Like A Trip Back To Middle School

Thursday, January 24, 2008

falling in love with fiction

I saw this on another blog and I liked the idea - top five fictional (television) characters that I am totally in love with and wish were real people.

First off, I had three honorable mentions that I couldn't leave out. I'm pretty sure that if I was a little bit older, these guys would be in my top 5, and I spent a lot of time debating whether any of them should actually get the #5 spot (oh the tough decisions I must make in my life) - ultimately they didn't make the cut, but they deserved mentioning.
    Chandler Bing, Friends - So Chandler Bing - pretty much awesome. And if we got ten seasons of seasons 1-5 Chandler, he just may have made it into my top 5, despite being 10 years older than me. I kinda stopped loving Chandler quite as much when he and Monica got together - so much of his charm came from his relationship with Joey and all of his dating woes, both of which were kinda thrown on the backburner after Chandler and Monica stopped sneaking around and confessed that they were together. But even after he became Monica's whipping boy, Chandler remained the best thing about Friends. I only wish I could be as awesomely sarcastic as Chandler. He could always be counted on for a laugh, almost every time he was on screen. One of my all time favorite lines of the show: "Joey isn't gonna be here tonight so why don't you come over and I'll let you uh, feel my bicep. Or maybe more." I'll never see a sweater vest without thinking of Chandler Bing. And while a little part of me died when the show ended and Chandler Bing disappeared along with it, I'm happy he got the last line in the series. *sigh* Oh Monica Geller, you lucky woman.

    "Uncle" Jesse Katsopolis, Full House. Seriously . . . you weren't a girl of the 80s if you didn't swoon a little when Jesse sang "Forever" to Becky at their wedding and wish that he was singing to you. Okay, yeah, Jesse lost his edge when his twins were born, and yeah, he didn't graduate from high school until like the 7th season, but seriously? Who didn't have a crush on Uncle Jesse? He could do it all (exterminator, advertising, radio personality, sidekick to Ranger Joe, rockstar -- he had the #1 album in Japan! -- smash club owner . . . am I missing anything?) and he was TOTALLY devoted to his family - so much so that he moved into the attic with his new wife and started their family there to avoid leaving them. Which, while pathetic, at least showed where his values were. Yeah, he's a good catch. And he has great hair.

  • Derek "McDreamy" Shepard, Grey's Anatomy. Okay . . . I feel almost like it's kind of cliched to include Derek Shepard on my list of fictional characters I'm in love with. And I resisted watching this show for a year and a half to avoid becoming somebody who swooned over McDreamy. But let's face it - you don't get more perfect than Derek Shepard. So I don't even feel a need to justify this honorable mention with an explanation.

5. Pacey Witter, Dawson's Creek.

I think I was a "Pacey girl" from Day One of Dawson's Creek. Maybe because I loved Joshua Jackson from The Mighty Ducks. Maybe it's just because Pacey Witter was THAT awesome. Okay, so there was that whole scandal with the teacher, which was kind of (a lot) sketchy. But Pacey was just one of those guys you just wanted to win. Pacey always got a bad rap - picked on by his family, low grades in school, didn't get into college. His girlfriend cheated on him while she was in a mental institution! But nobody could love more than Pacey Witter. I couldn't even fault him for being a jerk to Dawson with the whole Joey thing because I was just too busy thinking that everything he did was the cutest ever! He was always trying, for Andie, for Dawson, for his family, and especially for Joey. And for as much as I hated Joey Potter, Pacey and Joey together made her almost likable. And his monologue in the series finale? I melted. Just a little.
You're off the hook. I've never really put much faith in all that "if you love someone, set them free" crap, as evidenced by everything I've done in my life up to this very moment, but I am determined to be happy, Joey. Happy in this life. And I love you. I mean, I always-- I have always, always loved you. But our timing has just never been right. And the way I figure it, time is no man's friend. So I have to get right with that and be happy, now. Because this is it. I mean, this is all that we get. If there's one thing I've learned from losing Jen, that's what I've learned . . . Actually, um, hold on. I'm not done yet. Because I also want for you to be happy. It's really important for me that you be happy. So I want you to be with someone, whether it be Dawson or New York guy or some man that you haven't even met yet. But I want you to be with someone who can be a part of the life that you want for yourself. I want you to be with someone who makes you feel like I feel when I'm with you. So, I guess the point to this long run-on sentence that's been the last 10 years of our lives is just that the simple act of being in love with you is enough for me. So you're off the hook.
Ahh, Pacey Witter. I cried a little when Joey chose him at the end. At least she had a brain in her head.

