Saturday, May 26, 2012

T-Bird: "The Crow"


Actor:           David Patrick Kelly
Year:            1994
Beard Type:  Criminal Beard

David Patrick Kelly is your favorite criminal character actor. You might not know it, but he is. You've seen him in The Warriors, 48 Hours, Dreamscape, and Twin Peaks. In Commando, he played Sully, who John Matrix probably would have killed last had Sully grown a Criminal Beard. Hindsight, Sully.

And, of course, he was T-Bird in The Crow.
T-Bird works under Top Dollar with three other crumb bums (Tin-Tin, Funboy, and Skank) to create chaos in down-trodden Detroit. Devil's Night is their new favorite holiday, and they rape, kill, or set fire to anything in their path. This agenda leads to unfortunate, deadly circumstances for Shelly Webster and Eric Draven on the night before their wedding.

T-Bird's Criminal Beard makes him the understood, unspoken leader of the crew. This gives him the authority to read "Paradise Lost" to your girlfriend while his buddies are murdering you. The beard also gives him the power to swallow live ammunition with a shot of whiskey while rocking a Joan of Arc haircut pulled back into a pony tail.

Being the bearded leader of the crew, T-Bird is the only one that gets direct contact with main villain Top Dollar, as only a bearded man should. That hierarchy gets shifted once Eric Draven duct tapes T-Bird to his car seat and sends him to a fiery death while Skank is getting smokes and road beers. Only then can Skank crawl his way up from the bottom of the totem pole and confess to Top Dollar during a meeting that he feels like a little worm on a big fucking hook.

Criminal Beards typically exhibit a kinda-don't-give-a-fuck-about-it level of maintenance, unlike a Villain Beard, which, as Hans Gruber has shown us, is maintained and groomed to further represent authority and control. Nothing in T-Bird's actions led us to believe he wanted to ultimately usurp Top Dollar and turn his Criminal Beard into a Villain Beard. All T-Bird wanted to do is fire it up. Is that too much to ask?

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