Richard Armitage as Paul Andrews in Between The Sheets (2003)
The inspiration for this blog post came to me after I read a post on another blog called (R)Ailment. Apparently there are Richard Armitage fans who have been chastising other fans for ogling him. These people seem to believe that ogling RA's body is reducing him to body parts and is very disrespectful to him. Richard Armitage should be seen as much more than a symbol of sex. RA is a very talented British actor and with that comes a certain distinction. Well, I do agree that Richard Armitage is a very talented British actor and should be seen as much more than a symbol of sex. However, I think these accusations are unfair.
Richard Armitage is obviously a very handsome man from the top of his gorgeous head to the tip of his toes. Who in their right mind would not love looking at such a superb male specimen? I mean really; lets be serious here for a minute.. It is natural for both men and women to admire beauty when we see it. It does not necessarily mean that we are being disrespectful. Since the subject was brought up though, lets go over a few facts that the "moral minority group" seem to be overlooking.
Exhibit A, B and C are screen caps from a miniseries called Between The Sheets that Richard Armitage performed in back in 2003. The screen caps show Richard Armitage playing the role of Paul Andrews having sex with his screen wife Alona. I have not seen this production. Well, let me clarify. I have seen bits and pieces of it on You Tube, but not the whole thing in its entirety. In Between The Sheets, there are scenes containing complete nudity as you can see from the screen caps.
You can actually see what is going in on this scene by clicking HERE and scrolling down. I have seen these screen caps before but before today, I never saw this scene in action mode. I admit that my eyes got real big when It saw.
This screen cap shows "Paul Andrews" getting his ass massaged during a sex scene. Remember, this is Richard Armitage's ass.
Here is a screen cap of Richard Armitage playing Lucas North in Spooks. I have seen all the episodes of Spooks that Richard is in, so I did see this scene. Lucas North is stripping down completely and you get a full body length view of Richard's back completely nude. This scene is quite alluring.
I will leave you to wonder if I hit the replay button.
I do not take Richard for a fool. This proper British actor is a grown man who knows exactly what he is doing. RA obviously consented to do these scenes and I am sure he is well aware of the kind of thoughts these actions will illicit in the minds of some people. It is also very possible that Richard does not mind being thought of in a sexual way. The fans do not know him personally, but we tend to project what we want onto Richard. Many of his fans conclude that RA is shy and bashful, which is something I never assumed about him. A lot of fans prefer to see him as being a bashful bloke who needs protecting.
Now, I have to admit that I wish Richard never did those scenes in Between The Sheets, but he did, I accept it and do not admire him any less. Generally speaking, I am not thrilled about a few of his past projects because it seems like he was accepting any role just to get acting jobs. Acting is a burning desire within Richard and I have not walked in those shoes, so I will not judge. I know that I couldn't have done it though. Can you imagine being completely nude and simulating sex in front of an entire film crew?
Anyway, like other fans of Richard Armitage, I have my own ideas of how I view him. To me, Richard is not bashful at all, has been well brought up by his parents so he possesses impeccable manners and doesn't brag about himself. He is charming and has a "Presence" about him that draws people to notice him. On his own Richard does not seem to have a good sense of fashion, therefore he has to be shown how to put clothes together well. Apart from being an actor, I see a man who is a loner who prefers solitude when away from his craft. This need for solitude could make being in a relationship a challenge for him. Women need attention and lots of it when we are in a relationship.
To me Richard Armitage also has what it takes to be a legend in his own time. Richard has got to make sure that he chooses his roles wisely from here on in. When I think of actors like Cary Grant and Gregory Peck I would love to see Richard gain the same type of timeless respect.
I wonder what Richard thinks now of his earlier roles before he did North & South. If RA had it to do over again would he appear in Between The Sheets?
The Divine Miss M - Better Midler
I remember Bette Midler being interviewed many years ago on television. Midler had just given birth to her daughter Sophie, and I remember her saying that she would not want her daughter to see some of the work she did in her early years. When you have a child some of your views change and you think back on some things that you did realizing you didn't make the best choices. If Richard has children would he be comfortable with them seeing his earlier work? Would he be more selective in choosing roles if he does have a child? I feel that Bette Midler has risen way above anything she may regret doing in the past because she is so talented.
I don't think that Sharon Stone ever shed her "Basic Instinct" image. Her name for years was synonymous with female genitalia. Who does not remember her crossing her legs in the movie Basic Instinct, revealing that she didn't have on any panties. That one scene reverberated around the world and maybe was far reaching into her personal life as well.
Richard doesn't need to be naked to be thought of as a symbol of sex. Millions of women fell in love with Richard Armitage fully clothed and wearing a cravat. To me John Thornton has way more sex appeal than Paul Andrews. I didn't even find those sex scenes in Between The Sheets particularly appealing. For me it is more like soft porn. The kiss at the end of North & South held a lot more bang because it was romantic and about two people deeply in love finally connecting on a soul level.