The picture’s the pits

His name beckoned me to click it in the trending list of whatever page I was on (they’re everywhere): Jason Priestley. I wondered what the former Brandon Walsh is up to. I haven’t seen him since 2007’s Don’t Cry Now, which he directed and in which he was reunited with Cameron Bancroft (Joe Loves Donna to you 90210 fans). CLICK!

Turns out, Jason wrote a memoir. Squee! Then I remembered that Shannen Doherty wrote a book, too (I’m still trying to forget). Of course, hers was part memoir/part how to be a “bad ass” (or just sound like an ass saying that phrase every other sentence). But maybe his is better. Maybe he has interesting stories to tell since he’s not only an actor, but a director, a car racer who almost died doing that, and a dad. Besides, I wouldn’t mind a visit back to 90210… oh, who am I kidding? If SoapNet hadn’t gone off the air, I’d still be watching weekend marathons, even though I’ve seen every episode a zillion times (and just might own several seasons on DVD).

So I’m reading the post at UsWeekly where the link dropped me. Scrolling, reading about how Jason thought Shannen was a bit over the top when he met her (no kidding), and then I see the cover:

Wow! He hasn't aged a day!
Wow! He hasn’t aged a day!

Are you kidding?

This is worse than dating site photos — they’re only five or 10 years old. This pic is at least 20 years old. Jason, now 44, looks closer to that age than that of his high school or early 20s self.

Seriously, who made this call? The publisher? Uh, 90210 fans remember his name (big letters there) and would still recognize him today — I mean, he looks like Brandon Walsh, just older:

Hi, Older Brandon! Picture from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jason_Priestley
Hi, Older Brandon! Picture from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jason_Priestley

If publishers worried that people wouldn’t recognize Jason in his old age now (as opposed to the zygote in that photo), maybe a better title would have caught people’s eye? A Memoir?? It’s nice to know what it is, but I don’t think genre names are titillating titles.

How about:

  • I’m Not Brandon Walsh, but I Played Him On TV
  • Jason Priestley: It’s Not the 90s Anymore
  • Starring Jason Priestley, the Artist Formerly Known as Brandon Walsh.

But no. Instead of a creative title, they gave me a creative cover, with a photo from the days of the elder Bush’s administration.

Shannen used a current photo on her book (that’s so bad ass!). Donna Martin, er, Tori Spelling uses her current visage on everything she does. Jennie Garth’s book cover is her circa now, not her circa the Kelly Taylor days.

HarperCollins calls his memoir “charming and honest.” People, we can’t even get past the cover before the fiction starts. Who knows what’s waiting inside.

I think when I publish my book(s), I’ll ask my publisher to use my high school graduation photo. Looks just like me, only *mumble mumble* years ago. Hey, it worked for Jason.

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