Rock Of Ages opens in less than a month. We’re about to get a lot of Tom Cruise. Tom Cruise as a badass rock star. Tom Cruise bare-chested, wearing eyeliner, and SINGING.

Two magazine profiles have been released as advance promotion for the film. I’m sure by now that you’ve seen these shots of Tom fully Stacee Jaxxed in a spread for W Magazine looking really uncomfortable on the cover being groped by two models. But have you read his entire interview with Playboy? Perhaps you’ve just glanced at the excerpts. Most of the coverage has focused on whether or not he’s had plastic surgery and how he’s analysed the fallout from his now infamous appearances on The Today Show and Oprah Winfrey. But that’s not what’s most interesting or insightful, to me at least, about the piece.

On the subject of whether or not he’s messed around with his face, Tom’s answer to “why do you look so young” is to say that he hasn’t f-cked with it like his ex-wife and that beyond taking care of himself, he doesn’t know how he’s been able to maintain his good looks right up to 50. I don’t know if I believe him. I think I might believe that maybe he hasn’t had anything invasive but I also think that there’s an omission here. Just because he doesn’t get needled doesn’t mean he doesn’t make use of the other treatments that are available. It’s just that he wouldn’t want to reveal that he hits up the cold laser and the microderm blast at least once a month. I’ve seen the effects of it myself. And I don’t understand why anyone would go Botox once they’ve tried it.

As for how he addresses what happened in 2005, with all the couch-jumping and the Scientology missioning, what I appreciate about his approach is his acknowledgement that he handled it poorly. There’s none of the usual celebrity blame excuse. He doesn’t criticise the people who criticise, he doesn’t rail on society’s obsession with tearing down famous people, he doesn’t deflect. So many of them deflect. Here’s a man who has been famous far longer than they ever will be. Who has learned how to be comfortable with his position. Who has been taught a different way to bury the insecurity that, naturally, accompanies actors.

It’s the Church way. And it permeates every Tom Cruise thought, every Tom Cruise statement, every Tom Cruise action.

THIS is what you read from the article. THIS is what you learn about Tom Cruise. This is Xenu’s greatest star accomplishment on display. This is where John Travolta failed. John Travolta couldn’t swallow the Scientology juice and let it absorb into his bloodstream to be released through his skin. John Travolta couldn’t memorise the playbook.

Tom Cruise has totally memorised the playbook. To the point where it doesn’t even seem, to him, like it’s a set play anymore. It just is. It is who he is. It’s why he can’t answer any question directly except for the ones that require only “yes/no” responses. It’s why whenever he’s required to elaborate, it always becomes a mantra, a life guide, an almost mechanised reaction that essentially leads back to one refrain:

I have passion. I love riding motorcycles.

It’s all about riding motorcycles!

What do they all have in common, the ones who stay on top, the biggest and the brightest, the Depps, the Cruises, the Pitts?

They are ALL control freaks.

They each manage their control freak differently, but ultimately, this is how they exist. Tom Cruise lives a rigid existence, governed tightly by a singular personal philosophy shaped by his religion that seems to advocate replacement fulfillment. It’s no wonder he lives on a film set. If you can’t be who you are, why not play who you want to be all the time? Fly planes, race cars, devote yourself constantly to the character, in front of the camera, and never, ever stop, don’t let it stop, don’t let yourself relax, because auditing only helps you create a truth, it will never allow you to confront it.

Click here for the full Tom Cruise Playboy profile. It’s worth your 10 minutes.