Supercilious Armitage

483667_10151785236065760_601488441_n[At left: mini-surveillance drone prototype]

[A couple of especially intrepid fans of Richard Armitage recently revealed that they have been able to use very small mini-surveillance drones that look like locusts, a technology lifted from the CIA, to eavesdrop in the office of Armitage’s agent in Los Angeles to good benefit here and here. While they had hoped to profit from the current UK fad for phone hacking, recent events have made it easier for them to cooperate with fans in London to exploit drone surveillance there. Here, a transcript of some things they overheard recently in the office of United Agents.]



Friday, July 4th, 2014, mid-morning

[Sound of door opening and closing. Sound of hand slapping against shoulder.]

Voice 1: Good morning, Richard!

Voice 2: [still a little groggy]: Good morning.

Voice 1: Brilliant to see you!

Voice 2: Yes, thanks.

Voice 1: Do you need some coffee?

Voice 2: Do you have some tea? Better for my vocal folds.

Voice 1: Yes, yes, of course. [calls assistant to bring some tea]. Congratulations on all these fantastic reviews, Richard! Five stars from the Telegraph, that’s wonderful, and from the Times!

Voice 2: [grunts affirmatively]

Voice 1: You don’t seem so excited.

Voice 2: I’m tired. Press night, the afterparty, and now I’m here at 9 a.m.?

Voice 1: Of course, of course. I thought you’d be happier, though. If this keeps up the theater will sell out or close to it every night, and you’ll be able to do whatever London theater production you’d like!

Voice 2: Be careful or you’ll jinx it.

Voice 1: Yes, but this is what we dreamed of all of those years ago, when you left the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Voice 2: Yes, I’m very happy, but it’s not all me. Yael and the ensemble are the important ones, I am just part of the team. It’s really Yael’s direction and her vision that those reviews are praising.

Voice 1: Well. Yes. Be that as it may–

Voice 2: Can you tell me why you wanted me to come in? Do I need to sign a contract for that next–

Voice 1: No, no, that can wait. It’s–

Voice 2: Out with it.

Voice 1: Well, there is something we need to address.

Voice 2: Did we have to do it this morning?

Voice 1: Erm [pauses] yes.

Voice 2: What then?

Voice 1: Well, it’s actually something from the first review that came out last night.

Voice 2: The Daily Fail?

Voice 1: Yes, quite.

Voice 2: You didn’t take that seriously, did you? “The incredible hunk casts his spell”?

Voice 1: It’s not that.

Voice 2: Because we’ve talked about this for years, and there’s nothing I can do to stop large numbers of random women of all ages from finding me attractive. Believe me, I’ve tried.

[awkward silence]

Voice 2: Though I’m going to try a new strategy next week, wearing contrasting checks in red on purpose with a blue jacket. May cut down the number of women who want to be photographed with me.

Voice 1: No! Those photographs are great publicity! Every time one of them shoots around the world the theater sells ten more tickets. It’s not that.

Voice 2: Well, what then?

Voice 1: It’s the point about–

Voice 2: About what?

Voice 1: About [pauses] your eyebrows.

[noise of newspaper being opened and rattled a bit]

Voice 1: This is what Quentin Letts says in his review: He — that’s you, Richard — also has a habit of raising his gaze towards the top of his skull, as though searching for crumbs in his eyebrows.

Voice 2: I really can’t help the shape of my eyes.

Voice 1: Yes, I know, and fans like that too, they love the whites of your eyes. Though we could revisit our discussion about plastic–

Voice 2. No. No plastic surgery.

Voice 1: But you know, sometimes even fans complain that you use your eyes too much, and I realized from reading this review last night–

Voice 2: You realized what?

Voice 1: [reproachful tone] Why didn’t you tell me, Richard? I could have helped you myself, or called in a consultant.

Voice 2: About what? Just tell me!

Voice 1: Oh, Richard. You know exactly what. You know [pauses, drops tone of voice] — the crumbs in your eyebrows.

Voice 2: [scoffs] I don’t have crumbs in my eyebrows. Don’t be ridiculous.

Voice 1: Of course you do, Richard. You don’t need to hide it any more. The reviewer noticed last night and now the phone is ringing off the hook!

Voice 2: [protesting] I don’t have crumbs in my eyebrows!

Voice 1: Really, it would be best for you to confront this quickly rather than denying it so emphatically. The sooner you admit it, the sooner we can get you some help.


Voice 1: Of course you do. One of those bloggers published a diagram immediately after the review came out. It was published so quickly that I think they were keeping silent all these years to protect you.

Voice 2: A diagram? Come on. Show me.

Voice 1: Here it is.

