“A” is for Armor

A lot of RA bloggers seem to be doing the 30 day challenge this month, and I’m a bit jealous. I’ve done the challenge previously, with a small group of friends, and had planned to include that experience when I came to it in the recollection of my “fan-path”.

*if I can't have fun, no one can!*

if I can’t have fun, no one can!

So, to mix things up a bit and give me the chance to ramble on about my love for different characters, I thought I’d try the A-Z blogging challenge instead.

no worries, Harry! you're still my favorite

no worries, Harry! you’re still my favorite

except… it won’t be every day

 because that would take dedication

because that would take dedication

and… it won’t start at the beginning of the month

because I lack patience

because I lack patience

really I’ll just be using the alphabet letters to kick-start my brain into choosing things to talk about.

*this is a key*

‘K’ is for Key

so, not the blogging challenge at all, really! I like to make my own rules.

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on to the letter “A“!

it's about to get serious all up in here!

it’s about to get serious all up in here!

“A” is for Armor

When I think of Armor, my mind automatically goes to Guy of Gisborne from Robin Hood.

I'm trying to be serious here, Guy, so quit being cute!

I’m trying to be serious here, Guy, quit being cute!

Of Sir Guy’s two distinct costume choices, the series 3 “renaissance” resembles an actual protective covering

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more than the “futuristic” leather, delightful though it may be.

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Guy’s Armor was incorporated into what he wore everyday, with the option of being able to add to or remove from the overall outfit, depending on circumstances.

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When I think of Guy and his Armor though, my mind tends to lean more towards the metaphorical. Armor: that protective covering that is added to or removed from one’s overall being; those invisible barriers that keep others away from what we try to keep hidden deep within our selves.

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Guy was driven by a single-minded goal, to attain lands and status that would afford him the power and respect he so tirelessly fought his whole life for.

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He tried to fit Marian into that goal as well, but even if she had reciprocated his attachment to her, I don’t think he would have let even her through those barriers.

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Guy was burdened with deep-rooted hurts that were never afforded the chance to breathe. Instead, they melted into each other, were added to over time with each new rejection and personal failure, making that heavy Armor all the stronger.

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It isn’t until Guy reaches the lowest of lows, drowning in guilt during series 3, that we see his Armor truly start to come off. Guy appears in his black shirt more often, minus those outer coverings, as he wanders in new directions.

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Series 3 Guy is surrounded by the suffocating darkness he’s been living in; he must shed that Armor just so he can breathe! But in doing so he loses his anchor, that all consuming goal that had been misguiding him with it’s negative energy, pushing him forward for all of those years. It’s difficult to comprehend that there could be something different.

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Guy faced his past, payed for his choices but also found those pieces of himself that were thought to be lost forever, buried under all of that Armor.

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Guy’s acceptance from and protectiveness towards Meg, his fragile truce with Robin as they stayed tied together by their shared duty to Archer, Guy’s long-awaited reckoning with the Sheriff and his own sister’s revenge; all part of the painful journey on the path to his redemption.

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Armor protects us from the harshness of the world. If you can’t separate your Armor into pieces that come off or go on in regards to one’s ever changing circumstances though, you will end up unintentionally harming that which you are trying to protect.

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The only way out is through. You are often strongest when at your most vulnerable. Let your soul breathe.

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40 thoughts on ““A” is for Armor

  1. Nice analysis! I have a hard time with Guy. He’s beautiful but a really bad guy. And it’s so hard to feel anything with Marion. Don’t like her at all. Interesting post!

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      • Cill says:

        I am totally seduced by Guy’s beauty and the vulnterability he displays in his relationship with Marian so I’ll try to be objective.
        In a way, she is responsible for this, because she is manipulative and deceitful, in the guise of doing good. Now, I’ve seen other shows where you have someone pretending a relationship with a baddie in the name of standing up for justice or whatever, but I always felt little sympathy. Now, although some of the relationships were not based on love on either side, but a few were. Still I felt nothing for the deceived.
        Perhaps this is the genius of Richard Armitage (not just the beauty, since some of those characters were handsome, too), or something lacking in the writing of Marian or Lucy Griffiths’ portrayal, but my sympathies always end up being with Guy rather than Marian or (shudder) Robin
        I think your analysis is very insightful.

