This isn’t supposed to be a full on food blog, so please allow a momentary distraction. Before I get to my point, let me just say that the Lifetime Movie Network shows some amazing stuff. And you thought plain Lifetime was good enough. Friday night I got sucked into Eat Your Heart Out, a late ‘90s treat about a floppy haired guy who becomes a celebrity chef with a romance call in show, lets it go to his head and hooks up with his agent Laura San Giacomo when his heart really belongs to that whiny/raspy voice woman who played the wife on Lucky Louie (whose friend is played by pre-gastric bypass Jackie Guerra)
I was going to call it quits but then the next movie, crazylove, starred Michelle Dessler. She was a spunky grade school teacher with a live-in boyfriend who wouldn’t marry her, then her new exciting after school math program got overshadowed by her younger sister announcing her engagement to a guy she’d only known three months and who proposed to her by putting a ring in a piece of cake (unfortunately, this was verbally conveyed—no cinematic evidence). So, Reiko Aylesworth went crazy at the engagement party she threw because the martini olives weren’t right and ran out to the grocery store and had a “nervous breakdown” i.e. threw jars of olives at people, which caused her to be committed in a psychiatric hospital where she fell in love with a schizophrenic and after they both got released they lived out their fantasy of humping and eating SpaghettiOs in bed.
So, two Sundays ago I was watching that scene in John From Cincinnati where the bad actor surfer kid (I’ve never been one to agree with the NY Times TV critic but declaring, “Only Shaun, who rarely speaks, has real charisma” was particularly egregious) had broken his neck and a doctor was consulting with the family. James says, “I think that’s Henry Thomas.” Granted, James was right and I was wrong when he said the same thing about 11:14 but that was a fluke. I countered, “Uh, no, I think I’d recognize Henry Thomas if I saw him. And don’t you think a new HBO series would be a bit high profile for the Hankster?” Last I read he’d been in films no one’s heard of directed by Michael Landon Jr. and acting with the likes of Karen Black, Anne Heche and Alan Cumming.
No, that was no Henry Thomas and I paid the doctor character no mind until the latest episode when he shows up unannounced at the Yost’s house and mentions that he often smokes a cigarette or two a day and got all tongue-tied and damp-eyed dwelling on the mystical, extraterrestrial, miraculous, whatever the hell is going on in this show.
I suddenly decided that he’s disarming in an open minded yet professional manner. I think he does or would wear Dockers but if you suggested something a little more stylish he wouldn’t be opposed. I like that. Someone on the HBO boards says that he's "SO HOTTTT!!!!!" while another claims he looks like a gnome. Who ever said the two needed to be mutually exclusive?
But obviously this is a character, not the man himself, Garret Dillahunt. I know next to nothing about the real person, but c’mon the name alone is enough. It’s dapper and dirty at the same time. I’ve so not dabbled in stargazy stalkerish behavior as of late (I had a passing interest in Christopher Gorham but only as Henry on Ugly Betty, not so much as Jake 2.0). I just decided that I like this guy (or that guy—why did I forget about this site? Late‘90s wonders get so quickly surpassed).
He still has a Deadwood drawl, which was how I finally deduced where I knew him from (oh, and the instantly cancelled Book of Daniel that I never watched but from the commercials thought it was Peter Krause playing Jesus). I never understood why folks in South Dakota would necessarily speak twangily (or Shakespearean, for that matter) but the Dillahunt is a west coaster (raised in Washington) so I’m even more confused. A little confusion keeps things fresh, though.
I was going to say that Dr. Smith is older than my usual type, but then again I’m older than the last time I ogled a lesser-known actor. I forget that 42 is merely an eight-year age gap. I had a non-imaginary relationship with someone older than that a full decade ago. So watch out Garret—I’ve got (fine lines forming around) my eye on you.