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The Devil’s in the Details: An analysis of Proctor’s physique (strictly for scientific purposes)

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This post contains spoilers with regards to the plot/scenes of The Crucible, so if you are yet to see the play, I suggest you give it a miss.

It also a shameless fangirl approach to Armitage/Proctor, so if you’re sensitive to the issue of RA objectification, I’d give it a miss too ;)

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Now that my adventure is well and truly over, I guess The Crucible genie is out of the bottle and there are so many thought I’d like to share.

There have been a few post requests here and there, so I would consider it rude not to fulfill my obligations as a raving fangirl, take one for the team and lay some issues to rest.

I’d like to try to give you a thorough head to tail toe analysis strictly for the sake of you understanding the character of Proctor better ;)

 Let me also tell you about one of my most favorite scenes and have it serve as a backdrop to some Armitage musing if that’s alright by you…

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Proctor is by far the largest physical presence on stage, and I’m including the metal frame bed and large wooden table ;)

This is no doubt exaggerated by how tiny (TINY, I tell you!) all the actresses are and the ease with which he throws them around the stage like ragged dolls (I’ve never been one for liking it rough, but this play has brought to light a new fetish…).

The costumes and minimalistic set design, not to mention the choreography, create an air that can be described in no other terms than haunting, but I’m not letting myself get distracted by rambling on about how beautiful it all is, so let me proceed…

Richard’s hair is closely cropped, I’d venture a guess that it’s his natural hair colour although I noticed no silver threads, so either he’s lucky or has given his mane a helping hand.

For those interested in the thickness, it looked pretty darn run-your-fingers-through-it worthy, even when wet.

Beard is thick and luscious, eyes piercing and those lines running vertically down his forehead very pronounced.

Nose suits his face beautifully, even if there may be a tad less of it than a year or so ago (allegedly).

BTW, if you’re wondering what accent comes flying out of his mouth, I’d say it’s most reminiscent of John Standring.

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Proctor wears a heavy coat, ever so slightly reminiscent of Lucas North’s peacock coat, that accentuates his huge physique.

The coat has clearly been mended on the back (a detail I greatly enjoyed) and the mean part of me had a passing thought: Sure, poor Goody Proctor was probably sat by the fire mending it as her not-so-goodie husband was rolling in the hay with Abigail ;)

Let me give you a moment to contemplate the image of John and Abi rolling in the hay… yup, Ok, let’s move on…

The scarf is a nice touch as I do enjoy a man who can accessorize and it’s all about the colour coordination, people!

Richard Armitage as John Proctor

Anyway, under the coat you can see a dark grey shirt, loose enough to allow a quick peek at the chest situation.

As I was quite fortunate to have Richard stand centimeters away from me as he delivered his lines on more than one occasion (and yes, I did get a fair amount of RA spittle on me, not complaining), I could take a closer look at the neck and chest situation.

Very hairy. Very very hairy.

Although I’m a fan of a nicely shaved chest, something tells me waxing wasn’t that big in Salem at the time and Richard certainly kept it authentic in that regard.

Also hairy- his arms, although I think any fangirl worth her salt knew that already, the hairs on his arms are quite light, so it’s only when they catch the light can you fully appreciate the manly jungle ;)

I also couldn’t help but notice something I’d focused on in RA pics before- how his middle finger is not much longer than his index or ring finger.

I think (although I can’t say for certain as I did have an intense play to focus on at the same time and there’s only so much I can register at any given time) that it’s more pronounced in one hand.

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I’d get a good look at the thumb and especially the thumb joint as Richard would have his hand clenched in a fist, probably ready to punch those nasty faux witches!

Left the binoculars at home, so can’t say much about the nails, sorry…

We’ve done the north, let’s proceed south.

Pants baggy, baggy, bloody baggy, much to my disappointment.

It wasn’t really until Richard got physical on stage (and luckily there’s no shortage of those moments) that you can spy on a thunder thigh muscle, an outline of the Armi buttock.

If I could change one thing about the play, I’d ask the costume designer to rethink the shape of those trousers to a more viewer-friendly line ;)

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Boots- oh, those boots, with the legs of the hip hop pants tucked in!

I’m not sure whether I found them so alluring because we’ve seem Richard sporting a similar pair in RL, but there’s just something about a big BIG man wearing sturdy weathered footwear.

He takes them off and throws them around a tad, much to the horror of the people sitting closest to the line of fire of said boots.

Bare feet- anyone who knows me will tell you I’m not a foot person.

If you’re big enough to use them for walking, that’s my cue to start ignoring them, so maybe I’m not the best judge.

Let’s just say as men’s feet go, these aren’t bad.

