The Boyfriend of the Week

January 16, 2007

Note: in honor of this actor's character on NCIS, every paragraph in this write-up ends with a more-or-less relevant quote from a movie or TV show. See how many you recognize -- answers are hidden in the brackets after each quote. To view, highlight the area inside the brackets with your mouse.

The other day, as I was watching a rerun of one of my favorite TV shows, NCIS, I thought to myself, "Gosh, it's been a while since I read my old write-up about Michael Weatherly -- I wonder what I said about him way back when. . . " I hopped over to my laptop, booted up my web site, and plunked his name into the BoySearch engine. The result? Nada. "What?!" I exclaimed in horror. Had I gone and accidentally deleted another old write-up? But, but, that's impossible! I started this whole file naming convention thing several years ago that was supposed to prevent that from ever happening again. ("You just keep thinkin', Butch. That's what you're good at.") [Movie: Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid]

What I soon realized, however, was that it wasn't that the old write-up had disappeared -- it was that it had never existed in the first place. Yep, believe it or not, I'd never featured Michael! I'd done research on him years ago, loving, as I do, his hilarious, movie-quoting character on NCIS. But I'd never gotten around to doing the actual writing. Amazing! Unbelievable! Inconceivable! ("I do not think that word means what you think it means. . .") [Movie: The Princess Bride]

So, time to correct that oversight, posthaste, I thought. And while I'm at it, I'd better bestow some honor upon him as well, as an apology for screwing this whole thing up years ago. Thus, Michael Weatherly, I now dub thee the Official First Boyfriend of 2007. Hurrah! Huzzah! Hooray! Let's hear it for Mikey! ("Let's not call him 'The Captain,' you illiterate TV people. It's 'The Skipper.'") [Movie: The Blair Witch Project]

Lucky for you guys, he ought to be somewhat appealing, as he's on a very well-known and successful TV show (you guys are getting sick of the obscure Discovery Channel guys already, I can sense, and I haven't even gotten to Mike Rowe from Dirty Jobs yet), he's gorgeous and funny, he's been in several other successful TV shows or films, and . . . wait, did I mention GORGEOUS and FUNNY? Because, yeah, that's really all it takes to get ME interested. ("I'm your huckleberry.") [Movie: Tombstone]

Now in case there are a handful of people out there who have never seen NCIS (likewise inconceivable since it's a pretty popular show -- where have you people been lo these many years?) it stars ex-Boyfriend Mark Harmon as the head of a Naval Criminal Investigations unit, and each week, the team is called out to investigate a crime (usually a murder) that has somehow affected someone in the military. Costarring, along with the gorgeous and funny Michael Weatherly (who plays goofy Tony DiNozzo, a veteran from season one), is Pauley Perrette (delightful goth forensics expert Abby), David McCallum (cute and funny medical examiner Ducky), geeky Sean Murray (future Boyfriend Agent McGee, or "McGeek," as DiNozzo calls him), and the far-too serious Cote de Pablo, who plays ex-Israeli-agent Ziva. What makes this show stand out from similar ones (like, for example, CSI), is that it's got a great balance of old-fashioned sleuthing and modern-day forensics, and is packed with a variety of different types of characters (Goth forensics expert? Abby rulz!), all of whom are fascinatingly complex and extremely entertaining. ("I know an awful lot of people, and until one of them dies, I couldn't possibly meet anybody else.") [Movie: Charade]

It was actually kind of hard to choose which supporting actor I wanted to feature, to be honest, because all this time, I'd been expecting to talk about NCIS during a write-up on McGee (Sean Murray). You know how I love geeks of all shapes and sizes, after all. But the fact is, I've had a thing for Michael Weatherly since before the show started, way back when I first saw him in one of the crappiest Judd Nelson movies of all time (a tricky honor to bestow, since so MANY of Judd Nelson's movies are crappy!). The movie? Cabin by the Lake, a movie most frequently found playing on the Sci-Fi channel at three in the morning -- never a good sign. ("Don't mess with the bull -- you'll get the horns. . .") [Movie: The Breakfast Club]

Cabin is about a serial killer (played by Nelson) who murders women and then ties their corpses down deep on the bottom of a lake, creating what he calls a "garden" of dead girls. Now, I should be honest and say that this movie isn't actually as bad as I just insinuated it was, though Nelson is, of course, absolutely abominable in it (I still love him, though). And part of the reason it's better than it ought to be is the fact Mikey is in it, playing a cop named Boone who is on the lake when one of the killer's victims escapes. He ends up saving her life, and the two of them work together to set a trap for the bad guy. What made Michael so much fun to watch in this the first time I saw it -- long before I ever saw him on NCIS -- is that, as it turns out, he was essentially playing DiNozzo. His character is sarcastically funny, a bit of a goofball, and yet extremely dedicated to truth, justice, and the American way. ("I don't need a compass to know which way the wind shines.") [Movie: Mystery Men]

