Friday, August 8, 2003

Artiste sees the details in deviled eggs

Maggie Downs

Sometimes it seems the more you love something, the more you want to devour it.

And so it is with Dylan Speeg and his deviled eggs.

He loves them. Licks them. Swallows them whole.

"Every time I see one, I think, 'I'm gonna eat these eggs like no one has ever eaten eggs before,' " he said.

[IMAGE] Dylan Speeg loves deviled eggs.
(Joseph Fuqua II photo)
The egg-ceptional Northside resident is one of the most memorable characters in the flavorful feature-length movie Three Barbecues. The film, written and produced in Cincinnati, follows a couple through a comedy-filled night as they attend three very distinctive barbecues.

Speeg, 32, plays the Deviled Egg Nut, a man obsessed with the creamy, yolky treat.

"Prior to the movie, I was only a surface deviled egg lover," he said. "But now, I know the nuances of deviled eggs. I can tell fresh from not, store-bought from homemade."

A hen requires 24 to 26 hours to produce an egg. Speeg must have made those chicks sweat, eating well over a couple hundred deviled eggs during the course of the film.

He is now a connoisseur.

"The egg white. I don't like it to be too chewy. Rubbery turns me off," Speeg said. "And extra paprika, please."

Some of you might know Speeg from his other incarnations. He's one of the powerhouse musicians in local rock band Buckra. He's also made a couple of appearances on the Jerry Springer Show, trying to woo back a former love. But film just might be the medium that captures Speeg best.

"Most of the time, it was a matter of getting him to pull back a little bit because his performance was so over-the-top," said Rob Gray, 34, director and co-writer (with Jay Metz) of Three Barbecues.

"He's a piece of work," agreed Molly Donnellon, 33, the movie's producer.

Maybe that's because it didn't take much for Speeg to channel his character.

"You know that little skin that forms on the top of things that sit out for hours? He was going right through that," Gray said. "The guy loves his deviled eggs. The first day of shooting, he must have gone through 25 of them."

The movie's climax is the campy fantasy scene where Speeg hooks up with Candy, the movie's deviled egg temptress. The couple enjoys the sinful treats in bed, in a bathtub, at a table - pretty much anywhere. Dancing around them are two men clad as giant deviled eggs. And all of this eggs-ploitation is done to the tune of "Shake Your Baby Fat," a local hit by Buckra.

It's almost ovo-erotica.

"We went totally off the hook with that scene," said director Gray. For Speeg, it was just all in a day's work.

"I'm an expert eater," he said. "And I have no problem with food porn."

The Deviled Egg Nut is not the only unique character in the film. There's a beautiful drag queen. A naked TV commentator. And then there's Chef Jean-Robert de Cavel at Pigall's, who plays himself. Somewhat.

In his role, Cavel is a stereotypical French cook - wielding big knives and shouting "Vive la France!" - while doing battle in a fictitious competition for Griller of the Year.

"I'm whimsical, and I'm French, that's for sure," he said. "But the script was for a really obnoxious, mad, typical pompous chef. "

At this stage, the movie cannot be viewed by the general public. However, it is being submitted to film festivals and will hopefully be available in the near future.

In the meantime, you might want to watch your incredible edible eggs.

"Most store-bought eggs don't do it for me anymore," Speeg said. "But if I'm at a party and somebody has made deviled eggs, I go freakin' nuts."

Read more about "Three Barbecues" at Web site. The deviled egg fantasy scene can be viewed under the synopsis link.


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