Friday, April 12, 2013



Dean George Tanaka was born July 31, 1966 in Mt. Clemens, Michigan. His mother is of Irish and Welsh descent and his birth father is of French Canadian and Japanese origin, hence giving Dean his beautiful Eurasian features. When he was three, Dean's mother married director Christopher Cain and he would later adopt Dean. The family would live in Malibu and Dean would grow up with the likes of Hollie Robinson Peete, Rob & Chad Lowe, Sean & Chris Penn, and Emelio Estevez and Charlie Sheen. An all round athlete, Dean was offerd 17 scholarships to American colleges, but instead went to Princeton, an Ivy League school that does not give athletic scholarships. While there he dated Brook Shields and garnered a degree in history. 


Two Supermen on one team. Can the West team even come close to winning?


Ah, our Dean is trying to steal our Alex's job as zebra stripe counter!

The first time I ever remember seeing Dean was on the sitcom A Different World back in the late 80s.  He played a part very much against type, a racist who was arrested for starting a fight at a football game with the show's African American characters. It was a smart, well-written episode, and it was impossible to take your eyes off Dean.

Next I saw him in the short run CBS series Grapevine, an anthology which featured all of the up and coming hotties of the day, including Jonathan Penner, Steve Eckholdt, Patrick Warburton and David Gail. Not realizing what a great thing they had, CBS shelved the show, only to try and revive it in 2000, but unsuccessfully. 

After that I saw Dean in a beer commercial wearing a red bathing suit, and then as a prick volley ball player in the dreadful film Miracle Beach. 


"This room is a mess. It looks like it was hit by a tornado!"

"Why does that guy get so much attention?"


Finally Dean got his own series in 1993, playing opposite Teri Hatcher in the rom-com reboot of Superman for television. The show was sublime, with a great chemistry between the two leads, a great supporting cast, and wonderful writing from producer Deborah Joy Levine. But then it's parent network, ABC, decided that it didn't want the romantic comedy to be a romantic comedy completely, so they replaced Levine with one of the producers of Star Trek. The show was still good though watered down. And this also reminds us that this is the 2nd of Teri Hatcher's leading men to be a Fab 40+ entry. Evidently girlfriend knows her men!

Can you believe that the part of Clark/Superman was down between Dean and Kevin Sorbo of Hercules fame? Kevin is fine, but he completely lacks the dark beauty that one expects in the role of Superman.  Plus, Dean is just so damn charming!  It looks like both men ended up in the perfect project for his talents. 

In 2000, Dean played the handsomest of a group of gay men in West Hollywood, which featured Justin Theroux, Zach Braff, Christian Kane (ironic name, huh?), Andrew Keegan, Charlie Weber, Kerr Smith and fellow Fab 40+ honoree, Timothy Olyphant. Damn, this thing is really going in circles!

Dean's love interest in BHC was a closeted actor played by Michael Bergin. 


For reasons yet to be understood, Dean passed up many opportunities to seize upon his Lois & Clark fame.  Instead he seemed to choose to produce and host the revival of Ripley's Believe it or Not and act in a slew of Lifetime movies. All of this proving that if you grow up in Malibu, your hunger for success will always remain on a strict liquid diet.


The closest thing to a nude scene that Dean has offered so far came in the film No Alibi. However, any woman or gay man of taste is waiting for him to finally do what he was designed to do and drop trou. 


Thanks to my own Superman, xyzpdq, for the clips! 

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