May 3 2010
Joss Whedon wrote this intro for Neil Patrick Harris in Time magazine's Influential 100 and it was not only brilliant, but very true:
Neil loves magic tricks. He's good at them, but his greatest trick may be himself: not just the way he was suddenly all over TV — and other media — but also that he made it seem like he'd always been there, a charming, Carsonesque presence. While he flourished as both an actor and a persona, he serenely announced he was gay. And that was that. He's been nominated for an Emmy three times for his role as hetero hound Barney Stinson on How I Met Your Mother not because he's playing straight but because he's very funny. He made the issue of his sexuality disappear without desexualizing himself. He can get the girl and sing about the boys, and it all works. The public's perception of gay men is shifting because of this guy, and they'll be too entertained to notice. That's more than a good trick. That's magic.