Let joy be unconfined: or, finally happy about the hype

[Title comes from Byron, “Childe Harold.” Jazzy should be pleased.]

This photo was linked on RichardArmitageNet.com this morning so I assume everyone has seen it.

Park Avenue, Manhattan, October 2012. Source: TORn on FB.

This kind of thing is potentially a step up from Strike Back posters all over London that stare into your colleague’s bedroom and make your stomach churn when you see them.

I saw this yesterday out of the corner of my eye, and I thought, “Oh, my, Mr. Armitage — no more jetting off to skulk anonymously through the clubs of New York City for you!”

Then again, as long as he doesn’t wear long, braided hair (which probably would raise red flags for a bouncer, anyway), he might be okay. I’d suggest to him that, as much as I love brown-haired boy-next-door Armitage, he color his hair darker again and wear it John Porter short.

Like the English and Prussian soldiers in the poem from which the title comes, I feel, we’re listening now to the booming in the distance. Perhaps Mr. Armitage is as well.

I concede that I’m occasionally annoyed by moments of this process. The entity that’s producing the adorable Thorin Oakenshield plush toy — which I purchased — raised the price for the item somewhat this week, and added the following message to the item’s page:

That bugged me somewhat less than this, which appeared on a different, much more expensive item offered for sale this week by the same entity:

Everyone’s gotta market, I suppose, and the fact that mass consumption has been a marker of identity at least since the mid-seventeenth century is uncontested, although the whole “how much of a TRUE … fan” thing really raised my hackles.

Nonetheless, watching the entire process from inside the fandom (as opposed to witnessing it develop afterwards, which has been my role with regard to his other roles), I have to admit that I feel a continuing sense of euphoria and pleasure about it, a sense of belonging, an intuition of triumph (even though I haven’t really done anything).

Every time a new article mentions that Richard Armitage will be a breakout star, every time I notice that a venue that would have limited itself to mentioning Ian McKellen and Martin Freeman two years ago is now including Armitage’s name in its coverage, every time I see a new ad, I think, wow, he’s finally getting the recognition of his talent, hard work, and ethics that he deserves. That little bit of luck he needed to have all this revealed has finally turned in his direction.

It just all makes me so happy. I hope it makes you happy, too, Mr. Armitage!

My joy over this is truly unconfined!

~ by Servetus on October 18, 2012.

31 Responses to “Let joy be unconfined: or, finally happy about the hype”

  1. All this building hype for The Hobbit is making me squee inside, imagining how many people will be knocked sideways by his Thorin and wondering how many more legions of swooning women may join our troops.
    I can’t help feel a sense of pride to have found him before so many others and want to cling to the smaller circle of fans we have now. But I’m excited to share him with the world at the same time. Now we can prove that we weren’t blathering idiots, seduced only by his good looks and smoldering stares. There’s a talent there that we knew was in the league of something truly great. And now everyone will know it! Hooray!!!!

    (Can he be human in the next major film project, though, please?!)

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  2. re the price of the plush Thorin: as I understand it was a special offer at first for a limited time and then the price went up as scheduled for all characters. So it wasn’t a matter of supply and demand. If you still want a bargain, you should give your love to the goblin king or Gollum. 😉 (Which I consider, as I have a weakness for ugly creatures.)

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  3. When I first saw that picture it was over on Tumblr, and I thought it had been produced on one of those photo editing sites!
    I understand that “intuition of triumph”, that my faith in, and feelings for, him have not been misplaced. I am so, so proud of him, and happy that all his hard work and talent is being recognised.

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    • That was my initial thought, too, Mezz — I didn’t post it when I saw it b/c I thought it had been photoshopped.

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  4. I suspect people will be recognizing him not because he looks like Thorin, but rather because they’ve googled him, and also from all the promotional appearances. So John Porter hair style is not likely to help. Monet, on the other hand….. 🙂

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  5. I think Richard will still be able to get around fairly anonymously as long as the Thorin image remains the one widely distributed. Once the full PR campaign starts, particularly interviews and public appearances, his “real” look will become public knowledge. I wonder if he will appear bearded for these events so that the general public’s image of him remains more Thorin-esque. Then he can reclaim some bit of anonymity if he chooses to return to a clean-cut image. I doubt his PR people will allow that, however, as they will want him to showcase his leading man looks every opportunity he can. For some reason, I suspect if that were the case Richard would resist (politely, of course!) and insist to his handlers that he retain a look more like Thorin’s- all the better to assure that future roles are based on performance, not looks (and so he could still have a nice dinner out with minimal interruption!)

