Because I’m Missing Sir Guy

In October, in honour of the 10th Anniversary of Robin Hood, I started re-watching Richard Armitage as Sir Guy of Gisborne in BBC’s Robin Hood.  I find myself once again mesmerized by that smoulder, that smirk, and that tortured soul as only RA can play him.  In the midst of a show that is comic-book like (reminds me in some ways of the old Batman series without the POW!), RA is able to bring a thoughtful characterization to the Sir Guy role.  I am taking my time this time – I binge-watched it the first time – and I’m listening to the episode commentaries as I go.  I love behind the scenes stuff – it makes it that much more astonishing that this soft-spoken guy who giggles at the juvenile banter amongst his cast mates can convey that stern commanding presence on screen.

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Re-watching the show has made me want to spend more time with Sir Guy, and so last month, I downloaded and read Manna from Heaven by Zeesmuse, a fanfiction starring Sir Guy and an original female character.  The story has a feisty modern-day woman, Genevieve, being transported back to medieval times to have a think on some of her problems.  Wouldn’t you know it, but she literally drops right in on Sir Guy and may help him with some of his problems too.  The voices of the familiar Robin Hood characters are true to the series and the modern woman gives as good as she gets. (Advisory for strong language and explicit sexual content.)

I love a good story where people are put into unfamiliar times and situations and, not only does Genevieve have to deal with the backwardness of Sir Guy’s times, but Sir Guy has to deal with the modern devices that have found their way to his time along with Genevieve.  This fanfiction is well-written and entertaining and kept me turning the pages (swiping the screen) quickly to the end.  (Manna from Heaven)

The great thing is that Zeesmuse has two sequels that each have a number of chapters posted and are continuing works in progress.  The Shepherd explores some of the events in Sir Guy’s and Genevieve’s story that were not fully explored in Manna from Heaven.  And Aside from Heaven takes Sir Guy’s spirit through a number of lifetimes, as he makes his way towards Genevieve.  I’ve enjoyed both of these fanfictions so far and can’t wait to see what else Zeesmuse has in store for us!

Check out what Zeesmuse has to say on her blog about writing Manna from Heaven.  A link to the fanfiction can also be found there. Jump to her post here: Zee’s Muse — It’s a Challenge!!!!

26 thoughts on “Because I’m Missing Sir Guy

  1. [Jeepers, I hope you don’t think I am pestering you, jumping straight onto each of your posts to comment… Sorry!]
    Oh Sir Guy, yes, always missing him. I think you described RA’s contribution to that – anachronistic and rather simplistic – series so well. Is it my skewed perception, honed in on RA because he’s my favourite, or is Armitage *really* the only actor from that series who went on with roles of note, beyond RH? Deservedly so, of course. – Strangely, Guy gripped me even *before* I ever watched an episode of RH. The power of YT and tumblr, so to speak. And I never had the patience to watch the series in its entirety; I always fast-forwarded through everything. But maybe it is time to do a real re-watch. The commentary you mention, sounds interesting. Must get my hands on a used box set somewhere.
    As for Zee’s “Manna” and spin-offs – big favourites of mine, too, and it is great to see it mentioned and praised here.

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  2. I still have all three on DVDs after getting the series out of the library. One thing I noticed is in series like Robin Hood, or even Merlin, everyone played the drama seriously and the comedy as written. It made those ‘tea-time’ shows not only fun to watch but set apart from their American counterparts. (Although Atlantis made me scratch my head.)

    Seriously, my first introduction to Richard went something like:

    Good Friend: Hey, I just saw this BBC production of Robin Hood. Kind of corny but Richard Armitage is hot.

    Me: Who?

    The rest is history.

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    • Yes, I found that too, as he would talk about the acting or the appropriateness of the music etc. But I actually really enjoyed hearing the camaraderie amongst the cast too. When RA was trying to be serious, sometimes someone would make a comment, like Gordon Kennedy saying something about RA needing to prep by listening to loud hair bands, or talk about Lucy Griffiths saying something like “Get that thing out of me!” during her final scene. And then everyone, RA included, would laugh or giggle, not being able to help themselves. I find those unguarded moments really endearing.

