MCM: Richard Armitage


This Man Candy Monday is basically because of Richard Armitage’s role in North and South (2004). He is so amazingly hot in that otherwise dreary-looking (but quite expertly told) Victorian story, that I immediately jumped on to find out what other historical costume movies and TV shows I could see him in.

And I was shocked to see that he really hadn’t been in any others! What the frock, Hollywood? Are you blind, BBC? Are you dumb, ITV? Have you no sense, PBS? Give this man another top hat and cravat, stat, and get him in a drawing room behind a film camera — WE HAVE NEEDS.

Richard Armitage, North and South (2004)

Maybe it’s the sideburns.

Hmph. Since Armitage is apparently just fine off playing a Nazi in the Marvel Universe, a Tolkien dwarf in the movies, and a serial killer on TV right now (none of which are historical, ugh), we have to settle with his paltry few period roles in murder mysteries (yawn) and a super-cheesy Robin Hood show (snooze). Oh, and he’s got an upcoming movie set in 13th-c. Ireland (booooring).

I feel like he could have been cast in so many more delightful period dramas for us to lust over. He could have done some Jane Austen or even made me interested in all those Dickens TV adaptions of the mid- to late-2000s. Maybe he could have been a tragic suitor for Lady Edith on Downton Abbey or an actually hot Vronsky in Anna Karenina (2012). There’s just so many possibilities!  Instead, this is all we got…

Richard Armitage, Malice Aforethought (2005)

Although in the 1930s murder-mystery, Malice Aforethought (2005), Richard Armitage is still quite good looking. You know he did it, and you’ll like it!

Richard Armitage, The Impressionists (2006)

Richard Armitage as the young Claude Monet in The Impressionists (2006). Stringy hair and the ‘stache isn’t working for me. Keep trying!

Richard Armitage, Miss Marie Lloyd (2007)

In the TV movie Miss Marie Lloyd (2007), Richard Armitage plays the husband of a famous Edwardian-era showgirl. Proof that he really should be in more pre-20th-century roles!

Richard Armitage, Miss Marie Lloyd (2007)


Richard Armitage, Robin Hood (2006-2009)

+1 for the wavy long hair, +1 for being a sexy evil henchman, but this Robin Hood (2006-2009) series had mega-crappy costumes that make Da Vinci’s Demons look decent, so minus 1 million points.

Richard Armitage, Robin Hood (2006-2009)

Only good thing about that Robin Hood series? Occasional half-naked Richard Armitage.

Richard Armitage, audiobook

Apparently Richard Armitage does a lot of audiobooks. MEH. I’m not a big listener-of-audiobooks and even if I were, then I couldn’t SEE his hotness. NOT HELPING.

Richard Armitage, Pilgrimage (2016)

He plays a knight, Raymond De Merville, in Pilgrimage set in 13th-c. Ireland, coming out later in 2016. This is the best we can do? NOT IMPRESSED.


Forget about all that nonsense, I’m just going to indulge in these yummy pix of him from North and South. *swoon*


Richard Armitage, North and South (2004)

Tall, dark, handsome, rich, arrogant, taciturn — sign me up!

Richard Armitage, North and South (2004)

The very definition of Serious Business.

Richard Armitage, North and South (2004)

But he’s sensitive underneath it all!

Richard Armitage, North and South (2004)

“Just 20 more minutes so I can finish doing the taxes, then we can Netflix and chill.”

Richard Armitage, North and South (2004)

He brought a gift basket!

Richard Armitage, North and South (2004)

White tie. *fans self*

Richard Armitage, North and South (2004)

Smile for me, baby.

Richard Armitage, North and South (2004)

Oooo, I love it when you’re angry.

Richard Armitage, North and South (2004)

Dawwww, and then he’s all sweet and unruffled!



Are you in love with Richard Armitage in North and South?


About the author

Trystan L. Bass

Twitter Website

A self-described ElderGoth, Trystan has been haunting the internet since the early 1990s. Always passionate about costume, from everyday office wear to outrageous twisted historical creations, she has maintained some of the earliest online costuming-focused resources on the web. When she’s not dressing up in costumes, she can be found traveling the world with her sweetie and, occasionally, Kendra and Sarah. Her costuming and travel adventures are chronicled on her website, TrystanCraft. She also maintains a popular fashion blog, This Is CorpGoth, dedicated to her “office drag.”

42 Responses

  1. Lyn

    In agreement 1000 percent! He was terrific in N&S although I first noticed him in that crappy Robin Hood thing, thought he was the best thing in it then went looking for other works and discovered N&S.

