The term nerd was used to put people down for the longest time. Being a nerd was a bad thing. The eighties changed all that with a surgical strike from Lambda Lambda Lambda that made being a nerd almost cool. Bill Gates and company have shown that cool can be bought, and now millions of adolescent wet dreams around the world involve video games, computer hacking and librarian glasses.
Starring in “Underworld” and “Van Helsing” may not make her a full-on nerd, but it sure does help. Besides her turns in franchises with nerd fandoms, she grew up as a bookworm. She spent her time reading, writing and avoiding social situations. She won awards for her writing, short stories and poetry, and she mastered French, Russian, and German well enough that she was able to get a spot at Oxford, where she studied French and Russian literature. She’s also consistently ranked by magazines as one of the most beautiful women in the world.
Danica McKellar is the perfect nerd fantasy. Every male in America that was alive during “The Wonder Years” years loved Winnie Cooper. After the show ended, Danica dropped off the celebrity radar to go to school. While she was there she studied math. She then published three best-selling math books. In her spare time, she guest stars on a bunch of television shows that want to show her off, because again – Winnie Cooper! And she’s still beautiful. Additionally, she’s one of the few celebrities that have an Erdos-Bacon number, which gives her more nerd street cred than anyone on this list.
Natalie Portman is the hippest nerd in Hollywood. She’s obviously brilliant—she graduated from Harvard and she speaks five languages. She also has her priorities straight; she skipped one of the Star Wars prequel premieres to prepare for her Harvard entrance exams. She shaved her head in a comic book movie (“V For Vendetta”) and still looked like someone you would beat up your best friend for.
Olivia Munn is the cheerleader of nerd culture. She’s admitted in interviews that video games aren’t her strong point so being hired by G4 was a strange fit, but she made it work. She’s shown she is tech savvy, loves cosplay (and that Leia costume makes us love it, too) and isn’t afraid to call herself a geek. The title of her book is “Suck It, Wonder Woman: The Misadventures of a Hollywood Geek” after all.
The daughter of legendary musician Quincy Jones isn’t just a hot celebrity, she’s a hot celebrity nerd of the highest order. Besides getting her education from Harvard, she created a comic book called “Frenemy of the State”. That’s right, she is a comic book writer. That’s enough to make her a nerd among nerds. We don’t even need to mention her other credentials, like staring in a web series with fellow list resident Natalie Portman or appearing on “Robot Chicken.” Nothing brightens my day like some hot Rashida Jones photos.
Felicia Day is the real life incarnation of Mary Jane Watson from the Spiderman mythology. She has luxurious red hair, a figure that makes other women weep and a demeanor that makes people want to hug her all the time. She appeared on “Buffy” and her more recent appearances on “Eureka” have helped her get mainstream attention, but it is her web series about a girl addicted to gaming that she produces, writes and stars in based on her life as a girl addicted to online gaming that makes her a geek for life.
Rosario Dawson is one of the hottest celebrity nerds on the planet. In fact, her nerdiness is only exceeded by her hotness. Many of her films are nerdy – “Josie and the Pussycats”, “Sin City”, “Men In Black II”. She’s a theater geek – just look at her performance in “Rent”. And she’s a comic book nerd to the point that she wrote her own series, Occult Crimes Taskforce, and made the main character her Doppelganger so she could be in a comic.