Sunday, July 4, 2010

I Heart the Geek

The Laws of Attraction are weird and unexplainable.  Take for instance, mainstream America’s growing attraction to the underdog.  Pop Culture has officially welcomed the age of the Geek.  I like to pinpoint it to the first season of The OC, where Seth Cohen stole every girl’s heart, including that of California girl, Summer. 

Gone are the days of the popular jock, now coming in second to the emo-loving, tech-savvy, comic book enthusiast of today.  With the growing popularity of geeky comedies like Superbad and Knocked Up, awkward boys like Michael Cera and Seth Rogen are attractive, I think, because when hairlines recede and good looks fade, there has to be something more than the superficial.

Actually, comedians have kind of always been exempt from the conventional romance rules of Hollywood.  Guys like Jim Carrey and Kevin James (from King of Queens) get the girl even while not exactly having Brad Pitt-like good looks.

It's kind of like the fairy tales we all grew up with, like Aladdin, where audiences identify with seeing the street urchin end up with the princess.

My Top 5 Geeks of All-Time:

#5 Steve Urkell  from Family Matters.  The stereotypical geek, Steve had the too-short pants kept up with suspenders, plaid shirts and oversized glasses, not to mention the annoying nasal-y voice.  But, his alter-ego Stefan Urquelle shows us that beneath every geek there’s a smooth guy just waiting to get out, so you should stick around for when that happens.   

#4 Carlton Banks from Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.  So annoying and such the tattle-tale, with his endless supply of sweaters and preppy clothes, poor guy pretty much never got the girl.  Not to mention his obsession with Tom Jones...And the Carlton dance, ohhhh the dance.

#3 Duckie Dale from Pretty in Pink.  Molly Ringwald’s best friend, complete with the goofy hair, shoes, and desperation.  He wasn’t cool enough to get into the hottest spot in town but always waited for his beloved, red-headed Andie.  Jon Cryer will always be remembered for serenading Andie with Otis Redding’s Tenderness.

#2 Samuel (Screech) Powers from Saved by the Bell.  Zack Morris’ best friend with a heart of gold!  For some reason, Saved by the Bell never actually followed typical High School conventions.  At Bayside, the head cheerleader hung out with the class valedictorian and the biggest geek in school.  With that said, Screech’s goofiness and cluelessness made the show what it was, comic gold for the 80s, and somehow, still in syndication almost 20 years later.

#1 Dwight Schrute from The Office.  From his awkward display of useless knowledge on bears and beets, to his love of Battlestar Gallactica, he gets #1 for being so uncool that he’s cool.  He wears his geekiness as a badge of honour, embracing what he loves and stands for, and does so with so much confidence that he transcends the traditional characteristics of the geek, creating a new genre with his unique personality.

No comments:

Post a Comment