The world is in mourning this week after the death of one of the most beloved stars of the 21st century, Generic John.
John McNamara, or more commonly known by his stage name, Generic John, won the hearts of millions back in 1989 as an extra in the popular soap opera, Fair City.
Brown hair, brown eyes, of medium build and average height, John’s was a look that would inspire generations to come. One fan, Terry Gilmore, recalled seeing the star for the first time:
“I remember it very clearly, because he casually walked past as one of the other stars pretended to look shocked, and the actress acted very well – which isn’t something you see too often on Fair City – but almost immediately, you could see the talent within John. I’ve been getting my hair cut – short back, short sides, slightly longer on the top – the same way ever since, just so I can look like him.”
Neighbours sat around and reminisced at the kitchen table of John’s home in his native Ballyhoura. A close friend, Mary McCarthy, said of John that “he always let me borrow a cup of sugar when I needed it.” Charitable as always, it was discovered after John’s death that he had a secret Trocáire direct debit set up, in which he gave three euro every week to disadvantaged children in Zambia. “The world really has lost one of its best. Bowie, George Michael… now John,” said a neighbour.
World leaders were quick to sympathise with the grieving family. British Prime Minister Theresa May offered her condolences:
“We remember Generic John here in Britain as one who brought light into the hearts of many, and was always there to provide inspiration when needed. Though we only ever saw him the once in that shite re-run of Fair City, it is clear that he has made an impact on so many throughout the world.”
Tensions ran high between U.S. President-elect Donald Trump and President of the People’s Republic of China, Xi Jinping, over who would be responded to first by McNamara’s family. John’s mother, Josephine McNamara, chose to answer the Chinese president’s call first, saying she’s “not a fan of the tangerine tan look off that other fella.”
Ordinary people and celebrities alike were included among the mourners. Kourtney Kardashian, the eldest of the three Kardashian sisters of Keeping Up with the Kardashians fame, visited the McNamara’s semi-d in the centre of Ballyhoura, and is quoted as saying that the star’s death was “just like, so not fair.” Other celebrity grievers included Elton John and Jennifer Lawrence. Lawrence in particular credits John with inspiring her to pursue her acting career. She revealed to this publication that she watched John’s Fair City episode and knew that if a man so ordinary as John could become a world-renowned celebrity, so could she.
It is clear that we have lost yet another one of the greats. Rest in Peace, Generic John: we hope that you’re up there in heaven, smoking the unreal rollies that probably caused your demise with Jesus and the lads.