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Digesting the lowest rung of pop culture so you don't have to!
The internet has a tendency to rally around various celebrities and speak of them as if they can do no wrong. They might even be awarded “Passes for Life” which Zack and I discussed about a year ago. People like Joss Whedon and Christopher Nolan seem to fall into the category. Then, there is the opposite, where the internet tends to heap large amounts of hate onto various celebrities. Sometimes it is understandable (Kardashian clan, I am looking at you). However, most of the time, it is completely bizarre and arbitrary. It gets to the point where I simply don’t understand why people on the ‘net like to beat up on them. So, the topic of this week’s Friday Five is:
“Five Stars the Internet Likes to Beat Up (Which I Don’t Understand)”
Channing Tatum (GI Joe, The Vow, 21 Jump Street)
He seems to be a relatively rising star and already he’s hated on. Why? I’ll admit, he hasn’t had a stellar filmography thus far, but he is usually pretty solid in the flicks I’ve seen him in. He can do action pretty well, he has solid leading-man looks, and has recently shown a flair for comedy (which I hope he continues with). Yet, the Internet says he sucks. Personally, I like him. I don’t mind seeing him in things. Some complain that he can be a bit of a wooden actor. That is fair, I suppose. He strikes me as an actor that either needs a lot of direction or needs to really fit a role to pull it off successfully. In short, he isn’t a bad actor. If you want to see a truly bad actor, go watch The Room. You’ll have plenty to choose from.
Shia LeBouf (Transformers, Indiana Jones 4, Disturbia)
People love to crap on him. Why? I’ll grant you that he largely does the same sort of roles (though, it appears he is trying to stretch his wings with the upcoming Lawless) with his characters all having that manic, geeky shtick. It works, and, I feel, viewers can relate to him as he plays a loveable dork. I think he’s fun to watch. Plus, I’ve gotten multiple first-hand accounts that LeBouf is incredibly fan friendly by going up to people, shaking hands, and appearing genuinely grateful for their support. For me, that goes a long way. I have a theory on why LeBouf gets hated on by the internet: many of his characters are a variation of the nerdy fanboy who goes on a fantasy adventure and gets the hot girl in the end. I would bet most who complain about LeBouf fall into that nerdy fanboy crowd and are fueled by jealousy. Am I stereotyping? Perhaps, but does that make me wrong?
Megan Fox (Transformers, Jennifer’s Body, How to Lose Friends and Alienate People)
LeBouf’s Transformers co-star also gets dumped on by the internet. This one always perplexes me. She isn’t a bad actress (though, I can’t deny, she does tend to pick bad movies). I was surprised when I went back and re-watched the first Transformers movie a few months back. It was the first time I saw it since 2007. Fox did pretty well with the material she was given. She wasn’t wooden and came off as very natural. The few other things I’ve seen her in featured her really throwing herself into her roles. I particularly loved how she sent-up her media image in How to Lose Friends…, especially when it veered into a darker twist. She needs to do more stuff that can actually show off her acting chops. My theory on why people love to loath her is two-fold: 1) guys who hate her do so because she ends up with Shia LeBouf in Transformers. The whole jealousy thing. 2) Girls who hate her do so because she’s pretty. End of story.
Kristen Stewart (Twilight, Runaways, Adventureland)
I guess I could have put the entire cast of Twilight down here. K-Stew (as Kyle, and now I, likes to call her) is a solid actress. Sure, she has that blank stare that she’s kind of become known for, but look at her filmography. It’s pretty good and mostly well-received. She does that angst thing well in the roles that she’s in without it being obnoxious. I like watching her in stuff. However, I think the only reason she is hated on is because she is in Twilight. That’s unfair, but then again, it’s “kewl” to dump on Twilight.
Tom Cruise (do I really need to put anything here?)
He jumps on Oprah’s couch. He’s a member of a religious with questionable practices. He married someone nearly half his age. Are these reasons to hate the guy? The correct answer is no. I fully think that Tom Cruise is awesome. I almost always enjoy the movies he’s in, and the ones I don’t have nothing to do with him. He is incredibly hard working, and always seems to be willing to try different things. He has little ego and doesn’t mind working with stars bigger than him (if anything, he seems to relish the opportunity to work with different people). He also seems, in interviews, to be a friendly and nice guy. I like him, and I’ll usually defend him when the basing begins. The world would be a lesser place if he stopped making movies.