By the time Proctor takes his boot off, his sockless feet are a tad squashed and knackered, but I found nothing offensive there perhaps a small bunion developing on one foot and that’s high praise from me.

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Now, onto one of my favorite Proctor/RA scenes (unfortunately no visuals):

It starts with John’s wife Goody (short for Good Wife) Proctor carrying a big water jug and filling a big bowl.

The scene is quite powerful as she pours the water slowly and you can hear it trickling and splashing.

She then proceeds to take a lamp and go upstairs.

Proctor returns home after working in the fields all day, put’s his gun and whip down, tastes his wife’s cooking, scowls and proceeds to add salt to it.

It’s actually quite funny as he later in the scene compliments her on how well the dish has been seasoned, cheeky beggar ;)

Not that it’s important, but the food is real and you can clearly smell it as it’s stirred in the pot and later served up on a plate.

I wondered whether it’s one of those microwave meals that they heat up right before and whether they serve up a different one every so often.

For Richard’s sake I hope they do (although the smell was the same on both nights) because he does end up taking at least 3 spoonfuls before the scene ends.

It smelt quite meaty, but then I guess it’d be weird to get a whiff of chicken tandoori considering the historic context.

As a joke they should serve sushi one night, a good ol’ california rolls that Proctor ends up having to add wasabi and soya sauce to ;)

Talking about smells, I’ve always wondered what RA might smell of.

I’d heard about fresh linen and soap, but needed to verify it for purely scientific purpose, you understand.

Throughout the play whenever the actors would move closer I’d get this lovely smell of cologne.

I was beyond excited that Richard seemed to have broken his usual perfume pattern, or non-perfume pattern as the case may be, as I like a man who smells yummy and I do come from a family of perfumers.

It wasn’t until the end of the night when I leaned in to give the lovely Ms H a goodbye hug did I realise it was actually her, sat 2 seats away, that smelled so beautifully.

Oh well, I’m just happy someone made the effort ;)

Anyway, let’s get back to business:

Proctor walks in, clearly knackered after a day in the fields and proceed to take off his heavy coat, boots and shirt.

He walks up to the bowl and kneels in front of it.

Now, if the water was heated prior to the scene, the chances are it had cooled down in the process, poor Richard, but then he only washes the top half of his body, so he should be thankful for that, the audience not so much.

Anyway, the scene was quite beautiful from the front and, better still, there was nothing else happening on stage at that time, so I didn’t feel at all guilty gawking at Richard (really, how long can you stare at a wooden table and chair…).

If I may digress, I’m not the only one who felt guilty following Richard throughout the play and would, on occasion, divert my attention  onto someone else, out of human decency if nothing else, especially seeing as the other actors were all worthy of attention.

Anyway, Proctor gives his neck, face and chest a good scrub, no soap, and then proceeds to give the ol’ armpits a wash, Lucas North style.

This moment is unbelievably intimate as your eyes follow his hands while trying to drink up the outline of his silhouette and curves.

As I had mentioned before, Richard is simply huge on stage and this is exemplified by the fact that he’s kneeling by and crouched over a large bowl.

The shoulders are incredibly strong, as is the chest (seriously, where has he been hiding it all these years!) and the dripping wet hair which doesn’t fully dry throughout the scene made me wish someone would switch the sprinklers on throughout the play.

After he’s done, he wipes himself down with a towel, not very thoroughly though, and proceeds to put on a light white shirt.

Now, I don’t need to describe what the end result of wet RA body+linen shirt is, let’s just say if this were a wet T-shirt competition, Richard would be my winner, hands down ;)

I had the pleasure (and believe me, pleasure it was!) to see this scene from the other side and I can’t lie, it made an even bigger impression on me.

You can see him crouched over the bowl, back so wide you could pitch a tent on it (although I’m not sure why you’d want to…), the action of kneeling accentuating his thighs and rump.

If seeing a beautiful man wash from the front was powerful, Yowza!, it was staggeringly intimate from the back.

I won’t ever publicly reveal my exact thought that stormed through my mind as I watched (probably with my gob wide open drawing flies), only that it occurred to me this is an angle that probably only lovers get to see of one another.

As I tried to find at least one picture available online that would illustrate this scene and found none, it hit me that they’d keep it close to their chest (pun intended) and use it to knock the female part of the audience out.

And that they did…

That’s all for today’s RA leering, hope you enjoyed it and I shall be back to write more about Richard’s interaction with the female cast which is truly worthy of a mention ;)

AgzyM does London or Ramblings of a textbook fat, white, middle-aged RA Fan

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This is a mammoth of a post, but I didn’t want to chop it up, but it definitely wins the award for most words AgzyM has ever tried to squeeze in at one time.

