The first of my obligatory blogger bunch of “best of” posts. I don’t stay current with anything so my lists will be totally out of date and contain many things that aren’t new, unique or awesome to 2013, just to me. Suck it.
In no particular order:
#10 Shane Cortese
I’m betting Shane Cortese is a relative unknown to 99.9% of people outside of New Zealand. That includes Australia. Most people have never heard of Outrageous Fortune or The Almighty Johnsons in which he plays two asshats of the highest order. In Outrageous Fortune he played Hayden Bloody Peters (not a single character referred to him otherwise) a morally bankrupt jerk who liked to screw people over for his own gain and didn’t really care about anyone. Sadly that has been off the air for a while so imagine my delight when he shows up in The Almighty Johnsons (written by the same people) playing a New Zealand born reincarnation of the God Loki. Total shithead. I loved it. I’ve seen nothing else he’s been in but he makes such an amazing asshole I would be really disappointed if he’s not a scheming turd in real life. He’s probably not.
I really wish there were better YouTube clips to actually demonstrate but they are both relatively obscure Kiwi shows so there’s not a lot out there. In lieu of that, here is a promo for season 4 of Outrageous Fortune which will at least demonstrate the kind of awesome that this show is (and The Almighty Johnsons follows in a similar vein). It’s also appropriate given that my list today includes three actors from Outrageous Fortune.
#9 Ben Barrington
Also from both Outrageous Fortune and The Almighty Johnsons and likely totally unknown outside Kiwiland, Ben gets my vote for his character Olaf, the 93 year old grandfather of the four brothers central to the show. Olaf screws everything that moves, is perpetually stoned or drunk and as such he makes a pretty shitty Oracle of Wisdom. He’s hilarious. All I could find was this clip:
#8 Antony Starr
Might as well stick him here to stay with the Kiwi theme. Antony played identical twins Van and Jethro West in Outrageous Fortune. He was so good at it that I often forgot they weren’t two totally separate but similar looking actors. They looked different, their mannerisms were different and the way they spoke couldn’t have been further apart. Jethro was a smarmy, manipulative, jerk of a lawyer with a heart of stone who only became a lawyer to become a better criminal whereas Van was an idiot stoner who barely had the smarts to speak English with a heart of gold. Earlier this year my dad said he’d found an American show called Banshee that Antony was in. Since I was already a fan I watched it and HOLY SHITBALLS he’s certainly not a Westie anymore. he’s an ex-con just released from prison with a sweet American accent and in the very first episode busts some heads in the most hardcore and brutal of ways. Seriously. I ain’t gonna link that shit because it made even me cringe, which is really hard to do. He then steals the identity of the town’s new Sheriff (nobody has met either person thus far so it’s easy to do) and proceeds to be a total badass and fucks shit up nine ways from Sunday while trying to convince his ex to fess up and admit her kid is his while dodging the creepy ex-Amish turned uber criminal dude that runs the town. Wow.
#7 Bruce Campbell
I’ve loved Bruce Campbell for ages and thus he will always be on my list. Burn Notice has sadly disappeared from my screens and I am distraught. Please put Mr Campbell on another TV show where he can be the master of the deadpan snark and I will live happily the rest of my days. Especially if he’s a semi bad dude. I just love the criminal element. I think I missed my calling as a super spy/criminal genius. If I could be any TV character, I would totally be Sam Axe. On top of this, I have also read his two books this year and follow him on Twitter and he’s just super cool. There’s no two ways about it. He tweeted me back last year and I nearly fell over in a dead faint. Best present ever!
#6 George RR Martin
George made me fall in love with the fantasy genre when I thought it was all but impossible. I was tired of the cliches, I hate the Farmboy Trope and the Damsel in Distress and I felt like I’d been reading the same books over and over again. Well. Enter this dude, a potty mouthed dwarf whose allegiance is never really clear and a nine year old tempestuous girl who never backs away from a fight and I was swooning. And holy crap he killed off half his characters! What a refreshment! I cackled with maniacal glee when The Red Wedding aired on this season of Game of Thrones and the entire world collectively lost their shit. I don’t think I have ever been pulled so deeply into a fictional world. Ever. This man is my hero. Hey George, hurry the fuck up with the next book.
#5 So many Peeps on QI
Have you seen QI? If you like funny things, then you must add this to your list. Currently on season 11 with plans to continue through to 26 (each season is alphabet themed), you are doing yourself a disservice if you don’t. It’s not really a gameshow as such, its more Stephen Fry asking stupidly ridiculous questions of funny people which degenerates into a free for all of wit and sarcasm. Alan Davies is a permanent guest, which is great because he makes me laugh so hard. He’s on my imaginary beer drinking buddy list. As is Ross Noble, Bill Bailey, Sandi Toksvig, Jo Brand, David Mitchell and Sue Perkins, all of whom have made lots of appearances on QI. If I see any one of them in the lineup I know I’ll be in for a good night. Obviously Stephen Fry is included in that list.
#4 Caitlin Moran
I don’t even remember how I learned Caitlin Moran existed. I think Stephen Fry might have retweeted something she said and I thought she was funny and decided to follow her. Best decision ever. I bought her books, How To Be A Woman and Moranthology and was not disappointed. I never really sympathised with the feminist movement until I started reading what she had to say on the subject and now she’s converted me. She’s truly hilarious. I often found myself laughing while reading (which never happens) and then reading passages out to my husband. Even he didn’t mind it, so you know, that’s a ringing endorsement right there. She’s also one of my imaginary beer drinking friends.
#3 Mark Sheppard
You can’t seriously tell me you don’t know who this dude is. His IMDB page reads like my entire DVD collection. He’s in all the shows! I am kind of obsessed with him. If I see his name in the credits of something I am watching, I literally squee. That gravelly voice is pure heaven and he makes being a bad guy look like so much fun. I am SUPER pissed off that I have missed every appearance he’s made in Australia because you know a) was having a baby, b) was in the wrong city due to travel for uni or c) consistently not having money as a consequence of a) and b). However, when I finally get to meet him, and I will, I will be utterly destroyed if he’s not as sarcastic as 90% of his characters in real life.
#2 Jennifer Lawrence
I rarely fangirl over women. Women in Hollywood just don’t seem to have an interesting bone in their body. Well to be fair most of them don’t seem to have bones. I don’t understand how it is physically possible for women to be that small. And somehow, this gorgeous creature above, gets called fat. I call bullshit. If I was that thin I’d be walking around everywhere naked and calling attention to my lushness. Hollywood sucks. Have you listened to her talk? She has absolutely no filter whatsoever. Her interviews are awesome to watch. Pretty sure my husband will leave me for her the first chance he gets. Y’know what? I’d be cool with that.
#1 Tom Hiddleston
So, Tom Hiddleston. Where does one even start on this? Originally I wanted to see Thor because hello Beefcake! (Even though I hate blondes and anyone who’s associated with Home and Away on principle). Yeah, I walked out wanting to know more about this dude with the amazingly sexy voice. Was not disappointed! He’s smart, funny, intelligent (the most important part) and is hilarious to watch in interviews. It’s exceedingly rare in vapid Hollywood to find someone who is actually an interesting person and so he’s totally at the top of my list. I can sum my love for him up thusly:
Also, did you know he does wicked impersonations of people? (ignore the gross fangirling at the start)