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      • My recollection: I honestly felt like Armitage was way more professional than the rest of them except for Lucie Griffiths, and I didn’t get the feeling that they had a very solid sense of camaraderie — it seemed apparent to me at the time that the people in Robin’s band had a lot of injokes and those who were not in that group were not included as fully in the talking or the laughter. I also remember at least one occasion where Armitage kind of had to prod them to actually comment as they’d just been making in jokes and then fell silent. But it’s been years since I’ve watched them — maybe I should listen in again, and maybe my perception would be different.

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        • Now that you mention it, some of the jokes (e.g. prepping listening to hair bands) did seem to be directed at RA, not exactly laughing with him. But I think that Lucy Griffiths and RA seemed to have a good rapport and I think I heard him say to her, “You looked pretty hot there for someone who was just dead!” after the Night Watchman’s recovery from Guy’s curved blade.
          Sometimes, too, I find it hard to figure out which one is talking. Wish there were subtitles!

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  3. Yeah, she really loved working with him. She said he was the best scene partner she’d ever worked with and he’d do whatever she needed him to do to make her comfortable. Here’s a transcript of an interview she did with some extremely complimentary remarks about him: http://robin-hood.forumactif.com/t707-interviews-de-lucy-griffiths

    I wasn’t a fan at the time, but what I read about the production afterwards suggested that either it wasn’t the happiest set or the show was made under a dark star. Tapes of the first series were stolen, Armstrong broke his foot during a stage fight with Armitage, Armstrong’s statements and behavior suggested that he was unhappy with the series at times. There were rumors that Armstrong didn’t like Griffiths. I saw one interview of Armitage’s where I thought, hmm, I wonder if he and Armstrong get along. Armitage was a bit older than most of the actors in the band except Gordon Kennedy, and he probably spent more set time with Keith Allen anyway.

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  4. Pingback: RA Challenge – Week 3 | I'm Feeling This

  5. Zeesmuse has had my undying admiration for Manna from Heaven. I admit, I was late to the game (which is typical for me) but once I started reading, it was like having Sir Guy back for whenever I can read them and forget life in her stories. (Meaning the spinoffs too.) She created a better (more acceptable for me anyway) ending for Sir Guy. She is awesome!

    Don’t know if anyone saw Lucy Griffiths in tv series True Blood, Constantine or Preacher, she is sort of unrecognizable, (or maybe that is just me) but I thought she was really good in all of them. Although, it is odd that she only made one appearance in the first episode of Constantine, because in the comic series (sorry) her character is a big part of the story. Not all of the story, but an important part and then she is gone. Not that I’m being a purist or anything, only brought it up cause I thought she did well in those episodes where she shows up and think it a shame she wasn’t given more in any of the series.

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    • Thanks for dropping by, Mimi! I do love Zee’s writing, and I also really love the continuation of the story that she created for Sir Guy. I’m waiting to see what she has in store for William and Vivienne.

      I don’t think I’ve seen Lucy Griffiths in anything else. I watched the first season of True Blood but somehow didn’t continue. I never saw the Constantine series, although I liked the movie. I’ve been thinking I should watch Preacher. … Wow, I just took a look at a still of Griffiths as Emily on Preacher. I don’t think I would have recognized her.

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      • I’m enjoying Zee’s William/Vivienne story too. She makes it so much fun. I also enjoy her historical wrapping around it all. In my opinion, it is as good as Bernard Cornwell’s historical fiction.

        Griffiths didn’t show up in True Blood until the 5th season and by then I was pretty much not watching it much. I’d read the first novel because it was a gift and when the tv series started, it caught my eye. But it didn’t hold my interest long. It is hard for television to keep me watching. I did try to watch most of that 5th season. Only reason I caught Griffiths was in any of the shows I mentioned is because I just happened to see her name in the credits. Constantine and Preacher are two of my favorite comic series. I’ve read Constantine/Hellblazer since he was introduced (made up whole cloth) by Alan Moore in his Swampthing series back in the late 80s. Preacher started in the early 90s and wrapped up long before 2000. I will pretty much read everything those two writers put out, so I was paying attention when the tv shows first aired. Which is why I caught her name. I’ll spare you more of the comic minutiae but their good writing is what keeps me interested. 😀

        Whoops, I meant to say that Griffiths really isn’t immediately recognizable. I remember my hubs saying she should wear make-up in that first Preacher episode. I explained that isn’t her call to make when she is cast for a part. She has to look however they want her to look. My first thought though was not that I didn’t recognize her, but how quickly they made her a mother of three. Her character in Preacher is hot for the main character, Jesse Custer and does everything to get his attention. He never notices. FYI-The character she plays in the show isn’t in the comic series and it looks like she is dead by the second season too.