        (Those are also some of my favourite pictures of Guy, btw)

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        • I’m not particularly a fan of Marian (though I think Lucy herself did a wonderful job) I don’t think she really knew what she was feeling. Marian was supposed to be the young feisty beautiful woman who was set on fighting for justice, in whichever way she was able given her gender and circumstances; but she did have feelings for Guy, in my opinion, and they confused and frustrated her. In the end it appeared that she had been playing Guy all along in Robin’s name, and that’s what she wanted Guy and everyone else to believe, but I think she was a very confused young woman. I’m not saying she had true love feelings for Guy, I think they were rooted more in friendship mixed in with hormones that she didn’t know what to do with. She played him though, plain and simple. She pulled his strings in order to accomplish her own agenda, and that is what made me cheer for her demise; I am very protective of Guy, “baddie” or not 🙂

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          • Cill says:

            Yeah, those hormones of hers. 😀

            I used to wish that they had just had her marry Guy or be seduced by him and then deal with the consequences. (And so apparently did Richard Armitage. I read or heard an interview in which he said that he wished that they’d taken the script in that direction.)

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          • I wish Guy and Marian would’ve gotten married too, not for the romantic angle (well, okay some actual romance would have been nice 😉 ) but I think being married would have opened up a whole new world of struggles, made Marian’s deceit carry more weight. *shrugs* it just would have made more sense, while also bringing a bit more realism to it all. I liked the campy style they had going on, but it’s like there was no in-between; it was either tongue-in-cheek or devastating despair.

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          • Cill says:

            I agree totally that it was too extreme: despair or camp.
            The marriage would have allowed the writers to explore the relationship between Guy and Marian in a totally new way. Would Guy still have been so in love with her once he had her? Would a sexual relationship with Guy have changed her relatioship with Robin? Instead they just retread the same group for 2 seasons.

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          • I think Guy would have been one of those men who fall in love with someone’s free-spirit, and then expect them to live in a cage. Marian was too much of a girl still, to be able to truly reach him and help turn his life around. it would’ve been all about her and her rebelling nature 😦

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          • no, I think Robin would’ve been worse. Guy would try to tamp down that adventurous spirit of Marian’s to keep her safe, but he would still value her input and strategy I think. whereas Robin uses Marian for his own gain; once she was his again, I think he’d expect her to be his keeper, cooking and whatnot, & just expecting her to do what he said without discussion (like he treated the rest of his gang 😉 )

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  2. Lori H says:

    Any blog about GoG is a great blog. (Especially if there are pictures, LOL). I agree with the others, it is hard to feel any sympathy for Marian. Also, I’ve always felt Robin was more smug and arrogant than Guy. Good little analysis! 🙂

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    • We were supposed to be on the side of “good” which supposedly meant Robin, yet it was Guy who pulled our heartstrings. Robin was too arrogant, too flirty, too wrapped up in his own power. It appears to be a lighthearted family show, but the story-lines run much deeper. “Guy vs. Robin” made me ponder the politics of the time, the hierarchy, the weight that status and lands held, and how the lack thereof could drive someone to do the things that Guy did. and just because someone was on the side of justice, didn’t mean they were inherently “good”. There were so many times I wanted to slap Robin, I was firmly on Guy’s side by episode 2; Richard Armitage or not 😉

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      • Cill says:

        I was watching an ep of S3 recently and noticed a definite change in Robin’s attitude. In the first season he was almost a pacifist. In S3 he was shooting people at the drop of a hat. This makes his earlier stance seem a bit hypocritical.
        I also found him arrogant, bossy, full of himself and unconvincing as a romantic hero.

        (*whispers* I also disliked his accent. That’s probably a politically incorrect thing to say, but it annoyed me that he was supposed to be an earl and brought up with Marian and Guy. Why did he have a different accent? And why *that* accent?)

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        • I think Robin and Guy both went off the deep-end after Marian was gone. but as to the accents, I’ve not heard Jonas talk in real life so I don’t know if he was exaggerating it or if that’s just how he talks. Overall I think the accents weren’t focused on, at least that’s what it seemed like to me since they all differed.

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          • Cill says:

            In S1 Robin’s PTSD was at least interesting. By S3, he was starting up relationships with Isabella *and* Kate and dropping one or the other, running around shooting people.

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  3. Joanna says:

    I love it, Kelbel 🙂 though I had some problems in paying attention to the text. I think, I must watch…I mean, read it once more .

