Who’s your baddie?: Poll

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We all know Richard Armitage enjoys playing baddies. Of course, I don’t even consider my first and favorite RA ChaRActer, Sir Guy of Gisborne, to be truly bad–just misunderstood.

Excluding the Sultan of Smoulder, who is your favorite amoral/immoral bad boy  ChaRActer? Tell us why.  Is it someone not listed here? If so, who?

53 responses »

  1. I voted for Mulligan, because to me, he is the most frightening, capable of anything. I don’t believe Bateman exists, either. Most of the others, well, you can see them coming.

    • Hi, Karina, and thanks for commenting. One would certainly say that the brave, heroic Lucas we came to know and love was the opposite of what Bateman was presented as being.

  2. I haven’t seen most of these so I didn’t vote. I was surprised not to see Sir Guy? How is it that the handsome shaggy haired sociopath didn’t make your list? I know RA considers him to be a “baddie” and he did murder sweet Marion. He’s definitely ‘pretty poison’ and great eye candy, but one of the people I’d least like to encounter in real life. At least Lee you could laugh off. I’m not so sure laughing at Guy would be very healthy.

    • Notice what I wrote at the top of the post, Jane. 😉 Guy is actually one of the fan community’s favorite characters, period, including mine.

      You don’t have to agree, of course, and I can see where you are coming from, but you will need to come to terms with that within the Armitage community. I wouldn’t want to be involved with any of them in Real Life–remember, I am married to Harry Kennedy, more or less 😉 –but fantasy land is a different story, and I still have to write that post on the parallels between my dad and Guy. So don’t ask me to hate him. For me, he did have redeeming qualities that go beyond the superficial, a potential to be that better man, and he sought redemption. That’s something that John Mulligan never did (I realize you haven’t seen the program yet, at least I don’t think you have).

      To sum things up, here at the Armitage Effect, Guy is not considered a bad guy. And never will be.

      • Having a psych background and having been married to someone with sociopathic tendencies for 8 years I do look at Guy in a much different light. I love to watch RA portray him as the nuances and expressions are so masterful that they take an unsympathetic character and make you like him in spite of yourself. I honestly don’t think that I can watch the show from the start and get invested in this character. For me he’s best in small delight doses.

        He has started me thinking about the treatment of upperclass/royal children in those times. I don’t know if they get into it on the show but they were frequently treated brutally as childhood was not recognized then and children were thought to be small adults and expected to act adult and be able to deal with whatever was dealt out. They were frequently pawns and traded to others to strengthen ties and sometimes as outright hostages. It was a brutal world back then and with little protection children got the worst of it. 😦

        • I am sure that initially the scriptwriters intended for Guy to be this very vile and despicable secondary character you would want to boo and hiss along with Vasey and then root for the cheeky charmer young Robin and his “gang.” And they made Guy very bog-standard brutal in those earlier eps. As Richard himself has said, “robotic.” But–as the series progressed, one saw all the nuances, the shadings being given to this character that made him so much more than the cardboard cutout they perhaps meant him to be (not to mention the fact RA had much more chemistry with Lucy than Jonas did IMHO).

          And Guy’s role expanded and we saw the humanity emerging as he genuinely came to love Marian. Not a perfect love, flawed like the man, but he loved as best he knew how. We saw there was tenderness, kindness, heroism, much potential underneath all the surface swagger and smoulder. There was vulnerability and naivety.

          That “sweet” Marian was one manipulative woman in many ways. She took full advantage of his feelings for him for her own purposes. I am afraid I would have to say she was a p**ck tease. She was not without her own flaws. Don’t get me wrong, I loved Lucy and I detested the way she was written out of the show–no one deserved that–but I don’t always love Marian. And I definitely do not love Robin!! He manipulated everyone, the little glory hog.

          Guy had lost so much–his father a leper, his mother dead in a fire he’d always believed he started, a village that offered him no assistance, a very odd little sister to care for and he was only a boy himself. No family, no home. Nothing. I always rolled my eyes and laughed when his sister squawked about being sold off in marriage at age 13. Uh, it was the 12th century. Childhood was indeed brief just as life itself often was. Upper class girls married young and marriages were arranged to the mutual benefit of both families. It’s hardly as if it was an unusual situation.

