We talked trolling and masculinity with Tom Rosenthal – comedian, actor and star of Plebs and Friday Night Dinner
DtL: Hi Tom, can you tell us a bit about yourself and how you got into acting?
Tom: I am from Berkshire and have size nine feet. I got into acting via stand-up comedy.
DtL: Have you experienced any pressures in relation to masculinity whilst working in the entertainment industry?
Tom: Not really. The characters I play are all losers, so there’s little pressure to live up to a masculine ideal. The director of Plebs is always telling me not to go to the gym because ‘muscles aren’t funny’, which is an excellent excuse not to go to the gym.
DtL: If you could go back in time, what one thing would you tell your younger self?
Tom: Nobody really knows what they’re doing.
DtL: Can you name one thing that is not ‘typically’ masculine about yourself?
Tom: If there is an opportunity to drink a cocktail, I will drink a cocktail.
DtL: Have you ever experienced negativity from the media? If so, what happened and how did you deal with it?
Tom: I wouldn’t say the mainstream media has ever had a go at me no. People do do it on Twitter – they say how much they hate your acting / show / beaky face. Sometimes I will mute them, but sometimes I direct message them and ask them why they feel that way and apologise that they didn’t enjoy the show. When people realise you are just a person that has been affected by their comments they do generally rephrase things less negatively, which results in my girlfriend having less tiresome Tom-cheering-up-work to do. I would advertise her services but she currently works on a one client at a time basis*.
DtL: Have you ever felt you needed to hold back from a particular activity/conversation for fear of jeopardising your ‘manliness’?
Tom: I will only go to the heavy weights bit of the gym if there aren’t any big scary lads there. If I’m there at 6pm it’s a cross-trainer and balance ball session for me, which suits the director of Plebs down to the ground.
DtL: What does the future hold for Tom Rosenthal?
Tom: I would like to keep making things that I am proud to be in and ideally stay alive.
DtL: What are the best/worst things that come with being famous?
Tom: Best: when strangers are kind and say nice things about your work which is always so lovely to hear. Worst: when strangers are mean and say nasty things about your work which is always a kick in the balls to hear.