Jenn Tisdale is a D.C. stand up comic. Follow her on Twitter at @Jenn_Tisdale.
No “celebrities” were harmed in the writing of this column. Its purpose is to mourn the loss of their careers, status, and in all likelihood bank accounts. This is an homage to their life’s work, both well-received and utterly humiliating. I have the utmost respect for all of them, even if they no longer have respect for themselves.
Being the less famous sibling of a celebrity must be tough. Just ask Haylie Duff, every Baldwin but Alec, Ali and Lindsay Lohan depending on the day, The Jackson 4, and of course all of the Wayans Brothers. Living in that person’s shadow when you’re trying to get your big break can’t be fun. If you think that’s bad, try being Chad Lowe or as we like to call him Rob Lowe’s brother/Hilary Swank’s ex.
It’s bad enough being the not as attractive brother of Rob Lowe, whose pictures I once used to create a rather disturbing collage which included MRS. ROB LOWE in comically large letters at the top.
But then he went and married a woman who won not one but TWO Academy Awards during the time they were married. How could he predict that the Next Karate Kid, who delivered my favorite line in “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” would go on to snag two Oscars??? THAT IS SO 5 MINUTES AGO CHAD.
He’s had a pretty lukewarm career, but is one hell of a co-star. Lowe co-starred with Charlie Sheen in the CBS TV Drama “Silence of the Heart” (1984) and with Tommy Lee Jones and Robert Urich in the made-for-TV film “April Morning” (1988). However he really excels at guest starring; ever hear of a little show called “Touched by an Angel”? Well maybe “CSI: Miami,” rings a bell. Nothing? Well then here comes the big gun…. “Medium”!!!
None of this compares to his Emmy Award winning performance as Jesse, a young man afflicted by HIV, on “Life Goes On.” Hey, it was the early 90’s. Everyone had HIV. And when Lowe’s career was handing him HIV Lemons….well he made Lemon-AIDS, eventually.
He continued to pop up on the occasional TV show or made-for-TV movie here and there such as “I Hate My Famous Brother,” “No Really My Mom Has Two Sons,” and “More Like Sob Lowe.” Then in 1997 he married Hilary Swank, which would eventually catapult his name back into the media’s eye in the exact wrong way. When Swank received an Academy Award for “Boys Don’t Cry,” in 2000 she made one tiny mistake. She neglected to thank the love of her life in her acceptance speech. NOT SO SWANKY NOW, ARE WE?
Did that bother Lowe? Nope. He stuck around for Swank’s second Academy Award in 2005 for “Million Dollar Baby,” then promptly divorced her in 2007 and probably took half of her Million(s) Dollars, Baby because California is excellent at divorce. She thanked him that time but too little too late.
The Gods have smiled on him finally in the form of “Girls” creator and star Lena Dunham. At this year’s Golden Globes Dunham thanked Chad Lowe during her second acceptance speech…IRONICALLY SHE FORGOT TO THANK HIM DURING HER FIRST.
Lowe currently stars on ABC Family’s “Pretty Little Liars,” which is not actually about his former marriage to Swank. Bummer. He may not be the best known Lowe, but he certainly seems to be classiest. Thanks for sticking it out Chad. Now you have 2 public displays of appreciation…with many more to come I’m sure. You complete us.