    Not period, but I just LOVED him as the Dawn French love-of-her-life in Vicar of Dibley. He was soooo hot and yeah the fat gal got the big prize !!

    • MoHub

      I’m with you on Vicar of Dibley, and I loved seeing Armitage in a comedy, even if he wasn’t overly funny himself.

    • Janeheiress

      This! I love how he was cast as the perfect dreamboat for our Vicar. Also, he was quite good a Claude Monet–I really enjoyed The Impressionists. And he’s pared with Amanda Root from Persuasion.

    • Alex Mercado

      He’s perfect in the Vicar of Dibley! His relationship with Dawn was amazing and so cute

    • JessB

      Yeah, I remember him being all brooding and dark in an episode of Marple, he was a war veteran and in a wheelchair, and was being a bastard to his wife… But was he a murderer?!
      It was a good story, that’s definitely worth a watch.

  2. drush76

    Of course, Mr. Armitage portrayed a 1940’s HYDRA agent in 2011’s “CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER”. He appeared in an “AGATHA CHRISTIE’S MARPLE” TV movie in 2007 called “Ordeal By Innocence”, which was set in the 1950s. And he portrayed Tolkien dwarf Thorin Oakenshield in Peter Jackson’s “THE HOBBIT” trilogy, for which he won a Saturn Award.

  3. Stephani

    My favorite. I just adore him in North & South. He is the epitome of dark and brooding and oh does he know how to smolder.
    I loved him in the 2 episodes of the Vicar of Dibley he appeared in as Geraldine’s love interest and eventual husband. He was the hottest boring accountant ever. WATCH IT NOW. Not necessary for Sean “Bone” Bean to rescue her from that wedding.
    Seriously why is he being ignored for more historical roles??! *stampsfoot*
    I thought it was such a shame, though, that even this talented, smoking hot man couldn’t make Thorin Oakenshield anything but an ass.

  4. Susan Pola

    *swooning* as I type this. Yummy!!! Haven’t seen North & South. Unless cheesy Patrick Swayze miniseries. Will have to check it out.
    I agree about the level of heat his Thorin brought to Hobbit and persona of an ass. I need to see Marie Lloyd. Have seen the mysteries.
    Forget Lady Hexham, he should be paired with Mary.
    You know the yucky Robin Hood costumes make me appreciate costumes of The Tudors as *snort* “totally accurate’. Same with War & Peace 2016 version.

  5. Broughps

    I’ve been following Richard’s career for 10 years now. Still in my top 3 favorite actors. And yes definitely needs to do some more historical movies/tv shows.

  6. rikibeth

    He did the audiobook for my favorite Georgette Heyer romance, “The Convenient Marriage”. Trust me, hearing his voice means that I can visualize Lord Rule looking just like him, in perfect 1776 finery (yes, that’s the year, another character was in the 10th Foot and invalided home after Bunker Hill, and it’s been some months)! Wonderful.

    • lucina

      Thank you so much for pointing this out! I’m going to spend my credit right now…

  7. Bea

    I’m fairly ‘meh’ about him in Victorian but…

    yes, I’ll take *that*, since you’re not impressed ;)

    • Sarah Lorraine

      I seem to be the only one of us who isn’t bored by the 13th century. No doubt I’ll be the one who will tackle it when it comes out, so stay tuned…

      • Janette

        I have been studying the 13th century for some time now so I am looking forward to that.

  8. Eset

    You really should give the audiobooks a go. He is very good reader and his voice is so, so sexy. Something between hot chocolate, warm brandy and silk velvet. You can get pregnant just listening to him.

  9. Judit

    Yes yes yes yes yes yes yes a thousand million trillion gazillion times YES!!!

  10. Jane Murphy

    Like your article, food for thought. I, like you feel his talents have been waisted. Sometimes I think he needs another agent. Maybe it is his decision not to do more period dramas, but it is definitely where he shines. I, too, would love to see him in another period film, or more. Carvats definitely look great on him. I first discovered him on MI-5, liked him on the series. However, I was trapped at my son’s home in Norway with nothing to do so I checked him out on Netflix and found N&S, fell in love with his voice and his appearance is not too shabby either. Love watching his career, wish more of his work made it out of production on to the screen. I am sure Urban and the Shed Crew is a very good film, that needs to be out for the public to know universally the struggles our youth are confronted with daily. No child should be considered a throw away. Our world has become so hard and challenging for them without the tools to handle what at times adults can’t succeed. Well enough said. Really like the guy, he is a quality person in my opinion, and he has much more talent to offer the world, so wake up movie producers, you are missing the best.

