We watch “Parks and Recreation,” we know Aubrey Plaza is a cutie, so why are we only now writing something about her? Honestly, it’s because we just saw Aubrey seductively licking her knee in a shoot for Nylon and we stopped working to ponder it for a good fifteen minutes. Is this a joke? Can we feel aroused about this? Is the flash of her bra part of a knowing wink or a come-hither wink?
Does it matter what the intent was? It’s hard to say. Art is funny like that. And speaking of things that are funny…
Aubrey Christina Plaza was born June 26, 1984 in Wilmington, Delaware to a Puerto Rican attorney father and an Irish-English financial advisor mother who named her after “Aubrey” by Bread. Since her hometown didn’t offer much in the way of entertainment, Aubrey grew up exploring the woods with her friends, driving around, and doing weird things in public. She was popular, but not in the “traditional sense”–Aubrey earned her recognition by doing things like dressing up with her friend Neil in chicken and duck costumes and going to the movies on Friday nights, or inventing and becoming the mascot of her strict all-girls Catholic school:
We didn’t have a mascot, so I created a mascot for the school and made my own costume and I kept it in the trunk of my car, and I would drive around to all the games and show up as this character I created called the Phantom Raider, and I had, like, this mask on and a cape and stuff, and I would run around and get everyone pumped up and then I would get back in my car and drive away. And everyone knew it was me but I pretended I was this mystery. [...] I actually got in trouble. I climbed up the scaffolding in the gymnasium and I pretended like I was gonna fly off of it, and the nuns yelled at me. But then when I graduated, the school recognized the mascot. They’ve made it something now called the Spirit Officer, or something? And they pass the costume down to whoever is elected for that position. So now it’s like a legitimate tradition, and my sister was that person.
The Plaza parents say that Aubrey was creating and acting in little skits and home movies even as a youngster–”She was so alive and happy while doing a production. She would always get so close to the people she was working with”–and the lady herself says, “For as long as I can remember I wanted to be an actor and comedienne. I don’t know why.” This lead Aubrey to work with the Wilmington Drama League and participate in school productions throughout her youth before heading off to study at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. Even though she suffered a stroke that caused temporary paralysis and expressive aphasia during her studies, she fully recovered and graduated in 2006.
Aubrey held a bunch of different internships during and after college, most notably working at the Post-It company and as a page for NBC. Meanwhile, she was taking improv and sketch comedy classes at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater, working with the public pranksters of Improv Everywhere, and finding other small projects with which to spread her dramatic and comedic wings. After she moved to Los Angeles and found a manager, she landed “Parks and Recreation,” “Funny People,” and “Scott Pilgrim vs. the World” in a single week. Not bad, right? And now that she’s starred in her first leading-role in a major film–as jaded intern Darius in “Safety Not Guaranteed”–there’s no stopping Aubrey from being a huge star.
So, is Aubrey Plaza sexy? Short answer: yes, because we feel it in our guts. Long answer: why not? Let’s not confuse her for her “Parks and Rec” character, April Ludgate, whose constant eye-rolling may one day cause her corneas to collapse. Aubrey may have a deadpan sense of humor, but she does emote–she says she even “sobbed through the entire ‘Battlestar Galactica’ finale”–and when she’s in the dreaded position of being interviewed on late-night TV, she copes by making everyone else as uncomfortable she is. Frankly, we think this kind of sass and social tweaking power is hot.
Her next movie, “The Hand Job,” places Aubrey in the role of a sexually inexperienced teen who is frantically trying to learn about (and participate in) naughty activities before heading off to college in the fall. Yes, the plot sounds a little softcore, but we doubt that’s the direction it’ll head. Nonetheless, we wonder if will “The Hand Job” give us the most erotically-charged view of Aubrey Plaza we’ve had, or if humor and awkwardness will wash out the smuttiness. Can Aubrey–a clearly beautiful and talented young woman with legs like whoa–last in Hollywood without emphasizing her sexiness? Will the entertainment industry push her to show skin? Will she seek out more dramatic roles as she gets older?
These are the questions that we ponder as we gawk at Aubrey’s Nylon photos. She’s such a curious lady.
Be sure to check out:
· Aubrey Plaza’s Twitter (twitter.com)
· Her personal Tumblr (tumblr.com)
· An interview/sexy gallery from Rolling Stone (rollingstone.com)
· A revealing look at Aubrey courtesy of her home state newspaper: Delaware Today (delawaretoday.com)
· And many more interviews and photos collected on this fan site (aubrey-plaza.com)