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The Crush List

Willowy, effeminate, predominantly English, predominantly fictional men I have a crush on, obsessively arranged into categories

Click on the thumbnails to see the picture of each gentleman (or the same actor in another role, or an actor playing the role of that gentleman) in what a crack team of judges has selected as the *~*~*~MOST ROMANTIC~*~*~*!

I just want to build a railway! Pretty Archetype: Cillian Murphy

Here he is as Paul Montague in the BBC dramatization of Anthony Trollope's The Way We Live Now, in which I love him most dearly. There are times in it when he is heartbreakingly lovely, but here, in the only photo I found, he is wearing a doofy cowboy hat, because he is being an adorably passionate and adventuresome engineer in America.

Some may say he is funny looking, but I like his sleepy blue eyes and what my friend Sir John Suckling describes as bee-sting lips.* Also let's not forget the hair. (People! We almost forgot the hair.) He's the one of whom I wrote in my livejournal, in the feverish haze of having just watched The Way We Live Now, had "ruined me for all other humans." He was, I said, "so pretty [he's] almost not pretty anymore," and, "seriously, he looks like a girl with sideburns." Later in this page I will describe him as "almost alienly beautiful." At some point I will compare him favorably to history's greatest beauties.

My raptures on the subject of him might be cut short if I had seen him in any of his creepier roles, which, apparently, are all of them. Except for TWWLN and about a quarter hour in the middle of Batman Begins, I haven't actually seen any of his movies.

Here he is at some conference or something.
Here he is in pretty girl glasses in Batman Begins.
Here he is with longish hair, I guess at the premiere of the movie in which he is a girl or something?

*Ballad Upon a Wedding (1641), in which the English Cavalier poet foretold of Murphy's coming.

I disapprove of your gambling Cute Archetype: Hugh Dancy

It could be argued that Mr. Dancy belongs to the same archetype as Mr. Murphy up there, being that they are both dark-haired fair-skinned prettyboys best known and loved (by me) for their work in BBC miniseries versions of Victorian literary classics written by people who hung out together in Florence. However, I believe they represent two different kinds of prettyboy. Cillian Murphy in The Way We Live Now elicits (from me) sort of a hushed reverence in his beauty, while Hugh Dancy in Daniel Deronda has got the same reaction from every woman I've seen or discussed Daniel Deronda with: "He's so keee-YUTE!"

I mean look at him! Cast your eyes upon Daniel Deronda, and you will find yourself squeeing uncontrollably: "Awwwww! He's so CUTE with his little high-collared suits and his bright shining eyes and his little curly hair and his little ambiguously Jewish descent and his little unceasing helpfulness to everyone around him and his little disapproval of dishonorable conduct which doesn't stop him from understanding complex moral issues from all sides and having compassion for people who have acted poorly!"

All right, I guess a case could be made that Paul Montague is so cute with his little high-collared suits, and, yes, even his stupid cowboy hat and tweeds, and his little defiantly jutting jaw and his little passion for building railways and his little forcibly exacted obligations to his calculating ex (but who can blame her, am I right ladies?) But there's something about Paul Montague/Cillian Murphy that--despite his shortish stature--does not quite evoke that same "Awwww!" reaction that Hugh Dancy does. He's something else entirely, almost alienly beautiful.

Okay, but I was trying to talk about Dancy here. The thing about him is he's got a fresh face and you want to give him a hug. You cannot deny it because it is the Lord's truth.

Ummm, I don't have any pictures of him except for some samey ones in Daniel Deronda, which is the only thing I've seen him in except for part of that Elizabeth thing, where he was Essex, and cute but annoying. Anyway here they are!

A dreamy cloud-edged Deronda pic, and for kicks, another Deronda.
Okay, a non-Deronda one: a sort of generic head shot or something.
Look how pretty he is in a boat!

Errr... I think I'd better go

Cute Archetype Honorable Mention: Hugh Dancy's Deronda is an easy winner because he is legitimately attractive, but there are other guys who win your heart by ACTING cute: that is, soft-spoken, sweet, gentle. Sort of like Hugh Grant in Sense and Sensibility, how he's nice and so unassuming that he just sort of walks into rooms and goes "err" and leaves. (Deronda doesn't do that--and I wouldn't prefer it if he did--but shyness is a hallmark of cuteness, for me!)

Hello darling Dashing Archetype: Errol Flynn

It may be cliche, as Errol Flynn is one of the most famous Golden Age actors and his fame is based in large part on his personal attractions, but for good reason. He is an undeniably pretty man. I particularly like him in period adventures, of course, when he's wearing his hair long and clad in tights or similar, all dancing around throwing his head back and laughing, fencing with Basil Rathbone, etc. (Who, himself, was strangely attractive in black eyeliner in Captain Blood, but that's neither here nor there. Focus, people!) But even in other roles, or out of costume entirely, he's got that charming air about him, the loose wavy hair, the gigantic friggin' dimples. Basically, what I'm saying is, yowza.

