Wednesday, September 21, 2005
The Perfect Body: Sean Maher
Woman are not as visual sexually as men are—we all know that. Personally, I may be one of the least visual. My turn-ons are things like sense of humor, intelligence, voice, and attitude. I’ll take Zack Braff over Brad Pitt any day of the week, and as you recall, I ignored Kelly Monaco’s hunky dance partner Alec in favor of John O’Hurley.
Nevertheless, even a person like me must occasionally take note of the male physique. I recently rewatched the final episode of the cancelled sci-fi series “Firefly” to prepare for the release of its movie sequel “Serenity.” In this particular episode, viewers are treated to Sean Maher, as stowaway Dr. Simon Tam, with his shirt off.
Sean happens to have what is in my particular opinion the perfect body. It’s just genetic. I’m not saying he doesn’t work out to make the best of it: obviously he does. But the man is blessed with flawless proportions. The taper from shoulder to waist could not be more perfect. He’s lean in the right places, and it’s the perfect amount of lean. His carriage displays every feature to its best advantage. He’s a walking dream, really, so faultless he could have been designed by DaVinci.
What makes the scene that much more effective is the complete nonchalance of the circumstance. It’s not a love scene, there are not even any women present, and sex is the furthest thing from Simon’s mind. He has been awakened in the middle of the night by a dangerous intruder bent on kidnapping his sister and possibly murdering the rest of the crew. Simon happens to sleep shirtless, so here he is.
Simon is not in any way engaged with his own physical appeal, and yet the female viewer can hardly think of anything else. To be more accurate, the female viewer’s attention is amusingly split. On the one hand, we watch Simon keep his cool in this horrific situation—we marvel that he can be calm and even witty, and this behavior only increases his appeal. And on the other hand, well, the primordial female brain is simply chanting “God he’s gorgeous, God he’s gorgeous.”
Gorgeous without even thinking about it. Isn’t that a man at his best? Effortless beauty. The tight stomach and narrow hips exude masculinity, the shoulders and arms radiate power, the geometry of the entire assembly is poetically lovely. And all the while that the fellow emanates this glorious beauty, he is quite busy doing something else entirely and doesn’t even notice.
In the director’s commentary on the “Firefly” DVD, creator Joss Whedon makes an offhand comment about how he wrote Simon shirtless in this scene as a little treat to female viewers, and he’s gotten tons of messages of gratitude on that count. Personally, I believe that in the grand scheme of the universe, Sean Maher has a solemn duty to share himself in this way as much as polite society permits. God bless him.