I make no apologies for the rambling nature of this post and understand completely if you skim it and get to the good stuff (meaning RA pics).

For that purpose I have separated the post into parts so you can just omit the sections that are yawn-inducing to you.

I just wanted to save as many thoughts on my stay in London in one place, therefore it’s quite emotionally masturbatory in it’s nature ;)

I will also be focusing on the Armitage angle of the play which certainly DOES NOT mean that the other cast members were not phenomenal, especially the female leads.

If you follow me on Twitter (@AgzyM) you’ll have probably seen most of the pics before.

Obviously, any pictures from the play itself are not my own.

EDIT: The title of this post is a tongue-in-cheek nod to the reviewer who had described RA fans as fat, middle-aged white women.

Although I don’t necessarily feel I subscribe to that idea, nor do I agree that there is a common denominator for all RA fans other than admiring Richard Armitage, if that’s the way some people wish to describe me/us and being a proud Armitage admirer, so be it :)

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I’ve been back from London for a couple of days now, nursing my feet back to health after walking thousands of miles, trying to sift through (and wrap my brain around) all the wonderful experiences I’ve been fortunate to accumulate.

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As many of you may know in April I was lucky enough to receive tickets for 2 consecutive performances of The Crucible at The Old Vic for my Name’s Day (see, it’s good to be Polish sometimes…).

Well actually I was asked what I’d like to get this year, I said I really can’t afford to see Richard on stage, but I really can’t afford not to and my family rallied around me to make it happen.

Because I was arranging the tickets pretty early on, I had my pick of seating and I must admit I chose pretty bloody well…but more about that later.

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I flew in to London on the 6th early morning so had the whole Sunday free from any Armitage onslaught, but I did decide to check out The Old Vic (as any good soldier preparing for battle would) and my commute to and from the venue.

I had scheduled to do my shopping that day (didn’t buy anything from my list), then made my obligatory visit to the National Portrait Gallery and slowly crossed the Thames and walked to Waterloo Station.

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Dunno about you, but I wouldn’t mind all cities being adorned by RA images (so if you’re a politician make it happen if you want my vote…).

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The mind boggles how many people have actually touched, fondles and licked these posters, just to be on the safe side I restrained myself and only snapped away at them ;)

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I have to admit I did not encounter any Crucible posters around London, so seeing them proudly displayed around the theatre made my heart (and other parts of me…) swell.

We had stayed at a hotel just down the road from The Old Vic in December 2012 when we flew in to see The Hobbit: AUJ and every time we passed it I’d lose my fangirling shizz because it is the place of The 24-hour Play Richard had taken part in a few years prior (I’d also go all gooey when passing the Dorchester too, so I’m quite an embarrassment to be seen in public with ).

It was a mind trip to know I would actually be seeing the man himself in the flesh in the same place a year and a half later (see kids, dreams do come true!).

While I was checking out The Vic I also made a mental note of the stage door which looks harmless and innocent by daylight, but let me tell you the mood changes somewhat once Richard steps out of the door ;)

Also, don’t you feel a tad jealous of that parking meter that gets to check out Richard 6 times a week, usually the back of him?

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Anyway, the following day I planned my museum/art gallery schedule so I could swing by the Vic to pick up my tickets earlier, so I first headed to Tate Modern for the Matisse Cut Out exhibition (which I highly recommend), then walked to The Cut.

I felt like a lucky bugger as I picked up my tickets, especially seeing that since the plan had been forged I was on the lookout for some catastrophe that would see everything go up in smoke- lost reservations, delayed/cancelled flights, understudy performing on the night etc.

I had become so superstitious in the days months leading up to my London trip I dared not do anything to mess up my juju.

When I got this baby in my grubby hands I didn’t want to let go… but then I did out of fear that my sweaty hands would smudge the ink ;)

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As the nice lady was handing me my ticket, she told me that they were only just printing the Tuesday ones and they were on the letter “J” so I’d have to come back later to collect it.

Now, the ticket clearly asks you to make sure all the info is correct and everything is in order before you leave, which is easier said than done when you hold this precious in your grasp.

Long story short, turned out later that my Tuesday ticket had been printed out automatically and was attached to the other.

Oooppss, must pay closer attention in future…

Anyway, there I was thinking:

Willy Wonka, eat your heart out! I’ve got my golden tickets right here!

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 I proceeded to going down my exhibitions list for the day (Human Factor at the Hayward Gallery, you can give it a miss, Victoria & Albert Museum, which has a very interesting history of fashion display and my absolute favorite- Banksy The Unauthorised Retrospective at Sotheby’s which I highly recommend).

