Sunday, February 18, 2007

"I Couldn't Possibly Comment"

Stage giant Ian Richardson passed away this week, closing the curtain on 40 years of exemplary theatre, television, and film. I was introduced to Richardson as Francis Urquhart in the BBC's political thriller, House of Cards and its sequels, To Play the King and The Final Cut. I'm not sure what it says about me, but Richardson was able to make the murderous Urquhart an easily sympathetic character for whom I cheered. In each of these series, his soliloquies gave chills while he coldly mused about the disposals of Mattie Storin, Tim Stamper, and Sarah Harding. The Guardian described Richardson's as "a voice that could cut like acid" and never was it on better display than when he would deadpan his signature line, "you might say that - I couldn't possibly comment". A few years ago I had the pleasure of seeing Richardson perform in The Hollow Crown at The Princess of Wales Theatre in Toronto. Closing your eyes, Richardson's rolling "R" and smooth intonation brought to mind a man delicately speaking around a razor caught in his throat.

1 comment:

webber said...

My all-time favourite line, which I used a lot in my aborted political career, was "Put some stick about."