          Childhood as we conceive of it is a relatively recent concept and the idea of teenagers really didn’t come about until the 1950s or so with the rise of rock and roll.

          • I was watching a RA internew a couple of days ago where he described Guy as “damaged.” He stated that he didn’t know if he could really feel love. RA said that he felt that it was obsession and that when he got what he wanted he would no longer want her. He went on to say that he thought if Guy was living today his profession would be James Hewitt (he laughingly asked if that was a profession) and that he would be pursuing one of the Royals. He also said that since he killed Marion he was waiting for Guy to get his “comeuppance.”

            I know that he was really really pissed that it was written that Guy murders her. But he also said in a different interview that he likes to see what happens when your character does something you don’t think he would do. Since he’s so protective of Guy I expect he was hoping for him to find some sort of salvation. He’s stated that he looks for the good in a “baddie” so I’m sure he worked out a whole psychological profile on what was wrong with Guy and what might help him find the light.

            I’ve never understood what drives some directors/writers/producers to take their work so far to the darkside that it destroys a character that people are invested in, or even trashes the whole premise. I was a fan of Farscape until it became so ugly I couldn’t recognize it any longer. In the Firefly movie Whedon killed most of the crew. (WTF?!) There must be an allure to darkness that I just don’t “get.”

            I do see the allure of Guy as played by RA. As Shrek says, he’s like an onion…he has layers. Every time you peel one back there is another different one waiting. His look in the 3rd season is enough to raise the temperature in anyone’s room. Lift an eyebrow and smile slightly and watch the ladies swoon. LOL

            • One thing that really bugs me is when writers ignore things that have been established in previous seasons and allow continuity to go to hell in a hand basket. If Richard liked having something unexpected arising for a character, boy, that was sorely tested with Lucas and what they did to that character. Richard had referred to Lucas as a genuine hero, flawed and damaged though he might be, and I certainly saw him as such.

              I remember him saying in an interview before S9, “He’s (Lucas) not who you thought he was. He’s not who I thought he was!!” Boy, that was an understatement.

              The new writers basically trashed everything that had been established in 7 and 8 about Lucas and turned the whole thing into a ludicrous soap opera. They made MI5 look like a bunch of numpties for not noticing the guy they hired was not the guy who showed up for work. *sigh* Yes, Richard gave an amazing performance in spite of it all. But I am still so angry they didn’t at the very least give Lucas the elegant death RA had hoped for. Lucas and Richard certainly deserved better than what they got. 😦

              • I know RA knew that Lucas was going to die since MI5 apparently loves to kill their main characters. (Arrgh!) I think he fell off a building or something equally ungraceful. Splattered on the sidewalk is hardly the cool way to die he was hoping for. But then the folks who make the shows don’t give a crap about their stars. As Hitchock said: “Actors are cattle.” I would think that Lucas is one that you could truely see alternate endings for. I think I will probably see seasons 7 & 8 and maybe skip 9.

                It’s interesting that Guy’s father had leprosy and that he thought he killed his mother. Guilt can destroy a young mind and a lack of love and parental care can cause a mental illness called Borderline Personality Disorder. It’s one of the nastier mental illnesses and is untreatable except by therapy and a determination of the sufferer to change their way of thinking. Borderlines become very very self-centered as a survival tactic. Unfortunately their brains actually get rewired and they find it impossible to think of others except in ways that relate directly to what they want and need. If their partner’s needs parallel theirs all is rosey, but if that changes they can be very abusive. They are in real psychological pain much of the time. As Guy said: “I live in hell.” (I think that quote is right.) He needs more than a hug in a time that therapy was undreamed of. I think if I was to write a fanfic about him I’d pick it up when he’s still a teen. Maybe some real care when he was younger would have helped him to be the man he wants to be.