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I was to meet a fellow RA Admirer at the Pit Bar in the theatre before the play, so I took no chances of being late and headed that way around 6pm.

I ordered a glass of Merlot (hell, I was celebrating, right?!? although, in hindsight, a mixture of fangirl excitement, Richard Armitage and booze maybe wasn’t the smartest) and waited for Ms H, her daughter and a friend.

Unfortunately, as the crowds descended we missed each other and didn’t end up meeting until we were seated inside the theatre.

Let me just say that I truly regret not spending more time as Ms H is the type of person I could probably chat for 6 hours with without even making a dent in the topics we could cover.

I was extremely lucky to get an absolutely beautiful seat, first row, smack in the middle.

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The play started at 7.30 sharp, with the fog machine switched on and lights dimmed.

The stage (which isn’t a stage at all, just a large opening in the middle between seats) consisted of nothing but wooden chairs.

As the actors entered from the aisle opposite me, I was straining my eyes to see the bearded beauty.

He was one of the last members of cast to enter, but there was no mistaking that silhouette in the fog, I have after all spent a few hours of my life (Ok, maybe a bit more than a few…) paying close attention to images of Richard, so I felt quite well versed ;)

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I’m not going to offer a play review, I feel there are many who can do the job much better than I, but I can in turn offer some random thoughts.

The man is HUGE on stage!

It’s like he takes up most of the space and towers over everyone, exuding a force that you can’t help but be both drawn to and frightened of.

Everything from his costume (a heavy coat with patched holes, very sexy boots and unfortunately baggy pants, then he strips to pants and a loose shirt) to his voice (which wasn’t as deep as I thought it would be for the first part of the play, which was probably due to some throat issues he had apparently been experiencing) screams strength.

Richard Armitage in The Crucible at the Old Vic

If ever there was a part suited for Armitage post Thorin, John Proctor is it.

What I found interesting was catching small glimpses of other RA characters in his performance.

The accent brought to mind John Standring, some scowls were very John Thornton and Thorin.

It was like tiny visits from old friends and I was joking that it’d make a great drinking game: a shot of vodka every time an RA character would pop up.

Let’s just say I’d leave the theatre well and truly sloshed ;)

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BTW, I am in no way alluding that Proctor is anything but a well thought through independent Armitage character, it’s just when you’ve spent so much time watching various RA roles and certain mannerisms tend to creep up, a fan can’t help but notice.

Truth be told, because I was sitting in the first row with no barriers between me and the actors (seriously, I had to watch my feet so the cast wouldn’t step on them), it took a while for my brain to process that I’m actually not watching this on TV or on my laptop, that this was really happening then and there, mere meters from me.

The benefit of first row seats, especially the one I was parked in, is that you are less than a meter away from some of the most beautiful and powerful Proctor moments.

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As much as I was swept away by the story, I couldn’t help but register certain…hmmm… shall we say physical traits of Mr A…

Chest- very hairy, more so than I had ever imagined.

Actually, the biggest surprise for me was just how huge he was in the chest and especially the shoulders.

Somehow, apart from buff Porter, I hadn’t imagined that would be the case (but you learn something new everyday).

Let’s just say I wasn’t the only one who thought those shoulders and back would be a perfect place to press your head to ;)

The stomach is flat as a board with an adorable roll of skin when he leans over (don’t judge me, he was kneeling two meters away, what else was I supposed to look at???).

I was also enchanted by how his middle finger are almost the same length as their neighbours, but that’s a quirk of mine ;)

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Anyway, I was quite choked up by the time the actors were taking their bows and couldn’t help but leap up from my seat clapping as Richard stayed behind to take his final bows.

He has this adorable habit (as he repeated it the following night) of bowing one way, turning around and bowing the other and then he does this funny thing with his hands as he takes a bow towards the two sides.

Very thespian of you, Mr A (actually I typed it My A, but went back to correct it as, well, I should be so lucky…).

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Ms H had already pointed the best exit that would lead me straight to the stage door and into the queue, so I dashed out of my seat to procure my place.

If you’re wondering, it’s the exit to the left closest to the stage ;)

Much has been said of the stage door experience in the past week or so, so let me share with you my thoughts.

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Firstly, it’s orderly and well behaved which is a bloody blessing, but it’s also quite a stressful experience.

We waited about 15 minutes before Richard came out, flagged by two Old Vic security men.

Please keep in mind that the man had just spent almost 4 hours performing in a very challenging play and the queue went all the way down the street, so that no doubt impacts the interaction Richard has with the people waiting.

