Character of the Month: Lord Tony Dewhurst - Jamie Bamber News
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Character of the Month: Lord Tony Dewhurst
Title: The Scarlet Pimpernel
Original Airdate: January 24, 1999
Availability: I purchased my copy cheap on, but it seems to be unavailable at the moment, which leaves

Synopsis: Wikipedia has an excellent summary of the first novel by author Barroness Emmuska Orczy. But, here's what you need to know: during the French revolution, an English aristocrat - and renowned fop - Sir Percy Blakeney, AKA "The Scarlet Pimpernel", along with several fellow aristocrats known as “The League of the Scarlet Pimpernel”, cross into France to rescue French aristocrats from the guillotine. Despite being the talk of London, only the members of the league know of Percy's double life. Even his wife, Marguerite, is kept in the dark until it's almost too late. Jamie plays Lord Tony Dewhurst, supposedly one of Percy's most valued men, not that you would know this from the production.

Worth Watching? Yes, if you have a desire to see everything Jamie has appeared in. Otherwise, if you want a faithful adaptation of the novel, get yourself a copy of the 1982 mini series starring Anthony Andrews and Jane Seymour.

Does he live or die? Die. And it's the most brutal, in my opinion, of all his on screen deaths. The good news is you can quit watching at the sixty minute mark.

Jamie's first appearance and how you know you're a dedicated fan: You can spot that's him on the far right.

Usually there's this thing writers like to do called setting up the story and characters, but the writers of The Scarlet Pimpernel decided to go a different route: no set up. They just jump right into the story and expect you to figure it out. There's a rescue about to happen of one of the Pimpernel's men. And Jamie is forced to wear a really stupid hat.

“Yeah, I don't know what were doing standing way over here either.”

After Percy successfully rescues his man, who is about to die, everyone sets sale for England. Jamie looks around, is struck by familiar surroundings, and has to remind himself he is not starring in a Hornblower production.

Wasn't I just on this ship? Did the BBC get a deal on a lease?

I should mention in the other film productions Tony has a speaking substantial role with character development and lines. We're about fifteen minutes into the film and Tony has, literally, said two words.

I mentioned Percy and Marguerite. There's some scenes of them talking. There's obviously tension in the marriage, but we don't know why. I might be upset by this if I cared, but I don't because the actors were horribly miscast.

Tony speaks! With a stutter! Huh? That's new.

Here's Tony standing the background. Tony spends a lot of time in the background in this film.
Jamie uses the time to try and master the art of getting attention by only using his eyes.
Or maybe he's trying to not stare at his costars hair.

Tony pops his head into the scene. No, really, that's all he does. Again, no lines!
Maybe Jamie has begun randomly inserting himself to remind the production staff he exists.

He's so desperate for attention he attempts to sing.

At this point, stuff happens that maybe I should tell you about. Marguerite's brother, Armand, has been arrested by order of Chauvelin. Chauvelin's plan is to use Armand to pressure Marguerite to aid him in discovering the identity of the Scarlet Pimpernel. She hasn't figured out his "gone sailing on the Thames" is code for "heading to France to save people from losing their heads". Even though her marriage with Percy is on the rocks (While still in France - did I mention she was French? - she had a family sent to their death. Percy was none too happy to learn about that, but, really, it's just a huge misunderstanding!), she asks Percy to help save her brother. He says no to keep up a front, but takes off the next morning (to go sailing!) with his band of merry men to try and rescue Armand.

Once in France, Percy takes Tony to the BEST PARTY EVA! And we get a great moment in film history.

Tony, inspired by Colin Firth in 'Pride & Prejudice', tries out the wet shirt look.

The girls seem to like it and he's on his way to losing his virginity to all three of them.

Hey there! Can you believe I get paid to do this?!

Even the pervs can't help but admire Jamie Tony's ass assets.

The next morning, Percy and his band of merry men go to....the tailors to pick up Percy's new coat. But it's really just a cover. The tailor, like everyone who isn't busy rounding up aristocrats, is working with the Pimpernel. At this point you begin to wonder how Percy has a secret identity. Meanwhile, Jamie sits in the background, again.

From off camera: "Bamber! Wake up!"
Jamie: What? Wait. We're still filming? Crap.

Percy meets with Armand's girlfriend, who is actually working for Chauvelin. Chauvelin busts up their meeting and Percy goes running off. Meanwhile, Tony decides to play hero and gets in a scuffle with one of Chauvelin's men who is about to shoot Percy.

Bad screencap, but, still, doesn't it look like Tony's fighting off the guys advances? Not that you can blame him. ;)
And even Armand's treacherous girlfriend agrees!

As they say, no good deed goes unpunished and this is where the film goes from bad (literally) to worse. Tony is shot. And while it looked like he took the bullet in the shoulder in the scuffle, the writer/makeup person/director changes their mind and decides he got shot in the stomach instead.

While I'm down here, can someone get me my agent?

While Tony's busy bleeding, Percy is having fun running away form Chauvelin and stealing his horse. You begin to think, "It's all fun and games until someone loses their life". Which is about to happen to poor Tony. Chauvelin returns to the where Percy first fled, finds Tony bleeding and under arrest and, pissed off at being humiliated, grabs a gun and executes Tony. :(

I can't bring myself to show you any more than this.

