>>> Three Beers Deep
By staff writer Chris Phelan

March 7, 2007

Wow… to say I am impressed by the feedback from the Office column would be an understatement. Thanks to everybody who took the time to comment on it—honestly, I didn’t think it would garner that much of a crazily positive response.

I also realized something: I’ve gotten the most feedback not from my college-related columns, but from my television-related columns. Is that weird? Should I be writing for some entertainment blog instead of this fine website? Is there any way to fit in my weekly Gaudio joke in this paragraph? (I say no.) I mean, do I just have more readers who care about TV than college jokes? Or do I just suck at writing about college? Am I really that unfunny? Should I just write column after column of my feelings on various TV-related subjects? Are you clicking to a different column right now in frustration now over this obnoxious joke of a paragraph? Did you just click back to this column because you were vastly underwhelmed? (There we go.) Is it possible to drive this lame joke even further?

“Any fairly unknown actor who plays his first leading role opposite a beautiful girl will fall hopelessly in love with the girl in real life.”

Who knows. Just a lot of unanswered questions right now.

But anyway, I want to comment on a few Office­related topics real quick (because I’m pretty sure there are a few readers who only read this every week to see if I have anything to say about the show):

This past week’s episode (“Cocktails”) was crazy good. It had Jan looking smokin’ hot (always a plus), Karen pulling a great prank on Jim (the look on his face as he asked her if she’s been with every guy at the party was priceless), a few great “that’s what she said” jokes (should have been #6 on the list in the column last week, and yes, this is a nod to my readers who have been posting in the feedback section), some hilarious Dwight one-liners (“Oh good. You’re up.”) and of course…

…Roy awesomely declaring, “I’m gonna kill Jim Halpert” at the end of the episode.

Wow. I mean, wow. What a crazy way to end an episode. I swear, if NBC executives came to my door as soon as that episode ended with a DVD in their hands and told me, “If you give us $500 we will hand you next week’s unaired episode right now” I would have done it in a heartbeat.

I could write twelve more paragraphs about this whole Jim-Roy-Pam-Karen thing, but I’m restraining myself. I’m pretty sure I wasn’t brought on to the Points in Case team to babble endlessly about a TV show… right?

(Oh, and did anyone see the Rainn Wilson episode of Saturday Night Live this past week? His opening monologue with the Office spoof made me forget every single disappointing episode of SNL I’ve ever watched. It was fantastic. And yes, I realize I’m gay for anything Office-related at this point. Whatever, I’ve embraced it.)

Anyway, I wrote what you’re about to read last year and it was never published until now. Thankfully, it still holds up, and it fits in nicely after my “Jim is in love with Pam in real life” comment from the Office column last week.


Consider Emile Hirsch, the actor who played the lead role of Matthew Kidman in The Girl Next Door opposite Elisha Cuthbert.

He fell in love.

And no, I’m not talking about his character relative to the plot of the movie. It happened in real life. Emile Hirsch fell in love with Elisha Cuthbert. In fact, I’m pretty sure of it.

After much debate between me and my roommate, I have come up with a theory. It’s called “The Elisha Theory,” named after the actress who first brought it to my attention.

The Elisha Theory can be properly defined as:

Any fairly unknown actor who plays his first leading role opposite a beautiful girl will fall hopelessly in love with the girl in real life.

Put yourself in Emile Hirsch’s shoes. You’re a young guy, not really sure if you can make it in Hollywood… and then you get the call. Against all odds, you somehow manage to land the leading role in The Girl Next Door. And the script calls for you and Elisha Cuthbert to get it on.

My agent deserves a raise. I may give him my entire paycheck.

You’re nervous as hell when you arrive for the first day of shooting.

Then you see her.

She’s GOR-OHMYGOD-GEOUS. You have to fight the urge to hump the floor… and your agent.

“Relax,” you tell yourself. “You can handle this.”

After shooting scene after scene after scene with this beautiful girl, you realize you can’t handle this after all. As much as you tell yourself that she’s just acting… I know there’s no real emotion behind these kisses, you can’t bring yourself to NOT fall hopelessly in love with her—I mean, come on, she’s slamming her tongue down your throat for God’s sakes! And did she mean to graze your arm like that? She probably did, right?

