Love Actually (2003) – Billy Mack and Joe

Billy and Joe

This is probably the funniest pairings in the form of aging singer Billy Mack (Bill Nighy) and his manager Joe (Gregory Fisher). Joe is attempting to help Billy get back on top of the music world, by releasing the cheesy “Christmas is all around” and surprisingly he does get to Christmas number 1.

The basis of their relationship which you know has been over a lot of years now and through lots of different situations and general goings on, but in the film they are shown on different radio stations and tv shows promoting the song. Billy giving Joe scary moments by saying silly things like “kids don’t buy drugs, become a pop star and they give you them for free”.

Billy does get the Christmas number 1 and ends up going briefly to a party hosted by Elton John, leaving Joe all alone in his small flat. But after being there not very long he turns up at Joe’s flat and confesses that Christmas is a time to be with the people you love (which is a very nice message from the film, in my opinion). But he realised that “the people I love . . . is you” which results in a brilliant result from Joe mentioning that 5 minutes at Elton John’s and he’s acting gay. They embrace in what is a rather awkward man hug, but all amusing a the same time.

I think the main message from this storyline is that you should be with people you care about over Christmas, whether it be family or friends it does not matter as long as you love them in someway. The Christmas number 1 got Billy back into the limelight and chance to be part of the showbiz world again. But he realises that he would actually much rather be with Joe than at a mad party, which I actually found very cute.

Billy Mack is my favorite character in the film, mainly because of the funny lines and moments he has. Acted so brilliantly by Bill Nighy who I just love, and because I have been very geeky with this movie I have watched it with the cast commentary and Bill Nighy just sounded like he did not want to see himself on the screen and he was very embarrassed. To make it all even funnier they actually did release a music video of Billy Mack singing Christmas is all around into the UK charts.

So a very well put together story showing the deep and long friendship of two men, who have so clearly been there for each other through a lot over the years.

What do you make of the storyline involving this pairing?

2 thoughts on “Love Actually (2003) – Billy Mack and Joe

  1. More LOVE, ACTUALLY bloggin’ huh?

    What I actually wonder about Bill and Joe is what characters like them would make over the scrap for the Christmas single this year. Would would someone as snarky as Bill say about a reality star taking a swing at the charts? Better yet, what would he say about the campaign to knock that star out with Rage Against the Machine?? (Something full of dry wit I’m sure!).

    Now my one complaint about this post, is the disservice you do to this witty script. Given that it’s one of the movie’s best lines (and that’s saying something) – I demand that you include Joe’s reaction to Bill returning from Elton’s as he phrased it.

    Consider it a Christmas gift to a humble Canadian blogger 🙂


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