I saw Richard in the BBCs Christmas drama “Lorna Doone” in 2000. At the time I was impressed and very moved by his portrayal of John Ridd, Lorna’s destined love. Earlier that same year I had become a big fan of the British sitcom “Coupling” mainly due to the quirky character Jeff, a socially inept Welshman. His performance in this was so lively and convincing that when I saw the very serious and very English John Ridd in “Lorna Doone” I didn’t even recognise him! To me this is the sign of a gifted actor, he truly takes on the essence of his roles in much the same way that Gary Oldman does. You never notice the celebrity above the character he’s playing.
Personally I was very disappointed when Richard left the cast of “Coupling.” I think it was a wise move though, and avoided type-casting which was very possible whilst this was the most high profile role of his career to date. Without him the show lost its heart and I soon lost interest.
I really hope we will see more of him in the near future. Britain could really use a few more gems like him.
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