"I'm assuming you're referring to what I said about David being sweet and whatever? Well, you're right in that I can't know for sure if he is in real life what he appears to be, unless I know him, which I don't (and that's utterly tragic).
But he's done a couple of things that have given me a very favourable impression of him as a person:
1. If you watch Idol, you might have noticed an orange bracelet David wears on his wrist every week. (If not, look out for it!) He first wore it when he sang Eleanor Rigby and amazingly I noticed the bracelet (amazing because I hardly notice these things. I didn't even notice that he played his guitar left-handed until I read about it online). At first I was wondering what it was and if it was just some random fashion accessory, until a story surfaced a couple of days after the performance about the bracelet. He wears it in honour of a 7-year-old girl who's stricken with leukemia. She's the daughter of a reporter from a FOX affiliate who visited the Idol set sometime before Beatles Week 1 and spoke to David, who is his daughter's favourite Idol. The reporter was wearing the orange wristband, David asked him what it was, the reporter told him about his daughter, David asked for a wristband to wear on the show - and he did. And he's worn it every single week since then.
I'm not a 7-year-old girl with leukemia, but if I mailed David a necklace and he wore it on the show, I'd be FREAKING BLOODY EXCITED. I can only imagine how the girl must feel when she watches the show every week and sees David Cook wearing her wristband.
What makes this gesture really genuine is that he's not doing it to get votes. The fact that most people don't know about it, and that the people that DO know about it are probably David's fangirls/die-hards like myself, AND the fact that so far it's never been mentioned on the show, shows that he's not doing it to portray himself as some benevolent, big-hearted guy; he's doing it because he wants to. And the story didn't leak from him; it was the reporter himself who explained the bracelet during a recap of the show on his news station.
And the best part? David has never portrayed himself as a big-hearted kind of guy. He doesn't go around telling the world that he's supporting a 7-year-old girl with leukemia, or that he feels deeply for the underprivileged of society. Unlike the other David who's CONSTANTLY going off about the Deep and Meaningful messages in his songs, my David doesn't need to tell the world that he cares. He shows the world who he is, and he doesn't make a big production about it by flaunting it in our faces. That's what really touches me about the girl and the orange wristband.
2. The second point relates to David's personal life and I'm not comfortable with talking about his personal life since I don't even know him. So suffice it to say that there's a lot he could've done on the show to get sympathy votes, but he's never once done it.
3. Last week during the results show when they were pimping Idol Gives Back, after the segment about the girl and her sister, David cried. I'm sure a lot of other people cried too, but I was strangely unmoved, so the sight of David asking Michael J for a tissue and then wiping his eyes just made me go 'awwww'.
4. This one is a hit/miss, but I really loved the 'give back' David wrote on his hand after his Innocent performance. I don't think he was pandering, and I don't think he was pretentious; I think he genuinely believes in the cause. The execution was perhaps off judging by the vitriolic response towards it, but I personally thought it was very nice of him.
5. Apparently he also cried after Annie Lennox's performance on Idol Gives Back, and I just adore a man who has actual, genuine emotions.
Like I said, an essay. I'm not attacking you or anything and no offence whatsoever taken; I'm just attempting (hopefully successfully) to justify what I said about him being 'sweet' (no need to justify talented, hot and intelligent, as those are pretty self-evident!). I don't really know exactly what it is about David Cook that affects me so much, but he just does, and I'm glad that I actually have a logical basis for it! Hopefully this made some sense. :D"
I forgot to add: I've read his old Xanga posts before AI made him take down his stuff on the Internet, and from those posts he just seems like a very normal, down-to-earth kind of guy who can easily be one of your friends, or friend's friend, whatever. No hint of arrogance, no sense of entitlement, nothing along the lines of "I'm so talented why am I stuck in middle of American I don't deserve to be a struggling musician". Maybe fame would change him, but in my opinion that cannot get any more humble, David Cook is more likely to crack under the pressure than to let the fame get to his head.
