Favouritest Grabs Ever – Fifth Edition

What’s Going On in This Picture?

When you have as many grabs as we do, you may as well go for a Favouritest Grabs Ever – Fifth Edition.

Admin’s Picks:

He really does look an annoyed cat.

He really does look like an annoyed cat.

What’s Going On in This Picture?

Admin:  This is from Minder S06E01: Give Us This Day Arthur Daley’s Bread. Chisholm has just unsuccessfully attempted to warn a philanthropic widow, Mrs. Hurst, that the work crew procured for her by a one Arthur Daley are actually a bunch of ex-cons intent on doing a spot of robbery.  He is profoundly frustrated because, as usual, he is right, but Arthur Daley inexplicably has the good lady wound around his little finger.  Poor Mr. Chisholm is left frustrated and without support, hence the annoyed cat face.

Why is This One a Favourite?

An Annoyed Cat Source: FunnyAllTime

An Annoyed Cat.  So fierce; so cute.
Source: FunnyAllTime

Admin:  It is a favorite because he looks exactly like an annoyed cat.  The lowered brow, the fierce sneer, the jutting cheekbones, and the steely blue-eyed gaze all scream Annoyed Cat.  The only way he could possibly look more like an annoyed cat were to be if he suddenly grew fur and a tail.

Granted, “Arthur Daley’s Bread” isn’t one of my favorite episodes as I really didn’t like the “lovable” crims that much, but it really did showcase some of Mr. Malahide’s incredible facial expressions.  Mr. Chisholm was in full throttle for the episode which provided a ton of great blue-eyed grabs.  But, none of them quite demonstrate the sheer exasperation of dealing with the likes of Arthur Daley quite the way the “Annoyed Cat” grab does.

RF:  Well, Chisholm had good reason to be annoyed by that point; not only was he right about the crims (who, I totally agree, weren’t lovable in the least), but no one was listening to him.  🙁  Even Jones was being obstreperous in that episode.  But he does look exactly like an annoyed cat, and he’d react to being touched just about as well as a cat would.  That episode was well into the Wile E. Coyote phase of Chisholm’s career, when it seemed his sole purpose was just to be a comic foil for Arthur and Terry.  I much preferred the more confident and competent Chisholm of earlier seasons, who appeared to relish being a copper (at least a little bit).  Also, I don’t know if it was on purpose, but the blue curtains really brought out the blue of Mr. Malahide’s eyes in that scene.

Admin:  In its defense, I will say that the “Daley’s Bread” has some remarkably good cinematography.  I think they were paying particular attention to Chisholm’s facial expressions and filming them in such a way as to maximize their effect.

Emotions flicker across Lord W's face as he can't ignore what he's hearing. His heart is being broken by the man he regarded as a son.

Emotions flicker across Lord W’s face as he can’t ignore what he’s hearing. His heart is being broken by the man he regarded as a son.

What’s Going On in This Picture?

Admin:  This is from S02E09 of Indian Summers.  The Viceroy, Lord Willingdon, has just been given some terribly crushing news in the most brutal manner possible by a man he respected and loved like a son.  They are in a public setting announcing the new Viceroy while listening to a band.  The Viceroy is struggling to maintain his composure.

Why is This One a Favourite?

Admin: OK…bad form to include such a new grab, but there you go.  Perfection should be acknowledged, and this grab is perfection.  You can see the confusion, pain, and anguish all in Willingdon’s eyes as he is very nearly being abused by Ralph.  We never did find out why Ralph was so brutal with his confession as the Viceroy lamentably did not appear in the finale.   But, the intense emotion displayed by Mr. Malahide during the confession scene is extraordinary.   You can see him fighting back the tears and struggling with all his might to keep it together.  Poor Viceroy.  I kind of wished he’d just decked Ralph then and there.

RF:  Oh, that was an amazing scene!  Not a word of dialogue, but you could see everything flickering over Lord W’s face.  He was in a turmoil, experiencing denial, betrayal, anger, and heartbreak all at once, as the man he once regarded as a son revealed he wasn’t anything like the person Lord W. supposed him to be.  And of course, Ralph chose a public occasion to do this, so Lord W. had to fight not to reveal what was going on to any of the onlookers.  He looks incredibly vulnerable and even… young at this moment, like he’s never experienced anything like this before – and maybe he hasn’t.  I would agree that it was very frustrating that we never found out why Ralph decided to confess everything in this manner, nor what the aftermath was; it would’ve been nice to have had some resolution by showing Lord W actually telling Ralph “a few home truths” rather than just tossing off a mention of it in the finale.  Still, it was a remarkable job of acting by Mr. Malahide.

Admin:  I agree the Viceroy looks young in this scene.  That certainly works well to enhance his vulnerability.

RF’s Picks:

Captain Claude Howlett is working on getting well and truly snockered

Captain Claude Howlett is working on getting well and truly snockered

What’s Going On in This Picture?

