Last week Lainey reported how Captain America surprised his ex-classmates by showing up at his 20th high school reunion. (He wore a name tag. Because he’s a massive nerd. Heart emoji.)
Well, it turns out this may be a thing that Second Best Chris (Hemsworth > Evans > Pine, just in case you need a refresher, yeah?) really enjoys doing. This surprising people thing, he’s done it before. I bet he gets off on it. The sicko. Anyway, no, I take that back. That would be weird. Especially at things like this, from a few years ago, where he is surprising some kids at a screening of Captain America: Civil War. Apparently, this is a group of kids who volunteer to throw birthdays for shelter kids. And for that, they get a Captain America.
To be fair to Chris 2: He’s not alone. Celebrities do this a lot. They love surprising fans at random events. And the cameras are coincidentally present at those events.
There is a part of me that shudders a bit at the idea of surprise visits by celebrities. It’s probably just me being a miserable Monday sonofabitch but there’s something about the image of these gilded demi-gods descending from the heavens to momentarily bless us plebs with their presence that rubs me up the wrong way.
I’m sure it’s lovely for the person being surprised. And it’s great that the millionaire celebrity makes some effort to keep one feet on the ground and maintain some contact with the fans.
But then again what kind of sentence is that? ‘Millionaire celebrity’? ‘Maintain contact with fans’? Artifacts of a world gone mad and a society run amok if ya ask me. Tear up the support beams and throw it all down to the ground and let’s rebuild this mother among more egalitarian lines for god’s sake.
It’s a similar effect to when you see stories that perfectly illustrate the dystopian capitalist hellscape we live in being dressed up in ‘inspiring’ or ‘heartwarming’ framing. Like a teacher being unable to afford to pay for their life-necessary kidney operation or something, and so all the kids in the teacher’s year use up their free time after school to run a fund-raising event to help. Maybe they crack open their piggybanks. Or they sell their comic book collections. Whatever the specifics, the kids’ efforts succeed, and the teacher can afford their operation and lives to see another
bill day. Woo! Healthcare as a market commodity rather than a human right! Woo! Extortionate costs for that commodity! Woo! Child labour needed to save a life threatened by those costs! How inspiring.
Just like the celebrity visit, on a micro granular scale devoid of context it might look good and feel good. But expand outwards just like a millimetre and immediately it starts to feel much less like a feelgood story and somewhat more like indictment of society at large. ‘Oh but Knava you’re such a killjoy! And that conceptual reach! Kids being forced to raise money to save a teacher’s life due to exorbitant healthcare costs does not a silly celebrity visit equal.’ No, no it doesn’t. But it’s a spectrum, dammit! Who gave the famous people this power?! Captain America. Chris Evans. Why do they have the power to bring so much joy with their presence?! I don’t like it. Who is pleased by this ambassador from the tyrannical regime of Disney temporarily blessing them with their stardust trails before vanishing back into their private jet to heat the world with their CO2 trails so as to help Darth Disney amass even more powe—…
Image sources (in order of posting): YouTube, Fox