"I am proud to say that I am a G-Double-E-K," John Barrowman declares.
It's not something you'd expect to come out of Barrowman's mouth. With his impressive stature, dashing good looks and enough charisma to make George Clooney jealous, the Doctor Who and Torchwood star looks like he'd be more comfortable in an Armani commercial than professing his social ineptness. If you didn't know better, you'd never suspect the 41-year-old dreamboat of being Scottish either; Barrowman speaks with a flawless American accent that he learned after moving to the United States when he was nine.
"I didn't get rid of my accent," he explains. "I just learned how to speak like American kids because they made fun of my Scottish accent and I didn't want to be bullied. When I'm back in the U. K. with Scottish people, I actually go back to my Scottish accent."
But even across the pond, Barrowman is better known for his American dialect, playing the charming, omnisexual Captain Jack Harkness on BBC's Doctor Who and its spinoff, Torchwood.
Don't be fooled, though; Barrowman is the first to admit that he is just as fascinated by his shows' mythology and minutiae as any of his fans.
"I grew up watching Doctor Who," he says. "I'm of the Star Wars generation; I love science fiction. Star Trek: The Next Generation, Battlestar Galactica-- love 'em."
Which is why it was a dream come true when he landed the role of Jack during the first season of Doctor Who's revival in 2005. Barrowman was initially only supposed to appear in a few episodes, but the huge fan response prompted the BBC to develop a spinoff called Torchwood (an anagram of Doctor Who), in which Captain Jack and his crackerjack team of specialists investigate alien activity in Cardiff, Wales. The show has become such a pop culture phenomenon in the U. K., the U. S. and Canada that it's almost too much for Barrowman's inner geek to handle.
"I love every morning, getting up to go to work because that little boy inside of me jumps with excitement every time I'm going to fight an alien or shoot a rocket gun or be on a spaceship or be with the Doctor or get onto the TARDIS," he gushes. "So every time I'm working on it, I'm really, really happy."
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