The geeks always got the laughs, but now they're also getting all the girls and the action. They're just a handful of drama away from total Hollywood dominance, plowing forward much like the seemingly unstoppable 3D train. And if it's like the 3D train, could the freaks and geeks face a backlash as well?
Just yesterday I griped a bit about the ever-growing trend to put the geeks (dorks, awkward dudes, whatever the case may be) with the beautiful women, but what I didn't consider was the action. In their post about the new Green Hornet trailer, Deadline asked: What happened to action heroes who could actually win a fistfight? Mike Fleming wondered if he was the only one having a hard time buying Rogen and Cera in action roles, asking: "What happened to the days when we watched action films, assured that the protagonist could probably wipe the floor with everyone in the theater?" Fleming cites the old days of Schwarzenegger, Norris, and the like, who led the world of action with a tough and iron fist.
While I have a hard time knocking Cera, because he's a spot-on Scott Pilgrim and it's a whole story about regular and supernatural dudes duking it out, there is something here. Sam Worthington is about the only modern action star with some pipes to prove it (though I still wouldn't rank him with any of the biggies like Stallone). There's Taylor Lautner trying to head down that road with his new-found muscles, but he's got a looong way to go. G.I. Joe brought us Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Cobra Commander. Action no longer requires the pipes that Linda Hamilton sculpted. In fact, modern action seems much like femme-centric fighting has always been -- moves and toughness not coming from skill and strength, but carefully choreographed moves.
Perhaps our tastes have moved on. The Losers had some muscle, but didn't become a smash hit. But then I thought of the other big group action fest coming this summer -- The Expendables. Stallone. Statham. Li. Lundgren. Roberts. Couture. Austin. Crews. Rourke. Schwarzenegger. Willis. All of the rippling machismo is coming in one film, and it's not a posse of new names, but rather the men who helped make the action world what it is today, from terminators to the best of the best to unstoppable McClanes. If there was a little Van Damme in the action, the screen would probably explode.
If this film does well, and I suspect it might, could the geeks finally face competition and possibly a de-throning?
Might audiences begin to turn away from the freaks and geeks, questing for anything that current cinema isn't providing? Whether that be show-stopping icons who get the girl, or hard-core action delivered by hands that could actually crush you with ease, and not just cheat with thin arms and vampiric strength?
Don't get me wrong -- I don't mind the rise of the geek. In fact, I like it. But at the same time, I like diversity. It's about time the geeks got some love, and weren't thrown into a corner like Baby, but maybe it's time for a little balance.
What do you think? Could the reign of the geek come to an end? Is it only a beginning? Could muscles return? Sound off below.