I don’t fancy Benedict Cumberbatch. Please! I only admire his craft.
I am an admirer of his craft.
He’s very good at what he does. Hell! The only line I could remember after watching Atonement was his: “Bite it. You have to bite it.” And let’s admit it; he didn’t feature much in it.
I saw Danny Boyle’s Frankenstein four times. Yes. Four. In one week. I confess, I gave Jonny Lee Miller’s naked bod an equal share of that, but it was Cumberbatch that got me standing in line at 7am in front of the NT, shaking against the lukewarm contents of a coffee cup.
His acting prowess made an Arthur Conan Doyle fan of me. He rekindled my passion for theatre. I have a lot to be thankful for in that respect.
But. I have to concede, reluctantly, shame-faced, that I also fancy the pants off him. Have done, obsessively so, for some time now.
It’s so bad that my husband’s nickname for Cumberbatch is ‘your boyfriend’.
“When’s your boyfriend’s show next on? Taking their time with the new Sherlock, aren’t they?”
“It was awfully cold on that stage. You boyfriend didn’t get much of a chance to show off, did he?”
“If you say one more time that I’m the Scottish version of your boyfriend, I’m getting the Tesco divorce pack. I’m serious.”
You get the picture.
Why did I lie about it? Because I prided myself on being a rational creature, someone who saw celebrity culture for the mind-bending, money-peddling machine that it is. I was so damned smug. Fell off that horse pretty quickly, didn’t I?
I am still at a loss to understand how it could happen. Yes. That’s it. It is something that’s happened to me. I mean, I like Ben Wishaw’s acting too, David Tennant’s, James McAvoy’s, Tom Burke’s… But I’m not stalking any of them on networking sites.
I finally understand what actors feel like when they suddenly get famous and struggle to cope with all the attention. As a recovering Cumberbatch addict, I feel the same in reverse: deer-in-headlights bewildered by this obsessive streak I had no idea existed in anyone!
Embarrassed? Yes. My only hope is that now I’ve confessed it, I can gather myself up and move the f on.