Will Richard Armitage bring an additional creep factor from Hannibal to Berlin Station?

So, I was looking at this picture:


Victoria Mayer as Ingrid Hollander and Richard Armitage as Daniel Miller in Berlin Station. Source: Berliner Zeitung

This is kind of unfocused musing, but I can’t say I found anything really delicious about the picture above (well, except for that space under Armitage’s nose. Totally erotic). The way he has his hand over the woman’s mouth — well, that is frightening.

I was thinking back to Spooks, and John Bateman. Now, we can say all kinds of things (it was a different character; we don’t know what Miller’s relationship to Hollander is like — it may be more explicitly adversarial than the cases I am citing; the CIA is probably more brutal in its methods than MI-5) about the difference between the two characters, but two comparisons popped into mind that tended to suggest that Bateman was a more “gentle” dealer with women.

To wit, Spooks 9.6, where Lucas North / John Bateman let Danielle Ortiz bleed out:

I discussed this death extensively here.

I discussed this death extensively here.

And then Spooks 9.8, where he drugs Ruth:


John Bateman (Richard Armitage) with Ruth (Nicola Walker) in Spooks 9.8. Source: RichardArmitageNet.com

To me, there was always something explicitly dance-like and finessed in Armitage’s work, even about John Porter’s violence with men. But this picture just has a different feel to it for me. I know that Dolarhyde was always infinitely gentle with Reba, too. But I’m wondering if, somehow, he’s had a closer look at physical brutality than he has had previously?

Anyway, I’m sure there are counter examples — this is just a musing in advance of definitive evidence.

~ by Servetus on April 6, 2016.

28 Responses to “Will Richard Armitage bring an additional creep factor from Hannibal to Berlin Station?”

  1. Ein sehr nachdrücklicher und gewalttätiger Griff. Ziemlich überzeugend. Mit Mr. Miller ist anscheinend nicht gut Kirschen essen….

  2. Grrrr..hope she bite and kick him hard!

    • That’s what I was thinking, too. Get your hand off her mouth already or she’ll bite you.

  3. Maybe what we see here is the difference in what is expected for an American TV show regarding a kind of ‘fierceness’ in a scene/in acting in contrast to a British one? I think you can see cultural differences between American cop shows vs. British cop shows on the telly. This could explain why the Berlin Station picture appears more aggressive on the Spooks ones, no?

    • There are probably at least six explanations, even without us having scene what is actually happening here … but in any case it was a difference that struck me. The whole “pictures out of context” is a big epistemological problem in fandom. At the same time, they let out these advance publicity photos based on what they want us to see or think about the character ahead of time, so they seem to be saying a little bit about aggression or ruthlessness here. The BBC showed pictures of North / Bateman with Danielle Ortiz ahead of time, but not of her death scene.

  4. (typo) …more aggressive than the Spooks…

  5. Something already seen, but out of place was the first sensation about the photo.
    A little disturbing but it’s too early.
    I hope to see it ,now I’m really curious.

  6. Der Satz “Jemand mundtot machen” fällt mir spontan dazu ein….

  7. I hope I get to see Berlin Station.
    There’s definitely something frightening to Miller’s posture, and the way he forcefully presses his hand over the woman’s mouth. It’s taken out of context, though, and although she looks frightened, she may just be startled.
    To me this is not quite as terrifying as the Lucas North/John Bateman scene, because that role was being ‘nice’ while letting his victim bleed to death.

    • I think with the Spooks 9.6 scene, it was colored by the fact that this was the very latest point in that series that one could continue to think about Lucas’ ethics as robust. This is chilling for me not so much because of the cruelty but because it’s sort of the death of the character as we knew it. Lucas dies in that scene as much as Ortiz does, just not literally.

      • Yes, Lucas died in that scene. That scene took my breath away the first time I watched it. I couldn’t believe what was happening. It was shocking. I think I cried. I really like her character and it was so subtle and sad and shocking when Lucas held her and purposely let her die.

  8. “To me, there was always something explicitly dance-like and finessed in Armitage’s work”
    I always should agree and shall add ambiguous, restraint too.

  9. I think it’s hard to judge the level of threat or violence from this picture without the context of the scene. Both their lives could be in danger and he has to have her quickly be quiet and his eyes are warning her about the danger to either him, her or both of them; not actually threatening her. Or, she could be going to scream and expose him so he is threatening and shutting her up…or, something else entirely. It’s really hard to tell if there is implied violence or a defense against danger…he could be saving her life here – who knows. Bateman’s actions towards Ruth and Danielle were pretty complex… some regret, feeling backed in a corner, he actually liked these women, etc. And with Ruth, he didn’t really intend to go through with killing her (in my mind anyways — it was a bluff to hopefully get Harry do want Lucas/John needed him to do).

    • Ok, point made about him possibly silencing her for the sake of their safety. I still get creeped out by it, out of context or not. I’ve never had anyone lay a hand on me like that…not signing up for it either! Even by Richard Armitage! A girl has to draw SOME lines, ya know…! Ha😊 But seriously- he has opened up in more roles to darker characters, and as the accomplished actor he is, I think I am witnessing a finessed “baddy” here. Perhaps his character will not have the redeeming qualities that we’re used to in Guy? Lucas? Only conjecture. .. fun to think and discuss what looks to be a promising new show!

  10. Obviously, I don’t know what’s going on here but his face is not saying “caution, shh” to me and there is tension in that hand. We’ll find out eventually.

  11. Look at how huge his hands are!

    Do we have any idea whether he’s supposed to be a “good” or “bad” guy?

    For me what makes it a RA character, even if he’s playing a baddie, is that undercurrent of sympathy he’s able to infuse into the character.

    On a different note, if they were to ever make a live action Archer, I would want Richard to play Sterling Archer. It’s right up his alley – a spy with questionable morals and lots of sex scenes!

    • He’s a CIA officer sent to Berlin to root out a whistleblower so I think the answer will depend on how sympathetic we are to that project in general — it’s being made for a US audience so my guess is that we’re supposed to see him at least somewhat positively, but that he will also do plenty of questionable things (to keep it real).

  12. I must have some dark fantasies. 😉 My first thought was quite, ummm blush, erotic. I’ll just go sit on my corner now …

  13. As you said yourself – it’s slightly premature to draw conclusions yet from one picture. Initially I found it quite threatening, too. Then somebody posted a crop that only showed “Daniel’s” face sans hand, and all of a sudden the impression changed. He stares with a strange intensity (which reminds me of Dolarhyde, too, the way he is transfixed by Reba stroking the tiger), as if he is studying the journo’s face, rather than simply just threatening her. Also, I wonder whether he has been captured mid-sentence? Anyway – much to premature…
    On another topic: “Oh my, grandma, what big hands you have!!!”o_O

  14. by reading the articles and seeing the pictures of Berlin station, it looks like it is going to be a great spy television series. I just hope that when filming/editing the spy series is done that we get to see it and hope that it doesn’t get put on a shelf and collect dust like his other movies( I seen and heard that during 2014/2015, he did maybe between 4-6 pictures, all filmed and edited, ready to be seen. But the only one that got shown was Urban and the Shed Crew, and it only got shown in Europe at a few select theaters. movies are coming out every day, why aren’t his. Mr. Richard Armitage is a great theater/movie actor. He is a very hauntingly, handsome, sexy, and talented man. Why won’t they show his movies, if they don’t want to show his movies in theaters, then put them on dvds. because there is a lot of people that want to see him/his movies

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