A heartthrob is generally considered to be a man (usually famous) who is the object of a woman’s desire, lust, romantic notions, etc. A reluctant heartthrob is someone who really has no interest in being on the receiving end of all of that desire and lust. New heartthrob,Tristan MacManus, has elevated all of that to an entirely new level. This one makes your heart throb for sure, but he also makes your palms sweat, your pulse race, your knees buckle, your jaw drop, and your eyes bulge out of your head. So pop those eyeballs back in and focus. Tristan is a reluctant heartthrob, but he is going to have to get used to it. After all, he fits the SWATSPEARE definition as mentioned above.
When SWAT and I were considering how to write this blog post, we decided to come up with non-Tristan-related heartthrobs and see if we could ever agree on what qualities a heartthrob must have and why Tristan has all the assets (not those assets – get your mind out of the gutter) of other so-called heartthrobs. The bottom line is that there was nothing in common in my list and SWAT’S list – except for Tristan and his sudden jump to the #1 spot. It’s like the World Series and the Super Bowl of Heartthrobs all in one. So now you are going to be treated to the revelation of the World's Heart-Stopping Heartthrobs according to the most knowledgeable sources anywhere (SWAT and Shakes), with one Reluctant Irish Heartthrob not only topping both lists, but trouncing the competition by a mile.
My top 5 list had previously been set in stone and not subject to change, however, Tristan leapfrogged over all 5 and became number 1 in my now Top 6 – although the distance between number 1 and numbers 2-6 is a rapidly deepening chasm. In SWAT’s case, however, her pre-Tristan top 5 were interesting but none made my list. Just as her 5 didn’t light my fire or get the old engine running, she found my 5 “just okay”. Ultimately, Tristan was in the #1 spot and nobody else came close. Feast your peepers on these:
6. Colin Firth – How could I not include Fitzwilliam Darcy from Pride and Prejudice, Mark Darcy from Bridget Jones's Diary, and the guy with the best hair in the world (next to Tristan, of course). Not health club buff and muscular, but gorgeous nonetheless, he does it for me. Now, here’s where things get interesting. Tristan embodies the characters of Austen’s Darcy and Bridget’s Darcy – he’s suave, he’s unassuming, he’s hot, and he’s sexy in an understated “you rock my world” kind of way.
5. The entire Philadelphia Phillies baseball team - Sorry. It was too difficult to narrow it down to say, Cole Hamels or Chase Utley or Roy Halladay when there is enough gorgeousness to do a calendar or two or twelve. It was a no-brainer, however, for me to jump Tristan over my beloved Phillies. Tristan is talented, composed, mentally tough, and gorgeous like these extraordinary athletes, but he can also dance like a dream. In baseball terms, he hit a Grand Slam in Season 13 of DWTS.
4. Kevin McKidd – The Scottish actor wows us as Dr. Owen Hunt on Grey’s Anatomy and is just plain scorching hot. Ruggedly handsome, every move is determined and focused. Sex on a stick (sorry, Maks, but that term isn’t exclusive to you). Yep, Tristan has this one locked up. Especially when he brings out the sexy scruffy look that makes us all swoon and forget our names. Uh, what was mine again?
3. Rafael Nadal - I probably don’t need to explain this one. The athlete – lean, strong body. Um, did I mention, lean strong body? Piercing eyes. Sexy smile. Lean, strong body. Anybody doubting that Tristan has all of this and more? I didn't think so. Lean. Strong. Body.
2. Vittorio Grigolo – Who, you ask? SWAT will tell you that I talk about him all the time. I send her links, and make her listen to him sing my favorite Keane song, Bedshaped (Cosi in Italian). For those of you who haven’t jumped on the Vittorio bandwagon, he is an Italian tenor, gorgeous, talented, and handsome. Oh yeah. He has great hair too – a la, Colin Firth and of course, the Irishman. Granted, Tristan might not be able to sing an aria (but maybe he can, who knows?) but he has that international appeal, the earthy sexiness, the natural sensuality, and he’s an artist. I’m pretty sure VG can’t do a wicked jive or a red hot rumba but he did appear recently at the LA Opera as Romeo in Romeo and Juliet. Tristan wins this one too because he could easily choreograph, create, and perform the role of Romeo somewhere. Maybe at my house or something. I have a great balcony off of my bedroom. Oops. I'd better not go there.
1. Tristan MacManus – He made quite a statement when he passed Colin, the Phillies, Kevin McKidd, Rafael, and Vittorio, but when you’ve got it, you’ve got it. And he’s got it. I have never spent this much time writing about anybody, nor did I ever ogle (excessively anyway) photos or videos of Vittorio or Rafael, although there was this one time when I watched that Shakira Gypsy video (featuring Rafael) too many times, but then I imagined Tristan dancing to it, and that shot my concentration all to hell.
Tristan embodies it all – Colin’s Darcy, the athleticism and gorgeousness of the Phillies, the ruggedness of McKidd, the lean body and the seductiveness of Nadal, and the artistry and raw sensuality of Vittorio. Tristan MacManus = [reluctant] heartthrob. My own personal Romeo.