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    • That would be “his” PR people against Hobbit PR because for the Hobbit campaign a beard would help. But somehow I doubt he would re-grow the beard just for publicity reasons. We will see. The problem with having dinner is not so much being asked for autographs during his meal, but that it will leak with whom he has dinner. And in the age of twitter that can happen everywhere, not just at a fancy celebrity haunt.

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      • as we saw two weeks ago. I really have no idea. I just want him to continue to be able to do a few things with relative anonymity. It’s so dependent on who recognizes one. I just got a story in my email about someone who saw Ian McKellen on the tube last night — and simply sat there until she got off. So that’s possible, too, apparently.

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        • That is very true. I don’t know that I’d ever have the nerve to approach any celebrity especially RA…I doubt I’d be able to form complete words, and I wouldn’t like to look like a dope! I share your hope that he is able to maintain a measure of anonymity especially in a world where virtually everyone is armed with a camera phone and can instantly upload images to the web.

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          • It might be a nuisance but it would only become a problem if things emerge that he wishes to keep secret. Not because they are merely private but because they could harm him and would put off fans.

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            • I don’t know…if RA was only concerned with his career, then maybe, but he also seems to value privacy. I think it probably can become more than a nuisance if one’s perception is that he/she is never able to venture out unwatched. I am not a celebrity, but my profession is one of public exposure, and I have kids at home…consequently, virtually no privacy, and itcan be extremely draining. That is what I hope Mr. Armitage is able to avoid.

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              • On the other hand, he’s clearly no fool and was certainly aware that his profile would be higher with the release of The Hobbit. I imagine he is aware also of what comes with the territory

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              • yeah, it’s a real problem. You think you’re out shopping in your sweats and unwashed and then three students from your course last semester come up to say “hi”. Ugh.

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                • If the worst thing that can be said about your behaviour in public (or RA’s) is that your are occasionally very casually dressed, no harm is done.

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                  • let’s hope. Most of my sins are internal / emotional. Let’s hope that’s true for him, too 🙂

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                    • For me it’s this kind of feeling of not being able to switch off from Prof. mode. I imagine this could get really irritating if you are just out and about and constantly having to switch back on when all you want to do is buy some milk and bread. The last time I ran into some students out of context, I was pushing a cart full of liquor around the grocery store…G-d knows what the current rumor is 🙂

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                    • yeah, I think we’ve all had those moments. Buying a sixpack and complaining to the cashier about your students and you turn back and the person behind you in line is in the lecture class you just left … sigh.

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                    • LOL! Here’s hoping that they are as attentive in line at the store as they usually are in the last 5 minutes of class 🙂 (do you have the premature pack-up issue?)

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                    • Yes, from time to time. It’s actually a good reminder to me that I need to be into my final point / wrap up before the last 5 min. or they won’t hear it.

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  6. I’m so proud of him! 🙂 Oh, what an adventure!!! 😀

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  7. climbing that stardom ladder is tough but I’d say he is now pretty close to the top. Just a few more rungs and it’s world domination!!!
    Haven’t seen the toy yet but i’ve been so busy lately. where do you find it?

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    • I knew RA would break out in a huge way from this movie…but never quite like this — what a metaphoric image! My impression of RA is that he’s a humble, shy type of guy. So I wonder how he feels about having his bigger-than-life likeness on the side of a building in NY. I also think this confirms what I’ve believed all along –that RA is going to overshadow all the other characters, i.e. why no hobbit on the side of the building?

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      • good question. Why no Hobbit? Although maybe there’s a Hobbit somewhere else, and the TORn person just didn’t see it.

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    • it was on that same site, Jo Ann — thegeekestlink.com

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  8. Jazzy is always pleased. Okay, most of the time. Anyway, he’s talked about having the ability to blend in before and I wonder if he’ll still be able to pull that off.

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