Tag: Bernard Cornwell

We start the week by doing the weekly shopping with James and Toby – without masks, of course.

According to the government today is “Happy Monday,” with a limited return to outdoor sport and tea in the garden with the neighbors. But that’s always “the variants” lurking around the corner… lurking like a balloon animal stuffed with walnuts coming after your puppy. (That story has a better ending than Freddie the Hammersmith seal.)

James attended this past weekend’s anti-lockdown protests in London with Reclaim mayoral candidate Laurence Fox and managed not to get arrested. But how many people were in attendance is certainly up for debate, and debate is what James and Toby do.

Who is the biggest impediment to getting the adult population of Europe vaccinated? Is it people like our intrepid duo or is it really “leaders” like France’s President Emmanuel Jean-Michel Frédéric Macron?

We took a ride on the Technical Struggle Bus this week. Someone was throwing some electrical interference James’ way (we think MI-5 has finally caught up to him) and Toby was coming in a little bit hot… Apologies in advance.

But content-wise we have plenty of good stuff in here. After a small bit of self-congratulations (We’re Number Three! We’re Number Three!) we tackle the suspension of the AstraZeneca vaccine rollout across Continental Europe, the defenestration of Piers Morgan following his criticisms of Meghan Markle, and the cancellation of the banjo player from Mumford and Sons for liking Andy Ngo’s book.

Miscast? Or Not?


A thread from earlier today by member @simontemplar got me thinking about movies and television, and why and how casting decisions are made. Often for money, I suppose. And vanity. And to score political points.

Although ST’s thread about the latest Jack Reacher movie was about its deficiencies of plot, my comment on it was more about its deficiencies in casting, and how inapt I thought it was that Tom Cruise (5’7″) should play Jack Reacher (6’5″). This put me in mind of other spectacularly bad casting decisions, and which one might just be the worst ever? Cruise as Reacher is certainly in the top three, IMHO. But I’d also nominate Kevin Costner’s turn as Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (or as pretty much anything else, really). Bad as he is in POT, that movie does have some redeeming qualities (a lovely one at the very end, anyway) and Alan Rickman’s performance as the Sheriff of Nottingham is wondrous.

Then there are those casting decisions which cause consternation to begin with, but which end up being so sublimely “right” that we cannot imagine any other actor in the role. I remember an interview with Bernard Cornwell, author of the “Sharpe” series, in which he expressed his initial unhappiness with Sean Bean’s being cast in the role for the ITV serializations of his novels. Sharpe, you see, was clearly described in Cornwell’s first few books (which I do love) as having very dark, even black, hair; Sean Bean’s hair is of a decidedly blonder shade.