The Sexiest Man Alive

Ken AshfordPopular CultureLeave a Comment

Let me say something about People's Sexiest Man Alive thing.

It means nothing, and it is often wrong, and potentially dangerous to the recipients.

And to make my point, let's look at the first several "Sexiest Men Alive".  Starting with….

MelgibsonsmaYay, People magazine.  Right out of the box, starting in 1985, you picked a wife-abuser and anti-semitic racist: Mel Gibson.

Oooh, that's so sexy!

One wonders… if People magazine was around in 1938, would their "Sexiest Man Alive" be that adoreable moustachioed dictator in Germany? 

MarkharmonsmaTurning to 1986, we get… Mark Harmon!
Yes, the B-level actor whose talents just couldn't quite get him to the silver screen.  
Destined forever to play doctors, lawyers, and secret servicemen, Mark Harmon is always one role away from making a guest appearance on The Love Boat, if indeed The Love Boat was still being made.
By the way, noticed the trend?  Blue eyes.  You'll see more of that up to and including this year.
HamilinSMAWho's next?  1987.
Ah, Harry Hamlin.

Harry Hamlin.
Harry Who?

Harry Hamlin.  Harry Hamlin was People's "Sexiest Man Live" in 1987.
Who is Harry Hamlin?

You get my point.
And the list goes on….
Dead boy.
The exception to the point I am making.
Religious freak.
Another dead boy.
See Mel Gibson above.  Why didn't they use this picture, I wonder?
Anyway, my point is made.  
Being made SMA by People usually is a death notice, or it means you're weird.  Yes, I know the next couple decades include Johnny Depp (twice), George Clooney (twice), Brad Bitt (twice), Richard Gere (twice), and the occasional smattering of Matthew McConaugheys and Hugh Jackmans.  But maybe those people just haven't add time to show their inner Mel Gibson.
Or have they?