Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Marky Mark Wahlberg Comes Clean

WEHT Marky Mark? Not Mark Wahlberg, but the thugged out-wannabe-rapper-Calvin Klein-posterboy?

He was hot. Now, the former Boston bad boy has morphed into a Lee Strasberg-Stella Adler disciple. Definitely he has more skills on the sound stage than on the mike—which doesn't say too much—but don't you miss that persona? And the abs?

Mark covers the new Details, and the accompanying verbal j/o interview by Aaron Gell sheds some light on his catapult into fame and revisionist history. This interview goes more into depth about Mark's homoerotic appeal, and his early sponsorship by Messrs Klein and Geffen of the Velvet Mafia.

The first part of the article sheds no new ground, and revisits the standard party line: "stealing cars, robbing people, slinging drugs, menacing whatever unlucky soul strayed to close to him." The editors gloss over Wahlberg's 1988 assault conviction for beating two Vietnamese immigrants, chalking it up to "a very bad night."

Don't worry. Stronger, more evocative material is forthcoming: "He's always played the rough trade pickup to Hollwwood's panting sugar daddy, " Gell writes. "Taking up residence in the pool house and letting us ogle him as long as we didn't try to get too friendly."

Apparently that was Wahlberg's MO to secure lucartive work from Geffen, Klein and photographer Herb Ritts. "An easy paycheck, a free lunch," it's described. Mark sez it was looky-but-no-touchy. How did he feel about the "panting sugar ddadies"? "I think it was always clear what I like, my sexual preference. So I wasn't threatened by it."

Once again photog Tom Munro lenses the pictorial. It's been noted before that Munro's B&W imagery is sharp, sensous and lush, but not here. The lighting is harsh and severe, very film noir. The stylists undertake some effort to integrate a 50s bad-boy Jimmy Dean look. It's certainly appropriate for the rebellious tone introduced in the copy. The presentation appears contrived, even more so than the Herb Ritts/CK Marky Mark circa 1992. At least he was interesting.

Mark Wahlberg Won't Take a Swing at You: Details
Mark's Calvin Klein Gallery