You know, more or less. ("Always, no. . .Never. . . forget to check your references.") [Movie: Real Genius]

So, it's no wonder I took note. But it wasn't until Mike showed up in NCIS that I really started to develop a serious, all-out crush on him. His character has only gotten more fun with time as well, as he's moved away from just being a "frat boy grows up, but, eh, not so much with the growing-up part" stereotype to being a guy with some complexities, as well as a penchant for movie quotes that is something I wholeheartedly admire. In my family, after all, it's not uncommon for us to have a conversation that primarily consists of movie quotes being shot back and forth -- it's no wonder all our spouses have, at one time or another, mentioned that it can be kind of hard to follow Wood family conversations from time to time. I've been working on a little phrasebook to help with this problem -- here's a sample:

"Two weeks!" -- Exclamation used whenever something seems to be taking longer than it should. [Movie: The Money Pit]

"Hey, Henderson, long time no see, whatcha been doin'?" -- Greeting used whenever you haven't seen a family member for a while. [Movie: American Graffiti]

"Looks like I picked the wrong day to stop sniffin' glue." -- Statement used to convey the idea that your brain is not functioning up to speed at the moment. [Movie: Airplane]

"I just [cough] ate a bug!" -- Used at random to induce giggles. Likewise, "I like it when she goes dih dih dih-dih-dih dih dih-dih-dih!" [Movie: Overboard]

"Roy?" or "Twin, oh Twin!" -- How my sister and I often address each other. [Movie: Overboard]

"Man, dissed in the Malibu!" -- An expression of sympathy. Incidentally, the proper response to this expression is, "Lloyd, Lloyd all null and void." [Movie: Say Anything]

"Don't call me Shirley." -- Used to express annoyance. [Movie: Airplane]

"Beware of the dwarf!" -- Used to encourage caution. [Movie: Foul Play]] Likewise, "Beware the baaaaaald maaaaan." [TV Show: Laverne & Shirley] or "Don't. Go Down. To The Basement." [TV Show: Saturday Night Live]

"You fed a baby chili?!" -- Translated: "YOU ARE A MORON." Likewise, "Kenny! Don't paint your sister!" [TV Show: Mr. Mom]

And then, of course, there are the Monty Python quotes, which I probably shouldn't even get started with because we'll be here all day. Suffice it to say all conversations about gardening will eventually turn to shrubbery and the Knights Who Say Ni, the Spanish Inquisition is NEVER expected, spam-spam-spam-spam-bacon-and-spam is always on the menu, and THAT PARROT HAS CEASED TO BE! Also, all toddlers in the family who have just begun moving around on two legs are immediately inducted into the Ministry of Silly Walks, and it may be years before we'll let them back out. ("Now go away, or I shall taunt you a second time!") [Movie: Monty Python and the Holy Grail]

Anyway, now you guys understand why I am the way I am, right? Someday, I'll give you a list of all the nicknames we have for each other too (nobody ever calls anybody else by their actual name in my family), and also provide a definition for the ever-useful family expression, "I've got Boodge." And then you'll know the truth about me, which is that I was born into a family of MADNESS. ("I'll watch some TV. . . maybe it will help me to RELAX!") [TV show: Ren and Stimpy episode: Space Madness]

Anyway, once I realized that both the things I'd seen Michael Weatherly in featured him in essentially the same kind of role, I decided to try out another one of his old TV shows and see what he was like in that one. There were two I thought sounded intriguing -- Dark Angel and Significant Others. Having just watched all of Felicity, and been more or less sorry to see it end (I say the "less" part because the last ten episodes were utterly stupid and I was very ready to see THEM end, but I thoroughly enjoyed the rest of the series and miss that gang of characters already), I opted for Significant Others which sounded like it might have a similar feel to it. It's about a group of young adults all struggling to figure out who they are and what they want out of life, and it costars Jennifer Garner from Alias, who I utterly adore, as well as ex-Boyfriend and total hottie Eion Bailey. ("It's called 'wounded,' Peanut. 'Injured' is when you fall out of a tree or something.") [Movie: Band of Brothers]

Unfortunately, I didn't realize until it was too late that the series also costarred Scott Bairstow, an actor who has given me the willies ever since he was arrested in 2003 for having sex with a 12 year-old girl (a relative of his ex-wife, no less). He pled guilty and served a few months in jail, even though he apparently never actually admitted to the act. In any case -- gross, even in theory, and since he's not all that cute or talented to begin with, I mostly just try to avoid him in general. ("Great kid, don't get cocky!") [Movie: Star Wars]

That said, when I realized he was one of the major players in Significant Others, I decided to try to go with the flow. What if the show was actually a little-known gem, after all? With Michael, Jennifer and Eion -- how could it go wrong? Answer: it could be utterly, ridiculously boring as all heck. Which is what it is. I don't even want to take the time to tell you what it's about (love triangle, blah blah) because I'm concerned that even going that far might put me into a coma. Suffice it to say there was a reason it was canceled, and for once, that reason was actually a good one. ("When General Motors has to go to the bathroom ten times a day, the whole world's ready to go.") [Movie: Rear Window]

