I swear to god, if at some point in the next year we find out O.J. has been cast in the summer’s “wildest” comedy, I’ll only be half surprised. And that would mainly be about him getting parole. I say all of that because of this, and because of all of the bullshit that it is.
First off, someone should really tell Mark Wahlberg that even though you technically can’t be sued for trademark infringement by a fictional character, Mac from Always Sunny would still like his general look/thing back. Secondly, we’re really doing this? Mel Gibson is a thing we need to worry about being out there in the world now? Because that’s a real punch to the dick.
Aside from the fact that Gibson appears to be a life-long unrepentant asshole, let’s talk about Gibson’s actual body of work. Have you watched the Lethal Weapon movies recently? Because they don’t hold up. Same for Braveheart. And before you start with that face, I want you to remember that even if Braveheart does hold up (which again, it does not), that in no way excuses the revisionist-history, conservative wetdream that was The Patriot. And that thing was a piece of shit. That’s the catch with Gibson as actor/director. You might remember Mad Max, but you’re going to have to take What Women Want with it.
So if we were seriously contemplating taking Gibson back (and I cannot stress enough, I come down on the side of a firm “Fuck Off with that Shit”), is this the best movie to try to make a return in? A movie where the entire premise is “See, it’s funny because Gibson and Wahlberg are tough and macho, and Lithgow and Ferrell are sissies who feel comfortable expressing affection for the people most important to them”? You can tell that’s the entire premise, because while Lithgow makes his entrance to the poppy “Love Will Keep Us Together” (SEE? That guy’s always talking about his feelings, even in song form), Gibson gets to make his badass, slow-mo escalator entrance to “Heavy Metal Song” (I’m sorry, Petr).
And most likely, Gibson’s, not Lithgow’s, character will learn the lesson by the end of the movie. I never saw the first one because I have better things to watch whilst hungover, but context clues from this trailer tell us that Wahlberg’s character has made great strides in terms of settling into a sensitive dad role. It seems fitting that Papa Whatever-Wahlberg’s-Character’s-Name-Is-No-I’m-Not-Going-To-IMDB-To-Look-It-Up will have a similar realization. Which means we’ll have a movie about a toxically masculine guy who has alienated those close to him, played by a significantly more toxically masculine (and abusive) guy who has alienated many more people, learning a lesson about the dangers of machoness, which the real-life actor has clearly failed to learn?
If nothing else, I feel the need to remind you that Michelle Pfeiffer is currently making a similar comeback to Gibson’s after the nearly unforgivable crime of being a woman over forty.