4. Seth Cohen, The OC

Seth Cohen!

So putting Seth Cohen at #4 was actually a very difficult decision for me because I was debating whether I wanted to put him as #1. Seth Cohen is the character that got me hooked on The OC. What is there not to love about him? Seth is the perfect mixture of awesome and nerdy, and there is no doubt that if he was a real person, I would want to hang out with him pretty much every day. What keeps him from being higher on this list is that he's really alarmingly self-absorbed and a little bit crazy and sneaky (Thanksgiving episode from season 1? Lying to Summer about Reed? The whole Brown thing? Making the little girl in the comic store cry when she asked for the comic book based on the X-Men movie?) But the bottom line is that he's Seth Cohen. He's the guy who will silently love you for years and memorize a poem you wrote in 6th grade and create a comic book about you and would stand on a coffee cart in front of a school that for years would pee in your shoes and shove you in lockers and declare his love for you. Yeah sometimes he was a little over the top, but his heart was always in the right place. He embraced Ryan as a brother. He was always available with a sarcastic comment or a witty remark, but knew when the right moments were to knock it off and just be a friend. And if there was any doubt about how awesome Seth Cohen was, this voicemail that he left Summer in the 4th season made me fall in love with him all over again:
Hey Summer. I know flying home early is your move but I stole it. I just want you to keep doing what you're doing because I think it's pretty amazing. So if you don't hear from me for awhile it's not because I don't love you. It's because I do.
For all of his flaws, Seth Cohen was a damn good catch. And I'd be lucky to end up with someone like him.

3. Jim Halpert, The Office

Jim Halpert

I love Jim Halpert. I have loved him since I first watched the pilot episode of The Office the day that it aired. Of course then it was because he reminded me of "Hot Arms" from work. But aside from that, what was there not to love about Jim? From the moment he first put Dwight's stapler in Jello, I knew it was love. Jim is this awesome guy. He's hilarious. He's sweet. He's thoughtful. He's friggin hot. I think part of my love for Jim comes from the fact that I related to him so much for so long. And I think that the reason that he's not #1 on this list is Karen and how he let her change him. I mean yeah, he wised up at the end, but I think he knew all along that his heart wasn't in it (remember "A Benihana Christmas"? "You just had a rebound . . . Which, don’t get me wrong, can be a really fun distraction, but, when it’s over, you’re left thinking about the girl you really like, the one that broke your heart.") but he was still such a jerk to Pam at times that I couldn't really get past that. Why am I talking about what I don't like about Jim? Jim is freaking awesome. And as Mary pointed out, it would be pretty awesome to date him because he'd probably totally propose by putting the ring in Jello. Which could be really fun.

2. Will Tippin, Alias

Okay, totally not the best picture that I could have posted of him, but that was my favorite Will Tippin moment ever. When I first started watching Alias, I wrote a haiku:

My dear Will Tippin
would you be my valentine?
Oh wait, you're not real.