Screen shot 2014-07-08 at 11.03.37 PM

Voice 2: She’s diagramming things that are not even there!

Voice 1: No, I think they are clearly visible. I’ve always thought these high resolution images were a double-edged sword for the actor. They toned down some of the wrinkles around your eyes, but the crumbs in your eyebrows are clearly visible. I wonder why they didn’t take them out.

Voice 2: Because they aren’t there!

Voice 1: Whatever you say. In any case, we really need to get them out, so that you are free to act with less distraction.

Voice 2: I’m not distracted.

Voice 1: Yael’s called, she’s really concerned about you and wants you to know that the entire cast and ensemble stands behind you as you try to deal with this challenge.


Voice 1: That’s as it may be. But Yael thinks that if you remain this unconcentrated due to your eyebrow crumb difficulties, she will have to have your understudy takeover at least temporarily. And you know how your fans will see that. There’ll be anger.

Voice 2: Here — I am brushing my eyebrows. No crumbs. NO CRUMBS!

Voice 1: Well, I wouldn’t expect to see them now, after I warned you about it. Eyebrow crumbs appear when you aren’t looking for them. Luckily, however, we have lots of options, depending on what the crumbs are.

Voice 2: [in resignation] The crumbs.

Voice 1: Yes, the ones in your eyebrows.

[awkward silence]

Voice 1: You’re not … sleeping on a slice of bread as some sort of odd moisturizing technique, are you?

Voice 2: No.

Voice 1: Because that would explain it. And since you’ve said in the past that you have to moisturize really heavily and that you have had psoriasis, the fans would completely buy that as an explanation.

Voice 2: [matter of factly] I do not sleep with food in my bed and I do not have crumbs in my eyebrows.

Voice 1: Yes, I didn’t think you were pasting bread to your pillow. More’s the pity, that would be easy to fix. Listen, Richard, this is what we’re going to do, and hopefully we can have the problem addressed by tonight’s performance.

Voice 2: What are we going to do? I am not going to do anything.

[Door opens.]

Voice 3: Hello, there, good morning, Richard, here’s your tea. And you might want to look at the latest Google alerts about [coughs] Richard’s eyebrow crumb problem.

Voice 2: [groans]

Voice 3: Nice to see you again, Richard.

[Door closes]

Voice 1: Just let me look at my mobile a moment, Richard.


Voice 1: Oh, this isn’t that bad, actually. It looks like the fans are sympathetic to your eyebrow crumbs.

Voice 2: [makes strangling noise]

Voice 1: Look at this, Richard!


Voice 2: [groans more loudly]

Voice 1: Obviously, the fans at least have decided to embrace your disability!

Voice 2: [dead-pan] How wonderful.

Voice 1: Of course, the general public may not see it that way and we need to address it as soon as possible. I’ve got a plan.

Voice 2: I do not have crumbs in my eyebrows and if I did, it would not be a disability.

Voice 1: [brightly] Well, your fans certainly see it that way! That’s good luck. But we need to deal with this.

Voice 2: What are you proposing?

Voice 1: Yael wants to rule out dandruff–

Voice 2: It’s not dandruff. I’m washing my hair twice a day now.

Voice 1: [resolutely] Yael thinks it could be dandruff, so first it’s off to the dermatologist for a checkup.

Voice 2: There is nothing in my eyebrows.

Voice 1: Then there’s the whole question of stress.

Voice 2: What do you mean, stress?

Voice 1: Well, perhaps stress is causing some [pauses] odd behavior. Maybe when you’re eating your lunch you’re unconsciously crumbling the crusts of bread into your eyebrows.

Voice 2: How could that be? This diet you have me on doesn’t allow me any bread!

Voice 1: Are you cheating on your diet?

Voice 2: No. That was my point.

Voice 1: In any case, you’ll see the dermatologist at 10, and if there’s no solution, the psychiatrist will see you at 11.

Voice 2:The psychiatrist?

Voice 1: Yes, the psychiatrist, just in case the stress is somehow causing your eyebrows to crumb.

Voice 2: I don’t have crumby eyebrows!

Voice 1: Well, you never know. You are under a lot of stress. Or maybe this is some late side effect of the Urban project coming home to roost.

Voice 2: What does that mean?

Voice 1: Well, you know, the research you were doing. Maybe you somehow picked up some crumbs from that estate in Leeds where you were filming.

Voice 2: That doesn’t even make any sense.

Voice 1: Or perhaps there’s some bleedover from the Birdwitharmsitage blog. I noticed they posted a new graphic this week.


Voice 2: What does that even mean?

Voice 1: Well, are you?

Voice 2: Am I what?

