Michele over at the M Files had this fun Armitage-related questionnaire, and I had a break from work. Sometimes a break from the chaos and personal nuttiness can do the soul some good and I have the soul of a 16-year-old high schooler with a crush on the artsy introvert.
Let’s do this.
You Favourite John and Why
After entertaining, then punting, a number of prostitute jokes, I gave this some serious thought. While people love Byronic Thorton, I lean towards John Proctor. Armitage was on fire in this role and his talent finally took root for everyone to see. I knew he was good, you knew he was good, and he certainly knew he was good. Yael Farber’s stripped down, in the round, direction let the actors and the text burn with intensity both religious and otherwise. Also this favourite John introduced me to a lot of actors I enjoy seeing in other projects like Adrian Schiller (deliciouly slimey in Victoria) and Anna Mandeley (currently enjoying her in the new All Creatures Great and Small.) Keep Madely in mind for a later question.
Your Favourite Richard Action Movie and Why
I am going to bend this rule because, if you think about it, Strike Back is three movies under one televerse, the Strike Back-verse. If action movies are loud, fun, suspenseful things with tight t-shirts, I am letting my shallow flag fly. My brother considers this ‘high class’ compared to the action stuff he normally watchese and John Porter is my high class action hero saying actual words rather than grunting. (I recall in an interview Richard saying he was attracted to the project for taking some tropes and doing something meatier with it.) The set pieces are well executed, we have a flawed protagonist in John Porter, and bonus Andrew Lincoln not covered in walker goo. (Okay, this was before The Walking Dead, but still.)
As far as pairings go, it’s too bad we didn’t see more of Collinson and Porter in action mode beyond those final moments. Armitage and Lincoln play well off each other and both actors are known for investing EVERYTHING into their roles and this one is no exception. There’s a Rick Grimes movie coming up and maybe, just maybe, his agents might want him to audition for a role. Richard can be an adminstrator for the Commonwealth settlement and leave the action stuff to Lincoln for a change.
Your Favourte Pairing of Richard and…
Anna Madaley in ‘The Crucible’ with Rutina Wesley earning an honourable mention for ‘Hannibal.’ Madeley infused something playing Elizabeth Proctor, a role that gets glossed over as the loyal wife the hubby cheats on with the babysitter, witchcraft trial not withstanding. Elizabeth wants to get to know her husband while John shuts himself off. If Abigail was sex then Elizabeth is intimacy and those are two different things and Richard changes his body and his voice to suit John in either interaction. Madeley and Armitage worked on hard getting to the heart of this relationship and it shows. Alright, maybe getting lifted up and sharing a passionate stage kiss added a little spice to this judgement. (Holy cow, that too technical know-how as actors, plus stage direction, to accomplish it!) By the way, Madaley is great in the new All Creatures Great and Small.
When I heard Rutina Wesley was cast to play Reba in Hannibal, it wasn’t just enjoying her role as Tara on ‘True Blood.’ a character who got the short schrift in later seasons, but she has what I called ‘chops.’ She trained at Julliard and that means she’s got a tool box of skills to draw from to match his skills sets. Again, these two have great chemistry and a knack for working on the interior life of a character. I haven’t seen Queen Sugar yet because I cut the cable but I hope to catch her in something else.
Here’s hoping Richard gets to work with either of these two again in some capacity.
Richard’s Best Trait Is His…
His composure that borders on zen-like. Don’t get me wrong, he’s as human as they come and somebody sat him down and said, “Rich, mate, you have to stop deleting tweets. Write it or don’t.’ However, as a high-strung person, I really want to take him out to dinner (more on that later) and pick his brain on how he does it. Did he ever whalloped his bullies? I have stories of whalloping mine, one time with my pencil case, thanks to a small bottle of Lepage glue turning it into a tool of retaliation in grade 8. (Hi Corcord, I am Fat-Fat-Fatima and I have more stories where that came from. At this point it might either intrigue or scare him off completely.)
Perhaps that composure is an accompaninment to another trait, perserverance. You have to have both to survive the entainment business and know that in order to get the stage, you have to make somewhat of a name for yourself and negotiate all the other stuff that goes with it. All jobs have those other things no amount of training prepares you for and only experience can provide.
What One Question Would You Ask Richard About His Roles Up to Now?
Is there a bucket list of roles, or types of roles, you still want to do?
Richard Asks You to Dinner and Where to Eat. What Type of Restauarant Would You Take Him To?
Welcome to Winnipeg, home to a diverse food scene that I hope will survive the pandemic. I work for a college that produces chefs and restaurant owners so for a small city we have a lot of choice. Here’s my top 3:
- The Capital Bar and Grill. Good wine menu and a variety of food from sea food to the best burgers in town. Also they have a nice patio.
- (Tie) The Grove Pub & The King’s Head. How about two different ways to remind you of home. The Grove looks upscale compared to the King’s Head but many of their employees live in the aread. The King’s Head took the lead on pivoting their business during the pandemic. Both have delicious food, with the King’s Head boasting some truly-hot curry, with patios to people watch while we talk. The latter has good corners FOR PRIVATE CONVERSATION. (That’s if there’s not a band playing.)
- Get a takeaway from Viena Del Castelo and go to Assiniboine Park. Good Portuguese food, a lovely park, and a chance to know we are not colder than Mars all the time.
What Song Comes to Mind to Describe His Acting Career
I ran through a few choices and remembered a song by Karliene called ‘Become the Beast’ on Spotify. I found the song by accident through another playlist and loved it. I paid no mind to the deer on the cover just the melodies and the lyrics. Imagine my surprise hunting for a Youtube of the song and finding this on her official channel:
Richard played some beastly roles, always finding something new within each one. It’s almost like he’s exploring darkness to understand things like compassion, kindness, and what it takes to hang on to them. How can you undertand light if you don’t see the shadows cast behind you.
To capture a predator You can’t remain the prey You have to become An equal In every wayKarliene, Become the Beast
(By the way, check out Karliene’s song Anne Bonny or her concept album of the same name.)
What board game would you play with Richard during another lockdown?
I would love the vocabulary match up.
What Two Fandom Items Would You Give Richard to Richard as Tokens of your Appreciation
I had a hard time answering this question until I realized I already did it in my own way. In 2011, I wrote a letter, giving myself a limit of two pages max for fear of babbling too much, as he began the Hobbit. (Even paid the extra postage for a tracked shipment to United Agents.) At the time, I was moving to my condo and downsizing my library and I had a collection of Tolkien’s nonfiction writings and thought he might like it. I also gave him that and a small journal in case he wanted to do character notes or something.
Seriously, I haven’t thought about this moment for a long time and I wondered why the heck did I do it? I did get signed picture and noticed the postmark came from Leicester. Later, I would learn his mom handled the mail. I don’t mind of the book ended up in their local library or somebody else got to use the journal. This is the first time I mentioned this ever. Nobody knew. It’s something I did and I never expected any other response.
Complete this Sentence: ” Richard You are the (Blank) to my (Blank)
Oh, boy, this one is hard. Let’s try Richard you the oasis to my desert.