Wednesday, October 05, 2005

It's a bird, it's a plane... it's a MORON!

Okay, I think this has officially gone too far. Somebody's only going to get hurt from here on out. It was cute when Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin named their baby "Apple." I made many jokes to my friends about naming my future baby "Kiwi." I rolled my eyes when Rachel Griffiths named her kid "Banjo." I couldn't think of an instrument I'd name my kid after, though "Piccolo" briefly made me wonder. "Saxophone" might work, if only because he could be nicknamed "Sax."

But Nicolas Cage has taken this self-centered exercise to near-child abuse extremes. If you haven't already heard (and I found this at, Cage and his wife, Alice, have named their kid Kal-El. Kal-El Coppola Cage.

"Oh, that's an interesting name," some of you might say. Well, that's one word for it. But see, it's not, like, a French name. Yet it sounds familiar to you, right? Except if you're not a geek, maybe this isn't completely ringing a bell. But if you are a geek, and Nicolas Cage clearly is, you know exactly what has been done here.

Cage has named his kid after Superman.

But it's worse than that. This kid's name isn't Clark Kent Cage. But hey, anyone can do that. No, Cage took his apparent love of Superman even further than that. He took it old school. He went back to Superman's roots. He went back to the #$@%ing planet Krypton to name his kid.

Clearly, Cage has never gotten over almost playing Superman in a movie. Did you know this? Back in 1997, Tim Burton was going to direct a new Superman movie. His choice to play the Man of Steel? Nicolas Cage. But the project fell through, something for which we should probably all thank a higher power. (I would've loved to see Cage try to pull off that spit-curl, though.) Now, his pain has been passed onto his poor son. If this was an episode of ER, Dr. Greene would've called upstairs for a psych consultation.

You know, as I've been writing this, I've tried to think of a worse comic book-related name Cage could've given his kid. But I don't think there is one. Peter Parker Cage might have drawn a chuckle or two, but at least it can be passed off as normal. And the full name would probably never be called by a teacher at school. Bruce Wayne Cage? Again, a little strange. But at the end of the day, the kid's name is still Bruce. It could be worse. Like being given the name of an alien from the planet Krypton.

I guess the kid should be grateful Cage isn't a Star Trek fan. If so, maybe he'd now have a Klingon name. Or what if he was a Star Wars geek? Would the world now have Obi-Wan Cage or Chewbacca Cage? Shivering at the thought just made me spill my morning coffee.

(And hey, it's not just celebrities that are doing this to their offspring. Remember the doofus - actually, I think there are several - who named his kid "ESPN"?)

Maybe I'm being too hard on Cage. Maybe he plans on mostly calling his kid "Kal." That wouldn't be too bad. And maybe Cage will be a good dad, the kind of guy who might talk to young Kal-El's teachers before the first day of school. Even better, maybe Cage will pass out DVDs of Face/Off or Con Air to Kal-El's classmates as a warning.

You see how I killed the guy in that movie? That'll be you if you make fun of my kid.

Or maybe Cage will try something more passive, like sabotaging a bully's mind by making him watch Guarding Tess.

But what if Cage has more noble goals in mind? What if this is his attempt to give his kid something to shoot for, something to aspire to?

I believe in you, boy. That's why I named you after Superman. But I didn't give you Superman's earth name. Because I think you should aim for the stars. Don't hide your abilities, like Clark Kent did. You can be Superman, kid. I already made Mom sew you a cape. And it fits. It's cool. I made her sew me one too. And I wear it! Because I should've gotten to wear it in 1998. Did you know I almost got to play Superman? But those sons of bitches at Warner Bros. pulled the plug. I was almost Superman! I could've been--! Anyway, I'm getting off on a tangent, Kal. You're a special kid. That's why I gave you a special name.

Holy $#!+, I'm tearing up here. I hope this is what you have in mind, Nicolas Cage. If so, you might be a great father. For now, however, you look like a total moron. A weirdo. The Man of Surreal. You have time to fix this, Nicolas Cage. Do the right thing. Do what Superman would do. Stand up for truth, justice, and the American way.