It’s extremely rushed and I think RA makes his way down the line in under 20 minutes, which tells you plenty about the tempo.

On top of that, on Monday there were at least 2 groups of autograph hunters (one were standing right behind me, that’s how I know who they were), so I would imagine that puts a damper on the experience.

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The best advice I can offer anyone who’s planning on going is: BE PREPARED and TAKE A PIC FIRST.

I’ve heard of someone who pressed the off button on their camera instead of taking a pic, I took a rather disturbing selfie of Richard although I have no idea how to (believe me, that picture is a catastrophe!).

From what I’ve observed and, unfortunately, experienced, the moment Richard signs your poster/program he moves on to the next person.

It goes by so unbelievably fast that I before could even ask for a pic, he was gone.

Picture first, then an autograph!

Numerous people (me included) had to join the back of the queue again which makes me wonder that if the tempo wasn’t so severe the stage door would actually go much faster in the long run if he’d slow down a tad.

My one huge regret was that neither I nor anyone within earshot actually had the time to congratulate Richard or thank him for being…well, him!

In some regards I feel like we were there in line asking yet more of him after experiencing that brilliant performance without offering as much as a Thank You, but to say that the environment wasn’t conducive to any form of verbal exchange is a staggering understatement.

The chances are, had I started speaking not only would I have not got Richard’s attention anyway, but I wouldn’t have an autograph or pic either.

As to more Richard details, he doesn’t come off quite as huge as he does on stage, but definitely not gaunt.

He was wearing a checkered red and white shirt and a jacket which made him look rather smart.

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The only crack in his clear focus to sign/take pictures/move on came when he encountered the autograph hunters behind me.

As I was waiting for Richard I actually thought they seemed a bit out of place- young men dressed very casually, but figured they may be Tolkien fans drawn to the play by the allure of Thorin.

It seems Richard is much more savvy than little ol’ naive me.

He took one look at them as they clutch the 8×10 glossy pics of Richard, gave them a sideways glance (which was quite sexy), gave them a smirk (also sexy…) and said: I’m not signing that! and moved on.

I think this image is the one that’s lodged in my memory the most from the stage door experience- firstly because I felt it was the only time Richard had broken from the “fan interaction” persona but also because it made me realise what issues he has to deal with now that his career has entered yet another stage.

Oh, and I’d be pissed off too if someone was trying to make a quick buck off me.

Actually, as a fan who had flown in to see the play against many odds and for whom meeting Richard was a dream come true, I was/am pissed off of people trying to take advantage!

May this be a lesson to all of those who are tempted to buy an RA autograph on ebay, they aren’t really obtained in the best manner and having Richard sign something right next to you is much more valuable.

Anyway, the tally from my Monday Crucible experience was meeting the adorable Ms H, seeing a bloody great play, one signed poster, one very bad Richard and I selfie.

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I had arranged to meet Ms Sally_Boots on Tuesday afternoon, so I had enough time to pop into The National Gallery to pay a traditional visit to Holbein’s The Ambassadors and all the other brilliant art on display, while (traditionally) avoiding the Medieval Art rooms (what can I say, not my cup of tea…).

The plan for that afternoon was to meet close to The Old Vic, grab a bite to eat, maybe get lucky and see Richard on his way to the theatre (long story short, we failed on all accounts and ended up having a quick Sainsbury’s sandwich standing in the rain next to an RA Crucible poster, we’re classy that way…).

It was a pleasure to meet Sally_Boots, you may recognise her from Twitter and she had written a few posts on this blog for Fanstra4.

I knew she’d be lovely and she didn’t disappoint :)

As we were waiting, we spotted a familiar face scoping out The Old Vic.

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We recognised the Anglophile lady with her family walking around and, I can’t lie, we were more than a little jealous, convinced she was probably there to interview Richard.

As I’m not what you would call shy, as we passed I asked her whether she was the Anglophile lady (yup, it was a rhetorical question).

Turns out Marlise was incredibly friendly and we stood there chatting away while I was discreetly checking out her hair (which is gorgeous by the way).

We had ourselves a good ol’ chinwag about Richard (who else?) and I can confirm that Marlise is one of us- a proud Armitage Admirer excited about seeing the play the following night.

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After downing a bag of salt and vinegar crisps,bought the obligatory posters (trust me, you can’t choose just one out of the three available) it was time to go to Salem.

As we were taking our seats I was curious what it would be like to see the play from a different angle.

The picture of The Old Vic seating isn’t very accurate- there’s no stage per se and there’s an aisle running down the centre on the other side, which meant the actors would enter and exit right next to me.

