As Nic and I have been having a quiet January due to lack of funds, we've been hitting our collection of DVD boxed sets pretty hard. The other night, while watching an episode of The X-Files, it struck me that the 90s were a good time for TV crushes. In my opinion maybe even better than today (although it's hard to argue against Jon Hamm, there. Wow.) So, for your reading pleasure I present a list to you of my TV crushes from the 90s. We’ll start with my inspiration for this blog.
David Duchovny – Fox Mulder, The X-Files
I still love David Duchovny. In fact I think he's improved with age, and Californication is one of those shows that I didn't think I would like but ended up loving. And for me it all started with The X Files. I used to think my crush was solely on Fox Mulder – that intelligent, creative and rather weird FBI Agent and to begin with it probably was. There's just something that little bit fragile about Fox Mulder, something that you want to protect. And yikes, but the man is attractive. Look at him. Go on!
Look at him. YUM.
His hotness is such that it survived all those ponderous Mulder voice-overs about the nature of the universe, and even the finale of The X Files which has got to be one of the worst pieces of television I've ever enjoyed watching. Even the two movies, Fight The Future and I Want To Believe were rendered watchable by Duchovny's sexiness and overall charisma. What’s made my crush endure is the fact that he seems like such a funny guy. His guest spot in The Simpsons along with his co-star Gillian Anderson is hilarious and he is extremely funny in Evolution and the aforementioned Californication.
I honestly can't think of a caption for this one.
Okay, so he did have some sleazy times in the 90s with his sex addiction and all, but Duchovny seems like a good, funny guy. My love for him is strong. I want to believe.
The X Files was particularly crush-worthy TV. I think they figured they needed the hotness to balance out all the icky stuff and the mytharc waffle. I have a soft spot for Mitch Pileggi as Assistant Director Walter Skinner. He clenches his way through each performance, is totally uptight but is seriously buff. I love the chemistry between him and Mulder and an episode is always improved for featuring a bit of Skinner. If he's doing something angry, all the better.
Of course Gillian Anderson is amazingly beautiful as well. In early seasons she's spectacularly badly dressed, but I think I prefer this to the polished Scully we see in the recent X Files film. Her hair! Also, she's a pretty awesome female character in that she's always into the action. There's room in my heart for Scully as well.
Special Agent Dana Scully. I hope working with the hotness that is Mulder made all the bad shit that happened to her that bit more bearable.
John Shea - Lex Luthor, The New Adventures of Superman
This next one is a bit of a cheat because I didn't follow Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman when it was broadcast in the 90s. I did watch it off and on, but I didn't love it. Still, my crush here is 90s based so I'm going to include it anyway. It isn't Dean Cain, although the show does everything it can to make you crush on him. No, I love John Shea. He seems to be having so much fun as Lex Luthor. He's determined and evil, but he's smooth and charming and very, very funny.
Evil, but so very charming
I've been surprised by how charming Lois and Clark still is, and I think John Shea is a big part of that. You can really believe that this Lex Luthor could have so much power and that he could have charmed his way to it. Some of the plots (most of the plots) are completely ridiculous but Shea steals every scene he's in. I think he's aces. John Shea even turned up in an episode of Sex and The City. He's one of my very favourite guest stars, in an hilarious turn as Dominic Delmonico, the man who broke Samantha's heart.
Jimmy Smits - Detective Bobby Simone, NYPD Blue
I've written numerous times before about my love for NYPD Blue, and prepare to hear about it again! Like Lois and Clark, this programme wasn't really on my radar in the 90s because I was a bit too young. Nic and I affectionately call it NYPD Blue-y, but I'm ever so glad to have come to it as an adult. Not least because it gave me the chance to discover the immense hotness of one Jimmy Smits. Now, I'd seen Smits in action in The West Wing, as Congressman Matt Santos (apparently one of the inspirations for this character was Barack Obama) but I was so deep into my crush on Richard Schiff (what?! Beards are hot, let me tell you) that I didn't pay him much attention. However, the younger Smits, playing a good cop who can occasionally be badass, with a bit of a sad back story? HOT. My nickname for him is Jimmy Fits, because I am that classy.
Seriously though, he is a very beautiful man, and Bobby Simone is a fantastic character. Smits seems to excel at playing the good guy who isn't the boring guy. Simone could have been just a foil for Sipowicz but Smits made him more than that, it's a beautiful thing. One of the great things about NYPD Blue is you frequently get to see Smits in the buff, as well. Go and check it out.
Daniela Nardini - Anna Forbes, This Life
The Americans have been getting all of my attention thus far, but I did have love for a few Brits as well. I did watch This Life in the 90s. I was a bit too young to really understand it, but not too young to develop a massive crush on Daniela Nardini as Anna Forbes. Even then I realised that Anna was a mess, but I loved her. She's feisty and beautiful, and has that amazing Scottish accent to boot. Watching it again a few months ago I was impressed with my own taste, there. She's a consistently interesting character.
The beautiful, charismatic Anna Forbes
I also had a soft spot for Miles. Yes, he was a twat and he had stupid hair but Egg was also a twat with stupid hair. I could never understand why everyone fancied Egg so much. Miles treated Anna badly and he was spoiled and annoying and his hair was SO STUPID, but Jack Davenport was and still is a beautiful man.
Miles, and his stupid hair.
Patrick Stewart - Captain Jean-Luc Picard, Star Trek: The Next Generation
Obviously Star Trek: The Next Generation brings us back to the American end of things, but it should surprise no-one to learn that my crush was on the amazing Patrick Stewart as Jean-Picard. Picard. What a man. The man that inspired this song. He is an intelligent man, a man of character, a man who can DANCE.
Moving from topic to topic. Quite hypnotic.
He looks pretty damn fine in a uniform, as well.
I think that part of the attraction for me is definitely linked to the fact that Patrick Stewart seems to be such a cool person, with a real sense of humour. This comes through in his performance as Picard and in everything else I've seen him in. And, like Duchovny this is a man who has improved with age. What a man.
I could go on for days because clearly, I am very crushable. I know I've missed out some of the more obvious crushes of this era – Jordan Catalano, that guy from Party of Five, Pacey Witter (although, Pacey does get my vote) What can I say? I have individual tastes. Let me know in the comments if you share my feelings, or if you'd like to reminisce about the 90s men and women that got your hearts racing!