Little Fetishes (or why I’ve always been confused about why other girls enjoy looking at photos of celebrities)

This blog post got me thinking way more than I would have ever thought possible - what was originally meant to be just a reply in the comments section there is now turning into a horrendously long blog post ;)
I don’t know if Andreja is reading this… but I’m sure she remembers when she brought me a Shahrukh Khan photo from an Austrian (or was it German?) magazine. It was his Om Shanti Om bare chest look and even though I clearly have a huge thing for him, she got practically no reaction from me (we both laughed she should have given the magazine to a different Monika we both know, who would have been way more appreciative ;)).
The blog post in question is a list of celebrities with explanations on what details the author finds sexy in them (”little fetishes” *grin*) and links to photos to illustrate those features. I read through it with amusement and concluded that I would never be able to write a list like that. I just don’t react to photos in that way and I don’t really find particular kind of facial features sexy.
But as the discussion there continued and I started thinking more about it, I concluded I actually do have “little fetishes”, it’s just that they’re not photogenic. A lot of them have to do with body language rather than looks. And I started wondering - maybe I would be able to make a list like that after all.
So I figured I’d try (as everyone else was making their own attempts in the comment section there and it’s kind of fun ;)) and it’s becoming an alarmingly long list :] I’ve grouped it “by fetish” rather than “by celebrity” cause it was just easier to write that way somehow (but it also means the celebs get repeated multiple times).
So here goes… The “fetishes” are listed in random order.

Fetish no.1 - the only photogenic one
Ryuhei Matsuda - he’s the only celebrity I’ve ever liked who is beautiful to me in the sense that I like to stare at photos of him. He has a face like a porcelain doll, no? *grin*

Fetish no.2 - being politically incorrect (extra points for innuendo, even better if it’s gay ;))
Shahrukh Khan - He has narrowly missed getting sued for some of his jokes (actually, I think there was one he did get sued for - ironically it was kind of mild comparing to some of the other things he’s said and done). I think his politically incorrect humour is also partly why I like him when he’s evil - he has the license to go as far with it as he pleases then ;) He gets the extra points for innuendo too - there’s a reason why he’s the first star in Bollywood to have so many gay rumours about him and it’s not because he’s gay ;)
Daniel Radcliffe - I adore his sense of humour *grin* Though, to be honest, this politically incorrect thing is not even just in his jokes. There are many things he does on purpose just to wind people up. From saying he’s an atheist to making it a point to do Harry Potter publicity in a gay magazine.
Robert Pattinson - he has a slightly different style of political incorrectness than the two above (and is definitely milder on the gay innuendo ;)). But he does some things that neither Radcliffe or SRK would - I mean who in their right mind publically disses their own movies? ;)
I’m sure I could easily fit in more male celebs here, but those were the three that came to mind first - they take it to pretty extreme levels IMO.
I was trying to think of a female celeb who would fit this criteria (the original post includes both genders *grin*) and I couldn’t think of anyone who took it quite far enough and then suddenly it came to me - Mallika Sherawat *grin* She has a beautifully feminist and provocative wit. Having said that - I do think this quality is much rarer in women.
The other lady I can think of who totally has the potential to match the three guys above on political incorrectness is not actually a celeb, but then I only know her from the screen and she has an imdb page - so maybe that’s good enough? ;) I saw Samira Saraya in City of Borders (a documentary) and she is so incredibly hot! I honestly don’t usually have this kind of reaction to women. And thinking back to it, her political incorrectness probably had a lot to do with it ;)