Burned as I was by Significant Others, I confess to a degree of fear about actually wasting a Netflix slot on Dark Angel, especially since it looked like another show in which Mike played someone sort of serious (I forgot to mention that on Significant, he played a namby-pamby type -- so not the right part for him and his natural charms). Somebody who is a fan of the series should email me and tell me if they think I'll like it. It looks interesting in theory (an experimental human with super powers of some sort escapes from a government facility and is on the loose, only I gather she uses her powers for good not evil). But you just never can tell, especially when it comes to sci-fi. ("There's the brink of insanity, and then. there. is. the. abyss.") [Movie: St. Elmo's Fire]

In any case, my brief foray out into the world of Michael Weatherly projects in which he's not playing someone cute, smart, and funny didn't go very well, and thus I think I'm much better off sticking with NCIS. I know what I like, and what I like is DINOZZO. ("DiNozzo -- Big 'D,' little 'I,' big 'N,' little 'ozzo.'") [TV show: If you're reading this, you haven't been paying attention.]

Okay, time for a quick bio so I can get started on the research for the SECOND Official Boyfriend of 2007 (no offense, Mikey, but you aren't my one and only. . .): Michael Manning Weatherly, Jr. (whew!) was born in New York City, on July 8, 1968. Now, my favorite part of Mike's history? The fact that his father, Michael Weatherly, Sr., made his millions as an importer of the Swiss Army Knife, that gadget-to-end-all-gadgets that was so instrumental in every masterful experiment or trick MacGyver ever pulled off. How is that for coolness beyond cool? Unfortunately, though he imported one of the greatest devices of all time into the U.S., it turns out Mike's father was (is?) a bit of a jerk -- he cut Mike off from the family fortune when Mike announced he was quitting college to pursue acting. ("Nobody ever lends money to a man with a sense of humor.") [MOVIE: Head]

Mike didn't let that stop him, though, and as he struggled to get into the acting field, he made a little money by playing piano and guitar in a band, as well as selling both shoes and pizzas for a time. His first "break" was playing Theo's roommate on The Cosby Show, a part that quickly led to a role in an indie film called Trigger Happy costarring Rosario Dawson. After he began to get a little attention for his acting chops, Mike decided to make a real go of the gig, and moved to Los Angeles, where he soon landed his role in Significant Others. He's had pretty steady work ever since, with parts in a variety of television shows and movies like Gun Shy and The Specials. He was engaged for a time to his Dark Angel costar Jessica Alba, hubba hubba, and also briefly dated Rachel Hunter, whose kickboxing exercise video used to be one of my favorites (how's that for six degrees of separation?). ("I'm at a loss for a relevant quote with which to end this paragraph." -- Meg)

Michael gave marriage the ol' college (drop-out) try when he married Amelia Heinle in 1995. Unfortunately, not even having a son together a year later could keep the flames burning, and in 1997, the two called it quits. Nowadays, he appears to be single, which is a problem I could help him with if only I weren't married myself (I do have a cute single friend with "huge . . . tracts of land!" [MOVIE: Monty Python and The Holy Grail, again] that might go for him, though -- call me, Mike, and I'll set you guys up). But with his good looks, great sense of humor, and steady job on NCIS, I suspect it'll only be a matter of time before some gorgeous young lady figures out he's "good lookin' wool" [MOVIE: The Money Pit, Again] and snatches him up.

In the meantime, I'll have to settle for being a fan from a distance, I guess. NCIS airs on CBS every Tuesday night at 8pm. I'll see you there! ("I'm off like a dirty shirt.") [MOVIE: Pretty in Pink]

MacGyver Factor Score: 98.3769%. Points off for even TRYING to play a boring old stodge in Significant Others. Yes, I understand the urge to play straight when you're a comedian -- I play straight all the time myself just for a change of pace. I mean, not around HERE, of course, but in the real world. Just think about it for a moment, if you don't believe me: how many hilarious librarians do you actually see when you're out in public? NOT MANY. We have a reputation to protect, you know, and that reputation can be summed up with a single phrase: shhhhh! See also: copyright law.

But points back because your father single-handedly saved MacGyver's life on more than one occasion, and that's not worth nothing to me, even if he was a bastard who cut you off for following your dream. Here's hoping he's come around on that now that you've hit the big leagues. And if all else fails, I'm sure you have a lifelong friend in Richard Dean Anderson.

Stay tuned next time for a Boyfriend of the Week who is old enough to be my grandfather! Yep, it's time for another minstallment of the Ye Olde Grave Dodgers series! Bring on the fogies!

Boyfriend-Related Links

Michael Weatherly's IMDb page
Michael Weatherly Fans
Michael Weatherly Fan Site
Weatherly Only (fan site)
The Official NCIS site

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