Still Sharpe…

Sharpe returned to our screens last weekend in Sharpe’s Challenge, the first new on-screen adventure for the Duke of Wellington’s favourite soldier in nine years. I’m a massive fan of Sharpe – both the books and television series – and seeing him back on ITV after so long was an utter joy.

Not as much of a joy, however, as spending half an hour in a small room with Sharpe himself. Somehow, lucky, lucky, lucky bint that I am, I managed to wangle an interview with Sean Bean.

For the love of Elvis, life is good!

I should point out – reluctantly – that I wasn’t alone. There were ten other journalists there, but strangely enough hardly any of them seemed to know anything about Sharpe. Most just wanted to talk about The Lord Of The Rings or whether Sean wanted to be James Bond or how Sheffield United, his beloved footie team, were doing at the moment and if he still went to their matches. It seemed a tad rude, seeing as ITV had arranged the interview to promote their show, so I made sure I congratulated Sean on bringing back the famous Sharpe headbutt and, among other questions, asked if any more episodes were planned. (I was dying to see Sharpe’s Trafalgar but apparently it’s far too expensive to film – though they did think about it. Bother.)

Hilariously, I managed to get Sean to say one of my favourite lines from The Fellowship Of The Ring – when he picks up one of the broken shards of Narsil, pricks his finger and says: “Still sharp.” He even looked at his finger as he said it! Bless. If only I’d managed to get him to say, “They have a cave troll…” though. What a pity.

The most bizarre thing about meeting him was watching the first episode of Sharpe’s Challenge on a huge screen, soaking up Sean Bean as Richard Sharpe in the process – hair flowing, skin bronzed and beautiful, jaw firmly set, a man ready for action. And then walking into the room next door a few minutes afterwards to find him sitting on a sofa, fag in hand, shaven-headed and sporting a goatee… and wearing cowboy boots. My brain bounced around my skull with the shock.

I also had a streaming cold that day – the kind so bad that you wish you could stick a tampon up each nostril to save you having to blow your nose every two minutes. But it COMPLETELY VANISHED for the thirty minutes I spent in that room.

Sean Bean. Cure for the common cold!

And now, changing the subject completely, here’s a text message conversation I had with my friend Biddy the other day after we both saw a pig on TV getting rescued from a sticky situation. If there were awards for non-stop punning, they’d be sitting on our mantelpieces right now…

Biddy: Cute pig!
Jayne: They just saved his bacon.
Biddy: He’s hogging the limelight.
Jayne: They should give him the chop.
Biddy: I don’t think much of his acting. It’s a bit hammy.
Jayne: I think his delivery is crackling.
Biddy: Hmm. Sty as you might, you’ll never out-pun me!
Jayne: I reckon you’ll make a pig’s ear out of it eventually.
Biddy: That’s sow not true.
Jayne: Now you’re telling porkies.
Biddy: Snout wrong with that.
Jayne: I suppose you could say where there’s a swill, there’s a way.
Biddy: I’m going to have my lunch soon. I may have to cur-ly-tail our punning.
Jayne: I have a feeling we’ve hit a trough, anyway.
Biddy: Nah. I could trotter ’em out for hours!
Jayne: I think we were just going rind in circles, to be honest.
Biddy: It’s no use swining about it.
Jayne: You’re piglet-ing yourself get carried away now.
Biddy: It’s ok, I don’t rind.
Jayne: You re-used one of my puns! I win!
Biddy: But it was in a different context! There’s no need to be pig-headed about it!
Jayne: Nope, you cheated! I’m the winner!
Biddy: Ok. I’ll stop now. You’re obviously getting boar-ed.

Genius, I’m telling ya. Genius.

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5 Comments

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5 responses to “Still Sharpe…

  1. WhiteCrowUK

    After reading that entry I can feel all the blood, sweat and tears that went into coming up with that list of piggy puns.

    I also forsee there’ll be an entry coming in the next few days “I’ve a deadline and I’m way behind schedule”! 😉

  2. Jayne Nelson

    Seeing as the pun contest took place on Good Friday, I think I’m off the hook! However, we did have another one about horses yesterday, which interfered with work somewhat. In the end we had to (ahem) rein ourselves in…

  3. mark

    I laughed at that PUN conversation…oh the little things, eh? In school PUNS run rampant! It’s a scary place altogether…

    I’m not going to pretend like I know what Sharpe thing you’re talking about but it sounded like you had a right larf!

  4. Fence

    ITV are evil though. I was traveling the weekend they showed Sharpe so set it up to record, but didn’t realise the second part was on the very next day. ITV being evil is the only explanation.

    And the fact that I forgot to check. Damnations.

    Oh, and I’ve quoted you

  5. Charlene

    Just heard about your Sharpe/Sean Bean commentary [lucky you in being in the same room with “the man”] from a Yahoo Group I frequent called Buffs. Loved reading your commentary and happy to come across another Sharpe fan. I received Sharpes Fury in the mail yesterday and happily reading it. I do adore Sharpie and also the handsome, talented Sean Bean.

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