The Kenblog: “Remembering Bill Paxton!”
Howdy folks! It’s The Kendog with a heavy heart this morning. Bill Paxton is gone, passing away today from complications during surgery at the age of 61. Paxton was probably one of the most recognizable character actors in the world, often doing his best work in supporting roles in some of Hollywood’s biggest movies.
Paxton could (and did) play any type of role, but he was aces when it came to playing overconfident douchebags. From early roles as big brother Chet in “Weird Science” to his signature work as the cowardly Hudson in “Aliens” and the slimy used car salesman in “True Lies” Paxton was the dude we all loved to hate.
Of course he was terrific in other roles as well. He brought a grounded approach to both the roles of Morgan Earp in “Tombstone” and Fred Haise in “Apollo 13.” He directorial debut was also a corker: a twisty thriller about fathers and sons called “Frailty.” He also earned high marks for movies such as “Twister,” “Titanic,” and, more recently, an hilarious performance opposite Tom Cruise in “Edge Of Tomorrow.”
More recently, Paxton had been gravitating toward television, where he took home an Emmy Award for “Hatfields and McCoys,” as well as a memorable arc on Season Two of “Marvel’s Agents of Shield,” and most recently, a starring role on the television version of the hit film ‘Training Day.”
Throughout his career, Paxton always seemed like a quiet, humble man who cared about both his work and family in equal measure. He was the everyman, the guy you wanted to sit down and have a beer or hot dog with and shoot the breeze. And despite the outward ugliness of some of his best known characters, Paxton had the gift of always letting you see the twinkle in their eyes, as though there was always something redeemable about Hudson, Chet, or even Simon, a used-car dealer who pretends to be a secret agent to get women into bed.
Although Paxton will be remembered throughout the ages for his fine work, sixty-one is still far too young for a man of his talents to depart this earth. With the Academy Awards coming up tonight, I now have a new pre-show ritual in place. I know I’ll be watching me some “Aliens,” “True Lies,” and maybe a little “Frailty” tonight. My prayers and sympathies lie with Mr. Paxton’s family and friends today! He will be missed by all who love the movies! So Sayeth The Kendog!