Carmelo Anthony almost had a perfect day yesterday. He dropped 42 points on the Miami Heat in Madison Square Garden, but it came in a losing effort as Miami's Big Three were just too much for the Knicks. In addition to going bananas against the Heat, he also turned in a guest starring spot on the Showtime series “Nurse Jackie”, which stars former “Sopranos” alum Edie Falco.
This wasn't Melo's first venture into the world of television. He's guest starred in “Law and Order: Special Victims Unit” and made a cameo in a “Saturday Night Live” called “Laser Cats” which also featured Elton John and Tom Hanks. He's been around the block, but in both occasions he seemed pretty stiff. Let's see if he loosened up a bit in his next foray into acting with the video below, put together by the fantastic Trey Kerby over at The Basketball Jones (WARNING: the clip contains strong language):
Compelling stuff. Melo didn't have a lot to say, but when he did, he made it count. Let's break it down even further and try and see where he may have gotten inspiration for his acting.
[0:04 – 0:08] Melo is on screen for the first time, paying vey close attention to the sob story of another addict in the meeting. He seems pensive, empathetic, but also relaxed and above it all. The man is a professional athlete, after all. Inspiration: Listening to questions after Mike D'Antoni resigned.
[0:26 – 0:27] Melo checks his watch and shakes his head in disgust. Once this woman starts talking about the clowns, one can only count the minutes until the meeting is over. He seems completely exasperated and fed up. Inspiration: Baron Davis has made another egregious turnover while Melo stood wide open in the corner.
[0:37 – 0:44] Melo stares at Edie Falco (Nurse Jackie) patiently, but also expectantly, as he and the rest of the group wait for her to elaborate on her description. Then when Jackie says “That's it,” disappointing everyone, he slumps in his chair a little bit, thinking “I knew that was it.” Inspiration: Watching Toney Douglas shoot this year.
[0:58 – 1:01] Melo's first words! He starts off with a “Hmph” and then slowly spits out, “Professional baseball player. Same here.” Apparently, he only takes drugs when it doesn't interfere with his job performance, just like Nurse Jackie. The delivery was a bit stiff, and I was a bit worried. Inspiration: Laser Cats.
[1:12 – 1:14] Melo shows off his lighter side here, giggling when the old lady drops an F-Bomb in front of everybody. He's thinking, “This little old lady just said such a bad word! I can't believe she just did that!” Inspiration: Watching Jared Jeffries dribble.
[1:34 – 1:36] Melo nods in understanding as Jackie tells everyone when she first took drugs not because of pain. She had some extra vicodin, so she decided to “experiment”. He thinks, “Yeah, experiment, I feel that.” Inspiration: Becoming the point forward.
[1:38 – 2:01] This is it: Melo's big monologue. He shows off an impressive knowledge of baseball lexicon and strategy when recounting his tale, and his delivery actually shows off a bit of personality that makes this sound like real life dialogue. He even has good form using his magazine baseball bat. Terrific acting, both verbally and physically, from Carmelo “Wayne” Anthony there. Plus the change in facial expressions at another old lady line was on beat too. Inspiration: His brilliant performance in Game 2 against Boston.
[2:02 – 2:13] Melo wraps up his cameo with a little Solitaire and a trip to the restroom, blending into the background while the rest of the action unfolds in front of him. Inspiration: His one-point performance against Charlotte earlier this season, and poker with Baron Davis and J.R. Smith.
So there you have it. Will Melo earn that Emmy so he can get one step closer to EGOT'ing? Voters will probably overlook this highly nuanced performance, which is such a shame.