Ever since I discovered Grand Hotel on Netflix a year ago I have been enchanted with and enamored of Yon González. And I am not the only one. I have found hundreds of fans with the same passion for Yon that I have, on various forums on the internet. For the past year I have been racking my brain to figure out what it is about Yon that makes his fans so passionate. And I think I've figured it out. Let me start by giving a little background.
Like I said, when I discovered Grand Hotel, I watched the first two seasons literally non-stop in ten days like a drug addict really. This was very difficult since I am a professional woman with a full time career and a large and demanding family. But for some reason, I could not stop. Yon's interpretation of Julio awakened a feeling in me that I thought had died long ago. It was exciting to think... no, to believe... that there could exist a man with the gentleness, bravery, dedication and passion of Julio. At the time I watched Grand Hotel, Netflix did not have the license rights to the third season, so like a mad woman I scoured the internet for the final season. I ordered the DVD in Spanish even though my Spanish is rudimentary.. and I used Google Translate to decipher the third season once my DVD arrived. It took me days, but I managed to watch and understand the whole season! Then, like a woman obsessed I looked on YouTube for any other work that Yon had done. I discovered El Internado, and once again, I was transported into a different world. The world of Iván. Perhaps the most interesting and beautiful fictional character that I had ever seen. The love between Iván and Julia, to me, is comparable to the love between Romeo and Juliet. I could write a tome about Ivan and his love, but that is for another blog.
Suffice it to say that after El Internado, I again scoured the internet for anything Yon related. I found his interviews, all of them in Spanish, and I watched them, and read them, to learn more about this person who had bewitched me. The more I watched him, the more I liked him. I know it is difficult to know a person through interviews, and I know that the characters he brought to life are just that, characters.. but there was something that kept my interest, and even more, something about him that grew my interest. He often appeared disheveled and unkempt in his interviews, and he spoke abruptly and freely about his opinions. I learned that unlike many of his peers he did not have any Facebook or Twitter accounts, and did absolutely nothing to promote himself. For a fan, this can be a source of frustration, but at the same time, his appearance, his simple speech, and his obvious comfort in himself, was refreshing and admirable. And then it struck me.. What makes Yon so interesting and desirable is that he is made of different material than many in his generation.. than other actors, even those in Hollywood.. And I realized that this is a very, very, good thing.
Many actors crave the fame and fortune that comes with their profession. They revel in it. It is a narcissistic nature that they have. But no so with Yon. He does not have a narcissistic bone in his body. He seems to love the process of acting. He is the consummate thespian. An artist who loves his craft. Fame and fortune (if even fortune exists in Spain) are almost a nuisance to him. I have never been impressed with "celebrity". Those actors who are always in the limelight, building their careers on hordes of fans and public relations.. many of them with no talent, and certainly no talent to compare to Yon's. When I think of great actors of Hollywood, I think of Meryl Streep, Robert Redford, Paul Newman... and others who worked their craft without putting themselves constantly in the public eye. They did what they had to for their studios, but their passion was their work. These artists quietly work and give us pleasure with their talent. I think Yon is made of that cloth. He is not a male diva.. he doesn't want to be a male diva.. and he is all the more desirable for that reason. I am sure he is full of faults, but I admire him for his simplicity, his passion for his work, and his clear understanding of himself. I give him a lot of credit for being this way at this tender age. And I think that is why I am, and so many others are, so enchanted, enamored and bewitched by Yon González.