who has a cuter sidekick/BFF? Awww, jeez, this is rough. I mean, Dr. John Watson is so Martin Freeman-y, what with the cute blonde hair and that face — but Danny Butterman is the adorable Nick Frost, who is just so cute and I love him and I can’t decide!!! Winner? It’s a tie-ish?
Um, overall winner? Hah, I’m just kidding. The winner is Sherlock Holmes, because he always wins these things.
So the other night I went on a bit of a Billy Idol kick, listening White Wedding, Rebel Yell, Eyes Without a Face and even Cradle of Love, and then I thought: “Huh, whatever happened to that guy, anyway? Also, does he still sneer, like, all the time?”
So I decided to do a little research today, otherwise known as typing the words “Billy” and “Idol” into Google and reading the stuff that came up. Sherlock Holmes would be so proud of me.
Anyway, I learned many things about Billy Idol, like that he totally isn’t dead, which kind of surprised me, and that his real name isn’t Billy Idol, which kind of didn’t surprise me at all.
Billy Idol was born on Nov. 30, 1955, as William Michael Albert Broad, a more British name you couldn’t possibly find anywhere. I mean, there’s at least two princes thrown in that name and possibly a third, but I don’t pay much attention to the monarchy, so who knows? (Other people, that’s who.) Apparently, he came up with the moniker “Idol” after a teacher described him as “idle,” which sounds a bit like bullshit to me, because they have two completely different meanings and it seems like he would know the one is closer to “superstar” than “gadabout.” Also, I just used the word “gadabout.”
At age 2, Idol moved with his family to New York, but after four years, they moved back to England, probably because American kids mercilessly bullied a boy named “William Michael Albert.” Back in England, Idol attended the Ravensbourne School for Boys, which sounds like it has got to be covered in ivy and possibly the blood of whipped English boys. After finishing up at the School for Boys, Idol went on to major in English at the University of Sussex, but dropped out after a year to pursue his true calling: Stalking the Sex Pistols.
In 1976, Idol joined Siouxsie and the Banshees, which wasn’t called that at the time, but Wikipedia didn’t seem to know what it was called, so that’s as good as you’re going to get. Unless you’re friends with Siouxsie Sioux; then she can tell you. So apparently, Idol had some musical experience by that point or, possibly, like many of my friends who started punk bands in their late teens, a guitar from a pawn shop. Idol didn’t last long in the band with no name, and went on to join Chelsea (a band I have actually not heard of before) in 1977. Shortly thereafter, Idol and a bandmate left that band and started Generation X, beating out Douglas Copeland by several years.
Generation X released three albums, which is three more than I knew existed, before disbanding, and Idol embarked on his solo career. By this point, he had moved back to New York, because schoolchildren don’t make fun of a guy named Billy Idol (probably).
1981 brought Idol’s cover of Mony Mony, which I hope brings up as many bad junior high gym class memories for you as it does for me and if it doesn’t, have I got a stupid dance to teach you! Anyway, Mony Mony, the bane of junior high students everywhere, was actually quite popular (if horrible), and paved the way for much better work, like those songs I mentioned earlier and can’t be arsed to type the names of again, except Eyes Without a Face, just to point out it was on the penultimate episode of Fringe’s fourth season as elevator music right before the nanites started killing everyone.
On Feb. 6, 1990, Idol was out riding his motorcycle and ignoring stop signs when he got hit by a car. Wikipedia describes the incident as a “motorcycle accident,” but anyone with a journalism background who has seen Hot Fuzz knows that is a “wreck ” for sure. Anyway, the wreck nearly cost Idol his leg and definitely cost him his role as the T-1000 in Terminator 2, which is OK, because I can’t imagine anybody but Robert Patrick playing that role anyway.
In 1998, Idol had a cameo in The Wedding Singer (theme song: White Wedding, of course), back when we all still wanted Adam Sandler’s characters to find love and be happy. Also, he had a small part in the movie The Doors, which probably happened before The Wedding Singer, like playing with former Pink Floydian Roger Waters at Berlin in 1990.
At this point, Idol didn’t drop off the face of the earth, like I kind of thought, but made an experimental album in 1993 called Cyberpunk, because it was made on a computer, I guess, so why not call it that?
In 2000, Idol voiced the character of Odin in the animated film Heavy Metal 2000, which disappoints me because Odin is not the classic Norse god I was expecting, but is actually, like, an alien or something.
And this post is getting long, so brief highlights:
- 2005: Idol released Devil’s Playground. I haven’t heard of it either, so don’t feel bad.
- November 2006: Idol released a Christmas album called Happy Holidays. That makes me unhappy, for various reasons.
- June 24, 2008: A new greatest hits album is released, “Idolize Yourself,” because how did it take him 50 years to make that joke?
- I’m tired of typing now.
To wrap things up: Billy Idol! Listen to Rebel Yell right now! You know you want to!
Dear Nicholas Angel,
I love you.