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    • I did go overboard a bit on the pictures, I think 😛 but Guy amidst his struggles is a beautiful sight. Richard took a character that could have been very one dimensional if left to how he appeared on the page, and made me feel for him, made me think through the “whys and hows” and not just to take Guy as a “baddie” at face-value.

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      • Cill says:

        I was just thinking this morning of the scene where Guy broodingly watches Marian kiss and pet her horse and the sheriff asks him if he is jealous of the horse (which of course he is)

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      • Cill says:

        I wanted to add that the horse scene is a beautiful one, because it gives us an insight into all 3 characters in it (well 4 if you count the horse 😀 )

        BTW, does anyone else think that the sheriff constantly referring to “lepers” is calculated to remind Guy that his father was a leper.
        (All the references the sheriff makes are to women as lepers, but this might just be his way of taunting Guy without pushing him to the breaking point by making obvious digs about his father)

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        • that might be a possibility, that the Sheriff is taunting Guy by referencing lepers. I just think he was showing his severe dislike for women though, and trying to get Guy to see Marian in a negative light.

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          • Cill says:

            I happened to see an early episode again the other night, and the first time the sheriff uses this word to describe women he says “Avoid them as you would lepers” , which of course Guy’s father is.

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  4. I’m almost done with my 30-day challenge, and boy it’s been an interesting ride. Thank goodness for WP’s option to schedule your posts 🙂

    Having said that, it’s my first and last time doing something like that but I can’t wait to read your A-Z blogging challenge! Way more interesting than a 30-day challenge for sure!

    I can’t even start thinking what word to use for “A” other than Ass, but then that would make my blog totally NSFW 😀

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  5. fitzg says:

    Lovely! Though I think Marian was not so much a confused young woman (she was, no doubting the chemistry) as a medieval woman doing whatever she had to do to survive and protect her father and herself. The armour analogy is so good!

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    • I agree that she was doing what she thought she had to do in order to survive (much like Guy himself 😉 ) but I think her conflicted feelings regarding Guy maybe dug her deeper than she intended.

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  6. That was so beautifully written! Guy was such a sad character and how I love him! In one of the fanfictions I’ve read (sadly I can’t remember which one) Guy’s character subconsciously wore his leather gloves to keep his hands free from being tainted by the evil things he had to do. That has become my head canon for Guy’s character now, especially because it helps me justify why he wore those goal-keeper/dirt-bike-rider gloves instead of having to wonder what in the world the costume designer was thinking. I actually liked the character of Marian, but really hated the way that she couldn’t see the change she would have made in Guy if she had just given him a shred of sincere love. I too wanted Marian to follow through with the marriage because I think the writers could have done so much more with the plot if they had. Although I didn’t hate Robin’s character, I still thought he was a selfish, immature little boy and I could not figure out what Marian saw in him. She had much more chemistry with Guy, but then who wouldn’t when Richard Armitage is such an amazing actor? I guess that is why I am so obsessed with fanfiction: I can read and reread to my little heart’s content all the many beautifully written tales of Marian realizing her folly, redeeming Guy’s character, saving Nottingham and having lots of lusty sex! Perfect!

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    • Cill says:

      Did Richard Armitage himself say that Guy’s gloves were part of his armor? And that it was very significant that he would take them off to make physical contact with Marion?

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      • I’m not sure if Richard himself said it, but I’m positive that someone associated with the show did because I remember the glove thing being mentioned too 😉

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      • Maybe that is where I read about that, or maybe the author who wrote the fanfiction read about it from an interview. I’ve read/listened to so many interviews and fanfictions that sometimes they blend together!

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  7. I loved the analogy and the analysis as it reflects my thoughts on Guy. I felt conflicted with this character from the beginning as I didn’t like him because he did some really nasty things, But at the same time some of his minute expressions in the background (fruit of RA’s exceptional work, or maybe I was imagining it all) led me to believe that Guy was not always happy with the Sheriff’s orders or plans. Which made me start looking at the character another way, and question (just like Marian) if he was just a baddie or if there was something more beyond that armour.

    Thank you for sharing this, I loved it and the video at the end 🙂

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    • I’m so glad you liked it 🙂 I felt conflicted about Guy at the beginning too, and even after I knew that there was something deeper going on, because he did do bad things 😦

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