Alan Ruck is someone that a lot of us from the 80s and 90s likely remember fondly since he was one of the greatest sidekicks around and despite not being much of a lead character was still one of the funniest guys to have on a cast. He’s dependable, can keep a straight face or crack up on cue, and out of many upon many actors he’s one of those guys that tends to grow on you even if you don’t initially like him. His career has been very solid throughout the years and to be honest it feels as though he drops off the map for a while despite the fact that he’s still around, but then surges back with a few big roles in very noted films or shows. He’s one of those folks that never really goes away but drops into the background as though to be a part of everything but still be apart from it just enough to go unnoticed for a time.
No matter where or when he shows up though Alan’s always a welcome sight.
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
Cameron was one of the biggest hypochondriac’s to ever be put on film since he was the type of guy that would fake sick not just to get out of school, but to get out of doing anything with his life. How he and Ferris became and stayed best friends is something of a mystery even if it was kind of touched upon, but there’s no doubting that bond since Ferris, for all that he’s kind of a carefree jerk that gets away with everything, still does manage to show some concern towards Cameron. Still, by the end of the movie Cameron does eventually come around, kind of, sort of, and begins making headway towards being an actual upright individual that finally learns to stand up for himself. The funny thing about this role however is that Alan was well into his 20s when he played teenage Cameron Frye. He felt kind of weird about it but still did a great job.
Young Guns 2
His presence in this movie wasn’t the biggest but it was kind of comical in a way since he played a farmer that really had no business being around seasoned killers and outlaws like Billy the Kid and Chavez y Chavez. He was the only one among them, besides the character played by Balthazar Getty, that wasn’t tested in a fight, and it shows during a scene when Billy is staring down John Chisum’s hired guns and asks Henry to shoot the second man when he goes for his gun. Doc ends up soiling his own hands again despite his protests, but the failure of a simple farmer to acclimate to the life of a noted outlaw is kind of comical in a way, as well as inherently deadly. His role in this film was definitely more of a mild supporting actor, someone that was there in the scene when they needed to be. But he did play it convincingly.
Stewart was a mainstay character of this show and his attitude was what set him apart from a lot of folks on the show. Alan knows how to do sarcastic in a way that floors the average person and can unleash it at a moment’s notice it seems to either pick someone up or shred them to pieces as he sees fit. Usually he doesn’t play an overly mean character which is great since sarcastic and witty characters seem to fit his overall personality, but if he does play a mean character now and again it’s something to see considering that wit and attitude can be used in a very destructive way. The great part about his role in this show however is that he is one of the good guys but he’s also one of those individuals that will set someone in their place when he feels the need and was never shy when it came to talking down to those he saw as subordinates, in a good-natured way at times.
This was kind of interesting and disconcerting to learn. There was a point in his life when Alan almost cashed out early due to illness. Apparently he came down with something he couldn’t identify and was so out of it that he walked into a different apartment building than his own. When he woke up and walked back into his own apartment however he passed out and didn’t wake up until later. He woke up in a hospital on New Year’s Eve with a Streptococcal G infection in his bloodstream. At one point the doctors didn’t give him much of a chance to survive, but thankfully he pulled through.
It’s amazing what you learn about people when you look it up, but for all intents and purposes Alan Ruck is still around and he’s still doing what he does best.