Without any real merit, I feel that I’m a pretty good judge of creative talent. Especially, when it comes to movies. I’ve seen all of them. That one you’re thinking of now? Seen it.
I feel—also without any real bonafides—I can judge actors. I was a talent coach for several years to some high-profile Radio and TV personalities, so at the very least I can easily tell when someone’s not faking it very well.
My wife and I really love science fiction. So much so that we, uh, on the night we affirmed our love… we did it with the Blade Runner soundtrack playing in the background. Five times. Oh yes! Actually, it played part of a sixth time only because the bonny lass was too weak to move and flick it off right away. Or she may have fallen asleep. That could’ve been it too.
So, when I saw a post for a Sci-Fi series called “Origin”, it caught my eye. Not because of the name, terrible name, horrible, but this was a series from YouTube. They got a couple bucks so at least the special effects should be good.
I was about to give Origin a try, but then I nearly didn’t for one reason. In front of me, a dozen sycophantic entries like “I’m only here because Tom Felton is in it! Yippee!” Several were in ALL CAPS, many contained misspellings. The name didn’t ring a bell. When I looked it up, my heart turned cold.
Ugh. Malfoy. Drago or whatever. The blond Nazi youth kid from Harry Potter. A two-dimensional, sniveling hand-rubber that needed a 24/7 speech balloon hanging over his head reading: “Heh-heh-heh!”
I flashed back to the child actor playing him, probably directed this way, who was playing it camp-as-fuck. A shudder passed through me.
So, because Tom Felton is in it yippee!, I nearly clicked away and let the Origin abomination fall into my blind spot forever (where I keep all my memories of failed relationships, publishing house rejection letters, and any and all recollections about the taste of boiled okra).
However, as stated, we don’t have a lot left to watch. So, begrudgingly, and dreading the appearance of Draco Meets World, I pushed play.
From the start of Origin, Tom F. was doing that “Yo, I’m not in Harry Potter anymore, assholes”-thing the others have done. Daniel Radcliff did it by shaving his head and portraying a dirty-bomb-making white supremacist who’s actually undercover FBI. Emma Watson is now a social justice badass working with the UN. Rupert Grint learned to sing and now calls himself Ed Sheeran.
Tom Felton made his break from Hogwarts in Origin by saying fuck 147 times. In his first sentence.
I was ready to let Tommy Dragon fade into a quiet spot in my mind, but then something troubling began to happen.
As I watched the series, I was starting to like the guy.
Not the character so much, you’re not supposed to—at least not at first—but the actor. I had to admit to myself, the dude was engaging. And the more I watched Origin, the more I liked the guy.
Initially, I put it off to some odd love-hate thing. Like how when you get a toothache and you bite down it kinda feels good. It shouldn’t but it does.
It was weird. I was really digging Tom Felton in the role. Granted, it was a bit too much Jesse from Breaking Bad but that aside, despite all of my reservations going in, I was buying it. Buying him.
Frankly, I like my holier-than-you attitude toward creatives. While not a Twitter assassin, I do have a private air of judge, jury and executioner.
I was wrong. There I said it. Don’t get used to it. But, for my part, Tom Felton not only got a stay of execution, he got a Presidential Pardon. Dude can act. So, I’m sort of looking forward to whatever he does next.
Hmm. Maybe I should give Ed Sheeran a spin now.