MSNBC’s Dave White explains the appeal of star Colin Farrell: “[He] has a sex tape that is the only commonly seen denominator among the friends I talked to [about him for this article]. And a party-hard rep. And subsequently a stint in rehab under his belt at 30. And his own shrine on the gossip websites. And tabloid stories of him bedding more famous women than just about anyone of his generation.

“But whether those stories are true or not isn’t the point. There’s not a shred of soft ambiguity about him. No Rob-Lowe-in-the-’80s androgyny. He doesn’t have occasional gay rumors popping up. He could get you pregnant. Or give you an STD. His fingernails could be dirty. The gritty sensuality he displays onscreen whenever the camera lets him also spills over into reality. And that would be okay with us if he weren’t so pretty. But he is. So we’re terrified.”