There is no grey area, no subtlety — William Shatner is, and today the man who will forever be known as Captain James T. Kirk, turns 81 years old.
In my life I’ve been both thrilled and horrified by the Shat. A man who co-exists in my memory as this energy infused swagger machine with a baby-making smile in re-runs of Star Trek: TOS and also as the Priceline guy, whose self respect hurdled to it’s demise long before the “character” did. Should I have spoiler alerted that? Oh well.
Shatner has played a lawyer, a cop, a dad who says shit, and a man cursed with the ability to only speak in Esperanto, and through it all he did barely any of it convincingly. Still, he did it because he so clearly loved the sound of applause and the benefits that come from it. Shatner has long been a joke, a ham, but he is our ham, loveable in how eagerly he wants to please, and so on his special day, we say thank you and well done to William Shatner with these 5 signature moments from his 5 decade long career.
There are celebrities and uber-celebrities. There are celebrities who are only famous to us geeky, nerdy crowd. Then there are those special few who cross all sorts of boundaries to become an ultimate epic celebrity.
William Shatner is just one of those people. He’s Captain Kirk. He’s T.J. Hooker. He’s that guy in the Priceline commercials. He’s the Dad sayin’ shit on a TV show based off a Twitter account. Ask you average Joe Schmo on the street and they can tell you who Bill Shatner is.
Over at TrekMovie.com they’ve compiled at list of 80 Reasons Why William Shatner is Awesome. It’s a phenomenal list including things like,
In “Fight Club” when Brad Pitt asks Edward Norton what celeb he would fight, he replies “Shatner”
Nominated for Emmy for playing character named “The Big Giant Head”
Kingdom of the Spiders (the list includes accompanying hilariously bad clips)
Has over half million followers on Twitter, stars in sitcom inspired by Twitter, turned reading tweets into beat poetry
Speaking of Twitter if you don’t follow his tweets, you should be. He signs all of them, “My Best, Bill” or for short MBB (damn 140 character limit) and somehow makes it come off as completely sincere. Following him on Twitter is a treat especially whenever he interacts will other Star Trek celebs like Leonard Nimoy, Levar Burton, and George Takei. Here’s a birthday wish from none other than Wesley Crusher,
In honor of the birthday boy it’s also Talk Like William Shatner Day. Because you need another reason to practice your best Shatner impression. Check out the video below of a few famous faces putting on their best Shatner-speak. How are you celebrating Capt. Kirk’s 80th? Let us know your plans below in the comments. Me? Let’s see, a mini-marathon of some classic Trek and a little 3rd Rock from the Sun.