I confess to having a man crush on Allan Rickman. There I said it.
This thought occurred to me as St. Pauli Girl and I watched “Bottle Shock” over the weekend (an okay movie from which I learned that women will sleep with you if you give them a really good bottle of wine). However, by the end of the movie I was fantasizing about sitting in an old AMC Gremlin with Rickman, drinking wine and eating a bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken while he made droll comments about Colonel Sanders except he kept referring to him as Major Sanders.
(Sidebar: the movie made a mistake in that he was obviously eating original recipe in that scene yet the sound effect made it sound like he was eating extra crispy. Original recipe does not crunch!)
But how did my man crush happen? When America first met Allan Rickman he was the epitome of evil and destined to play only the most dastardly characters. He had his first big role in 1988 in “Die Hard” where he played the evil Hans Gruber doing battle with Bruce Willis who played Bruce Willis. This film was followed by 1990’s “Quiqley Down Under” where Rickman reprises his role as evil against Tom Selleck playing Tom Selleck. From that point on, when you saw Rickman in a movie, you knew he was the bad guy or at least you could never really trust him.
Somewhere along the line, he started playing other character types. I guess that’s the advantage of a British accent: you can be a snob, sensitive, and/or intelligent. I remember watching “Dogma” for the first time where every time Rickman appeared on screen, I expected him to become a traitor to the cause, but he never did. And I thought, “Wow! It sure was nice for him to be on our side for once.” And that’s what’s great about Alan Rickman, if he’s against you, you dread facing him, but if he’s on your side, he’s awesome!
It’s kind of like back in school when teams are getting picked for a sport, let’s say soccer. Rickman is not a captain, but he’s always the second or third player picked. If you get picked on the opposite team, you know at some point the game will have to go through him. As you dribble the ball toward him and the goal, he just stands there in supreme confidence, laughing in your face because you dared to challenge him. Then he’d probably sucker punch you, steal the ball, and kick you in the butt for good measure while making a sarcastic comment like “You should have tried to ‘Bend it like Rickman,’ you sad sack.” (And if it were a movie, he’d then break your neck with his bare hands). But the next day, you get chosen for his team and you cheer as he takes down an opponent and laugh uproariously at his clever sarcasm and then help kick the opposing player while he is temporarily down before exchanging fist bumps with Rickman (at which point he’d stare at his hand wondering what happened, then mumble something like “Americans….” And shrug).
And that pretty much sums him up. When he is in a movie, attention must be paid. But it still doesn’t explain why I want to drink beer and eat fried chicken with him. He would undoubtedly complain that the beer is too cold, that it should be no colder than a retriever’s nose or something equally British-sounding, and that the mashed potatoes tasted like they came from some blimey’s stewpot on the Isle of Wight. But then I could say, “Yeah, that Major Sanders was mad as a hatter.” And Rickman’s withering look would be priceless.