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[personal profile] lesbiassparrow
I should be working but instead I am mulling over how very terrible Robin Hood is. Sorry if you like it and the actor but I think a lot of its problems can be summed up in two words: Robin Hood. There: I never thought I'd see a Robin Hood story where I root for the bad guys to squish him, but there you go. It's not that I even like the bad guys, but at least they're better than him.

In bullet point:

1. Almost anyone in the cast would be a better Robin Hood. Hell, there are probably some trees in Sherwood that could do the job better. He has all the charisma of a wet sock. In fact, I'd follow a wet sock before I'd follow him. I wouldn't even follow him to the pub for a free drink, that's how anti-charismatic he is.
2. How dumb are these people? I know that the Sheriff can't actually ever really capture Hood, but still. STOP BEING SO STUPID.
3. Holy God, THE CLOTHES. Marian! Stop wearing trousers and colours that didn't even look good in the 70s! Clearly you have access to foreign dyes, but that's no excuse.
4. Guyliner. I know it's the sign of a tortured soul, but the thought of him getting up each morning, putting on his goth outfit and then adding the Guyliner as a finishing touch robs him of all menace, though Richard Armitage does what he can. His sole talent appears to be an ability to loom behind the Sheriff at key moments.
5. How dumb are these people? (Again!) Don't they ever wonder why they're being taxed to death? IT'S CALLED THE FECKING CRUSADES AND RICHARD'S LUNACY. STOP WAITING FOR HIM TO COME BACK! HE'S ONLY GOING TO TREAT ENGLAND AS AN ATM. AGAIN.
6. So the whole 'Richard will solve everything' just doesn't work. Not now. Maybe they deal with this - I fast forward so much that I can't be sure - but it makes no sense. Especially when people point it out and they're all "BUT RICHARD WILL SOLVE EVERYTHING." I hate to be one of Those People, but Robin of Sherwood dealt with it a lot better by making it clear that it was a rotten system and that as futile as it was you should struggle with that, not wait for Richard to fix everything. (And when he appears, he doesn't; he's as bad as the rest of them.)
7. The Night Watchman? Clearly a woman! She has breastage that YOU CAN SEE. I know these are the Dark Ages, but they're not that dark. Plus I will never understand why people do the cartwheeling thing in fighting. Is it really that good a move? I would think a sensible person would just get a big stick and clunk you in the stomach as you cartwheeled around. I mean, it's not like the Night Watchman has any other moves.
8. Why does no one other than the Sheriff live in a castle? If I know one thing about the Normans it's that they loved to build castles. It was like crack to them. In fact, I suspect that they thought any day without building a castle was a wasted day. A lot of Guy's problems could be solved if he lived in a castle, rather than in a house that Robin Hood can waltz in and out of when he wants. Get those peasants working and build yourself a nice, secure castle with a dungeon or two and you'd be all set.

Date: 2009-05-26 06:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jo-lasalle.livejournal.com
Get those peasants working and build yourself a nice, secure castle with a dungeon or two and you'd be all set.

You're almost making me want to watch that. Just for that. And the wet sock.

Date: 2009-05-26 06:55 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lesbiassparrow.livejournal.com
He will never build a castle because that would make actual sense. And given that most of their plots involve Robin having ridiculously easy access to various places, they might actually have to put some thought into it.

Date: 2009-05-26 07:43 pm (UTC)
morwen_peredhil: (derek man you up - by blackdoggy1)
From: [personal profile] morwen_peredhil
It reminds me of how half of the good guys' problems on Alias could have been solved by having a decent security camera system in the parking garage.

Date: 2009-05-26 10:18 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lesbiassparrow.livejournal.com
Once in a while I don't mind that the secret lair/house/castle apparently has only a guard of two because the villains are dumb that way. But when it happens again and again, either you have to assume that they've all been dropped on their heads or that they actually like being defeated. Plus, there's no risk if Robin can actually go wherever he likes.