I love everything about you.
From the way you leap over things to the way you do flips over things, I love you.
For your unerring accuracy with an air pistol, I love you.
For the way you carry two spare pens with you, I love you. For the way you ride white horses while loaded down with more artillery than I’ve ever seen in my life, I love you.
I love the way you’re ready and willing to do paperwork on all those people you’ve arrested. I love the way you insist on saying “police officer” instead of “policeman.”
I love the way you say “Yarb” when you’re fooling the bad guys.
I love the way you raise a Japanese peace lily only to use it for bashing in the head of the guy who says “Yarb.”
I love the way you rescue stray swans.
I love the way you say “collision” instead of “accident” because accident implies no one is at fault.
I love the way you wear a vest.
And I know that Danny Butterman is your soul mate, and that’s OK. I want you to know that I don’t mind.
I will totally take sloppy seconds.
So, me? Not a big fan of Scott Pilgrim.
I couldn’t understand it for the longest time. After all, all my friends liked it, and we all like Akira too. (Right, you guys? You like Akira too, right?) And then I finally figured it out: I’m a girl.
(Yes, I know that’s a news flash to the commentors who say I’m envious of Channing Tatum’s chest rather than lustful of. Or is it Tatum Channing? Shit, I can’t ever remember that guy’s name.)
Anyway, me: girl.
Scott Pilgrim: boys’ fantasy.
I’m probably the worst girl at being a girl ever, except for the lusting after hot actors thing and hating sports, I’m pretty boy-ish. Action films? Love them. Comic books? Adored! Video games? Errr, actually, they’re too complicated for me, but I’m sure if I had the time and the inclination, I would love them. Ladies? Think they’re gorgeous.
So why don’t I like boys’ fantasy Scott Pilgrim when I like Invincible and Chew and Arsenic Lullaby?
Because it’s the wrong kind of boys’ fantasy for me. Seriously, I have actually sat down and thought about this. (I was at work, so it’s OK.) Scott Pilgrim is the kind of comic book where two female characters (one of whom has a crush of Scott Pilgrim for some reason) get drunk and make out for no other reason than that’s what boys wish girls would do always. And that’s fine. It’s a boys’ fantasy book, I get that. It doesn’t mean I have to enjoy it, though.
That said, the stupid trailer looked really awesome and funny, probably because it is directed by the guy who directed one of my favorite love stories ever and the saddest zombie movie ever. (I don’t care what you people say; Shaun of the Dead is not a comedy. So! Tragic!!)
So now I kind of want to see it, and that really pisses me off.
Valentine’s week continues! And if there’s one thing I hate, it’s watching romantic movies. Also dramas. Actually, anything where something doesn’t blow up or get attacked by zombies occasionally. Or ninja. Attacked by ninja is also good.
So instead of a list of great romantic movies, I’m making a list of movies that aren’t romances, but have romance, but when you think about it, maybe they’re not so romantic after all.
1. The Terminator.
Why it’s romantic: John Connor sends his father back from the future to meet his mother, protect her from the big bad Terminator and also woo her. It’s a beautiful love story!
Oh, but wait: But the only reason John Connor did all that was so that he could be born and fight the machines in the future. Not so much to contribute to his mother’s great romance. It’s actually much less romantic and much more clinical, if you think about it.
Why it’s romantic: After Takeshi Kaneshiro and the time-traveling girl save the world, she comes back in time once more to save his life. There’s a tender goodbye scene when she goes back to her own time and even a transformation bit, where she looks cute in a skirt and new haircut.
Oh, but wait: Errr, the time traveling girl is probably 15 or so, and there’s never any actual overt romance shown between them, only a friendship. So, while it sounds like it borders on the nasty, it’s all completely innocent. I assume.
3. 12 Monkeys (I swear, this is the last entry in the time travel genre)
Why it’s romantic: Bruce Willis convinces Madeleine Stowe that he is a time traveler and that the future of the world is in jeopardy! Also, they fall in love.
Oh, but wait: Really, it sounds more like a rampant case of Stockholm Syndrome at work here. I mean, Bruce Willis just keeps kidnapping Madeleine Stowe. Also, he basically got her stuck in a time loop where she will keep witnessing his death. Also, he’s stuck in that time loop, where he witnesses his own death as a child. That’s not romantic at all, actually.
4. Death Note
Why it’s romantic: High school student Light Yagami’s girlfriend is kidnapped by Naomi Misora, who holds the girl hostage to prove that Light Yagami is the supernatural serial killer Kira. Light Yagami goes to save his girlfriend and prove his own innocence, and his girlfriend breaks free and runs to him. Naomi fires a wild shot, which Light’s girlfriend throws herself in front of to protect Light, and then dies in his arms, just as every teenage girl ever has dreamed of doing.