My seat was a mirror reflection of the one from the night before and I was wondering whether the actors/play favoured any side in particular (nope, both sides are brilliant in their own way).

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I actually have a confession to make.

As I was booking my tickets in April in somewhat of a fevered state (I’m a fangirl damn it, I cannot keep calm!), I knew I had booked a fab ticket for Monday but thought I had screwed up with Tuesday’s seat.

I was sure I had accidentally booked a balcony seat and had spent a good 2 months secretly tormenting myself that with my pick of seats I had chosen such a bad one.

Turns out all of the online plans I had checked out were from The Old Vic prior to the removal of the official stage, therefore creating “the circle” and the addition of seats from the back.

When I realised that all was well I felt so much relief, but it’s a lesson learned that I need to focus more even where Richard Armitage is concerned.

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By the way, the Lilian Baylis Circle was so high up it gave me vertigo just looking at it, so bear that in mind when booking tickets.

Talking about seating, Sally_Boots was in for a shock as she could have sworn she purchase a first row seat to the side, but it turned out there were actually two or three rows in front of her.

A quick online research confirms that they did end up adding a few rows on both sides, no doubt figuring that they didn’t need the side space for the play, so they plonked a few more rows there.

Brilliant if you were lucky to buy tickets late and scored first row, not so brilliant if you bought first row months beforehand only to be shoved back.

As the fogs distended and the play started, this time around I was much more savvy as I knew what to expect, where RA would pop out from, when to tuck my feet in so they wouldn’t be trampled etc.

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Anyway, I was so thrilled to see that play from a different angle.

If you have front seats you will at some point have your view blocked by an actor, so anything I may have missed the first time around, I more than made up for the second.

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I was particularly intrigued by the now famous shirtless washing scene (don’t you dare judge me!).

On Monday I got a full frontal view from a few meters away, on Tuesday I got to see it from the back, and let me tell you, that is my favorite angle ;)

I felt the play had gone even smoother this time and Richard’s voice was much stronger which makes me think he’d been doing his best drinking tea with lemon and honey to sooth his throat from all the yelling (and much yelling there is, believe me, I’ve developed a new fetish for it!).

Having seen the play twice I marvel at the fitness level of the actors.

This is an incredibly demanding play, beautifully choreographed and I image they go home each night with fresh new bumps and bruises.

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As I failed at obtaining a decent pic with Richard the night before, I vowed to do better this time around.

I was standing in line at the stage door with Ms Sally_Boots and we were joined by Ms Nina, a resident of London who sometimes comes to the stage door to meet other RA Admirers and always gives Richard an adorable card :)

Without going into too much detail, this was also the night of the now infamous “Richard is so rude but I’ll post a picture with him and me grinning like a maniac” lady.

Let me just say, she was not there for the play that night, nor is she an RA fan.

She was there with a specific aim (which she didn’t achieve) and I’m much annoyed to learn she’s the one who interrupted my pic with Richard and the reason it came out blurry.

A plague on both your houses madam, that wasn’t cool!

The stage door was just as hectic, but after experiencing non-RA fans with an agenda clearly other than to have the pleasure of meeting Richard, I’m a little less surprised at the rushed attitude he adopts.

Long story short, I didn’t get my perfect pic, but what I did get makes me exceedingly happy and grateful.

One pic came out fuzzy, but my grin says it all…

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Here’s the other:

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A huge thank you to both Sally_Boots and Nina for trying to make my dream of a good picture of Richard and I come true!

I very much appreciate it ladies :)

Tally of Tuesday: Meeting Sally_Boots and Nina, two wonderful Armitage Admirers, getting to see the play from a different perspective, a signed Crucible program, and, f*cking hell, actually seeing Richard Armitage in the flesh!

Not bad for a quick visit to London, right?

All in all, this trip was one of the best moments for me, hands down.

Given half the chance (or if/when I win the lottery) I’d do it all over again with relish.

I enjoyed meeting fellow Armitage Admirers who are even nicer in person, the play is quite possibly one of the best I’ve ever seen (don’t get me started, we’ll be here all night), I came so close to the object of my fangirling affections (and didn’t lose my rag, which is important).

I feel very fortunate (the agnostic in me doesn’t want to say “blessed”) to have accumulated so many fab experiences and, subsequently, memories that shall last me a lifetime.

My dad picked me up from the airport and as I tried to put into words all that I had experienced he said something that made me teary: Seeing how much you enjoyed yourself and how you took advantage of this opportunity, that trip to London was worth every penny!

Ahhhh…. thanks dad :)

I know that many would love to have the chance to go on this adventure and let me add insult to injury by saying that this is really worth begging, borrowing (NOT stealing though!) for.