Date: 2009-05-26 07:04 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pontisbright.livejournal.com
The first season really is spectacularly awful. After that it is is still awful, but they manage to make the costumes a bit less hilariously terrible and very slightly tone down the 'aha, our anachronisms are so wacky!' shit - and, fundamentally, they lay off the Crusades/Iraq analogy so you get less of Robin's deeply boring PTSD. Well, ish. I still can't really fathom why they did that. And why we're supposed to spend the early episodes thinking 'yes, Robin, you should keep your lands and have a loyal manservant, that's how to free the masses!'

If the eyeliner isn't doing it for you, I'd stop now. Guy's Comedy Manpain is really the only thing to recommend it. Go watch Praed and proper Merries, I say! (And yes, I know this is probably all my fault and I am very very sorry.)

Date: 2009-05-26 07:20 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lesbiassparrow.livejournal.com
If the Crusades = Iraq, how are we supposed to think that Richard will solve anything? Am I missing something? Are we supposed to think Robin is delusional? And YES on the whole dumb "I want equality for all. And we'll start by making me earl again, peasants!"

Date: 2009-05-26 07:17 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] gfrancie.livejournal.com
Oh I know it is bad. sooooooooo very bad, but I can't stop watching. OMG OMG but WAIT until you get to season three when you have Toby Stephens playing Prince John. It is like he and the sheriff are having a total camp-off. All swaggering about being Mr. Campy bad-guy with facial hair. I kept snorting. Loved every second.

Date: 2009-05-26 07:21 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lesbiassparrow.livejournal.com
I am almost drawn in the promise of a camp-off between the sheriff and Prince John. But...then I'd have to see more of Robin. THE AGONY. HOW COULD YOU HAVE SUCH A TERRIBLE ROBIN. It's like they want me to root for the other side.

Date: 2009-05-26 07:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] balcarin.livejournal.com
If I know one thing about the Normans is that they loved to build castles. It was like crack to them. In fact, I suspect that they thought any day without building a castle was a wasted day.

I am LOLing so hard. I have never seen Robin Hood because I heard it was rubbish.

Date: 2009-05-26 10:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lesbiassparrow.livejournal.com
It is quite unbelievably dreadful. Even fast forwarding so one sees as little of Robin as is humanely possible doesn't save it.

Date: 2009-05-26 08:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jenavira.livejournal.com
I agree with all your points. This is the only Robin Hood I've ever seen where I hate Robin so, so much (and really don't see why Marian didn't just marry Guy. I mean, that Guy and that Robin? No contest).

Are they really still all "Richard will fix everything"? LOL.

Date: 2009-05-26 10:09 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lesbiassparrow.livejournal.com
and really don't see why Marian didn't just marry Guy

Well, he does burn down her house or something. To be honest, if my options were Guy or Robin, I'd probably enter a convent and be an aristocratic nun. But if that weren't an option, I go for Guy. At least he doesn't look like a ferret and one could probably wean him off the eyeliner in time.

Date: 2009-05-26 10:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] queenthesixth.livejournal.com
At least he doesn't look like a ferret

Hee! My mother agrees. She can't stand Jonas Armstrong. She'd thrown things at the TV when he's on, but for the fact that she's afraid she'd break it and have to buy a new one.

Date: 2009-05-26 09:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] queenthesixth.livejournal.com
Toby Stephens is worth every minute of Robin being annoying. If they made a spin off with Prince John, I would watch it and then buy the DVD's.
I always thought that making Marion the night watchmen was a bit of lazy writing. Like it's shorthand for "she's a strong character! She's sassy! And she kicks ass! No wonder the men are fighting over her. Love her! LOVE HER NOW!" I'm not saying she should have been having the vapours and wringing her hands, and it could be my age showing, but she couldn't have been a strong presence without being a masked avenger? If they'd given her some better dialogue, she could have had both Guy and Robin at a loss for words and been this strong woman who kept home and hearth together when her father was clearly unable to protect them anymore.
I mean, I have never once watched Olivia de Havilland as Marion and thought "she's not even holding a bow and arrow. She's clearly weak and not worth my time."
This show could have been sooo good and it pisses me off because I love the Robin Hood legend. And don't get me started on the lame fight scenes...

