Thursday, November 29th, 2012

Susan Rice, Condi Rice … How Can Important People Have the Same Last Names?

It is impossible that two people named 'Rice' could be secretary of state.
For many Americans who thought it was okay to stop "following the political news" for at least a few weeks after the election, the controversy over "Susan Rice" has been very confusing. Didn't we just have a lady named "Secretary of State Rice," as secretary of state? Then what's the big deal? That particular glass ceiling is shattered, right? Why does John McCain keep trying to turn back the clock, to when he was young?

Throughout modern history, the popular consciousness has been regularly baffled and confused by stars who share the same surname. The 1990s, for example, are perhaps best remembered as a time of great confusion for the millions who would tune in each weeknight hoping to see their favorite outlaw country performer anchor ABC's World News Tonight. Join us for a photographic tour of America's most confusing last names.

One is Pamela, One is Gillian, yet they aren't sisters except 'sisters in feminism'
It all started with an innocent mistake: One Ms. Anderson was supposed to audition for the role of FBI heartthrob Fox Mulder's busty sidekick, and the other was auditioning as the tough-as-nails lifeguard coroner in a sleazy beach town with too many secrets.

This family lacks a 'Charlie Sheen.'
These two celebrity name sharers even kind of look like each other. But do they both have "sex addiction"?

Andrew and Jenny: Together, they make Indigo Children who are Pretty In Pink!
The original "Brat Pack," the McCarthy twins brought laughs and insanity to every role … including the role of life!

Try this one weird trick to make ... oh never mind.
These two famous Twains caused a lot of confusion on GED exams during the "grunge era" of the 1990s. "Never the Twain shall meet" was proven true in the case of this star-crossed pair. Or was it? (It is rumored that Samuel Clemens was sent into the future by his friend Tesla, who fronted a hair-metal band of the same name in the 1980s.)

Almost Fatuous.
It may be a fun parlor game to speculate on the shared family backgrounds of our nation's best-loved entertainers, but sometimes the confusion can lead to tragic consequences. Luckily, no one was killed when this U.S. Airways flight crew confused the Hudson River with VIP Kate Hudson.

15 Comments / Post A Comment

The Steve McQueen thing confuses the hell out of me.

@NotAndersonCooper The Brian Coxes do me in. I can't understand why Evil Brian Cox (tv scientist AND shit pop star) is so much more popular than Good Brian Cox (proper actor). Unless the viewing public really is so fickle and shallow as to concentrate more on looks than a bearable accent.

Ham Snadwich (#11,842)

@My Number Is My Address – I used to get Brian Cox and Brian Dennehy mixed up.

KenWheaton (#401)

@NotAndersonCooper You mean noted fashion designer Steve McQueen who had the exhibit at the Met? Oh. Wait.

NeonTrotsky (#2,249)

For what it's worth, it was an odd/amusing moment when I discovered that prominent civil rights attorney Connie Rice *is* actually the cousin of Condi Rice. Perhaps we should restrict our confusion to people who have the same last name AND whose first names start with the same letter???

dado (#102)

To further the Rice thread…in 1989 the Superbowl MVP was Jerry Rice, the Fiesta Bowl MVP was Tony Rice, and the NCAA Hoops Tourney MVP was Glen Rice, who went on to sleep with Sarah Palin. Donna Rice could figure in this somehow too I think.

@dado Also there's the food, rice, which, like Sarah Palin, can be white and wild but also, unlike Sarah Palin, brown.

@dado And also possibly Ann Rice. Because at least one of those other Rices might be an undead vampire.

Related Stories:
Bill Paxton and Bill Pullman: Seriously why do people have such a hard time with telling them apart?

Welcome to my life. I'm currently dating someone who has the same name (first and last) as a very famous person. I always get excited that my boyfriend is going to be on Letterman or whatever and then realize, no wait, that's the other guy. So disappointing.

ejcsanfran (#489)

@major disaster: Wow. I'm quite shocked that there is more than one person named "Mitt Romney" in the world.

@ejcsanfran Good guess, but I am actually dating a man named "Oprah Winfrey".

PoignancySelz (#238,693)

John McCain is such a great judge of character — Charles Keating and Sarah Palin for example.

I've always wanted to do an art show/screening/performance series based around the great name-doppelgangers of contemporary artworld: Steve McQueen, Nick Cave & Phil Collins. Picture it: Double-bill of "Hunger" and "Bullitt", a room full of soundsuits paired with Murder Ballads listening station, and projections of the Ramallah disco dance marathon ("They Shoot Horses") with optional soundtrack remix featuring "Against All Odds (Take a Look at Me Now)". Anybody wanna co-curate?

Bittersweet (#765)

My brother-in-law has the same name as a certain weasel-faced pop star who's also a judge on a reality show. He gets friend requests from supermodels all the time.

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