Fetish no.3 - running (and other high energy displays)
I like to see a good running sequence in a film - there are some guys whose running just really does it for me (I don’t think I’ve seen a woman whose run I’ve found particularly sexy though). The problem is that I quickly forget whose running I liked ;)
I’m not usually into very macho kind of running (like conventional action heroes and that sort of stuff). What I like best is when the running is dynamic, but not entirely in control - like maybe the guy trips or has to push through a crowd or something like that.
Other high energy activities also tend to qualify (but I’m just as forgetful as to who I like and why :]).
I think my biggest running fetish is Shahrukh Khan (I actually tend to remember it even when I don’t watch him run for quite a long while ;)). And I know I’m not the only person who has a running fetish when it comes to him cause his director in Kal Ho Naa Ho got a lot of flak for putting in a really ridiculous and illogical running sequence into the film and he admitted that the only reason was because he likes Shahrukh in running scenes lol The running scene that really sticks out in my mind is in Darr (1994). I generally liked his running much better when he was younger I guess. Can’t find the entire scene on-line, but you can see some of what I mean on the trailer. Some short shots from the scene I love are around the 0:30-0:40 mark (it’s a very long and satisfying sequence in the film) and then there’s a different scene, which I also like (though not as much as the first) at the 1:30-1:45 mark. Actually, when Shahrukh first became popular in India his energy was one of the major things that seemed to attract people. I don’t think he’s got anywhere near the energy in his body language nowadays (though I still find his body language very sexy). A favourite scene of mine that really shows off his energy is a dance sequence in Maya Memsaab (one of the first feature films he shot - this was early 90s). You can see it here (I particularly recommend it past the 1:00 mark - I think that’s where the energy is most evident *grin*).
As I’m coming out of a Tom Felton phase, I remember his running ;) I haven’t seen all that much of it (never seen him do a long running sequence), but judging by the little I’ve seen I think he has a lot of potential there *grin* You can see him running (in true cowardly style) on this clip at the end of the snow scene and then there’s a little more after the Hermione punches Draco scene. The snow scene starts around the 2:15 mark and the other one follows it.
I sort of have this recollection that I really liked Brendan Fraser’s running, but I don’t remember it clearly enough and can’t find a clip ;) He’s probably the closest I’ve been to enjoying a very macho kind of run (mind you, as far as action heroes go Brendan Fraser is pretty un-macho ;-P). What I find sexy about him is the size and power of him - like when he runs every step is so ridiculously huge (he looks great when he punches someone too ;)).
I’m sure there’s plenty more guys whose running I’ve enjoyed, but it really is hard to remember…

Fetish no. 4 - the domination/vulnerability dichotomy
The name of this fetish doesn’t make any sense, but I didn’t know how else to call it ;-P I love it when they do the whole “I’m going to intimidate you” thing and I also love to see vulnerability - what’s important is that the same person should be able to do both. Sometimes the vulnerability is enough in itself, but it’s still much better when the intimidating thing is in place too (doesn’t work for me the other way round though). What can be extremely thrilling is when they do both in the same scene *grin* The extremer the contrast, the more thrilling it gets ;) Unfortunately there’s not that many parts around where that’s possible and I tend to think it demands quite a lot of acting skill as well, so this is not something I get to see often *sigh*
Anyway, after Harry Potter 6 I have to say Tom Felton fits the bill perfectly. Ever since the 3rd one I thought he had potential with this (he just didn’t have the material to show it off) and Harry Potter 6 proved I was right! *grin* There’s the scene on the train (where he stamps on Harry’s face) and then the one on one scene with Snape, where you get both sides of the coin very strongly. No clips of these are up on-line yet though. Best I can do is link to the bathroom fight scene, which I don’t like anywhere near as much (and the opening crying shot is kind of fake - it gets better from about the 0:11 mark), but it’s still good :) It’s more on the vulnerable side of things though.
Alan Rickman also really must be mentioned here. I don’t think I need to convince anyone he can do the intimidating strutting thing well. He very rarely gets to do a full on vulnerable part, but what I really love about him is that in all his dominating personas, the vulnerability is usually just under the surface. One of my favourites is Sweeney Todd - Judge Turpin is a very dark and all powerful kind of character and yet when it comes to ladies he’s so adorably vulnerable! There is a shot in the Poor Thing song, which is full on vulnerability (it’s around the 1:30 mark - when he’s under the window with the flowers), but I also love this scene (past the 0:30 mark). Here he’s very much in his intimidating strutting mode and yet that vulnerability is constantly there, right under the surface - I find it really beautiful and sexy :) Btw, I was much amused to hear Tim Burton verbalize all my major Alan Rickman fetishes in an interview once, so I know I’m not the only one who feels that way about him ;)
Unfortunately, I’ve got to mention Shahrukh Khan again here lol And I think this is another reason I like him in villain and anti-hero kind of roles. I mean the only villainish sort of part of his I don’t react particularly strongly to (Baazigar) is the one which doesn’t fill either this fetish or my political incorrectness one :] He’s another guy who can pull off both extremes at the same time, though I can’t find a link with strong support for that :] In the end I chose this Don montage *grin* Don is Shahrukh’s most intimidating character ever I think (he’s usually more popular with the audience in his vulnerable mode), so you can really see that part of it in his body language there. It doesn’t show off his vulnerable mode much, but those can be seen on the Darr trailer and in the Maya Memsaab scene somewhat.
I’ve been thinking about female celebs, but I couldn’t think of anybody who gets this out on quite the same level. There’s plenty of female celebs, who can pull the vulnerability thing off beautifully, but the intimidating thing is very rare. Then again, female characters with very intimidating characteristics are hardly present in films and when they are they’re usually badly written *sigh*