Date: 2009-05-26 10:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lesbiassparrow.livejournal.com
Toby Stephens is worth every minute of Robin being annoying.

That's impressive. Not even Richard Armitage counterbalances him enough for me. I totally agree with you on the Marian and the Night Watchman stuff. They just can't really work out what to do with her beyond having her vacillate between Robin and Guy and be threatened by the Sheriff. Or be an improbable character who does cartwheels to fight people off.

Date: 2009-05-26 10:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] queenthesixth.livejournal.com
Toby Stephens is having a hell of a lot of fun playing Prince John and it really shows. As much I love Richard Armitage, Guy is really the Sherrif's lackey and seems to take refuge in brooding and being sullen. So Guy can be a bit annoying. Whereas the Prince just tells everyone what to do, changes his mind and tells them all over again and doesn't see what the problem is. So he can be as mad as he likes and nobody can do a thing. And it's brilliant.
But I'm biased because I think Toby Stephens is great, and as much as I'm a fan of Richard Armitage, he seems to have cornered the market in broody men with man pain since 2004's North & South.

Date: 2009-05-28 12:07 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lesbiassparrow.livejournal.com
as much as I'm a fan of Richard Armitage, he seems to have cornered the market in broody men with man pain since 2004's

He does like to lurk and loom over people in his angst. As Guy it's well deserved angst, of course, but that doesn't stop him. Not one bit.

I am attracted by the whole Prince John and Toby Stephens stuff. If only there were even a chance that he might get to kill Robin...

Date: 2009-05-26 09:09 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] namastenancy.livejournal.com
I LOVE your commentary. Robin Hood = wet sock! Best comment ever. I remember when he sauntered onto the screen; I was bored in three minutes and disgusted in five. I think that the producers thought that they were updating Robin by making him scruffy guy in a hoodie but it sure made me glad for my fast forward button. How Marian could refuse Guy who was sexier than 20+++ Robin the clueless twit was a complete puzzlement. In a way, the producers made a major mistake in casting Armitage as the villain - he's sexier, much more charismatic and can actually..you know...act. I swear that I thought that if I had Guy looming over me, mooing over me and making the moves on me and occasionally shirtless, I would have no difficulty in making up my mind.
Where do I start on the anachronisms? The clothes! The houses! The castles (?). The eyeshadow! Maid Marian in blue eyeshadow and cleavage. Oh My God. Bloody Awful. However, Guy's Man Pain and the evil Sheriff camping it up all over the place made those parts worth watching. Ah Richard. The sacrifices that I make for you!

Date: 2009-05-26 10:14 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lesbiassparrow.livejournal.com
I sort of see what they were going for with Robin and it might have worked if they'd had someone actually charismatic in the role. But as it is, he's just a ferrety ex-nobleman with a King Richard fetish. Any of the Merry Men has 10 times his presence and charm. Actually, any of the random peasants that wallow around could out Robin him easily.

Date: 2009-05-26 11:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] namastenancy.livejournal.com
Yup - I kept thinking that if he luves King Richard so much, why doesn't he go and look for him instead of lurking around the countryside, making life much more difficult for the peasants he is supposed to be helping. Then Guy and Marian can get it on, Guy will be happier and oppress less and shares in eyeliner will hit an all-time low.
Which would be A Very Good Thing.
Although I'd miss the man pain but a few hot and sexy scenes with RA would totally make up for it.

Date: 2009-05-26 09:39 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] cassiphone.livejournal.com
I thought the "richard will save us all" idea was dealt with best in the last episode of the first season of Maid Marian and her Merry Men in which good King Richard turned up to save them all... and turned out to be exactly as much of a bastard as King John! He was even played by the same actor... they sniggered together, the faces of the Merry Men fell, and they went back to doing what they did best - without ever mentioning their mythical hero again.

Date: 2009-05-26 10:16 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lesbiassparrow.livejournal.com
I have not seen this show, but it sounds excellent. And Richard returning works for a film maybe, where it gives closure neatly or for something where they're not contradicting themselves by showing that clearly this money is all flooding out of the country. They can't even say "But fighting the heathens is worth it!" because they're all conflicted about who the bad people actually are. It's just so dumb. And so clearly dumb - you can't even handwave it away because the show clearly shows it's an idiotic idea.

