Fabio is one of the biggest mysteries in the world to me. I understand how he gained fame many years ago with the whole male model thing, but his continued fame mystifies me. Here is a man who is most noteworthy for appearing on the covers of countless romance novels during the 1980s and 1990s. Outside of this, what has he really done to garner so much of a fan following? Okay, I can understand the appeal that he had during the '80s and '90s when he still appeared on the cover of the novels, but I just don't understand it now. Truly, how does one explain a photo like the one seen in this article?
I'll get to the substance of the article momentarily, but I wish to discuss the picture itself first. In the photo Fabio stands with Kristen Bell and Hayden Panettiere, both of the show Heroes (and one of my favorite shows, by the way). And surprisingly to me, neither actress seems too creeped out that Fabio has a hand and arm on her. (Panettiere seems positively delighted in fact.) Call me crazy, but I would imagine that I would be a little creeped out if I was a girl and some dude who is known for appearing on the cover of romance novels and is old enough to be my father grasped me. Yes, I know it was just for a photo, but still... (Hayden, please, relax there for a moment...) At this point I would guess that Bell and Panettiere are each considerably more bankable stars than Fabio. I cannot imagine that either of them has read any of the novels, the covers on which Fabio has appeared. And I really cannot imagine that one of these actresses (okay, again, looking at the look of pure joy on Panettiere's face maybe I can imagine this out of her) would go up to Fabio and say, "I simply loved you in that I Can't Believe It's Not Butter commercial." This is what I call the Fabio Conundrum.
I think the argument can be made that Fabio has become a living parody of himself, if such a thing is possible. Consider for a moment this Nationwide commercial. Now I definitely laughed at the commercial the first time I saw it, and I still get a bit of a chuckle out of it, but am I laughing because the commercial is really that funny, or am I laughing because Fabio seems to be a veritable joke? I contend that I find the commercial funny because Fabio is such a joke. The only reason that this commercial is remotely funny is because of the romance novel cover model persona that has been created of Fabio. Fabio is making fun of this image of himself, and in so doing, has become a living parody of himself. I defy you to find an occasion in which you see Fabio and you derive entertainment out of him other than because he is a joke, a parody of himself.
But let us finally come back to the substance of the article. Let us believe for the moment that everything transpired just as the article claims Fabio says it did. First, try to imagine Fabio telling George Clooney, or anyone for that matter, "stop being a diva." I mean, mentally picture this happening. If you are like me, you are already laughing hysterically. In your mental picture, does he use just one hand or does he use both hands to clear the hair from his face as he is saying this? And does he have five or does he have just four of the buttons of his shirt unbuttoned? And if you are George Clooney and you are drunk or otherwise, and Fabio tells you to stop being a diva, how do you possibly react? Do you get scared and run out of the restaurant? Somehow I really don't see things playing out exactly like Fabio described. I can see Clooney laughing uncontrollably and stumbling out of the restaurant, but running scared?
Let's not forget that in the second season of the show Average Joe, the winner dumped a fairly hot girl because she revealed to him that she had once dated Fabio. This is the winner of some stupid reality show who is refusing to date a hot girl for no other reason than she once dated Fabio! If this does not put Fabio in perspective, I don't know what does... And that girl that was dumped because she dated Fabio, Larissa Meek, is only two years older than Kristen Bell. Kristen, maybe you should be a little creeped out...you too, Hayden.
The Fabio Conundrum...