Oh, but wait: Actually, Light Yagami is the supernatural serial killer Kira, possessor of the Death Note, in which he wrote that his girlfriend would be struck and killed by a bullet at that exact time. So, she not only didn’t save his life, she was murdered by him. That’s, um, well, really goddamned evil.
5. X-Men 3
Why it’s romantic: With Cyclops out of the way, the romance between Jean Grey and Wolverine is free to bloom! And bloom it does, until she turns evil, and he is the only one who can stop her. Hey! Guess what? She dies in his arms. Totally romantic.
Oh, but wait: X-Men 3 was a really bad movie. Also, Cyclops is out of the way because Jean Grey killed him. Also, her hair is really nasty in the film.
Why it’s romantic: A man with anterograde amnesia is seeking revenge by tracking down his wife’s murderer. It’s love even after death! Even after brain damage! What. Could. Be. More. Romantic?
Oh, but wait: Actually, it turns out that amnesia guy’s wife survived the attack that gave him brain damage. And, in fact, he was the one that killed her by giving her an overdose of insulin. Which he didn’t remember doing, because anterograde amnesia is the kind where you can’t form any new memories, so any time you do something seems like the first time you did something. Also, he killed his wife’s rapist ages ago, and now he’s just randomly murdering people.
Why it’s romantic: Hey, right off the bat, Peter Parker tells us this is a story about a girl. A girl named Mary Jane Watson. That’s romantic! Plus it’s got the whole upside down kiss and he saves her life. Romantic.
Oh, but wait: Yeah, whatever, Peter Parker. “This is a story about a girl, by which I mean, I get bitten by a radioactive spider, my uncle dies and I fight a super-powered bad guy and there’s a girl in it briefly. Also, I dump her. Because I’m Spiderman.”
Why it’s romantic: Jimmy Stewart is hired to protect a beautiful woman and falls in love with her, and she with him. Tragically, she falls to her death. But the love story’s not over yet! After spending time in some sort of asylum, Jimmy Stewart comes across a girl on the street … who’s the spitting image of his lost love!
Oh, but wait: OK, this is when the crazy really starts. Jimmy Stewart takes this girl and remakes her in the image of the woman he lost. Also, it turns out the girl was actually the woman he loved and she still loves him, which is why she’s letting him make her dye her hair and wear dresses. Oh, and she’s actually the woman he loved because she was hired to impersonate the real woman for convoluted reason I can’t remember, and so she was involved in a conspiracy to murder that woman! Also, she falls to her death, and it’s totally Jimmy Stewart’s fault, so … not all that romantic.
9. Last Night
Why it’s romantic: Don McKellar, having trouble getting over his lost love (she died of cancer or something) meets a beautiful woman (Sandra Oh) and the movie ends with their passionate kiss.
Oh, but wait: Why is this movie called “Last Night”? Oh, because it’s the last night the earth will exist, you say? This is a movie about the end of the world, you say? That’s … well, it’s still kind of romantic, right? I mean, it ends with a kiss! Oh, Don McKellar meets Sandra Oh while she’s trying to return home to her husband? Who is brutally murdered by some kids who are terrified of the end of the world? And Sandra Oh and Don McKellar were going to shoot each other in the head before deciding to go for a kiss? That’s … less romantic. Yeah. A lot less.
10. Hot Fuzz
Why it’s romantic: A supercop is transferred to a small town in England, where he meets a slacker cop, helps him change his ways and fights a council of evil villagers, all while featuring some of the most longing gazes in the history of cinema ever.
Oh, but wait: So Simon Pegg and Nick Frost aren’t supposed to be falling in love in this movie? Look, seriously, people, are we sure? I mean, did you see those longing gazes??
So I finally got around to watching Hot Fuzz this weekend. Yeah, apparently it’s been out for two years or so. I’m busy! I’m a busy person! I’m so sorry! I should have watched it sooner! And also Shaun of the Dead! Please forgive me!!
At any rate, in between spasms of laughing my arse off, I noticed certain growing … feelings.
Could it be? I wondered. Is it a Christmas miracle?
Did my heart just GROW THREE SIZES?
Turned out, I just suddenly, inexplicably decided that the petite, slightly pasty, balding Simon Pegg was actually really hot.
I think it was all the leaping that did it. I mean, he leapt over things like mad in that film. He was leaping over things left and right. It was like, leap! And then leap! And then leap some more!
(Plus, and maybe I’m the only woman that feels this way, but there is nothing sexier than a British man on a white horse and he’s got more guns than a reasonable person would be outfitted with.)
(Also, and I didn’t know this until now, but he’s the inspiration for Garth Ennis’s “Wee Hughie” in “The Boys”? Kismet!)
Plus, the scenes between Simon and Nick Frost (who is also mysteriously hot, like, what the hell is up with me? Am I ovulating or something?) were really sweet, and I kept thinking they were going to kiss or something.
(Hot Fuzz is a love story, right?)
So let me leave you now with some pictures of Simon Pegg so that you, too, can see, boy is hot.