H.) How has your attitude to RA changed over your time as a fan?
I remember loving his eyes from the get go, not just the color but the way he uses them in his acting. Thorin’s eyes are what really drew me to him. that, and his voice. I loved the low, commanding sound of Thorin’s voice, how it combined wisdom and compassion and came out husky but silky? I don’t know how else to describe it. I liked how Richard looked with a beard and how he seemed so well informed in interviews during The Hobbit era. his younger self was more lighthearted but more awkward as well, so although I loved his dorkiness, I preferred the ‘older’ version. I never really liked him clean shaven. it makes his face seem full of sharp edges.
I loved The Crucible- so full of passion and heart wrenching moral dilemmas. and big dusty boots! I enjoyed Hannibal too, even though it was very dark and the red dragon visited me in my nightly dreams in a way that was both terrifying and exhilarating. Richard looked really good as Francis Dolarhyde, like a sculpture of the male form. I didn’t like how his clothing style switched to a younger look during that time. I don’t mind it now but then, it just seemed like too much of a change too quickly. I wanted to like Berlin Station. I wanted to. Daniel didn’t pull me in that first season, and I really needed him to.
The past two years have been rough on me, both mentally and physically. my grandfather’s death brought about changes in my extended family that have been rocky to traverse. then I suddenly became ill with stomach issues that took awhile to diagnose, the solution of which brought about something that was worse than the original ailment! I’m right as rain now (knock on wood) but at the time I needed a distraction, something I could lose myself in to forget all my woes for awhile. I needed someone with a sunny disposition and Richard, bless him, is not that person. I was lured away by another pair of pale blue eyes, someone who checked off those missing boxes of wedding ring and family man as well. in the end, all of that was the impetus, not twitter. twitter is just easier to blame.
Overall, I still admire Richard as an actor. I still respect him as a person. I still enjoy him in interviews. he may not be my main focus anymore but he’s still in focus. and that’s still a good place to be.
E.) Which of RA’s audio chARacters do you think he should play in a film adaptation?
I’m going to skip this question because I’m not a fan of audio books. I liked A Convenient Marriage, Venetia was okay, Lords of The North put me to sleep, and I quit Hamlet 20 minutes in.
F.) Name a play that you wish RA would do.
I’m not a big theatre goer. not that I don’t like plays, I do, I just haven’t had the opportunity to see many. my grand total is 8, most of which were musicals.
G.) How long have you been in the fandom, and how has your attitude to the fandom changed during that time?
The answer to this one is so long winded, it makes up for skipping the previous two!
I started lurking in this fandom in January of 2013, before starting this blog 4 months later. I announced my decision to stop blogging about Richard Armitage in late August of 2016- only to go against that decision and create a temporary blog to work through my confusion. I deleted that blog and moved those posts to my Getting Caught Up In The Mechanism blog, where I now blog about actors and fandom (Richard included). even after I stopped blogging about Richard here, I still kept a toe or two in the fandom by continuing to lurk in a few places. so I’ve been a part of this fandom for 5 years, a ‘superfan’ for 3. truthfully, I started wavering during year two but something kept pulling me back in.
In the beginning, fandom was a dream come true for me because talk centered around one subject above all others and pretty much stuck to that subject throughout. I’ve gotten to know many of you through discussing Richard. sharing our experiences in relation to storylines, character traits, aesthetic preferences, etc. this is how my brain works, I learn through story telling. give me a text book and I will fall asleep after page 2 but give me a movie/book/song that is fiction-based-on-fact, and I will eat it up in record time. I had been a member of 2 small groups in 2 different fandoms before this one, so I just assumed I would do the same within the RA blogging community as well. except the community reached farther than I thought it did. there were more blogs to read and comment on, more content to catch up on, more opportunities to interact with other fans…more frustration when the community became distracted by personal issues, opinions, and opposing methods of dealing with conflict. I didn’t sign up for that. I had a lot of positive experiences within the fandom too but the negativity seemed to dim their light. I am highly sensitive to underlying tension. some fans are able to shake that stuff off, ignore it if it doesn’t touch them directly; I am not one of those fans. I feel it in every wink and eye roll. I try to escape it by finding greener pastures, only to step into it again.
All of this was a constant push and pull to me, then Richard jumped into fandom himself, affecting a significant part of my fandom experience. I struggled with how big of a part that was. fandom was fandom and Richard was Richard and never the two shall meet. when they did meet? I cannot put into words how much that confused me and threw me off kilter. I could no longer separate Richard from fandom. when I finally came to terms with it all, observing from the outside instead of participating from the inside, the good memories overshadowed the bad and I was able to let the bitterness go. but that part of me that was damaged by not being able to separate Richard from his fandom never recovered.
