Nerd Do Well: Simon Pegg, Robots, and Growing Up Nerdy
Have you ever watched an episode of Spaced, and just started longing to have a one-sided conversation with Simon Pegg? Don’t worry, this is perfectly natural, and now your prayers have been answered. Joining the much-needed introduction of autobiographies from beloved comedians, Nerd Do Well follows the story of a precocious, young boy who grows up to be the actor, writer, comedian, celebrated geek, and zombie hunter (whoops, we dropped the “zed word”) we’ve all come to know and appreciate.
If you’re suddenly wondering what inspired Simon Pegg to put his life story down on paper, it’s cool. He seems to be a bit confused about it, too. Made clear from the start, Pegg was more interested in writing a clever sci-fi/adventure narrative starring a dashing hero that is a rather impressive combination of Batman and James Bond, and solves mysteries with the help of his state-of-the-art robot butler, Canterbury. While Nerd Do Well is an actual memoir of Simon Pegg’s life, he does manage to slip in a few chapters of this action-adventure hero by creating a parallel story arc portraying how these real-life incidents would have been handled by his alter-ego. So if you begin to get a bit tired of reading recounts of childhood influences, never fret; soon there will be robots and espionage to put you right back on the edge of your seat.
Aside from a sneak-peak into Pegg’s imaginary Batcave, Nerd Do Well shows a very intimate side of the entertainer. From growing up in a theater-appreciating family, to using every opportunity since an early age to exert his comedic side, even into teenage romances, and embarrassing childhood memories, we’re able to see an entire world of influence that helped create the personality we see on screens and stages. Pegg recounts, in great detail, the feelings and reactions he was searching for the very first time he intentionally tried to solicit a laugh with a joke. While we hear a lot of celebrities in recent years jump on the ‘geek bandwagon,’ Pegg openly relates his first feelings of love and romance to the feelings he experienced when discovering Princess Leia. He describes his transition from being weary of horror movies, to growing a self-proclaimed obsession with the genre. What’s particularly impressive about the way these stories are recounted is the way they’re presented. The way Nerd Do Well is written feels so candid and natural, that it seems more like having a conversation with the author than just reading his history.
Nerd Do Well is a fantastic look into what inspires a person to pursue a position in the public eye, and what it takes to get there. From this memoir, we can very clearly learn that a strong love of Star Wars and zombies will get you farther in life than you ever imagined. And while I, personally, would have loved to hear more on Pegg’s reaction to his likeness randomly showing up in The Boys, hopefully this inspiring memoir will now allow him to write more about the dashing superhero and his robotic butler.
I absolutely want my own Canterbury.
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