Will Tippin is almost as good as it gets and I think I can trace almost all of my favorite Alias moments back to him. He was Sydney's best friend and she couldn't have asked for a better friend then him. He did anything for her, no questions asked. I mean you knew he was a great guy from the first episode of the series - what kind of guy lets you borrow his SISTER'S passport without even asking why? He almost got himself killed trying to investigate why Danny was murdered, just because he felt so bad that Sydney had no answers. Then, when he gets caught in Paris (see above picture) and realizes exactly what Sydney really does for a living, and he's obviously totally freaked out, instead of being a jerk and instead of hating the fact that she's been lying to him since they met, he responds with what I think might be one of the greatest lines in TV history.
"I don't love you for what you do, or what you don't do. I just love you."
Be still my heart. Will was the best friend a double agent for the CIA could have. Writing him off of the show was one of the dumbest moves Alias could have made, but the episode in the 3rd season where they brought him back and they finally sleep together was one of the best of the season. Will's accented rock star? Totally awesome. But I think one of my favorite lines is when they say goodbye to each other, knowing Will's going back into witness protection and they might not see each other again, and Sydney says, "We never talked about that . . ." and Will just smiles and says, "Yeah . . . I kinda liked that." I remember one of my websites commenting on how it was one of the first genuine Sydney Bristow smiles we saw all season. Will Tippin is amazing.

1. Ryan Atwood, The OC

As I said above, Seth Cohen was the character that got me hooked on The OC. And I think a large part of that was because I hated Marissa Cooper so much that Ryan's inability to move on from her for so long really annoyed me about him. But the more the season and the series continued, the more I realized that there was more to Ryan than this need to take care of obnoxious Marissa. Even from his early days in Newport Beach, when he was punching water polo players and burning down Caleb's model home, it was obvious that Ryan was a good guy. From Day One, he had Seth's back. As the series continued, and Ryan and the Cohens grew closer, his interactions with Seth and Sandy helped make the first season what I felt was one of the smartest seasons of any TV show I've ever seen. He was always such a good person - he knew when to take the high road. He deserved a medal for dealing with Marissa for three years and for all the times he listened to Seth's woes. But Ryan never complained and he never forgot where he came from and how lucky he was to be where he was. He wasn't afraid to stick up for himself or for his family and friends. Despite my hatred of Marissa, his loyalty to her was noble. He was subtly funny - not over the top like Seth, but always there for a great delivery. His willingness to go along with Seth's antics were hysterical - the kid from Chino joining Seth's comic book club and holding meetings at school so they could get their picture in the yearbook was classic. But I think the thing that made me fall in love with Ryan Atwood the most were his scenes with Kirsten. It's funny to think back now, after the series is over, how Kirsten didn't want a "criminal" in her home. A couple of my favorite scenes of the series were between the two of them - Ryan always knew exactly what to say to her, and was able to get through to her when the others in her family couldn't. For as hot headed as he was at the series' start, he was so level-headed and normal by the end of the first season, so willing to do the right thing, that it was truly admirable. So yeah, it was pretty much impossible not to love Ryan Atwood. Throw into the mix his love of Journey (one of my favorite recurring jokes throughout the series), his adorable shyness when he first met Lindsay, and THE WHOLE FOURTH SEASON TAYLOR YEAR! Ryan and Taylor revived the show after an extremely disappointing 3rd season, and I have never laughed so hard in an episode of The OC as when Ryan stood up and said "I have a poem too!" and read this:
"A sonnet: I don't know how to write.
A haiku: 5-7-5 seems too tight.
Then there are three little words I'm not able to say.
But Taylor, this is what I can tell you today.
Though I can't say those words tonight.
Please stick with me because I feel someday I might."
(the youtube video can be watched here - embedding was disabled)
I still can't watch the closing montage from the series finale without crying. The show ended so perfectly, just as it began. Of all the shows I've known and loved that have been canceled through the years, I have never missed a show or a character more than I have missed The OC and Ryan Atwood. So I stick by my original "who I want to meet" on MySpace: someone who would punch out the dean of the school for me. Just like Ryan Atwood. The last dialog between Seth and Ryan in the series is
Seth: At least I leave you funnier than when I found you.
Ryan: A lot better off than when you found me.
Me too, Ryan . . . me too.

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  • At February 4, 2008 at 1:15 AM , Blogger Rebecca said...

    I LOVE RYAN ATWOOD. And...really, most of your top TV boyfriends. I will let you have Will Tippin, because a) I didn't watch Alias, and b) you wrote the man a haiku. You deserve him. :)


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