William Mapother. I feel so mean writing this, but I feel I must.
In 2001 I saw Mission Impossible 2 and I was shocked by what I saw.
No not the constant use of masks and flashbacks, no, it was William Mapother. William Mapother was the ugliest man I have ever seen. Distractingly ugly.
I have seen a lot of ugly in my life. I saw a documentary where "Lord Of The Rings" director Peter Jackson ate a meatball sandwich on a hot day. With no napkins. I have seen a wrestler that calls himself Bastion Booger. I once saw Phyllis Diller without makeup. But, William Mapother, man was he ugly.
He had a wispy beard that seemed to start at the eyebrows. His nose began somewhere in the middle of his forehead. Children ran screaming from the theater. It was like when "Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron" was playing.
After the film, I tried for weeks to forget what I just saw. Then, a year later Vanilla Sky came out. For those that haven't seen this, Tom Cruise plays a man who wears a mask to hide his face. In one scene William Mapother shows up. I kept waiting for him to borrow the mask.
As soon as I left the theater I had to find out who this William Mapother was. If he could be in show business, I was going to run for president. If the world of glitz and glamour had embraced this Quasimodo, I should be a lock for leader of the free world.
A quick internet search and I find Mapother is Tom Cruise's cousin. Tom Cruise was born Tom Mapother. Once I learned this I was relieved. I now understood why he was in films and I no longer needed to run the country. I took Monica Lewinski off speed dial.
However, this answer posed a new and more challenging question. 'How could Tom Cruise, who is considered to be good looking by most everyone, be from the same gene pool as a man who looks like a bad cross between Dave Coulier and Bert from Sesame Street?'
I still don't know. Perhaps all the good genes in the family went to Tom Cruise. Maybe he is the Super Mapother. Maybe the rest of his family looks like the brood in Texas Chainsaw Massacre maybe Boo Radley was inspired by his ancestors? I don't know.
Mapother has since appeared in 'In The Bedroom'. I have seen some more recent photos and he isn't as glaringly strange to look at. Perhaps it is that he shaved the beard. Maybe he had a facelift. Perhaps like caterpillars, all Mapothers must go through a larva and pupa stage before they emerge as butterflies.
Either way, this Bud's for you William Mapother. You make Tom look even better.