So yeah, my long, lengthy essay to what is essentially a very short comment.
Still on the subject of DCook: The studio version of Innocent is vocally solid the way the live performance wasn't, but the live performance was emotional the way the studio recording isn't.
Win/lose, lose/win. I wish he'd sung the chorus an octave higher on the recorded version a la the live version. Without the change in octave, the chorus just sounds monotonous and repetitive.
But honestly, Innocent is a notoriously hard song to sing. Our Lady Peace/Raine Maida must be nuts when they recorded this song; the high/falsetto "I" in the "I remember feeling low/I remember losing hope" verse is like OMG vocal chords can break down. I wonder how OLP performs it live; would be interesting to YouTube.
Anyway, thanks to David's love for OLP, I have now changed my mind about Raine's voice. Still grating on Clumsy, but it sounds okay on Innocent, so I'm now inspired to check out their other songs. Yay.
I also cannot believe that OLP is "obscure" in America when a random girl in fucking SINGAPORE knows who they are. Even if OLP aren't exactly Radiohead, I'm glad David didn't cover some Fuel song and call them his "favourite band".
On another but related note, I'm currently trying to figure out which Internet phone service allows me to call a United States toll-free line for free, so that I can vote for David Cook on American Idol. Yes, I'm really that far gone. But my saving grace is that I'm very reluctant to pay for it and I probably won't do it if I have to pay. I'm like DAMN BROKE already, after the $98 for my Stereophonics ticket and the US$40 I've invested in David's American Idol iTunes downloads, not to mention the little random things I've bought using my debit card/ATM card ever since Chinese New Year. I need money for Europe!!!
Anyway, I'm sure there's a way to vote, just like how there's a way around the iTunes thing. Someone from New Zealand voted for free using Gizmo but I haven't figured that out yet. I tried Skype but apparently I have to pay? Argh, dunno.
So last night I watched "I'm Not There." Some thoughts:
First, let me get my fangirling out of the way: CHRISTIAN BALE IS TEHSEX OMG HE'S SOOOOO HOT.
Because he is. But guess what? He had like, ten lines altogether WTF. And five of those ten lines were delivered when he was playing this old dude. They aged him twenty years and I almost didn't recognise him because he looked so different! But the eyes, they stay the same.
Okay, shallow nonsense out of the way. I thought the whole film was very interesting. Definitely not the most ground-breaking or original or even most arty-farty film I've ever watched, but it was a nice break from the usual Hollywood fare that we get. I liked how it told Bob Dylan's story in a very unconventional way, by creating six different characters that represented six different aspects of his life. Cate Blanchett definitely stole the entire film with her portrayal of Electric Guitar Bob and just for that, her narrative was my favourite.
Whatever little plot there was, was very non-linear, and while I did kind of got lost towards the end, especially when Richard Gere showed up, the rest of it was strangely engaging. Maybe I was just on the edge of my seat waiting for Christian Bale to appear, but honestly, that wasn't it at all. The film didn't have the kind of story that will engage a viewer in the tradition sense, and yet I was engaged. It sucked me into its 60's, 70's world of revolutionary, protest songs, into Bob Dylan's world as the director/screenwriter interpreted it to be, and I felt like I was THERE, living the entire experience. That's not an easy thing to do when you don't have a conventional story, and no, I'm not a Bob Dylan fan, and neither am I familiar with his music.
Speaking of his music, holy shit that's one amazing soundtrack. Apparently Sonic Youth covered "I'm Not There"! No idea which song it is but the thought of it excites me. With the exception of the Christian song (which sounds nice melodically but I don't like Christian songs), all the songs were awesome. The only few songs I know of Bob Dylan's are, like, Blowin' in the Wind, and Mr. Tambourine Man. And I don't even know how the latter sounds like; I only know it exists because I did the lyrics for Literature class in secondary school. Oh, and of course, that song he did for the Wonder Boys soundtrack which won the 2001 Oscar for Best Original Song, if I remember correctly. I forgot what it's called, but I watched the Oscars that year because Joaquin Phoenix was full of Oscar winness with Gladiator and everything, and Bob performed that song which I really liked. I might have downloaded it, but lost it along with my old computer. Oh well.
