How to fall for Richard Armitage

A step by step guide by Aquilea

I’ve finally made up my mind to start a blog about my fandom issues (which is mostly Richard Armitage, no doubt about that). During the last weeks I’ve felt the growing wish, desire, even need to participate more actively in the RArmy. I made a start with initiating the Weekly Thorin Oakenshield Challenge on tumblr, but I feel like there’s more to do. So prepare to hear more from me – more discussions, more thoughts, more fan work. I hope you won’t get fed up with me :p But how to start with this blog? I guess it’s time to recapitulate how I got into this wonderful fandom that now makes me feel so happy and at home – a story of how to fall for Richard Armitage.

The first step

I’ve been a great fantasy lover since I was sixteen which means I wasn’t into fantasy yet when The Lord of the Rings came into cinemas – what a pity! But of course I went to watch The Hobbit as soon as possible, not knowing what precious men I would find there in person of a majestic dwarf king. I can’t exactly remember falling for Thorin Oakenshield the moment I saw him, though I tend to think now that my adoration started when the door to Bag-End opened for this special visitor. Calm, quiet, insidious … yet growing adoration.

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Resistance … is futile.

The moment I really realized that I may have a crush not only for my dwarf king, but also for the men under the prosthetics came with the Extended Edition of An Unexpected Journey. The bonus material shows some of the auditions – and Richard’s audition struck me. He sits there without costume, prosthetics or anything dwarvish. He starts to talk … I still remember sitting in front of my TV and just starring at him. The voice, the determination, but also melancholy and fear. I was sitting there and was utterly amazed by the calm, yet commanding presence of this man. This was the moment I realized how much I loved this character … his character.

My days in the RArmy began with Thorin Oakenshield (not too remarkable for a fantasy lover), and he will always have the special place in my heart. But that was only a beginning.

Do your research!

I bought some books and guides to the Hobbit, weren’t there a few lines about other roles of the actors? Yes, there were! Let’s start with a work of him that will probably suit my movie/TV taste in general. Robin Hood sounds good – and it’s not too expensive to order online, either! So here we go …

Now the fun is when your first encounter with Richard Armitage was on the Hobbit, you look at Sir Guy of Gisborne in some kind of amazement: It’s you, Richard, isn’t it? Somehow I was half expecting beard and long hair … But don’t worry, it was just a phase. It didn’t took me long to develop what I called “some kind of seeing with two eyes”: half concentrating on the story, but always having one eye at Guy, no matter if he’s just standing in the background or having a breath-taking close-up. It’s easy to fall for Richard again, even if he’s supposed to be the baddy: He is a complex character, and Richard’s portrayal is wonderful. He’s brooding, he’s smirking, he has the most beautiful eyes, full of soul … And he’s irresistible in black leather. With Guy of Gisborne I connect one thing that I absolutely adore about Richard: He sometimes has this special kind of look – you just look into his eyes, and you know that he is hurt or grieved about something. He does this special look with many of his roles, but I will always remember Guy, looking at Marian with these blue eyes and saying “I thought we were friends.” From this point on it didn’t take me long to cheer for Guy in his confrontations with the outlaws. Go, Guy!

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No stand against that smirk.

After hardly having finished Robin Hood, the DVD of North and South was already ordered and waited for me. Needless to go into details about my love and happiness I felt while watching, I guess 🙂 Somewhere in between I also watched Captain America: The First Avenger. Usually, I don’t like to watch disaster movies. Did I sit in the cinema, watching Into the Storm in the same summer? Yep.

I chose to watch The Vicar of Dibley next – this became the first time in my life I imported a DVD!

And then it was already time for The Battle of the Five Armies.

Advanced Fangirling

I always had a tendency to become emotional with fictional characters – books, video games, movies. But honestly – The Battle of The Five Armies was a real breakdown, and not only once: the cinema release, the release of the DVD, the release of the Extended Edition … every time was quite … challenging. Probably won’t change very soon.

But apart from tears, grief and more tears my next Armitage phase had some pleasant highlights.

I’ve never been to such a special screening like The Crucible before – for concerts, of course, but an overnight stay for a movie screening? Not yet! I liked listening to audio books when I was a child, but one that is some hours long and even English (which is not my native language)? No need to hesitate if the narrator is Richard Armitage! I am also not the biggest fan of spy movies or war stories, but I watched Lucas North in Spooks with excitement and held my breath at John Porter’s struggles in Strike back (and beautiful eyes … as always). I don’t feel quite comfortable when I see blood (I just realize that I really have some issues *cough*), but I grinned like a maniac when Hannibal was finally released in Europe.

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Going to watch The Crucible was like going on an adventure!

Sunny prospects

And now? Catching up with older roles, listening to David Copperfield, waiting for Urban and the Shed Crew, Pilgrimage, Berlin Station, and Brain on Fire … trying to get more active in the fandom! And drooling. Always drooling. But hopefully also writing, so you will hear more of me!

 

Don’t bother knocking, your Aquilea

How to fall for Richard Armitage