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        • I’m reading Bernard Cornwell right now. After listening to The Lords of the North, I’ve started that series and I’m on the second book. Pretty violent, but good. And yes, I agree on Zee’s writing. I’m eagerly awaiting an update on the Welsh story too.

          I don’t read comics as a rule… except for What a Guy Wants from time to time! 🙂
          But my hubby watches a lot of superhero stuff, Marvel, etc., so I watch a fair bit of those too. But, Preacher looks really interesting.

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          • Gosh, I think there are ten of the Saxon tales now with The Lords of the North being the third. Can’t wait for the next one either. I love the action and the violence, but I’ve been reading comics since I was three, so maybe I am desensitised to it? Odd that while the main character, (RA reads) Uthred is a damn sexy tall blonde in the series, I can’t seem to see him as anything other than a damn sexy tall brunette. 😊

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          • Oh no, see what happened? I lost my focus on your comments when I started thinking about RA and responding about the Lords of the North. Lost my mind really with that man. Ugh

            Yes, Zee’s Welsh story is good. She is good at weaving all the components needed to create a deeply engaging story. I ❤️ that. Please write more and never stop Zee💕

            Oh my, thank you (giggle) nice to hear you have read some of the What a Guy Wants fumetti comics. What no one knows is that those are pretty much nonfictional accounts. Just kidding. 😉

            I have liked the superhero shows like Arrow, Flash, Legends of Tomorrow and Supergirl. But have not remotely stayed current on any of them. Hubs buys the DVDs so eventually I will probably catch up.

            Preacher is really a whole other genre in my opinion. The main character, Jessie Custer, is given the voice of god. He did not seek it out or know it was a thing that could be given, he is trying to be a good man and has the job of a preacher in a small Texas town when this happens. Since he is not prepared (really who could be) when this all goes down, he is in the middle of a sermon. The force of the voice of God blows up the whole congregation as well as the building. He is the only one who walks out alive. That is basically where the story begins, page one. Yeah, there are super heroic elements to Jesse Custer, but he is not really a hero. This is more of a supernatural horror story with sacrilegious, other extremely offensive subject matter and varying degrees of violence along the way, but with strong interpersonal relationships, intense emotion between story and characters as Jessie, Tulip and Cassidy search cross country for god. And I am not talking about it in an enlightened or nirvana kind a way. Jessie wants to kick gods ass and for good reason. Oh, and Jessie’s best, friend, Cassidy, is an Irish vampire. Not sparkly or emo or even handsome. I loved the comic series so much in the 90s, it would be the first thing I would read the moment it arrived. Garth Ennis presented the characters as southern/Texas/American (well except for the Irish vamp) so well I never knew he was from Northern Ireland until I met him at a DC Comics party. Could have knocked me over with a feather when I heard that Irish accent.

            If what I’ve said does not discourage your interest in Preacher, I would strongly recommend reading the story first. The tv series is not as good. Yes, it is always difficult to capture a story when adapting to different mediums, but the greatness (as obscene as Preacher sometimes gets) is all so much richer written and illustrated on the comic page. There is no substitute on this one.

            Er, Sorry for this long winded dumping of comic minutiae, 🤓 on the other hand, takes my mind off of a certain sexy tall brunette for a minute. Or at least for as long as it took me to tell you about Preacher. Heh ☺️

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            • Ahh there you go. I learned something new – Fumetti – I had to look it up! Guy is very funny and direct in his wants!

              Preacher does sound like something I’d like, although sorry to say I’m not really a comic reader so it might have to be the TV show. Thanks for all the info.

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              • Yep, he knows what he wants.

                It’s cool, very few people read comics. Although, IMO, the best writers are writing comics, even when so many get scooped up for film & tv. Example: they have to write the best of the best every month (some write several scripts a month) to keep the reader rabid for the next issue. Garth Ennis did that on Preacher for 75 issues. It was so great. Sigh 🙃

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