I’m keeping my fingers crossed for everyone who’s still trying to figure out how the heck to get themselves to The Old Vic- stranger things can happen, or have happened if my adventure is anything to go by ;)

For Guylty…”Friendship is a light in dark times”

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AgzyM:

I had written a huge intro, but I decided to keep it simple: Let’s give back a little bit of that positive energy that Guylty has been showering us with.

Originally posted on Ancient Armitage:

I am sure that most of you are already aware that Guylty’s father died last week after a sudden and unexpected illness.  The obituary for her father appeared in their local paper yesterday, and it asks mourners not to send tangible expressions of sympathy to the family.  The desired beneficiary of any memorials is a Heimatverein via a German bank account.

Since this will be a bit difficult for people outside of the EU to participate in, Servetus and I talked it over and we thought that a donation to one of Richard Armitage’s Just Giving charities on behalf of fans might be in order (similar to the one that was organized in memory of Servetus’ mom last summer).  I have set up a new PayPal account to collect donations which will then be donated at the Just Giving site.

This post is not meant as a pressure to donate;  …

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Don’t you dare turn that frown upside down, Richard!

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I was meaning to start having a look at the more… errr… challenging Richard photoshoots, the *uughs* to balance out the *ooof* images, but then of course life is what happens when you’re making Armitage plans as I had to be hit right in the gut with a new arrival courtesy of the Old Vic.

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Bloody hell, what are you trying to do to me?!?

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Not since RA image accompanying the release of The Hobbit have I been hit so square in the gut and makes me feel tingly in certain parts that should remain covered…

I’ve been searching for familiarity in the image.

My immediate though was that there’s a strong resemblance to Macbeth’s Angus which Richard played in a stage production on tour in Japan (all of 7 lines).

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Sure, the new promo pic shows Richard as more weathered, beat up by life, angrier…

It’s not the first time we’ve seen at least a passing resemblance of that look, as Mr Thornton would attest:

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Close, but that’s not it…

The frown, the scorn on his face brings to mind Thorin, a character that he’s inhabited for so long, I guess Mr Majestic will inevitably be popping up here and there.

If we stripped Oakenshield *breathes heavily like a dirty old wizard at the very thought* from all the goo and prosthetics, is this what we’d end up with?

Take Peter Jackson’s nod to the Star Trek franchise (ok, might not actually be true…)- Klingon Thorin:

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Sure, the degree of anger and scorn is much smaller, but who knows, maybe Richard’s been working on his Crucible face in front of a mirror since the Hobbit production wrapped up, eager to throw even the most ardent RA pic starer off.

Although I think most of us perceive Richard as a kind gentlemanly figure with thighs that just won’t quit, we’ve seen pics of him unleashing his inner lion and letting out a nice ROAR!, like the following:

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that’s right babe, you let it all out…

Out of all of the RA images that pop into my head, THIS Richard most resembles The Crucible image.

It took a while to get used to the cropped-hair bearded  Armitage, but now that we know what John (another John…) will look like, I feel as if it’s the return of a long lost friend (and welcome back Beardy…).

And as I continue staring at The Crucible image with a passion that would most certainly have me committed so don’t tell anyone, ok?, trying to find familiarities in the look, the expression, the eyes, I am also battling the impulse to grab a tissue and to rub off the grime from his face, but then that may just be my twisted need to apply saliva on Richard’s mug.

Anyway, I can’t/won’t stop being excited about this new path Richard has embarked on, if the Old Vic continues to tease, taunt and light fires in lady bits, it’s going to be a looong wait for July.

Confessions of a Gossip Rag Reader

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Confession time…

*takes a deep breath and whispers*

I shamelessly and illogically love reading celeb gossip…

There, I’ve said it!

Yup, I almost daily check out UK tabloids, flip through ridiculous rags that cover stories about the likes of Jordan (heading for her third divorce), Kim Kardashian’s awful dress sense (makes me feel a tad better about myself), the Royal family (that Kate is adorable)…

I read Daily Mail… well…. daily…

So yes, I am one of those people who punch the air when they see that Mr A is mentioned (which doesn’t occur that often).

It doesn’t happen often but when it does, it’s this strange crossover between the Armitage Universe as I know it and the dirty world of the tabloids.

So when I see a paparazzi pic of Richard, I can’t help but love it.

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I make myself feel better that it’s not a private pic, so that’s OK, that the press was probably invited to snap away on set as a means to drum up some interest in the project, but still…

I’d hate for him to feel hounded (although, as the last installment of The Hobbit is heading our way, I doubt it’ll ever come to that) and I’m more than content to get my grubby hands on images that are shot either by professionals or at a red carpet event.