The End. Thankfully. And sorry for the lateness of the post, but I still have thirty more minutes of Sunday. ;)


9 comments or Leave a comment
zegeekgirl From: zegeekgirl Date: July 26th, 2010 04:31 am (UTC) (Link Me)
Hey there! Can you believe I get paid to do this?!

Thank you, my dear, for capturing his facial expression in that shot so perfectly. LMAO. XD

The fact that they brutally killed off Tony is so much more annoying when you think about how Baroness Orczy's book series progressed. There is an ENTIRE BOOK entitled "Lord Tony's Wife." Yes, he gets married (to be precise, he elopes with a French duke's daughter, which is totally hot), and the whole climax of the book is about her being kidnapped and Tony enlisting Pimpernel to help him rescue her. *sigh* This is how it SHOULD BE.
asta77 From: asta77 Date: July 27th, 2010 01:08 pm (UTC) (Link Me)
I can't recall if Tony marries in the 1982 version, but they do show him hitting it off with the daughter of one of the aristocracy he helps to rescue. HE HAD A LIFE, DAMMIT!

Did you read all the books? I didn't realize you were so familiar with the story. :)
zegeekgirl From: zegeekgirl Date: July 27th, 2010 04:55 pm (UTC) (Link Me)
I didn't, but I knew of them. XD And after I watched the SP version w/ Jamie, after clearly thinking "Nooooo, no, that ain't right," I looked them up and sure enough.

And I may have read a bit of LTW - the whole thing's on Google Books!:
dramaturgca From: dramaturgca Date: September 20th, 2010 02:31 am (UTC) (Link Me)
Except for the delightful bath sequence, this version of Pimpernel is entirely dead to me. I actually first watched it before I knew what a Jamie Bamber was (oh horrors) I was 16 and newly in love with the Pimpernel musical (Douglas Sills, my first love), so I was watching/reading all the Pimpernel I could get my grubby little hands on. (I am still a deeply devoted Pimpernel junkie. I reread the first book at least once a year) I didn't so much mind Richard E Grant and Elizabeth McGovern, but when they shot Lord Tony my mind rebelled. I was like "But he has a whole BOOK later! You can't kill him, he has a book!". (Of course, three episodes later they killed Marguerite and that was seriously the end of it. You CANNOT KILL Marguerite.)

Anyway, my point is that even before I knew Jamie was Jamie, I knew it was wrong that he died here. So there.
asta77 From: asta77 Date: September 20th, 2010 03:18 am (UTC) (Link Me)
They killed Marguerite?! Good grief! I still have only watched the film Jamie was in, though the one James Callis appeared in is part of the set I bought. I think I'll need alcohol before I attempt viewing that.

On a side note, I discovered I had watched Jamie in TWO Hornblower films without taking any notice of him. Oops! I guess I needed the Arms of Apollo to come to my senses. ;)
dramaturgca From: dramaturgca Date: September 20th, 2010 03:20 am (UTC) (Link Me)
It's worse than that. She died in childbirth and then Percy had a sulky fit and stomped off to France abandoning his baby daughter. W. T. F?
lemurling From: lemurling Date: October 29th, 2010 11:46 pm (UTC) (Link Me)
I was desperate for distraction and started reading back through character posts.

I never read the books, and I haven't seen any other adaptions, so without any expectations of how the story was supposed to go, I rather liked these movies, so.... well I guess I have rotten taste, but pretty costumes, snarky lines, and a bit of swashbuckling go a long way for me.

I did rather like Lord Dewhurst, and was so sad when he died, but this was years and years and years before my Jamie Bamber obsession, so it did not scar me. Oh, and James Callis is utterly emo-boy and dashing and pathetic in his episode, I think it's rather fun, but even with my low standards I wanted to bang everybody's heads together very hard several times.

Scarlet Pimpernel/Hornblower is the only crossover that appeals to me. I'm a mad fancier of it actually, but I guess everyone else hating this version so much would account for why I've only found two in all my searching.

Well, people with low standards, give Scarlet Pimpernel a shot, you might actually like it!
asta77 From: asta77 Date: October 30th, 2010 04:39 pm (UTC) (Link Me)
My take on the films is VERY influenced by being a huge fan of the 1982 version with Jane Seymour and Anthony Andrews (I still have the videotape, which was one of the first I ever owned) and by seeing this after Hornblower and BSG. And now watching Jamie in L&O:UK and knowing what he's capable of given really good material, I'm going to have an even lower opinion of this adaptation.

I read a Hornblower/Pimpernel crossover fic years ago. I think Archie and Tony were cousins and Horatio became involved with Tony as he was dealing from Archie's death. Sound familiar at all?
lemurling From: lemurling Date: October 30th, 2010 08:25 pm (UTC) (Link Me)
No! That's one I've never found. The two I know about, one is sort of swashbuckly, can't remember who wrote it, where Horatio and Archie get kidnapped by Chauvelin and Fumier because they think Archie is Lord Dewhurst and can't figure out how he is alive. They get rescued by Percy and co, but are very pissed off about the whole thing.

The other is very heartbreaking, I think it's a Janet Cortese, called Doppelganger, and it takes place before D&D, and Horatio is moping, meets Tony at a party, and Tony takes him home and seduces him, knowing he's just a replacement, but so desperate for attention (appropriate to the series at least) that he doesn't care. It's one of my favorite HH fics of all that I've read.
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