Tag Archives: Film Characters

Empire magazine’s “Sexiest Characters in Cinema” list – nerd bait for nitwits?

You like lists – I like lists.

They inspire debate, prompt normally rational people to fume (“There’s no way that ‘Pretty in Pink’ is a better John Hughes flick than ‘Sixteen Candles’ – as if!”) and get those all-important clicks, hits and page views which underpin website visibility.

Empire magazine is at it again and have sought the earnest opinings of their readership as to the vexed question of whom the sexiest cinema characters of all time.

And, as you might expect, the results skew somewhat nerd-centric.  Check out the character chosen by male readers as their hottest of all time…

Ah, Lady Croft.

I know, right?  How very unexpected.  But, utterly in sync with the fanboy demographic who seem to be Empire’s bread-and-butter nowadays (or a sign that the Lara fan base voted early and often).  I’m kind of intrigued to see the amount of fetish-identified characters at the top of the list – with “Underworld” heroine Selene, the Michelle Pfeiffer iteration of Catwoman and Jessica Rabbit in 4th, 3rd  and 2nd places respectively, it’s like a ‘specialist interest’ website list or something.

As for the male characters, we’re going with the archetypes – this fine chap is number one.

Hmm...you would, wouldn't you. Just saying.

I hesitate to say that women have better taste in these lists than men do, but, you know, they kinda do.  The list of hottest male characters isn’t quite as pneumatic, rubber-clad and skewing towards ecdysiasts as we see in the list of female characters.  Does this speak to an essentially male nerd inability to deal with women more complex than the broadly-drawn Frank Miller archetypes so popular in our entertainment genres?  Probably so, sad to say.

So long as they kick ass, look sweet and fill out a rubber/leather catsuit, the geek hive mind seems paralysed by the visual and ill-equipped to deal with anything more complex.

Aragorn’s got depth beyond the grizzed good looks and soulful eyes – Lara?  Daddy issues and a cut-glass accent.  And the other assets, which I won’t insult your intelligence by discussing further…

Most lists of this type are now subject to the vagueness of memory – you vote for what’s in your head at the moment that you’re filling in the online form – or the demands of a devoted internet community who mobilise to perform the kinds of ballot box stuffing which sees Lara – a character not currently foremost in the popular consciousness – storming the chart.

What I’m getting at, fine reader?

Amelie. Who else?

How is Amelie Poulain not number one, dag blast it?!  Gorgeous, possessed of an actual character and indelibly etched in the mind of anybody who saw Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s breakout international classic.

Male nerds, I despair of ye – you’re supposed to be my people!


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