Friday, April 13, 2007

DCI Gene Hunt and women

The Daily Telegraph has now waded into the Life on Mars Gene Hunt thing with an article about why women love him. The journalist, a female, quite rightly pointed out that Philip Glenister should have been up for a BAFTA. A few weeks ago a female journalist also wrote about her obsession with Gene Hunt and how she discovered Philip Glenister reading bedtime stories on CBBC (something that had the mothers tuning in in droves I have no doubt).

Actually I am not surprised that women are enthralled with him. It is not his looks. It is his underlying core integrity, his loyalty to his team. He is the sort of man who despite his faults, you know will go into single handed combat with spiders, mice and other creepy crawlies. Through out the series, I was worried that some how the Life on Mars writer would add bits in that made Gene more grey. less attractive, but they didn't. Gene Hunt works because he has a code of honour. he also has a series of outrageous one liners. But when the chips are down, you count on him to do the right thing for his team. He is an alpha male hero, and why anyone should be surprised about women's reactions to him...It is the fantasy that is the perennial best seller in women's romance.

I do worry about the proposed new series Ashes to Ashes. He would be 12 years older. I don't want a shades of grey Gene Hunt. I don't want an older but wiser Gene Hunt. I don't want a ravaged by time Gene Hunt that might be more interesting to play. I want the black and white Gene Hunt, the scene stealing Gene Hunt, the unreconstructed male hero. And please, please, can his wife stay off screen? He is not the sort of man domesticity comes easy to. A bit like Sharpe.

Why do so many men assume women go for looks? Personality, codes of honour, doing the right thing can mean a lot. Give me a man of honour any time over a pretty boy snake.

The new wip goes slowly, but with my hero sorted. Things are starting to flow. I want my current hero to be even more dangerous. The sort of man who says -- this far and no further. But now that I have found him. Things have had to change.

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