Thursday, March 3, 2011

Jack of the Month: Jack McFarland

This month’s “Jack” was actually a suggestion from my ex-roommates Mesun and Ryan, and very fitting since we spent a lot of time together watching old episodes of the sitcom Will & Grace when we lived together.  So, drum roll please, I now present to you Jack McFarland!

Jack McFarland was a gay character played by actor Sean Hayes on the NBC sitcom Will & Grace.  The show ran for eight seasons from September 1998 to May 2006 and is one of the most successful sitcoms featuring gay main characters.  So funny!  And the winner of 16 Emmy Awards!

Jack and his Cher doll.
The character of Jack McFarland is a very flamboyant and often self-centered one.  He is the best friend of Will Truman (also gay) and is constantly dropping by, insulting him, and asking for money.  In fact, for quite some time he lives across the hall in Will’s friend Grace Adler’s old apartment, paid for by Will (and his mother and their friend Karen).  Unlike Will and Grace who have steady careers, Jack hops from job to job while pursuing a dream of being an actor.  He does a one-man show called “Just Jack”—which is terrible—and at one point even manages to teach an acting class after the regular teacher quits.  At various times throughout the series he’s been a waiter, a student nurse, a salesman at both Banana Republic and Barney’s New York, a producer at OutTV, and even a back-up dancer to Jennifer Lopez and Janet Jackson.

As flaky as he is with jobs, he’s even worse with men.  His relationships never last very long, although he claims to be “in love” almost always.  He’s far too shallow to truly invest, and usually runs after the next hottie he sees.  The closest thing to love in his life is probably his friendship with socialite Karen Walker.  They are both selfish, harsh, and wildly outlandish so they get along great!  She’s filthy rich, so that’s also a benefit since he’s always in need of money.  In fact, in the series finale we discover that Karen and Jack end up living together in Karen’s mansion for the rest of their lives.

Other important relationships would include his brief marriage to Karen’s maid Rosario (for a green card) and his biological son Elliot (the result of donated sperm), and a pet bird named Guapo.  He’s also obsessed with Cher—even has a doll of her—and has even met her once (although mistaking her for a drag queen).

So that’s Jack McFarland.  If you’ve never seen the show, I’m sure you could find it on television… it reruns on almost every station.  Or get in touch with Ryan who has every season on DVD.  I'm sure she'll let you borrow them.
Jack:   I took an oath in front of God and my mother. I'm here, I'm queer. Get used to it!
 Source for this post:  Wikipedia and IMDb

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