Point/Counterpoint: Wilford Brimley

May 12, 2009

Editor’s note: Point/Counter-Point is a friendly, cultural debate between Taylor Baldry and John Reinan. Their views are not a reflection of Fast Horse’s opinion of Wilford Brimley or his sordid career. See John’s Counterpoint.


Taylor’s Point:

Wilford Brimley is a sell-out. He was once an exceptional method actor whose rich portrayal of stodgy, old men had audiences and critics wowing. His characters were diverse, three-dimensional and iconic. Off the silver screen, the former walrusy rodeo-clown was the toast of Hollywood – women wanted him and men wanted to be him. “Give us more Brimley!” I imagine people would yell.

This all changed for Brimley when he became an advertising prostitute. At the top of his game, Brimley’s seemingly limitless career eclipsed when he took the road to Damascus by appearing in oatmeal and diabetes testing commercials. This was unprecedented. Never before had an actor licensed their image for commercial gain. The Ewoks: The Battle for Endor co-star became covetous once he began rolling in oat profits and wading in those sweet diabetic dollars. In doing so, he lost all credibility as an actor and gave a stubby, crinkled middle finger to the acting community and his fans.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not opposed to Wilford Brimley sacrificing his integrity. Perhaps the portly diabetic felt it was time to leave his cocoon of commendable cinematic character portrayals and emerge a less profitable, more pitiable performer. Unfortunately, in answering the calling of selloutery, he’s lowering the bar for more impressionable actors such as Beyonce and Jason Alexander. Who do you think you are Wilford?

Fact: Wilford Brimley is a Judas to the thespian community and is America’s original sell-out. Prove me wrong, John Reinan.