I have such happy memories of my interactions on this blog. the silly captions and all those reaction gifs, the sometimes deep and sometimes shallow but always enjoyable discussions in the comment section, the familiar avatars of my readers and the warm feeling I get when I still see them on Twitter. it’s easier to let the hurt go now that my fangirl heart has fallen for someone else. I don’t regret this blog, I don’t regret the fandom friends I made, I don’t regret falling for Richard. it’s shaped me and helped me grow as a person in ways I didn’t anticipate but greatly value.
When the file sharing site, Photobucket, recently changed it’s terms of service to restrict posting photos by sharing links, I decided it was a good time to clean house. I had so many images linked to previous fandom’s fan-forums, that were essentially worthless now (grr!). I thought I might look for a new place to store them, even though there really wasn’t much of a need anymore. Whatever pics I post on the blogs, are uploaded and stored there, with a few of my favorites that I keep on my own computer for easy access. So I downloaded the individual albums that I wanted to keep, placing them in a folder to deal with later. Fast forward a few days to when I was deleting all the outdated install files on my computer, and I accidentally deleted the Photobucket files in the frenzy (label your folders, people!). Not only that, but I was in such a cleaning mood that I also emptied my recycle bin. yeah. I didn’t mind losing all that stuff, it really was clutter that I could do without. All the good stuff has been uploaded to the blog libraries, though it’s not exactly the best set up for browsing. So, what does all of this mean? It means I currently have 6 images of RA at my fingertips. six. S-I-X. time to start over…
Fangirling over a celebrity can be like a courtship. first comes puppy love, then the realization of something deeper, which cultivates into a commitment of sorts. the “falling” eventually runs it’s course and you settle into an existence. as time goes on things change, because people change. we can either evolve and move forward, or veer off onto a path that takes us somewhere else. we can’t move backwards. while you may tell yourself that if you just stay still then everything will work itself out, you risk sacrificing your happiness to do so.
When I first started this blog, I was firmly in the puppy stage. I wanted to gush about Richard until I was out of breath, take a hit of oxygen, and then gush some more! then I moved into the “something deeper” phase and found myself exploring the hearts of not only the characters Richard portrayed, but the man himself. once I settled into “an existence” though, it became harder and harder to come up with fresh blog post ideas. in the beginning, it was effortless, but now that I’m three years in I have to work at it. I don’t like forcing it and I don’t like not posting either because it feels like a white blank space that blinds me. so after much thought, I’ve decided to hang up my blogging hat. I’ve had a good run, have so many good memories to keep with me, and so I think it’s better to sign off now while I still feel that way.
Do I regret any of it? no, not even a little. this blogging experience has shaped me in ways that I never imagined; good, bad, and everything in between. I’m not sure I could have done it with any other crush or any other fandom. but while I may be done blogging about Richard Armitage, that does not mean I am ready to quit being a fan of Richard’s or leave the fandom altogether. I’d miss you guys way too much! (and him too, but whatever)
To mark this transition for myself, I’ve picked a new look for this blog but the memories we’ve shared here will remain. I wouldn’t have had as much fun as I’ve had, without all of you, and so I want to be able to revisit those times whenever I feel the need. I hope you will stop by and browse back through them as well when you need a pick-me-up. I’m not sure where the next chapter of my fangirling will take me, but it soothes me to know I’ll be among friends. thank you for sharing the last 3 years with me, “the ride with you was worth the fall”.
It was an online friend from a different fandom who introduced me to Richard Armitage. This friend really liked Mr. Thornton. She didn’t have anyone to gush about him with though, or anyone who had even heard of the actor’s real name.
When The Hobbit promotions started in December of 2012, my friend thought that maybe now she could finally persuade some of us to join her.
She continued to post various pictures of Mr. Thornton on our community message board, along with a few from Richard’s photo shoots. I initially thought he wasn’t bad looking, he had beautiful eyes and a classic dignified nose.
But what was this North & South that she kept going on about? Wasn’t that a Civil War saga, starring Patrick Swayze?
Eh, I wasn’t really in the mood for another period piece at the moment. I think I’ll pass. how enticing can a cravat be, really?
My friend then informed me that this unheard of crush of hers was starring in the upcoming Hobbit film. Well, now you’ve got my attention! I was a long time Tolkien fan and had been eagerly awaiting the movie.
I didn’t know much about the film itself, preferring to go the wide eyed & innocent route this time around. Which character did you say this guy was playing? Thorin? But he’s old and grumpy!