Voice 1: Putting crumbs in your eyebrows to attract birds?

Voice 2: WHAT?

[awkward silence]

Voice 1: Look, Richard, I don’t know why you have crumbs in your eyebrows, or why you can’t just admit it, but given all of the positive praise of these other reviews, we can’t let anything stand in your way now. Yael wants those crumbs out of your eyebrows and so do I. So it’s off to the dermatologist you go.


Voice 1: Richard, you really need to stop yelling. It’s bad for your voice.

Voice 2: [strangled sound of exasperation]

[Door opens]

Voice 3: Excuse me, Richard, but here’s a special delivery package for you.

Voice 2: Hmm, what’s in here? [sound of someone opening package] Who sent this?

Voice 3: The card says: from a group of fans.

Voice 2: Oh, how sweet. I’m sure it’s chocolate or something. [continued sound of opening package] WHAT?? “PROFESSIONAL ACTORS EYEBROW CRUMB GROOMING SPA PACKAGE??”

[sound of package being hurled against the window]

[awkward silence]

Voice 1: [clears throat, nervously]

Voice 2: I apologize. Please take any costs for damages out of your commission.

Voice 1: [soothingly] Of course. And where are you going now?

Voice 2: [resigned]. Right-o. The dermatologist.

Voice 1: You can take your tea with you.

Voice 2: Are you sure that tea isn’t the cause of the crumbs?

Voice 1: No, but we have to get his under control as soon as possible, before Hollywood finds out about it.

Voice 2: What do you mean?

Voice 1: If you have crumbs in your eyebrows, you’ll never, ever live this down. Eyebrow crumbs have killed the careers of more people than I can name.

Voice 2: Can you give me an example?

Voice 1: No, because that’s how dead their careers are.

Voice 2: Oh, please.

Voice 1: And where will you go after the dermatologist?

Voice 2: [sighs] The psychiatrist.

Voice 1: Very good. Let me know how it goes. Don’t forget your eyebrow crumb grooming kit here.

Voice 2: Thanks.

Voice 1: And congratulations on all the rave reviews! I’m sure the Guardian and the Independent can’t be far behind.

Voice 2: Let’s hope.

[sound of slamming door]


[sound of opening door]

Voice 3: [brightly] Well, he took that quite well, didn’t he?


[Before you get angry at me, read the word origin of the term “supercilious.”]

~ by Servetus on July 9, 2014.

69 Responses to “Supercilious Armitage”

  1. EYEBROW CRUMBS????? Oh my, poor soul!!! Roflmao


  2. Oh dear, this is the funniest thing I’ve read in ages! Thanks for sharing 🙂


  3. LOL! Oh, splendid. And thank you for making me look up the derivation of supercilious! 😀


  4. LOL! bit pompous too, lately 😉


  5. “No, because that’s how dead their careers are.”



  6. Thanks for the giggle Serv! 😀


  7. Oh, I’m so, so, SO glad he finally gets help, our poor little baby bear!

    Thank you, Serv. 😀


  8. Hooting, howling, coffee-spitting LOL! You have made my morning. If there were crumbs (not that that is even possible), I could always volunteer to lick them away…


  9. Obviously he doesn’t have crumbs in his eyebrows – he uses the BEARD to store his FOOD! XD


  10. LOL!! Hilarious! 😀 Tho’ this made me feel utterly compassionate for our man, despite his admirably stalwart struggle against this odd accusations.
    Sure, we innocent girlie fans really have no idea which awfulness Richard is faced with on a normal daily basis…
    BTW (electronic) surveillance, quite the actual topic here in Germany right now!!!


    • electronic surveillance = yeah. Everywhere, no?

      One rumor of eyebrow crumbs and the whole world goes crazy. They are really upsetting.


  11. OMG, I am DYING laughing here! He may be supercilious but you are supersilly. 🙂


  12. wipes tears away OMG, that was brilliant! I almost spit coffee over my keyboard. Thank you so so much, Serv!


  13. great way to start the day. Thanks, Serv, for the crumby humor. I heard the same people who made the drone have shipped him a really tiny eyebrow vacuum cleaner to be used prior to performances. Isn’t technology wonderful?


    • Yes, but they forgot to ship the adapter for the British plugs, sadly … I heard he was really moved by the tiny browvac.


  14. Brava! Gosh I can’t help now watching a Crucible pic and hearing I DON’T HAVE CRUMBS IN MY EYEBROWS!


    • How does that go? I have given you my soul — now leave me my eyebrows?


      • … now leave me the CRUMBS in my brows?


        • Augenbrauenkrümmelmonster.


