You know, there are some actors that just never get the recognition they deserve. Case in point: James Marsden.
The phrase 'ridiculously good-looking' could have been created for him. That is if Derek Zoolander hadn't got a hold of it first. Charisma; charm; talent; he's got it all and yet too often he gets relegated to the Paul Walker 'cute but should have stuck to modelling' league.
So why am I such a fan? Well, let's review the evidence.
Exhibit A: X-Men. Under used (I love Bryan Singer but he made an error here) but still great as Cyclops. We never see his eyes! It's incredibly difficult to act without eyes! As for X3, the potential was there for a Cyclops centred story. But no! Not to give too much away, but Mr Marsden doesn't get to see a whole lot of action in The Last Stand.
Exhibit B: Ally McBeal. The US legal comedy/drama suffered a big hit in its 5th and final season due to the departure of Robert Downey Jr. Good old James helped to ease the pain with his easy charm and dulcet singing tones.
Exhibit C: Superman Returns. Perhaps Singer was trying to make things up to him by casting him as Lois Lane's squeeze in his Superman revamp. Sadly still a fairly peripheral character, Marsden nevertheless fleshed out his role in such a way that it truly left the viewer unsure which man Lane would choose.
Exhibit D: Hairspray. Utterly joyous. I love this film and you-know-who was perfect in the role of cheesy as can be TV show host, Corny Collins. Once more he got to show off those vocal talents and sends up his clean-cut looks and image a treat. See also Exhibit E.
Exhibit E: Enchanted. Marsden is hilarious as the Disney prince searching for his princess in an all too real New York. He flings himself headlong into the spirit of the film despite once again playing second fiddle in the leading man stakes, this time to Patrick Dempsey.
So there you have it. Undeniable proof of the genius of James Marsden. If this guy had been around in the 40s or 50s then he'd have been a matinee idol. It's just bad luck for him that these days audiences want their movie stars a little less slick and a bit rough around the edges.
James Marsden, I salute you!