Oh, I’m sorry, were you planning on giving ‘That Championship Season’ a miss? Because if you were, the stars of ‘That Championship Season’ are going to find you and beat your face in. Don’t believe me? Just take a gander at their poster:
Having fun yet?
Now don’t get me wrong, I like a lot about the design of this poster – sleek, contemporary, striking. It doesn’t suffer from the ‘Morning’s at Seven’ photoshop horror of having a bunch of awkwardly severed heads sharing the same space as if they’re happy about it:
Clearly, the Producers of ‘That Championship Season’ know what they have: five big stars whose faces you want to use to advertise a show. Not only that, but they have five badass stars who are mostly known for playing roles in which they beat people’s faces in (Jason Patric beats peoples faces in as a vampire or on cruise ships, Chris Noth mostly metaphorically beats people’s faces in in a business suit or using his cutting wit/suave charm, Brian Cox is the Elder Statesman of face-beating, Keifer Sutherland, come on, do I even have to expain it? Only Jim Gaffigan is not really in this group, but they couldn’t really have one goofy smiling guy, could they?). They also are probably wanting to target a male audience, and this image, with the subtle basketball texturing behind (lest it be forgotten that this show has balls of many kind), probably does do that; it certainly lets you know that there will be no dancing or singing in THIS testosterone-fest.
However, they also have a play set in the early 70s in which five guys who used to be high school champions coming together to fight and squabble and generally realize that they will never again reach the heights of their past selves. It’s not a sleek contempory play, it’s not particularly dark, and although the characters get violent, they are not badass killers; instead, two of the most violent moments are (spoiler alert!) a drunken Jason Patric (who seems to have based his performance on Blanche Dubois, but that’s for another post) falling downstairs, and Keifer Sutherland, as a sad-sack whom everyone pretty much ignores, literally getting his dentures knocked out. Everything about the play is about recalling victorious days of yore in the musty past when the present is all love handles and disappointment. So posing these guys like they’re being carved for a ‘Reservoir Dogs’ Mount Rushmore is not exactly reflective of the actual show they’re selling.
However, it should be noted that this poster is a far cry better than an earlier incarnation, in which someone went a little cray-cray with the airbrush, if you know what I’m sayin’:
The basketball detailing is a little different – a vague sense of a court design in the shape at the bottom there instead of the ball texture behind – and they’ve replaced Brian Cox’s ‘I will beat you with my mustache alone’ picture with one that’s more ‘you talkin’ to me, punk?!’ But unless an early version of the play planned on stealing Boy George’s ‘what double chin? I don’t have a double chin’ makeup trick:
Keifer Sutherland and Jim Gaffigan’s throats have gone to a different astral plane of darkness (Jason Patric’s remains entirely the same, which is especially odd considering his square chiseled jaw is probably the one most likely to throw a shadow). And Chris Noth… well, let’s just say that I hadn’t realized that before they cast the actual Chris Noth, they were planning on using the prettiest Chris Noth drag queen impersonator out there.
But seriously, guys, no matter what you think of the poster, go buy a ticket to the show. Because if you don’t, those guys are going to find me and beat my face in.