Here he is looking, not swashbuckly, but debonair, and almost as if he is saying "hey-hey," but he wouldn't, because he is all English and shit, let's not forget THAT. (Okay, I know he's Tasmanian, but he has an English accent, and it is hot!)

Another handsome smile, this time with teeth!
Here's a small one with him and Olivia de Havilland in Captain Blood in which he was clean-shaven and fresh-faced.
Here he is as Robin Hood, shooting an arrow.... into your heart!!!

There are a shortage of perfect breasts in the world...

Dashing Archetype Honorable Mentions: Cary Elwes as Westley in The Princess Bride; Robert Donat as Hannay in The 39 Steps. Basically anybody who can pull off wearing that little moustache.

...and I have to be handcuffed to you!
  Sweetheart Archetype: Title in dispute; to be decided with bake-off

Somewhat related to the cute archetype, as this type of guy is more than likely to make you go "awww," sweethearts are those just plain nice fellows whom you just want to make you cocoa and read you a book, and they probably would, too, if they thought it would make you happy. Daniel Deronda might be a candidate for this, given his helpfulness and care for others, but the prototypical sweetheart I'm thinking of is a little more settled, mature, almost maternal. Here are the candidates so far:

I know it's a wee bit creepy, but...

Carson Beckett (Paul McGillion), the doctor from Stargate: Atlantis, who has been described as the "heart" of the group because he is so compassionate and caring. His main claim to the title is, of course, that adorable Scottish accent, which makes everything he says sound so comforting (it doesn't hurt that in the writers' or actor's attempts to sound extra Scotsmanly he peppers his speech with words like "wee" and "aye" and calls girls "love" and boys "son".) He also has the added advantages of being socially reserved and uncomfortable (like when he uses his only chance to send a message back to Earth to self-consciously ask his mother if she's keeping up with her ointment) and being a doctor (and thus being competent and care-takey and saying things like "Right then, off with your shirt and we'll have a look").

Can we buy each other presents?

Seth, the great hulking roommate from 9 Chickweed Lane. I guess he could be accused of being stereotypically homosexual (at least one strain) in his quirky mother-hen type of way, but everything he does is just so darn sweet that I don't care. The website says he has "the protective instincts of an Irish wolfhound", and one time he sang Edda to sleep with "The Man I Love" in what Amos described as a "nice countertenor." There is the problem that he is a cartoon (and, even as cartoons go, I've seen cuter; though, within the world of 9 Chickweed Lane he's quite a looker).

Sometimes it's hard to pick a winner in these categories because I set the bar so high starting out, and literally nobody, living or dead, in any period of time since the world began, is up to the calibre of Cillian Murphy. Consider:

Helen of Troy Cillian

Helen of Troy: Fuck Helen of Troy. Cillian Murphy's face could launch a million jillion ships.

Aphrodite Cillian

Aphrodite: More like Aphro-UGLY (in comparison)!

an undisturb'd natural countryside Cillian

an undisturb'd natural countryside: This is probably the most apt comparison, but really, which one would you rather kiss? If you kissed the countryside you would just end up with a mouth full of dirt. If you kissed Cillian Murphy, on the other hand, well, even odds are you'd have your soul sucked out through your lips since, let's face it, he is probably not of this world. My friend Dave thinks he harvests souls to keep himself young and beautiful. The theory cannot be discounted. According to IMDB he has been cute for upwards of eight years. Such a reign can only bespeak of immortality and "foul play."

Angelina Jolie Cillian

Angelina Jolie: Dave has the same theory about Angelina Jolie. The crucial difference between here is, I think, that Angelina looks mean whereas Cillian looks to have a perfectly sweet disposition. She's like "I am darkly dangerous and possibly a little crazy, I could break your bones!" and he's like "(blink blink) Don't you love me?" As Dave rightly points out, that makes Cillian Murphy all the more dangerous, in "Come into my parlor" fashion.

He really does look kind of freaky, doesn't he?

Two days after the transmission of this document, Laura was found wandering the moors, muttering something about "those eyes--those blue gimlet eyes!" Stumbling by a police car she gazed balefully at the detective and, just before fainting, murmured, "I've forgotten what humans are supposed to look like."

"What happened to her?" asked the deputy. Jaw set, the detective replied grimly, "She flew too close to the sun, and she got burned. Be careful of the beautiful ones, Woonsocket. They are the most dangerous." Deputy Woonsocket wondered if perhaps this had less to do with the case at hand than the fact that pretty Jason Santos from Internal Affairs had turned down the detective's invitation to the annual Police Prom; but he said nothing, choosing instead to examine the unconscious victim, in whose hands rested a crumpled copy of this very list.


- Laura