And it’s all downhill from there. After getting your hopes up and thinking hey, maybe, just MAYBE, she feels the same way, you realize that she really considers you nothing more than her co-star. You’re heartbroken. You leave the set, head back home, and pop in every single Dashboard Confessional CD you can get your hands on, crying as you can’t come terms with the fact that you are sure that Elisha is “the one.” You are inconsolable for days, weeks, even years, at which point you nearly decide that life is no longer worth living. Instead, you go back to feverishly masturbating to Elisha’s latest paparazzi photos.

It’s a slippery slope, that’s for sure.

This theory makes perfect sense because in reality, it’s just common sense. No matter how much of it is acting, it’s still Elisha freakin’ Cuthbert telling Emile Hirsch that she loves him. Yeah, he knows it’s acting… but he still falls head over heels.

When Elisha looked into Emile’s eyes and kissed him passionately, you know his heart melted into oblivion. He thought to himself, Well, maybe she’s not acting… maybe she really has fallen for me like I’ve fallen for her.”

Any fairly unknown actor who plays his first leading role opposite a beautiful girl will fall hopelessly in love with the girl in real life.

It’s so simple.

You know, there’s a reason we really haven’t seen Emile in any movies since The Girl Next Door: it’s because he has been living in severe depression for the last two years. I would love to be able to interview this guy and see how he’s holding up in his underground lair. (Note: I know he had a part in Justin Timberlake’s movie a few months ago. But still, he was unaccounted for over the better part of two years. That’s unreal.)

Need more evidence?

Marc Blucas –> Katie Holmes in First Daughter (Yes, I skipped class to watch this one back in the day. I blame movies on demand; it makes it so hard to say no to even the lamest of movies.)

Ethan Embry –> Jennifer Love Hewitt in Can’t Hardly Wait

John Krasinski –> Jenna Fischer in The Office

It’s so obvious. These poor actors are never going to be the same, simply because they fell in love, hard. Do I need proof of this? No. But every guy in the world would also fall in love with these women, and that’s the only proof necessary.

You can even argue Zach Braff –> Natalie Portman in Garden State, but in reality, that is not a true example of The Elisha Theory, considering:

A) He was already an established, well-known actor.
B) He already had his pick of many Hollywood actresses based on his work on TV’s Scrubs.
C) Most importantly, he demonstrates the single most impressive accomplishment in Hollywood, eclipsing even The Elisha Theory….

I give to you… “The Zach Braff Phenomenon.”

The Zach Braff Phenomenon states:

No matter how many beautiful stars Zach Braff hooks up with on TV or in movies, they will constantly keep coming.

Of course, unless you are Zach Braff (you reading this buddy?), you will never reap the benefits of this phenomenon. Somehow, Zach always beats the system. I mean, the law of averages says that he should eventually stop hooking up with beautiful women so consistently on TV, but he doesn’t seem destined to stop. It’s really amazing. I hear he’s actually giving sex advice to Wilt Chamberlain these days.

Consider Sarah Chalke, Tara Reid, Heather Graham, Christa Miller, Elizabeth Bogush, Amy Smart. That’s just from Scrubs, and that’s just off the top of my head. All ridiculously hot women.

And you know he personally cast Natalie Portman to star alongside him in Garden State. This… this… BASTARD wrote, directed, and starred in this movie, and deliberately cast Natalie Portman as the girl he got to kiss approximately 480 times during it.

And amazingly enough—in natural progression of the Zach Braff Phenomenon—he continues to top himself.

In 2006, he’s starred in The Last Kiss, a movie about God knows what. His leading lady?

Rachel Bilson. What a bastard.

Stay tuned for an upcoming TV show or feature film where Zach Braff stars as a guy who has Scarlett Johansson, Rachel McAdams, and Penelope Cruz begging him to have a foursome. Mark my words: at this rate it’ll happen by 2009.

In conclusion, whether it be for poor Emile Hirsch or for me, the lesson is simple: life’s not fair.