Friday, December 05, 2008

Does taste mature?

When I was young, I remember being shocked when my mother told me that Han Solo was much better looking, and sexier, than Luke Skywalker. It wasn’t so much my mother's talking about the relative sexiness of celebrities that shocked me. I was already used to her common expressions about Richard Chamberlain and Neil Diamond, whom she declared were some of the sexiest men alive. I thought it quirky and humorous that an old lady like my mother would even think about someone being sexy, but I was used to it. But I couldn’t figure out how anyone could pay attention to Han, the slightly naughty guy, instead of Luke, the obvious protagonist (and also cute).

But I grew up. And now I can’t even watch Mark Hamill without practically wretching. Did I ever think he was cute??? (Because obviously “handsome” doesn’t, and didn’t, apply and neither did “sexy.”) Ew. But Harrison Ford . . . ah, that’s something else. Yes, Mom, you were right. (Although I still won’t agree with you about Neil Diamond. Double ew.)

So I guess I grew up in taste.

So I’m wondering whether it’s that I’m an old (“mature”) lady now, or whether there is an actual change in what is considered handsome between generations. Because I cannot find anything attractive whatsoever about the actor who plays Edward in Twilight and who also played Cedric in Harry Potter. In both of these movies, the characters played by this guy were, according to the books, supposed to be devastatingly attractive with such heights of attractiveness that said attractiveness could not be denied by anyone who saw them. But I find nothing at all attractive about this guy. What’s wrong with me? And furthermore, I can’t find anything attractive about the actors who play Jasper and Emmett either. And all of these guys are supposed to be supernaturally good-looking.

Is it just me? Are there other women out there who are my age who find these actors completely unattractive? Is it an age thing, a maturity thing, or a matter of personal taste?

Probably an age thing. Because I found the actors who played Charlie and Billy much more attractive than the vampires—and of course, Charlie and Billy are “adults.”

When I went to see Twilight, I had already braced myself for being disappointed in the casting. I actually didn’t mind that the vampires weren’t anything I'd ever consider attractive. And although I can’t believe anyone finds that Edward actor attractive, that didn’t bother me all that much either. The chick who played Bella did fine—being appropriately pouty and lacking a personality, just as the one in the book does (is it that hard to actually smile at anyone? ever?). And Billy and Charlie were good, and Bella’s mom. I really liked Bella’s classmates (oops, I almost said “friends,” but that would imply that she was capable of friendship). So, in general, I was tolerating things OK . . .

Until I saw the person they had cast as Jacob.

Sorry, unforgiveable.

There is NO WAY that that baby-faced, Donny-Osmond-grinning kid could be Jacob. As soon as I saw him, I knew I would never see another Twilight movie, or watch this one again. Jacob, as I’ve mentioned, has always been my favorite, for several reasons. Not the least of which is that he is just sexier. The whole Quilute thing is sexy to me, the wolf in him, the mystery.

And there is NO mystery, no maturity, nothing interesting about this Jacob. He looks like what he was probably meant to be in this movie: a teenage pin-up, meant to be cute but not distract too much from the Main Couple.

If they make a movie out of New Moon, which is hugely about Jacob, and keep this same actor I’m going to wretch. A whole movie out of this cutie-pie? Gag, gag, gag.

Sigh. So the movie wasn’t meant for me. (And was I expecting it would be?) It was meant for someone with 13-year-old taste and, from what I hear, it has succeeded in hitting that market. Good for them. But, sigh.


Mrs. G said...

Fun to read your post.

I was teaching my students about Martin Luther King and I mentioned he was an attractive, charismatic man. One of my students in shocked sincerity said, "Mrs. Glick, you're married." Oh well, I still love fifth grade most days-even if they do think I have a secret crush on MLK.

Lady Steed said...


I mentioned this post to my wife and she then related an identical growing-up/Star Wars story. I never knew she started out on Luke!

Th. said...


Shoot, sorry --- that was me.

Anonymous said...

I remember liking Luke best when I was really little -- but I'd moved on to Han Solo well in time for Empire. But Harrison Ford kinda nauseates me anymore.

I actually thought what's-his-face made a decent Cedric but I agree with you about him not being right for Edward. I do think he's attractive, just not stunningly flawlessly maturely gorgeous enough to be Edward. But I had low expectations and ended up enjoying the movie.

Have you seen this yet?

If not, then do -- it's so worth it.

Laura said...

Gotta say Edward reminds me of Leo DiCaprio (sp?) in Baz Lurhmann's Romeo and Juliet. I remember thinking he was pretty hot until my older sister pointed out how effeminate he looked. She postulated that teenage girls are attracted to what they wished they (themselves) looked like. Weird. Maybe that's the case this time around.

Michelle said...

so much to agree with here. Yes, I could hardly get through the movie with bad hair, bad makeup weird features scary Edward. I wanted someone YUMMY! And I had a few young actors in mind...

funny that your mom talked men with you like that. I don't recall my mom EVER saying anything like that(course we didn't chat much). I, on the other hand am happy to dish on the latest hunk at any time(did I mention how cute and funny your husband is?) And since I am married to the best looking man of them all I have the freedom to do that. ;)

Melinda said...

Darlene, you made me laugh with this one. I totally agree. I was sooo disappointed with the pancake makeuped, red lipsticked vampires. Bleh. And the special effects!!! I laughed in all the wrong places.

And Bella's personality...hahaha.

But Jacob's casting was the worst!!! I really liked Jacob in the book, too. Until he became a brat in book three. But, still. yuck!

I did the same with Luke and Han.