But then I see a picture like the one above and something stirs in me, something that makes me want more… more candid pics, more images where Richard is caught off guard, a peek into his day when he doesn’t have his project promo hat on.

Hell, the heart wants, right?

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Richard and the Armitage Crew (when do I get my crew tattoo?)

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Yowza, it’s been a while since I last posted, luckily it was less than 10 days ago, so I can count that far, plus I have a pinky or two to spare.

My excuse defense is that I have been keeping myself busy with good RL stuff, but as I have failed as a blogger, I am humbly accept my punishment so I’m ready for my spanking Mr Armitage…

Today I shall start by write about one of my absolute favorite aspects of our little community of Armitage Admirers.

As I had mentioned before, due to my planned trip to see the thespian Richard Armitage in July, I’ve had to tighten the ol’ belt and couldn’t splash out on Urban Grimshaw and the Shed Crew by Bernard Hare until debts were paid off and London pocket-money (or rather a large sack, judging by how expensive that city is…) was safely tucked away waiting for July.

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I must admit, with all the positive reviews of the book, it did very much feel like a kid with its nose stuck to the sweet shop window, but needs must and I was focusing on the greater good.

Turns out two beautiful souls ( you know who you are and, more importantly, I know who you are!)  gifted me a copy, so this sugar-starved snotty-nosed kid could dive right into the book, so thank you and I.O.U!!!

To continue with my annoying sweety metaphor,  I couldn’t stop devouring Hare’s book and it was so good it gave me literature diabetes…

I bet there have been dozens of posts written on the topic of Urban, both about the book, the film adaptation, Richard’s part and everything in between, so let me just offer a few random thoughts:

I’m was adamant that I wouldn’t really enjoy the plot as I’d be focused on the character that Richard plays, how prominent he is and whether he has any good lines etc.

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Officially my favorite Chop pic to date!

Not to worry, Chop is the narrator, the part is plump and perfect for our Mr A- juicy, disturbing, heart-breaking and, at times, ridiculously tender.

Judging by the set pics, book Chop has been transformed from an overweight long-in-the-tooth boozer to a slimmer boozer with dodgy dress sense.

Ergo, just like beards started being hot right about the time Richard grew one, I’m betting grandpa-meets-second hand shop garb and dodgy hats will stoke our fires red-hot very soon.

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This part is just what Dr AgzyM ordered as an antidote to The Hobbit madness and the fact that I’m actually getting my wish makes me think I should seriously play the lottery and maybe hit another jackpot.

Also, no spoilers, but there is a scene that involves dangerous water and Richard getting soaked, so yahoo! for us and bummer! for him.

And when I say water… well… maybe it’s not pure H2O, but then Porter stuck a Swiss Army knife up you-know-what, so let’s not get prissy…

For those who read the book and would like to delve deeper into the dark world of welfare benefits and estates and need a bit of context to understand Urban better, here are two recommendations:

I adore the first season of Shameless (UK version, not the US).

It follows the Gallagher family and other occupants of the fictional Chatsworth council estate in Manchester and stars the delicious James McAvoy (nuff said!).

You can watch it on YT, episodes chopped up into small mouthfuls:

You can also check out a 5-part documentary called Benefit Street, which follows people living on James Turner Street in Birmingham, where it is reported 90% of the residents are on benefits.

 

The stories we tell ourselves…

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Warning, the post contains instances of blogger referring to herself in the third person which some may find annoying and disturbing.

The stories we tell ourselves, about ourselves…

We repeat them like a mantra till they become set in stone.

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AgzyM doesn’t write.

Nope, she loves reading, listening and talking all together waaay too much, but she doesn’t write.

2,5 years later she’s still blogging and although both quality and quantity of her written word may be questionable, she’s still at it.

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AgzyM doesn’t run.

Not for a bus, not for anyone…

Yet half way through her Zombies, Run 5K program, she doesn’t mind telling you that she is kicking those zombies butts and has her heart set on further goals- a 10K, perhaps a half marathon one day.

What other stories on repeat in that thick skull- stories of what cannot be done- repeated to the point when they become an absolute?

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It at moments like these that I think of poor Mr Armitage who script after script is confronted with, what he claims, is one of his greatest fears.

Doused and drowning, sinking and swimming, sprayed, spritzed, hosed down (and that’s just Porter…).

There are more projects on his CV that involve a wet T-shirt competition than not.

Wet in water and mud, soon filthy canal muck, he puts aside the story he tells himself and just does it anyway for his admirers’ amusement and entertainment.

Do you ever tell yourself what you simply can’t do but know deep down inside it may just be that- a story?

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