When Cindy mentioned our "Historical Hotties" week, I racked my brain--I couldn't think of who on earth to talk about, and then I remembered:
What a Sean-o-phile I am!
Sean Bean, who I first saw as Richard Sharpe, in the Brit series, Sharpe's Rifles.
Bad-boy Sharpe is field-promoted from sergeant to lieutenant then captain during the Peninsular War (1808-1814) by Wellington (before he was Wellington), because Sharpe exhibits courage, intelligence, and initiative (and he saves Wellington's life, which doesn't hurt).
He's given command of the Rifles (The Chosen Men), who are considered the riff-raff of the army. Two things make them stand out from the others, their bottle-green uniforms and their new rifles, which are far more accurate than the musket. The Rifles become sharp-shooters and are sent on clandestine missions for Wellington.
Sharpe is tough and courageous, not afraid to be hard on his men, and he shapes the Rifles into the best fighting team in the army. He falls in love with a beautiful Spanish woman who leads a contingent of Spanish rebels (she wears pants and shoots as well as Sharpe does). He deals with personal enemies as thoroughly as he deals with French soldiers in battle.
Richard Sharpe not a "nice" guy--he's alpha male, and he makes sure we know it.
Sharpe's Rifles played through the 1990s. I remember at the time how many Regency historicals featured heroes who'd been in the 95th Rifles. Coincidence? I think not--the Rifles were too cool to pass up, and Sean Bean gave them a face and a character.
Most Americans know Sean as Goldeneye from the James Bond movie of that name (Pierce Brosnan and Sean Bean in one movie--what's not to love!)
And also as Boromir from Lord of the Rings.
In fact, I only reluctantly watched the second and third movies of Lord of the Rings, because Sean was only in the first one. Aragorn, piffle. Give me Sean!!!
Most of the Regency-era hotties play Darcy and other Austen heroes--Richard Sharpe is the rough, tough bad boy of the lot.
And it's no coincidence that in my Regency mystery series, my hero/sleuth is a half-pay cavalry captain from the Peninsular War. Captain Lacey is not Richard Sharpe (Lacey was gentleman born, but just as tough as Sharpe ever was), but Sharpe's Rifles helped me visualize Lacey's background.
Any other Sean-o-philes around? And if not, I hope I've inspired you to rent DVDs and get to know the terrific actor Sean Bean. (Note: You can see a *lot* of him in Lady Chatterley's Lover.)