Throughout the late nineties and early aughts, the world was given a veritable buffet of highly fuckable Jack Black characters, be they freestyling to The Graduate soundtrack Jacks or crooning “Love Lifted Me” like a goddamn angel Jacks. And what did we do with this bounty? We squandered it. By seeing with our eyes and hearing with our ears that Jack Black is the only part of High Fidelity that holds up, yet remaining silent, we waste the illimitable sexiness of Jack Black covering “Let’s Get It On” in a way that is somehow both completely ironic and totally sincere. Earlier in December, a lone Twitter soothsayer pointed out that anything Chris Pratt can do, Jack Black can do backward and in high heels without joining a cultish-sounding megachurch and whining about how there are not enough roles for average white guys. That in and of itself is a rare gift from Hollywood and one that has, for far too long, gone unsung.
As a longtime Jack Black bonability truther, it was heartwarming to learn that I was not alone in my desire. Across the internet, longtime admirers crept from the shadows to declare Jack Black the winner of pretty much every film role in which he’s been cast, dependably more memorable and appealing than all the technically handsome sandy-haired men whom he has been repeatedly cast opposite but with none of the glory. Like David Tenant, Jack Black is a near-universal would, though, unlike my precious creepy/hot David, he is not a universally discussed would. And that is a shame because Jack Black blankets every role that comes his way in good-natured, hyper but still quirkily intelligent comedy that is always, like his Marvin Gaye cover, both earnest and ironic, bringing welcome dumb charm to roles and films that could have been otherwise pretentious and thoughtful warmth to roles and films that could have been very dumb.
And the long silence ends today, with a definitive list of Jack Black character archetypes ranked by how okay it is to want to bone them.
(Bernie, Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far on Foot, The Holiday, Margot at the Wedding, High Fidelity)
This Jack Black is a prestigious director’s idea of a person most people would not want to bone, and the fact that other characters do, in fact, want to bone him is often meant to come as a surprise to the audience.
Why it is normal to be attracted to him in these roles: He is the most charming person in the entire goddamn film despite being paired with much more “serious” actors whose Oscars have somehow not prepared them to play off Jack Black’s frenetic, five jokes for the price of one energy. It is, quite frankly, very hot to watch the Kidmans and Cusacks of the world scramble to get their bearings back as they are being outacted by someone who has been oft-dismissed as not very good.
This Jack Black is allowed to go full Robin Williams and does, to the delight of audiences young and old.
Why it is normal to be attracted to him in these roles: There is a reason that Tom Hardy is not a highly bankable children’s movie star in addition to often being the best part of obvious Oscar-bait films: It is inappropriate to force children to watch movies just because you, personally, have frequent and recurring fantasies of a sexual nature about the film’s star. However, Jack Black’s penchant for physical comedy and innocent sense of good fun are natural fits for kids’ cinema, providing plausible deniability as to the true motives for encouraging the selection of his work over something animated with a boring message about friendship or feelings or whatever. It could be argued that The Rock provides similar cover, to which I would counterpoint no, he absolutely does not because look at that man.
(“Computerman,” The Polka King, Nacho Libre, Tenacious D)
This iteration is the most Pratt-like of the Jacks Black—a man saying or singing fairly normal phrases or sometimes just plain good advice (such as stop humping like a goddamn rabbit women hate that) in a way that inexplicably makes straight men laugh uncontrollably. My sister’s best friend knew that her husband was exward bound when he bought her a Tenacious D double album as her lone Christmas gift, despite her having expressed zero previous interest in a band founded on the premise that Ray Stevens would be even funnier if his music sort of sounded like Neil Young. The future ex-husband’s logic was that if she would just listen non-judgementally she would see the obvious merits and then the two of them could sit around with mutual boners for Jack Black. Instead, they divorced and now sit around with solitary boners for Jack Black.
Why It Is Normal to Be Attracted to Him in These Roles: Jack Black is the ultimate marry in a game of fuck, marry, kill because he would never pull this shit. His eclectic film and music career is all the proof one needs that whatever you’re into, Jack Black wants to hear about it and will maybe make up a funny little song about it on the spot. He is the interesting, actually funny person one can fantasize about meeting while divorcing their boring, unfunny husband who cannot understand Noah Baumbach movies even when they have Jack Black in them.
It is not normal to have seen this film more than once. If you are having sexual fantasies about anything you witnessed Jack Black do therein, please stop immediately.