In defense of the pundits who have consistently dismissed Sandler, 32 and single, as a mindless dolt: Who knew? Jim Carrey at least smartened up his Dumb act with the genius of physical comedy. Jerry Seinfeld filled out his Thursday night Nothingness with wry wit. But Sandler? His humor hasn't changed much since he tossed a head of lettuce out of his New Hampshire high school window to amuse his classmates. "His act was not what we'd call A-1 material," concedes Budd Friedman, founder of the Improvisation, the L.A. comedy club where Sandler began performing in the late '80s. "It was more about his attitude, his little-boy quality, his vulnerability." Not to mention his bad hair. Says longtime friend Frank Coraci, who directed both Wedding and Waterboy: "He would have become a rock star if his hair grew out cool instead of goofy." But it doesn't—and that's the point. "Adam's kind of the Everyman," says friend and former SNL buddy David Spade. "You feel smarter than him. You feel sorry for him." And call it dim wit or dumb luck, you just can't help wanting to watch him.