Anyway, my point is, yay for new music to check out, even if it's, strictly speaking, old music.
Also, Christian Bale, limited screen time notwithstanding, is an AMAZING actor. That press conference scene was phenomenal and it would've stolen the entire film if someone else but Cate Blanchett had played Electric Guitar Bob. The drunken petulance and world-weariness of the character was utterly SPOT. ON.
Christian is definitely amongst my top 3 favourite actors:
1. Joaquin Phoenix - still love him after all these years. Absolutely phenomenal, naturally-talented actor
2. Leonardo DiCaprio - another phenomenal actor with the same intensity and dedication to his craft as Joaquin
3. Christian Bale - same reasons as above.
I love supremely talented actors who are hot to boot. I think Joaquin is beautiful and has the best eyes ever, Leonardo...well, Titanic and everything, but he's looking better now that he's older, and Christian is MAJOR HOTNESS. I've loved him since Batman Begins which is one of my favourite movies because Christopher Nolan's extremely human take on a superhero movie was just SO refreshing, so brilliantly-done, and so moving and engaging. I don't really care for comics/superheroes and wasn't foaming at the mouth over the original Batman movies (obviously not counting the non-Tim Burton ones, because only die-hard Batman fans with no brains would like them) though I did like them fine, so my love for Batman Begins and what will soon be the Nolan/Bale Batman franchise is entirely due to the brilliance of the film-maker and the actor.
Obviously, I can't wait for The Dark Knight. SO EXCITING!!!1!1ONE!!111
Oh, and this is the first time since the news that I think, "Poor Heath Ledger." Poor thing. Before this, my most vivid memory of him was his role in Ten Things I Hate About You which was like a million lifetimes ago. It was surreal watching him on screen, knowing that he's gone, and that he was still so young. Sigh.
On another note, the opening lines to "I'm Not There" are amazing:
Narrator: There he lies. God rest his soul, and his rudeness. A devouring public can now share the remains of his sickness, and his phone numbers. There he lay: poet, prophet, outlaw, fake, star of electricity. Nailed by a peeping tom, who would soon discover...
Jude: A poem is like a naked person...
Narrator: - even the ghost was more than one person.
Arthur: ...but a song is something that walks by itself.
I'm officially FUCKING HELL screwed for ILA and Comp Crim.
But I'm not panicking yet. My delusion is so deep-seated that somehow I'm convinced that I'd be able to wing my way out of this quagmire.
ILA due on the same day as Comp Crim take home and I haven't done a single thing for either.
At least ILA is a research paper on a topic with which I'm reasonably familiar. At least I can still kind of write and get away with writing fluff. At least Comp Crim is 48-hours and although I haven't been reading, I try to pay attention in class and sometimes succeed in taking notes.
It's okay. There's still hope. Because, you know, I said so.
Gah, I've always been good at lying to myself. Fuck!
I did some emo-ing while in town last night, aimlessly walking around Isetan, waiting for my film to start, and I came to a rather interesting and sad conclusion.
But that's for another entry. I have to wash the dishes, shower, and attempt to read at least 2 pages of a self-determination article before I settle down to watch Idol Gives Back. It's freaking 2 and a half hours! I only want to watch David and his glory note on the Christian song, David singing and dancing to Rihanna's Don't Stop the Music (I might die laughing. Really, I might), David answering phone calls, just David Cook, period.
Apparently next week is Mariah Carey week, though I don't know what they're singing. Because I'm confident that David Cook will not be leaving the show this week, I'm thinking it'll be sexy as hell if he sang Mariah's My All. Smothering sexiness. I can already hear it in my head and grah, if that happens, I will be his love slave FOREVER.
Right, need to do chores and shit.