  11. jpsgirl

    RA’s performance as John Thornton in North and South made them my favourite hero, drama and actor. of all time I have enjoyed all his work but as my name will indicate, I thought Strike Back allowed me to see some of the RA I particularly like to see.

  12. Janette

    Just the MCM I needed to bring the smile back to my face this morning. Loved North and South, (though I thought some of the costume choices were a bit questionable). I also loved the book. The ending, like the costumes, I found jarring though. I much preferred the original, novel, ending.
    I would heartily recommend The Impressionists, despite the stringy hair. RA is charming as Monet. (how could he not be? The image above does not do justice to him in that series.) It is also nice to occasionally watch a series where talent and goodness prevail against the odds.
    Would definitely like to see him in more costume dramas.

  13. brocadegoddess

    SO MUCH YES; to the whole post and everybody’s comments! There needs to be more Richard Armitage smouldering in cravats in this world!

  14. Rachel

    I call the end scene of North and South his “McDreamy face” because he just does the things with his face that make you go phwoar.

  15. drush76

    I thought it was such a shame, though, that even this talented, smoking hot man couldn’t make Thorin Oakenshield anything but an ass.

    A very complex and ambiguous ass. And Armitage’s performance landed him a Saturn Award. I have no complaints about his Thorin Oakenshield.

    • Andrea Númellóte

      Yes, role of Thorin is very complex one and he did it superbly. He made Thorin the way that this character should have been written in the book, especially since Tolkien did made Lotr after and wrote interesting stuff on dwarves, 99% about Durin’s line. But for those who haven’t read pieces about Thorin and his life, I am pointing them to look in Appendices of LOTR – chapter ‘Durin’s folk’, and in The Unfinished Tales – chapter ”Quest for Erebor”.
      I wish Tolkien had rewrote the Hobbit to fit the tone of the LOTR and Thorin to be the figure he deserved to be. (Btw, for those who don’t know, in first drafts Thorin and his nephews didn’t die. And this is another thing I wish it wasn’t changed later.)

      What I wanted to say it’s that Richard should have been nominated for Oscar for the role of Thorin, he was the one who brought Thorin to life and gave him depth in every single thing he did on screen. And his dedication to do that, well, is just admiring. I can’t imagine no other Thorin than Richard.
      Though I love him as John Thornton, who is my second fave Richard’s character, Thorin is the one who comes out first.

    • Sienna Margeaux

      Me neither. I collect reviews of The Hobbit films and majority of the critics have lauded RA’s performance in the three movies. Review after review, critics call him and his work the “dramatic stand out performance,” “dominating presence,” “the brooding center,” “the star,” “magnetic,”ever compelling” “brilliant,” “splendidly conflicted etc. I guess critics have no complaints about his Thorin, too.

        • Sienna Margeaux

          Sorry if I misunderstood. I took your remark to mean that RA only managed to portray Thorin as a one dimensional character. I thought describing Thorin as portrayed by RA simply as an ass is a bit reductive. I understand why you dislike the character, though.

          • Stephani

            RA is an excellent actor, and I’m convinced he can do anything. I don’t really feel like going into all the reasons I dislike Thorin Oakenshield as a character, either as written by the screenwriter or by Tolkien, so I keep it succinct.

  16. Karen Lavoie

    Some men are born to play specific roles, and I think that RA was born to play North and South. But my main reason for commenting, Trystan, is to agree with you about the dippily costumed Robin Hood. After watching a few episodes, I began to wonder if those Merry Men weren’t buying all their clothes at the Sherwood Forest GAP.

  17. IrishWitch313

    Have you ever seen anyone smolder like John Thornton in North & South? RA was amazing in the role and I would love to see him in more period pieces. He would fit so beautifully as and arrogant, strong male lead or a rake who falls in love with an “innocent” like in Heyer’s novel “Venetia”. Oh, so many roles to play that would be perfect for him. With such superior acting …where are the offers? Are we the only ones that see it??

  18. M.E. Lawrece

    My daughter made me watch both “North and South” and a brooding-Brit-Iraqi-War-veteran series, because she loves R.A. to pieces. But WHY didn’t someone think to cast him as Ted Hughes in that movie some years back about Sylvia Plath? He would have been close to perfect–much better than Daniel Craig–and he reads Hughes’s poetry and letters well:


    (Sorry; YouTube film overflows with bad background music, but the photos of R.A. are pretty fetching.)

  19. armitagebesotted

    And you didn’t even mention the train station kiss! How did I miss this post 1.5 years ago?! You sound like my people! I don’t know anything about costumes, but I like your humor. I’ve been crushing on this gorgeous actor for years. Many of us have. Join us!


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