Fetish no. 5 - restrained emotions
Finally a a fetish where Shahrukh does not score top marks ;) A lot of British and Japanese actors score high on this. I love it when they barely change facial expression and yet underneath you can feel there’s so much going on.
Alan Rickman really needs to be repeated here. He has this fantastic quality (which Tim Burton also greatly appreciates ;)), where you look at him and you sort of don’t want to know what he’s thinking. It feels like whatever he’s thinking is so dark, sick and perverted that you just don’t want to know ;) I mean that feeling doesn’t come across in every part - only with his villains really. But I love it. He’s generally a very restrained actor though, so even when there’s nothing perverted about the character it’s still a lot of fun to watch him *grin*
Colin Firth has to be mentioned here. Mr Darcy is a classic and I’m pretty sure the restraint in that part is what attracts a lot of girls - not just me :]
Ryuhei Matsuda’s face is not the only thing that appeals to me ;) He’s one of the most restrained actors out there. I think his part in Gohatto is very unique - it’s probably the least facial expression I’ve ever seen by a leading man ;) and yet he’s magnetic, there’s so much tension there.
Amongst the ladies, Keira Knightley definitely needs a mention - Atonement and The Duchess are amazing parts in this respect. Her restraint in these is very beautiful.

Fetish no. 6 - warmth and personal space
I get a kick out of watching people who are totally unabashed about physically getting into the personal space of others. Somehow, to me these people exude warmth and sexiness. Like the restraint thing, it seems to have a bit of a cultural element to it - or at least I observe this much more often in South Asian, African and Latin looking people.
I have this belief that a major reason why Shahrukh Khan is so successful in playing lovers, despite never having kissed a heroine on screen, is his personal space thing. He gets so much innuendo out of just encroaching on other people’s personal space that he doesn’t actually need to do any kissing ;) Check out the dialogue scene at the beginning of this clip - most of the sexual tension in that is him gradually taking up more and more of the girl’s personal space.
Tony Curtis is quite a character - he may be overweight and over 80, but he just exudes warmth and sexiness. The level of comfort he has with people is beautiful (if you want to check it out then IMO it shows up quite a bit in this interview with Jonathan Ross).
Samira Saraya gets another mention as well. Her comfort levels about this are definitely one of the reasons that make her so sexy to me :) Not enough video of her on-line to link to unfortunately or I would *sigh*
Jaya Bachchan - she’s over 60, but I still find her very sexy. Unfortunately, I can’t find a clip which really shows off what I mean… But I do think one of the reasons people like her so much in motherly roles is how cuddly she is ;)

Final Note: This list is far from full, amazingly enough… I tried to pick people who really embody these “fetishes” for me, but I’m sure I’ve left loads out. And there are also people who don’t exactly embody any of these, but have a little bit of many. And there are also some things about body language that I just can’t be quite this specific about and yet they do seem sexy to me. And there are probably “fetishes” I’ve just forgotten about. So, er yeah, this list isn’t exactly comprehensive ;)

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