Rant: My Chin Isn't Evil

Fair warning, this post has no redeeming value of any kind. It is not meant to be taken seriously.  It is, quite simply, just an amusing rant about having a "cleft chin" or "butt chin" and the stigma associated with it. Yes, there is a stigma perpetrated by the flat-chinned media against those of us with dimpled chins and its been going on for far too long.

Butt Chins Gone Bad

In the 1950s and 60s, cleft chins were so popular (spurred by Kirk Douglas) that someone actually invented a gun-like device designed to punch you in the face repeatedly to "soften the chin tissue" and create a cleft.  Of course, it never worked as promised, but it was a sign of the rising popularity of the dimple chin. And for a while, superheroes were the ones with the fantastic chins. Those were the glory days...

Then it all changed in the 1980s with the Tom Cruise sci-fi fantasy "Legend". In it, Tim Curry played the devil, a cleft-chinned monster whose joy was derived from trying to kill unicorns and hero Tom Cruise, corrupt the purity of virginal souls, and plunge the world into eternal darkness.  Sure, he was red, had crazy horns and was voiced with raspy, baritone evil dripping from his every word--but it was the over-the-top butt chin that stood out to most. And that was the beginning of the end.

Since then, I have seen countless examples of butt-chinned bros that subtly reinforce the evil of this genetic circumstance. For every Matt Damon, there is an Eminem. For every Patrick Dempsey, there is a Simon Cowell, Russell Crowe or Sean Penn. For every Peter Griffin, there is a Wario (Mario's evil brother).

But this vilification is gaining steam in the media and seems to be focusing on an even more disturbing nexus: monstrously evil or weak-willed movie and TV characters named "Nick", played by cleft-chin men. I'm obviously very concerned by this trend. It started with Dan Hedaya who played Carla's husband on "Cheers", and was always stealing from her and bringing his girlfriends into the bar. Ben Affleck in "Gone Girl" was a dirt-bag husband--part victim, part weak-willed bastard. Aaron Eckhart in "Thank You For Smoking" as the douche-bag darling of the tobacco conglomerates. Michael Douglas as the cold-hearted, damaged and detached billionaire in "The Game". Some guy from a recent Law and Order episode who was a hard-to-catch serial killer with some serious five o'clock shadow and a deep, dimpled chin.  All of these characters were named, you guessed it: "Nick". I mean, what on earth people?

The perversion of this dynamic feature is creating pervasive, albeit subconscious prejudices for all of us with dimpled chins. So I am calling on the media to reverse this deplorable trend by casting dimple-chinned men in and handful of high-profile hero roles where their characters reflect the machismo, bravery and brilliance we expect from great heroes (and preferably name the characters Nick). Yes, it's a tall order, but isn't it time someone addressed this? And I am just the man to do it. And while not all chins are created equal, not all cleft-chinned men are cloying criminals.

Damn you Tim Curry. Damn you sir.

Go Back