I. Am. Boy Crazy. That should be tattooed across my forehead. If I were a contestant in a beauty pageant (snort), and the announcer was listing my interests as I stumbled down the runway with a cheesy grin plastered on my face, it would probably sound something like this: “SWAT is a Capricorn who likes puppies, long walks on the beach, fly-fishing, and oh yeah…she’s completely bonkers boy crazy.” Let’s just say that the term “Heartthrob” is not a foreign concept. I can spot and sniff out a heartthrob on a dark, foggy night in less than 3 seconds. In other words, they are the fine wine, and I am the heartthrob sommelier. You can imagine the look on my face when Nancy told Maks and Val on her Holiday Special that they were going to have to teach our Tristan how to be a heartthrob. I choked, snorted, hiccupped, snorted again and then let out a quite an unladylike guffaw to round out my reaction to Nancy’s comment. As Tristan’s MacManiacs, we find it hard to wrap our heads around the fact that Tristan doesn’t think of himself that way. That is why Shakes and I dubbed Tristan the “Reluctant Heartthrob” and that is because he is a heartthrob whether he wants the title or not.
When Shakes and I came up with this concept, we realized that, for once, we didn’t completely agree because as far as heartthrobs go, we have very different tastes. We each compiled a list of our top 5 heartthrobs (now 6), with Tristan being a resounding and unwavering #1. We brainstormed but each of us came up with our own criteria. We thought long and hard about who makes us weak in the knees and who makes us drool. I’m not saying that our Shakseypoo didn’t pick any good ones. There are a few on her list that I would put in the very important category of mine that I dub the “I would totally do him, but he doesn’t make me faint” category. I can easily see why Colin Firth (sigh Darcy sigh), and Kevin McKidd made her list. They are hunky, romantic, strong, and Darcy…well…Shakes is right…he has fabulous hair! But to make my list, you have to have a certain quality where you make me need to catch my breath by one glance. Back to the list…my Heartthrob List.
6. Jonathan Rhys Meyers - The Tudors’ King Henry VIII made this list because he’s the only heartthrob that actually scares me more than sweeps me off my feet…and I like it. He is strikingly dark and beautiful and has a set of peepers so intense that he could see into your very soul. It’s the intensity that is attractive, and Tristan shows us that intensity when he connects with his partner on the dance floor. For instance, in the Paso with Nicole, he stalked and owned her as they danced. It was dead sexy.
5. Il Divo- Okay, just like Shakes and her entire Phillies team (which has left things open for me to REALLY tease her on that one!), I just can’t pick one Il Divo heartthrob. They are a package deal, and one member without the other wouldn’t be able to produce such beautiful harmonies. Il Divo transports me into that place of passionate, worldly music where emotion is personified by music. Maybe it’s the classical vocalist in me, but Tristan dancing while Il Divo sings would be my idea of heaven as Tristan could easily weave their music into extraordinary choreography.
4. Kiefer Sutherland- He’s my wild card pick. He is a great actor, but his character Jack Bauer is my bad boy heartthrob. Jack is intense, determined, quick-thinking, deadly, and completely underestimated – just like Tristan is as a pro. Tristan passionately attacks every dance with no fear.
3. Hugh Jackman- YEOW! What can I say about Hugh Jackman that most hot-blooded women don’t already know about this studly piece of manly beefcake. The great thing about HJ is that he’s the kind of man that women love and men want to emulate. He has the rugged good looks of an alpha male, but he is also a Tony award winning stage actor, singer, and dancer. Tristan has not only the charm and talent of HJ, but both of these hunks, shall we say, have really nice chests. Enough said.
2. James McAvoy- Le Freakin’ Sigh…what can I say about Jamesy (that’s what they call him by the way). He isn’t exactly conventionally hunky, but he and his beautiful baby blues possess this romantic quality that turns me into blubbering mush [editorial comment by Shakes – this is so true. She becomes blubbering mush]. The man can profess his love for a woman on the big screen and you swear he’s talking to you. Just check out Atonement and Becoming Jane. Tristan actually caught my eye in Season 12 because he reminded me a lot of Mr.McAvoy. His exquisite waltz with Peta was both enchanting and breathtaking, and you could see the passion and anguish etched on Tristan’s face. He felt the dance, and his gaze radiated that same marvelous aura of romance. Thud.
1. Tristan MacManus- The Reluctant Heartthrob. He possesses all of the qualities of everyone on my list, and then some. I’ve told Shakes this many times, but there are no real words to truly describe this man. Our descriptions will never really be enough. Even in my list of my all-time favorite heartthrobs, he still is way ahead of the field.
I will say one thing though. Shakes and I may have different tastes when it comes to heartthrobs, but Tristan ultimately is the glue that holds us together. There is no other heartthrob out there that can do that, which is probably why we just spent something like 20 hours writing this thing for y’all.