Date: 2009-05-27 03:28 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] cassiphone.livejournal.com
If you can get hold of it, it's worth a look - a witty, musical kids series from... 15 years ago maybe, written by and starring Tony Robinson (as the Sheriff).

The premise is that Marian is awesome and the leader of the merry band, while Robin is a complete twit who gets the public credit for everything she does (because hero stories are hard to beat). The first season is a particularly cool take on many of the classic myths surrounding Robin, as well as skewering the various film versions (including the Disney one - as shown when Robin DISGUISES HIMSELF AS A CHICKEN for the famous archery contest).

Date: 2009-05-27 01:27 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] salimbol.livejournal.com
I hate to be one of Those People, but Robin of Sherwood dealt with it a lot better
That is actually all that needs saying, really (not just about Richard, but about everything). I've just rewatched all of RoS, so I know this for truth! Gospel truth!

Date: 2009-05-28 12:15 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lesbiassparrow.livejournal.com
Gospel truth!

IT IS. EVERY WORD OF IT. And they even had more than five villagers and one castle! CLEARLY SUPERIOR.

Date: 2009-05-27 02:04 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ulkis.livejournal.com
Hee.

A lot of Guy's problems could be solved if he lived in a castle, rather than in a house that Robin Hood can waltz in and out of when he wants. Get those peasants working and build yourself a nice, secure castle with a dungeon or two and you'd be all set.

Plus, castles make for much better brooding backgrounds.

Date: 2009-05-28 12:16 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lesbiassparrow.livejournal.com
Plus, castles make for much better brooding backgrounds.

Guy does his best work while in Nottingham Castle. Its corner and nooks were made for him to brood in. Or, alternatively, to loom threateningly in.

Date: 2009-05-27 02:41 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kirpunz.livejournal.com
I would ask that you keep watching and making posts like this. I'm sorry I find your pain so humorous.

Date: 2009-05-28 12:17 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lesbiassparrow.livejournal.com
It's just so very dreadful. I've watched so much bad TV that you would think that this would not represent some new horror for me. But it does. I can hardly believe how much I want to kick everyone involved.

Date: 2009-05-27 07:30 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] missmomoko.livejournal.com
LOL but all those points is why I love Robin Hood! It's a good show to make fun of!!

Date: 2009-05-28 12:24 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lesbiassparrow.livejournal.com
I think I would have more entertainment with it if I could bring myself to like Robin. Then all the Guyliner and camp sheriff and hilarious dancing Saracen assassins would be fun. *sigh*

Date: 2009-05-27 09:44 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] fivil.livejournal.com
Once again struck by your ability to watch crappy things so persistently. :D

Did you see The Mentalist finale ep?

Date: 2009-05-28 12:20 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lesbiassparrow.livejournal.com
Once again struck by your ability to watch crappy things so persistently

It's my super power. I can watch pretty much anything. Except Robin Hood as done by the BBC.

I did see the finale and loved it. Though I find with The Mentalist that although I enjoy it, I never have a lot to say about it.

Date: 2009-05-27 11:23 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] chelseagirl47.livejournal.com
There *is* no good about this show. Somehow M. and I watched two seasons of it, mostly marvelling in "can it get any worse? yes! it just did."

I admit to some fondness for the Guyliner, but honest, he is dumb as a rock; dude, the woman in the historically inappropriate outfits just isn't into you! And as you say, the next random person who walks past me in the street, no matter what age, gender, etc, would probably make a better Robin Hood than the actor who actually landed the role.

Date: 2009-05-28 12:23 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lesbiassparrow.livejournal.com
dude, the woman in the historically inappropriate outfits just isn't into you!

And you burned her house down! And keep killing people and such which is not exactly going to win your way into her heart. It's somewhat amazing that he thinks he has a chance, really. Though, given that his competition looks like a weasel, maybe there are reasons to hope.

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