So, I moonlight as a reviewer over at PopMatters. Today I got to review My Own Worst Enemy, mostly because I confessed to my editor an embarrassing crush I’ve had on Christian Slater since middle school. Unsavory, I know.
So I watched the show, and something struck me as odd. I kind of got at it in my review, but I’ll mention it again here.
You know the premise of the show: There’s the nice, suburban dad Christan Slater (Henry), and a badass, Russian-killing secret operative Christian Slater (Edward). They both share a body and have to work out being corporeal roommates.
Usually, when this sort of thing happens in pop culture, the “good” personality is the “real” one, and then the “good” side realizes that there’s this ugly, secret, crazy personality that they have to learn to control, get rid of, or live with. That’s how it happened in Fight Club, Heroes, etc.
In this case, Christian Slater–as much as I still hold a torch for him–is completely unable to sell the “good” side. Edward is the legitimate personality. It’s just hard to buy that Christian Slater would ever be a meek suburban dad, and the show doesn’t do anything to convince me otherwise. Edward gets to run around on secret seduce-and-destroy missions, and it feels right. Henry talks about going to his son’s soccer game, and it sounds so forced. (Just try to say “soccer game” in your best Christian Slater voice. Doesn’t work, does it?) Edward is so much fun that, even though his part of the show involve computers that are able to wipe/fabricate memories, it’s somehow more believable. Henry is too boring to be real.
Then again, maybe I’ve just seen Heathers too many times.
2 comments October 13th, 2008