The Real Time Men of the Year for 2006

When our colleagues at Time magazine announced their person of the year was  You, we snapped up the issue, eager to finally get credit for the night last spring we decided not to bang that blind chick, even though she'd totally mistaken us for her boyfriend. However, we soon learned that "You" didn't refer to us, but rather the small minority of the population who managed to put down the hair brush they usually lip-synch into long enough to upload video to YouTube. According to Time, the most important people in the world during the year 2006 were people who "would otherwise have drowned in obscurity (but) get backhauled into the global intellectual economy via sites like YouTube and MySpace.

But if Time didn t want these web celebs to drown in obscurity, then why name the Man of the Year something vague like  You? Why not give the award to people who actually made a splash on YouTube and the internet in general? In an effort to give credit where credit is due, we name the top 10 web celebrities that Time was probably referring to when they named the 2006 Man of the Year.


The Little Dancing Indian Boy
Is he a kid? Is he an adult? Does he have some sort of Andy Milonakis/Robin Williams in Jack disorder? Who is that grown man reclining on the couch? Like  39 Man of the Year Joseph Stalin, the Little Dancing Indian Boy raises more questions than he answers. And sure, we could easily do a10-second Wikipedia search and figure out at least part of the puzzle. But like a good mystery novel, the  hows and  whys surrounding the Little Dancing Indian Boy are best left up to the imagination. Still, we would like to know if he s available for birthdays and weddings.

Legacy
Took over as the Internet s reigning  little person dancing like a big person, an archetype begun by the CG dancing baby. But since we re pretty sure the CG dancing baby never won Man of the Year honors, the most logical forbearer has to be 1936 winner Gandhi. Indian, mysterious, looks great without a shirt on: these two were cut from the same loin cloth.


Brian Atene (Good Day, Mr. Kubrick)
As American Idol has proven, any time you announce an open audition, you re going to get more hilariously bad performers than good ones. When Stanley Kubrick encouraged young actors to send audition tapes for Full Metal Jacket casting in 1984, Lord only knows how many William Hung s responded. We do, however, know of one: Brian Atene. The majority of his tape is made up of an overwrought monologue loosely based on The Outsiders, but Mr. Atene s finest work comes in his introduction. He tells Mr. Kubrick he s a lesser director than Michael Curtiz, which we re sure directors love to hear. But what makes Atene such a memorable character are the ridiculous personal details he spews as if they d help get him a part:  I consider myself to be a young Alec Guinness,  My favorite composer is Wolfgang Van Korngold, and best of all,  When I was 12 years old I won a Spaniel puppy for 50 cents.

Legacy
He would have just been the awesomely bad audition tape guy if not for the long, aimless video he made this year in which he poorly imitates a series of characters and tries to sell Superman dog tags. It s the biggest sophomore slump of any Time Man of the Year since Jimmy Carter won in  76.


One Bank Duo (Ethan Chandler on vocals, Jim Dubois on guitar)

Close your eyes and imagine that you re a Bank of America employee seated in a room at a corporate conference, enduring a grueling seminar. The meeting s just about to break for lunch when two dudes dive into a rendition of U2 s  One with Bank of America-related lyrics. At first you think,  Cool, this is kind of like that Weird Al guy I used to listen to when I was depressed. But you quickly realize the impassioned singer is not trying to lampoon anything. Instead, he croons on and on about BOA s merger with MBNA, credit customization, trust, teamwork and specific BOA employees who ve outperformed expectations. Mr. Chandler is the ideal example of a corporate type who dares to let his creative hair down, and we applaud his shamelessness.

Legacy
While  05 winner Bono would be the obvious choice here, Ethan is more from the every-man mold of past honorees, for example 2002 s  Whistleblowers. Like the ladies who busted big business by raising their collective voices, Ethan can t help but raise his voice and testify about how great it is to work at Bank of America.


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