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In Praise of Susan, Siri, Scarlett and Samantha

There’s plenty of sibilance in the above headline. But fear not; both Susan C. Bennett (a.k.a Siri) and Scarlett I. Johansson (a.k.a Samantha in Her) can handle it.

It’s always nice to review the year with a category that requires only a Top Two. Such is the case with this pair of astounding female voices. One, from the past (endless recording sessions in 2005), was finally revealed this fall to be the ubiquitous voice of Siri. The other, enacting the near future in limited NY/LA theatrical release, has led journalists like Daily Beast culture writer Kevin Fallon to bang the drum for 2013 Best Actress Oscar consideration:

Scarlett Johansson has never been more alluring than she is in Her.

Her coy sexuality has never been so tantalizing. She’s as vivacious and gregarious as she is sensual and deep. She both gives her most nuanced performance yet and sears her status as one of the most desirable actresses working in Hollywood today.

We’re right there with you, Mr. Fallon. In fact, if Apple one day in the real near-future is able to offer the option of Johansson as Siri, we will be willing to clear out our Bitcoin reserves for such a sultry, customized privilege.

Shutterstock_ScarlettJohansson

In the meantime, we are happy to celebrate as one of the year’s most delightful and surprising media twains the actress in Her and the Atlanta voice-over pro behind Siri. Kudos to Her writer-director Spike Jonze for the inspired casting and to CNN reporter Jessica Ravitz for finally giving Bennett her well-deserved due.

Update (January 9):
We’re not the only ones who are putting these two together. Today, the Alamo Drafthouse revealed that it will play the following, custom-recorded PSA before each screening of Her:

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