RF:  It’s from “All the King’s Men” (1999), in which Mr. Malahide played Captain Claude Howlett, battalion doctor of the ill-fated Sandringham Company, which was wiped out entirely during World War I in Turkey.  In this scene, Howlett and the rest of the company are attending the wedding of Sgt. Ted Grimes to Sandringham maid Peggy Batterbee just before their deployment overseas.  Brother of the bride Cpl. Herbert Batterbee (Ed Waters) has just asked Capt. Howlett if he can get him anything, and Capt. Howlett, who’s well on his way to being very, very drunk, replies with his heartfelt wish for a “plump little waitress, rather unclean”.  Living dangerously, Batterbee then asks if Howlett “reckon[s] [he’d] be any good to her in that state” and gets a Drunken Glare of Death in return.  Howlett might be drunk, but he probably won’t forget that one!

Why is This One a Favourite?

RF:  We already know that Howlett’s life isn’t a very happy one; his wife has left him and his lover, Lady Frances, is due to marry someone else (although she’d probably drop him in a red-hot second if Howlett was available).  Howlett also saw action during the Boer War, and while he emerged physically unscathed, he still has some mental scarring.  We know that he frequently turns to drink to dull the pain, but this is the first time we’ve seen him quite so far gone.  He’s swaying in his chair and barely staying upright – Batterbee is probably right(!) about his condition – but Howlett still has the wherewithal to give Batterbee a nasty Glare of Death for impugning his prowess.  Sad, but a little funny at the same time.  Also, Howlett appears to be sooooooo drunk that you can practically smell the alcohol fumes coming off him. It’s a very convincing and ultimately moving portrayal by Mr. Malahide.

Admin:  Howlett is such a wonderful character.  He starts off this sort of drunken debauched sort, but then he proves himself to be essentially the most caring and capable man of the battalion.  One thing that sets him apart from most characters is his keen sense of self-awareness.  He knows very well what his shortcomings are, but he also knows why he has them and is depressingly accepting of it all.  Even in a near drunken stupor he seems remarkably clued in as Batterbee found out.   And I love Howlett’s drunken expression as he takes offense to Batterbee’s intrusion and gives the warning glare.

RF:  Howlett was also the only one out of the entire Sandringham Company who had a clue what they might be facing in Turkey.  He knew how bad it would be, but he had the courage to go anyway.  And you’re right that he was well aware of his own shortcomings, but he didn’t seem to judge anyone else for theirs.

Inspector Roderick Alleyn has been away for a few months. Stupid lucky Troy.

Inspector Roderick Alleyn has been away for a few months. Stupid lucky Troy.

What’s Going On in This Picture?

RF:  Isn’t it obvious?  😉  The “Inspector Alleyn Mysteries” series is always great for grabs, perhaps no episode more so than S02E03 “Dead Water” (1994).  It was hard to pick just one, but I had to go with this one.  In this scene, Alleyn has been away in Egypt on a top secret diplomatic mission for a few months.  He’s just gotten back to England and has had to do a couple of tiresome chores first, like debrief at Whitehall and convince his old French tutor, Miss Emily Pride, not to take matters into her own hands in dealing with some death threats (long story, reviewed in my recap).  So he’s been a bit delayed in meeting his girlfriend Agatha Troy (Belinda Lang), who is eagerly awaiting his return so they can set off on their (mostly chaste) vacation together, away from his police work.  When he finally does show up at Troy’s, this is the greeting he gets two seconds after he walks in the door.  They seem quite happy to see each other again.  😉

Why is This One a Favourite?

RF:  For one thing, the cinematography is lovely.  The lighting is perfect and as Admin has pointed out, you can actually see their faces from different angles reflected in the pictures on the wall, while that sculptured bust seems to be averting its gaze in embarrassed disapproval.  For another thing, it’s a chance to see Alleyn in more relaxed, casual clothes; I absolutely loved his tweedy suit, ascot, and fedora.  But best of all, it shows the progression of Alleyn and Troy’s relationship, which has reached the point where they obviously have a lot of passion for each other – something which doesn’t quite come across as effectively in Ngaio Marsh’s novels, in my opinion.  Ms. Lang and Mr. Malahide added a lot of warmth, emotion, and believability to their characters, so that we were rooting for them as a couple.  Aside from all of that, the scene is just so dang cute!  Alleyn has just kicked the door shut without looking at it rather than take his attention off Troy.  Aaawwwww.  😉

Admin: Poor awkward sculptured bust. 🙂Alleyn”  has some of the most gorgeous cinematography going even by today’s standards.  Everything is always on point from the color scheme to the decor to the general layout.  Yes, I love the mirror reflections in this grab, they are lovely.  And I also love the way they made it a full-length shot so you can see Troy’s footwear.  She is really looking  forward to their vacation together.  Yes, Alleyn’s more casual tweedy attire is incredibly fetching.  “Dead Water” is an excellent episode for fans of the Alleyn wardrobe. 😉

RF:  It’s just an excellent episode all around.  Of course, we know they’re not going to have a peaceful, uninterrupted vacation without any pesky murders.  As a bonus, the Scottish location for the main part of the story was also quite gorgeous.

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