Tuesday, October 18, 2005

"Other Guy" of the Month

I'm starting to think that having several recurring topics is a good way to keep the writer's block at bay. That's me, always thinking. Currently, I have two semi-regular features - "Eye Boogers" and "What's in BeckEye's Ear". I'd like to add at least one or two more. This post marks the introduction of the first of those topics, '"Other Guy" of the Month'. All entries under this heading will pay homage to or catch up with those poor guys who had their chance to be stars but were overshadowed by someone else's fame.

Mr. October - Alex Winter
To most of us, Alex Winter will forever be known as the "Bill" to Keanu Reeves' "Ted" in Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, as well as the crappy sequel. Many of us also remember him as the littlest vampire in The Lost Boys, but the reaction to seeing him in that movie is usually, "Hey, there's the other guy from Bill and Ted!" No matter that The Lost Boys actually came before. When it first screened, no one knew who Alex was. No one knew of him until he became William S. Preston, Esquire. Only then was he recognized in The Lost Boys, upon repeat viewings.

Sometimes I wonder what Keanu had that Alex didn't. How did Mr. Doofy Ding-Dong shoot to fame while Winter toiled in obscurity? Both had an affability about them, but I wouldn't consider either a master thespian. I'm guessing it's all about aesthetics. Keanu is an undeniably good looking guy. He's not typical looking either; he's kind of got that exotic Indo-Polynesian vibe. Not that Alex isn't attractive. By most women's standards, he's probably average looking. By Hollywood standards, average means ugly. Personally, I find him fairly cute, but there is something slightly off-kilter about his appearance. I don't know if it's all those tight blonde curls, the gigantic eyes or the Laura Dern-esque rubber mouth. He certainly has a knack for making bizarre expressions. On top of that, he's a pretty short dude. I guess if you add it all together, it doesn't exactly equal matinee idol. Still, he has to have more sex appeal than Tobey Maguire or Jake Gyllenhall, and they're quite famous. True that they are both good actors, but they've also been blessed with some good roles. Who knows what kind of Spiderman Alex could have made, if he had just been given the chance? I've always had a little soft spot for him, not only because Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure is one of my favorite movies, but he looks a lot like one of my old college roommates, who was always fun to be around.

So whatever happened to this other guy? Thanks to The Alex Winter Fansite, I now know. From what I can tell, he seems like a decent fellow with a good head on his shoulders. Immediately after the success of Bill and Ted, MTV approached him to be a VJ. The catch was that he had to do it as the character of Bill. Proof that he wasn't just some piece of fluff looking to extend his 15 minutes came in the form of his response - "no f***ing way".

I've often heard that Alex is not into all the glitz and glamour of the Hollywood scene and doesn't really hang out with the "beautiful people", but that he's still good friends with Keanu Reeves. Apparently he's not jealous of his buddy's fame. But other than Speed, is there really that much to be jealous of? (Don't start with me, Matrix fans. Those movies are pure crap.)

Winter has appeared in a handful of movies since the late '80s, but most of his film work these days is behind the scenes as a producer, writer and director. His next project is for MTV, a considerably better opportunity than the first one they offered him, writing and directing a movie about Napster. I can't imagine how that subject will translate to the big screen, but I guess we'll have to wait and see. I can only hope that Lars Ulrich won't be in it. I'd rather pay $10 to download one song with a 28K modem than pay the same amount to listen to that self-important bazillionaire jackass whine about how the advent of Napster prevented him from ascending to gazillionaire status. That would heinous. Bogus. Most egregious.

Alex Winter, I'm glad to hear you're still living a most excellent life. Here's hoping that your future projects will be most triumphant. Party on, dude.


The Zombie Lama said...

haha that's a great idea for a post. Here's a couple of more for ya - Andrew Ridgley, Oates, and whatever that guys name was that didn't sing in the Pet Shop Boys.

Mr. Happy said...

I think it all fell apart for Alex when Keanu left Wyld Stallyns for Dogstar. Nice post.....again.

Party on Beckeye!

Neo said...

Becky - Most Excellent!

The Everglades said...

I love the new feature. There are so many guys like him (thiking Weekend at Bernies). It would suck to try and make it in Hollywood as an actor where there are 1000's of other super homogeneous people looking to do the same thing. Your idea that Alex could have done Spiderman as well as Toby Maguire is true. Maguire just happened to be at the right place at the right time. And Maguire is a total dork.


Lee Ann said...

Alex looks pretty cute, but I adore Keanu!

Alice said...

aw, it's so oddly heartwarming to know he still has a successful career. way to go, alex!

Fridaysweb said...

I'm with you on the curly locks. There's something about them that's a turn-off. But, look at his bone structure. So lovely.

Masha said...

Wow look at that shirt...

Brooks said...

you and i definitely have a similar vibe going on this week with the posts on mix tapes and our current posts that deal with celebrating the underdog. i have always been drawn to the "other" guy or girl. in high school we always liked alex winter better than keanu and i still do and i agree with you on those matrix movies. i slept through both of them literally. keanu is another hollywood pretty face that can't act his way out of a paper bag. speed was an interesting concept, but that so-called acting job of his is painful to watch. i could alex making a tasteful IFC comeback like Allie Sheedy did years ago. like everglades said, it is all about being at the right place at the right time.

Chicken Little said...

Keanu. No way can he act. He only has ONE EXPRESSION - the one where he tilts his head and looks puzzled. (But I liked the Matrix in spite of him)

Kate said...

You called Keanu Reeves Mr. Doofy Ding-Dong! Ha ha ha! Congratulations for making my really great day even better! I almost sputtered (hot) coffee out my nose for that one. No, don't worry, I wouldn't have held you responsible. ;)

Sangroncito said...

He`s cute!

Anonymous said...

cool idea..I read recently about someone bumping into Corey Haim in a coffee shop


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