This is a preview of our pop culture newsletter The Daily Beast’s Obsessed, written by senior entertainment reporter Kevin Fallon. To receive the full newsletter in your inbox each week, sign up for it here.
The committee responsible for the Iowa Caucus has finally delivered its results, and they are surprising. Coming out of nowhere, it is Chris Messina who, it turns out, is the best of the Hollywood Chrises. (He came in third in New Hampshire, which means he’s all anyone’s talking about anyway.)
Ranking the Hollywood Chrises was a thing for a moment there. The conceit was there were a bunch of beefy white guys who all vaguely looked the same, were starring in film franchises, were all named Chris, and all had the personality appeal of a microwaved baked potato. That last bit is important because it meant that people could baselessly announce their favorites and the decision was, in essence, unimpeachable.
There’s no real argument as to why either Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, Chris Pratt, or Chris Pine is better than the other. And there is no real argument why one isn’t. It is like deciding on the tastiest brand of white sandwich bread.
The whole Hollywood Chrises thing isn’t so much a thing anymore, since it became clear that Chris Evans, he with his knives out, the finest man to ever fill out a chunky fall sweater, was the best of the bunch, and Chris Pratt became an insufferable abomination. But it’s also because the entire concept was a fallacy. The true Best Chris wasn’t even up for consideration. It is Chris Messina.
Gushing about Chris Messina has been a passion project of mine for several years now. (Yes, I’m a philanthropist.)
The very appeal of him has always been that he exists outside the realm of those indecipherable other Chrises. He doesn’t exactly look like them, wasn’t as famous, and wasn’t leading some sort of blockbuster. Well, the truth is he’s far hotter than any of them, he is the most famous person in my heart and my sex dreams, and he is now starring alongside Margot Robbie in DC Comics’ Harley Quinn movie, Birds of Prey. De facto, he is the best Chris!
From a casting standpoint, Messina’s greatest asset has been the malleability of his gee-shucks, good-boy looks. It allows him to be slightly aggro and macho while still winning you over with an innate kindness, like in his The Mindy Project role as Dr. Danny Castellano, a TV character I would abhor in reality. And yet there has never been a fictional person I’ve been more attracted to in my entire life.
He’s a great entitled prick. (See: The Newsroom). He’s a great underwritten supporting male character. (See: Julie & Julia.) He’s a great “oh he was really good in that Glenn Close show, too.” (See: Damages.)
His sweaty helpfulness on Sharp Objects was one of my favorite TV performances of 2018. And not just because of—mom and everyone related to me, avert your eyes—the scene in which he visits Amy Adams in her hotel room and they have sex and after she goes down on him, but before they switch to intercourse he sort of holds his dick in his hand and rubs it and it might be the hottest thing I’ve ever seen on television.
While we’re all hot and bothered, let’s talk about him in Birds of Prey. He plays Victor Zsasz, a supervillain henchman to Ewan McGregor’s Roman Sionis (Black Mask). He has the bleached blonde hair of a gay in the throes of an existential crisis, and shares with Roman a sinister homoerotic energy that I truly don’t know why every comic-book movie doesn’t have more of. They’re like a murderous Liberace and his meth-head Igor, and their unusualness is part of why the movie works so well.
(It must be said that Birds of Prey, a movie in which Rosie Perez does hand-to-hand combat while a Heart song plays, the big chase scene is done on rollerskates, and the entire storyline centers around the sanctity of an excellent bodega breakfast sandwich, is a delight. I can’t believe you idiots all saw that rancid shit show Joker, but Birds of Prey is underperforming at the box office.)
Anyway, the newly appointed Best Chris is also starring in the third season of The Sinner. He’s creepy as hell in it, this time not in a cartoony way but a “this guy probably murdered a nice lady” way. He stars opposite Hollywood’s Best Matt, Matt Bomer, whose character has a throwaway line about the two of them sexually experimenting together while in college that I will never not be thinking about for the rest of my life.
Moral of the story here, folks: Chris Messina is the Best Chris. Get on board!