              • There were a lot of different ways they could have gone with Lucas’s character that would have been better fhan what they chose. They were looking strictly for sensationalist effect IMHO

              • Wonderful discussion, all of this. I wish I could put in my two cents, but there would be many more than two, and I would end up getting no sleep at all tonight. My clock now says 12:48 a.m. Bonne nuit, et un grand MERCI.

  3. Kruger is my choice. In my opinion, the real bad guy is the nazi, because he truly believes that his side is the right side, and he is ruthless.

  4. I had to go with Mulligan too, because as much as I would like to think I could see him for what he is, I have a feeling that, like Ellie, I’d succumb to that charm of his – the gorgeous smile, the stubble…*sigh*

    • Mulligan would be my choice, too. *sigh* He’s so beautiful and charming and very disarming when he wishes to be. And yet he seems to have no conscience, no remorse for the bad that he does. I could see myself being sucked in by someone like that, as much as I’d like to think I’d be too smart for that to happen. 😦

      • That’s when the Mulligans of the world are the most dangerous isn’t it? We think we know better, but they are sneaky, single-minded in pursuit of their own ends and not concerned with consequences. There is a certain honesty in him in the end though that made him really interesting – I didn’t have much sympathy for Ellie. It’s hard to stand on the high moral ground wearing the fruits of a poisoned tree no?

        • Ellie was looking for a way–an easy way– out of the debt that was burying her, a way back to the good life she really couldn’t afford–the life her rich friend had and she wanted (of course, rich friend who fooled around on her husband wasn’t happy, either).

          And John was offering Ellie that as he wined and dined her and offered to take that house off her hands for a handsome sum. She was more than happy to take him up in his offer. John had read her well. I don’t have a tremendous amount of sympathy for her, either. You might say she made her bed and she had to lie in it.

  5. I wanted to vote for Percy first but having read the comments, I think I’ll go with Mulligan! Although Percy was pretty bad as well IMO. Even resorting to physical abuse when under the influence of alcohol..

    • Percy had a lot of surface charm ( in spite of the wonky hair LOL) but underneath there was a lot of weakness in his character.

      He was insecure in his position as Mr. Marie Lloyd (granted, Marie loved the limelight so much she stopped really spending time or giving attention to her husband) and turned to drink to bolster his male ego, which only brought out the worst in him.

      It’s said there are happy, fun drunks and there are nasty, mean ones. He tended to be the latter. You know, I wonder what happened to their child . . . seems likely the poor kid got neglected by them both.

      • Percy was horrid, but primarily weak, therefore prone to abuse, but nothing like the amoral sociopath that was Mulligan. As you say, I wonder what became of Marie and Percy’s child…

        • I decided to look that up, and it seems the daughter became a performer under the name “Marie Lloyd Jr.” She appeared in a short musical film made in 1926 and performed in many music halls. The daughter passed away in 1967. Lived a much longer life than her mum–79 versus 52 (heavens, my age!!). Percy died at age 71 in 1933.

  6. I voted for John Mulligan, because he’s bad, very bad, althought Philip Durant is also a bastard. Richard is very good in these roles. 🙂

    I haven’t seen “Cold feet” or “Marie Lloyd” for the moment, so I cannot judge these characters.

    • It’s amazing how such a sweet, good, kind gentleman in RL can play absolute bastards so well, isn’t it? It’s interesting–in reading about various actors, many of those who are best known for playing villains are actually very gentlemanly, nice fellows in RL according to those who know them.

  7. I still have to see some of Richards baddies so I chose from those I have seen. I have gone with Philip Durant, what a slime bucket. This was also one of the first characters that I saw Richard in. John Bateman is bad, but Richard does a great job at making each character have a different look so you can tell when he is Lucas or John. I think he could pull off playing twins very well.

    • What also impresses me with RA as Lujohn as I called him in S9 is the fact many of those scenes are not shot in chronological order. So there are times when he had to go from being John to Lucas back to John. It was no easy feat and a lesser actor would have made a total hash of it, methinks. I also think he could play twins very well.

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