9. Cuba Gooding, Jr. – Even more compelling than his “Show me the money!” role in Jerry Maguire was his role as a gay art promoter for his boyfriend, played by Greg Kinnear, in As Good as it Gets. He puts the prissy homosexual stereotypes to bed when he physically confronts the immortal Jack Nicholson and pulls him out of his apartment into the hall for a verbal smack down on the stupefied legend. I don’t know if Jack’s just a great actor or if he actually shit himself (the scene starts at about 1:30).
8. Phillip II of Macedon – A conquering king in his own right, Phillip II may be best remembered as the father of Alexander the Great, but he also took a chance on a young pupil of Plato to educate his son in the ways of the world. Many people attribute Alexander’s greatness to his hand-picked tutor, Aristotle.
7. Robert Downey, Jr. – I still haven’t seen either Iron Man, but I liked him in Tropic Thunder, and I can’t wait to see him as the Wizard in an upcoming Oz prequel produced by Disney.
6. World War II – WWI resulted in 38.8 million dead or missing, but only 19 years later, this mark would be smashed by its predecessor, claiming 49 million civilians alone, not to mention 24 million soldiers.
5. Al Gore, Jr. – Not only an enviro-alarmist, massage enthusiast, and former Vice President, Al Gore, Jr. helped create Current TV, my wife’s favorite channel (for a taste, see link below).
4. Carl’s Jr. – best known for sexist commercials, chili cheese fries, and burgers with way too much stuff on them.
3. Sammy Davis, Jr. – The Candy Man is either best remembered for being a Rat Packer, or for losing his left eye in a car accident and subsequently converting to Judaism. Asked if he was handicapped: “Handicap? Talk about handicap — I'm a one-eyed Negro Jew.” With wit like that, I’m sure he fit right in at temple.
2. Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. – Survivor of the fire bombing of Dresden, celebrated novelist, Indiana native, and avowed atheist, Kurt would have made #1 if I thought I could get away with it.
1. Martin Luther King, Jr. – This is what fathers hope for when they name their sons after themselves (my condolences to John Hinckley, Sr.).
Worst Junior award goes to:
Junior, the film – starring Arnold Schwarzegger as a man who gets pregnant, co-starring Danny DeVito and Emma Thompson.