          • (not to self) Chocolate = good gift. Cookies = big NO-NO!

            Was meinst du, können wir TC umschreiben, so dass die Hauptperson Krümelmonster Proctor wird? – Miss Abigail Piggy wäre vielleicht auch überlegenswert …

            (Hoffentlich fühlst du dich besser – ich hab in den Links gelesen, dass du so nur schreibst, wenn du nicht gut drauf bist.)


            • It will be totally YOU TWOs fault when they kick me out of the theatre because I start laughing out loud when ‘Krümelmonster Proctor’ enter the stage for the first time together with Abigail Piggy!!!!!!


              • well, I think he looks a little like Augenbrauenkrümmelmonster (sorry, English readers, the pun doesn’t work in English)

                Gestern habe ich die ganze “nette” Glaswaren meine Mutter gewaschen und für meine Nichten weggepackt. Seufz. I’m okay, though, all things considered.


              • Sorg nur dafür, dass das Krümelmonster keine Kekse bei dir sieht, sonst kann man für nichts garantieren.


          • 😀


  15. I love it, I simply love it 🙂
    And thanks for the derivation link.


  16. LOL! What are you drinking and can I have some? 😉


    • last night, while I was writing this? A homemade michelada.


      • we need the recipe. “I’ll have what she’s having,”


        • Last night, the low rent variety because of what was in the house — equal proportions tomato juice of your choice with any lager (last night I used V-8 and Shiner Bock). Add juice of lemon, Worcestershire sauce, and Tabasco sauce to taste.


        • oh, and yeah, I know it sounds awful … but really it’s not too bad and you can drink a lot of it 🙂


          • It sounds like a bloody mary with lager instead of vodka. And you are right, it sounds challenging to drink. Did you stir it with a celery stick?


            • yeah, that’s not a bad description. It’s a kind of Mexico City thing and it was a sort of hipster cocktail just as I was leaving Austin. Better with better ingredients. There was no celery in the fridge.


              • I’ve always wanted to be a hipster (as apposed to hippy, or hippie) so I will have to try this. thanks for the recipe. One of the side effects of drinking this must be increased powers of writing hilariously. 🙂


                • Mexico City prefers it with lime — I ordered one in a Mexican restaurant here (run by Mexicans) the other night and it came covered in chile powder (not bad), so there are lots of varieties. (there’s a lime shortage at the moment).

                  To me, the key thing w/beer is that it kills your ambition — so you have to drink enough to loosen the boundaries but so much that you think, meh, why am I writing anyway?


  17. LOVE IT. Thank you claps


  18. no idea where that came from, probably will see when I do catch up of the last two days (thanks for your collected links btw.) but thanks for the laughs and chuckles XD! I already glimpsed the red checkerd shirt with the blue jacket, yay roflz.


    • see Daily Mail review from press night 🙂 I don’t think it looks so bad but many Australian fans seem to be anti-check.


  19. Hilarious, as you know…. agents probably would overreact more with the most successful clients 🙂


    • I’ve always thought he might have been a sort of ambivalently resistant client. Some things he obviously does (the huge teeth fix in 2005) and other things you think — wow, why is he not doing that? Of course, we don’t know about all of his attempts and failures.


  20. I agree, I bet he can do passive resistance with the best of them…. which may not be all bad with agents. Probably agreeable for stuff he has already considered himself at some point.


  21. This morning I had to decide between curling my hair, being on time for work, or reading Supercilious Armitage. After reading a few lines, I was late for work with straight hair. And it was SO worth it! I laughed and giggled all the way through.


    • I’m always too late at works for the last weeks. So many great posts and hilarious informations.
      Very stressing but SO entertaining! 😀


  22. It’s interesting, how sometimes a problem pops in your life. Even when you think, you have none 🙂 Poor boy. All he wants is to do a good job. Life can be hard.


  23. girls , sorry , ladies , this is so funny , I wish Richard could read it .I think this would be right up his street re humour .clever clever Servetus .Great big grin on my face ..hehehehehehe THANKYOU x


  24. Thanks for all the kind comments.


  25. […] is a good illustration of why untreated eyebrow crumbs can kill a career deader than a doornail. Richard Armitage NEEDS […]


  26. […] the drone chronicles of conversations from Richard Armitage’s agent’s office. This was the last one, from this summer, and a previous installment from 2013 when the Richard III buzz was hot. This one […]


  27. […] [Voice 2]: Is that why you were so eager to have dinner with me? Are you calling me on the carpet again? Because I didn’t have crumby eyebrows, even if I spent weeks in therapy— […]


  28. […] [Voice 1]: Quatsch! This is up there with the eyebrow crumbs. […]


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