Professional Rugby player Gareth Thomas is the third most capped Rugby Player, ranked twelfth among international try scorers and schmoop de woop burble wurble blah. Look I’m sorry, I tried to read and retain some rugby information but it just turns to nonsensical hieroglyphics as I look at it. I have no idea what’s going on in rugby. There’s a ball, lots of running about and some seriously aggressive cuddling and that’s all I know. I don’t know anything about any sports. But I don’t know anything about rugby even more.
Despite being a super-fit sportsman with abdominal muscles so well defined you could cut your finger on them, Gareth Thomas has still chosen to enlist a trainer to do all the fitness instruction. Nikki O'Connel is responsible for talking us through the 7 day workout plan while Gareth just concentrates on looking like a burly, tattooed hunk of a man. Something which is does rather well, to be fair.
Because Gareth and Nikki clearly don’t want you taking any time off from their fitness plan, there are workouts for every day of the week. Monday is body conditioning, Tuesday is Boot Camp, Wednesday is Legs and Bum, you get the idea. Some of the workouts take place in what looks like a disused factory while others are in a shitty nightclub owned by some guy from The Only Way is Essex.
Because this is the REAL Celebrity Workout, remember, and the DVD blurb is keen to tell us that Gareth is joined by special celebrity guests Mickey Rourke, Nicola McLean and Kirk Norcross! Yay! Wait a minute, who are those last two? Someone from TOWIE and a glamour model, you say? Riiiight. You know what; you should have stopped after Mickey Rourke. That’s some serious Grade A Hollywood Star Power right there. You throw a couple of Z-listers in the same sentence and you’ve devalued Rourke as a commodity. It’s basic celebrity maths.
Gareth announced he was gay in 2009 making him the first openly gay professional rugby union player. In an ideal world, someone’s sexuality should be so unremarkable that nobody would consider it a news story. But in the non-ideal world that we actually live in, it’s still pretty rare for a professional football and rugby players to feel they are able to come out as being anything other than heterosexual. So we should heartily applaud anybody who has the courage to do so. Like Gareth Thomas and like Thomas Hitzlsperger who became the most high-profile footballer to come out as gay earlier this month.
Well done, you guys. Well done the Sports Regulating Bodies for not freaking out. Well done us for not organising a lynching party. Just jolly well done everybody.
Of course David Silvester from UKIP will probably blame Hitzlsperger and Gareth Thomas for causing flooding in parts of Devon and Oxfordshire but you can’t have everything. We’re getting there... ridiculously bloody slowly.
It brings us back to Mickey Rourke who has decided what he wants to do more than anything in his whole life is make a film about Gareth Thomas’s life. And that’s not all, Rourke has decided that he, himself, is the very man to portray him. Despite being twenty years older and American, and well, looking like this:
Rourke is nothing if not passionate about the project as he explains at length on the DVD extras:
“I’ve never wanted to make a movie that means so much to me. We’ve met a lot of political resistance. A lot of people wanted someone British. Or younger. I said to them: ‘If you want that guy over there who’s 28 years old, give him the ball. If he can run through me then you know what?
(Mickey bangs his fist on the table)
“I’ll give him the fucking part. But there ain’t no fucking way that’s gonna happen. No fucking way on God’s green earth that’s gonna happen while I’m still fucking breathing. So you want the part, run over my fucking ass. That’s all I gotta say.”
Because when Mickey Rourke believes in a project, he really believes you know?
Mickey Rourke is completely supportive of Gareth Thomas’s homosexuality. In fact he’s so OK with gays, that he can make slightly homophobic jokes because he’s so not homophobic that it goes right the way round past unacceptable and back into totally cool.
After Rourke’s frenzied outburst quoted above, Gareth chuckles and says “I think you need to show a bit more passion about it, mate,” and leans across for a matey hug.
“You better shut up” says Rourke, “Or I’m gonna hit you so hard, you’re gonna be straight!”
Aha ha ha ha ha! Oh Mickey ... No, wait, that makes no possible sense on any level. You freaking lunatic.
Just before things got weird.
I hope Gareth Thomas survives having his life story told through the prism of Mickey Rourke’s batshit insanity.
The workout DVD is certainly one of the better ones out there. Gareth’s Bridgend accent is adorable and he seems like a lovely chap. I just wish I had the faintest inkling of what the man does for a living.
Nope, still no idea.