Monday, June 06, 2005

The Greatest Living Actor: Mark Harmon

The Future Mr. Collins.

The best part about running out of money entirely, other than being able to eat dog food straight from the can, is that you also pretty much call your social life quits for a few days. Everything costs money, and when you tag along with a bunch of drunks as I do, a night out can easily drain $70-80 bucks for drinks, cabs, and getting your stomach pumped at the Hackensack ER.

But what is free anymore, eh kids? Well, sleep for one. I slept for 12 hours Friday night, waking up Saturday morning with a fully grown beard and a son in college. The other thing that is almost free, or at least always paid for, is cable. So, as usual, I woke up on Saturday morning and spent a solid 5 hours flipping between BBC America and TLC, which show the exact same home improvement shows except with different accents. Trading Spaces to Changing Rooms, While You Were Out (or WYWO to us fans) to House Invaders, 4 hours and 13 eggo waffles later, and I was ready to call it a life.

In order to class things up a bit, I also caught "Howards End", a movie based on one of my favorite books, "My First Potty." It's been yee-ahs and yee-ahs since I've caught glimpse of this epic, the electricity between Emma Thompson and Anthony Hopkins enough to power one tiny, portable stadium fan. Watching those two kiss reminds me of the time I walked in on my cat making doody in his box, his face so intense, mine so surprised -- our eyes met, and you could have cut the tension with the poop end of the stick. (Please read this next sentence after time travelling back to 1992) Ahh, but yes, "Howards End" is a must see.

But why am I giving you this entire run down, you are asking? For a good reason. Because yesterday, I caught what is perhaps one of my favorite underrated 80's movies (along with Three O'Clock High ): Summer School. Not only does it feature the directorial work of (and you'll shit when you read this) CARL REINER, one of America's most gifted comic voices, but it also stars someone who I'm going to go out on a limb and call America's Greatest Actor, Mark Harmon.

More man than Andersoon Cooper could handle.

Summer School, if you haven't seen it (and God's prayers with you if you haven't) is a cutesy yarn about a surfer-style English teacher, Mr. Shoop, assigned to teach a group of miscreants for a few summer months, and using all of his wits to motivate them to success. I can't tell you much more without giving some of the funnier scenes away, but Mr. Harmon is so natural, so talented, that even in roller blades, huge headphones, wearing hot pink sunglasses, you can't help but just love the bastard.

Once the movie was over, and my eyes were dried, I did a little research about Mr. Harmon. And no wonder I love him! He played Ted Bundy in the classic TV movie "The Deliberate Stranger".

Another great casting choice for this role would have been another eerily similar looking, albeit douchier Mar(c): Summers.

Other little known facts about Mark Harmon: Did you know that his sister, Kelly Harmon, was the Tic Tac lady??? Thanks to Kelly, I used to binge eat boxes upon boxes of Tic Tacs in one sitting, sometimes pretending they were Mummy's "special pills", throwing a few back with a finger of scotch, then crying, fresh-breathed, into my "You Never Give a" Care Bear's belly.

The Harmon legacy continued: Kelly was married to the recently deceased John DeLorean, i.e., Mark Harmon was once the brother-in-law of the man who made the car with the funny doors! His other sister, Kristin Harmon, is the ex-wife of teen idol Ricky Nelson, making Mark the uncle of anorexic Tracy Nelson and the guitar-playing duo: Nelson! Does it get any more Nelson? No, sadly, it doesn't.

They're Bar Mitzvah was off the HOOK.

Focusing on Mark: He's had a pretty great career post Bundy/Summer School, including his well-known stint on Chicago Hope, and now on Navy UNITY: NCIS. But am I the only one out there who longs to see Mark back in the hottie driver's seat?

Move over Clive/Daniel/Owen/Craig: We've got a new James Bond in town.

p.s. if Mark Harmon, in fact, DOES become the next James Bond, I will blow my brains out because obviously, I am a lunatic psychic. Just like how this weekend, in the same dream, Damon Wayans died and I met Steven Spielberg in a hotel lobby. Now it's on record.

With your net, you caught my heart. With your pleated-front jeans, my intellect.

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