Monday, October 24, 2011

Voices: Favorite Actors On My Mind - Nicola Walker, Trevor Eve, Ben Daniels, Damian Lewis

Continuing the series that I call Voices I’m featuring this time four actors whose work I admire and who have recently been in my thoughts. Two of the actors starred in British television series that have now aired their final episodes, one left his role in a television series recently, and the fourth is starring in a new series for American cable television.

Nicola Walker

Ruth Evershed was the only woman in Spooks/MI5 that I could identify with. I still remember the thrill I felt in the series episode when Harry (Peter Firth) and Ruth (Nicola Walker) first go out to dinner and Harry confesses having a romantic “thing” for Ruth.  

Nicola Walker played Ruth to perfection, and if Harry was the heart of Spooks, Ruth was the soul.

I  also recently greatly enjoyed her funny and wonderful guest appearance in the UK series Being Human.

Nicola Walker started her career in the Cambridge Footlights, a theatrical club founded and run by students at Cambridge University.  She’s worked in films, television, theater, and radio.
Below you can listen to Nicola in a 2006 BBC Radio play called Gilly about Internet dating:

Trevor Eve

I can’t remember the first time I saw Trevor Eve on my television screen. Thanks to U.S. public television and now BBC America I’ve watched him now for a couple of decades.  He’s one of those actors that never seem to be out of a job, you can always count on him to give a good performance, but also  to always do it in his own special style. Some of my favorite series with Trevor Eve through the years have been Parnell and the Englishwoman (1991),  Heat of the Sun (1998) and Waking the Dead (2000-2011). He’s also appeared in films like Troy.

In Waking the Dead he played Detective Superintendent Peter Boyd, the head of the Cold Case Squad.  I was sad to see the final episode a few weeks ago on one of my local PBS (US public television) stations. Waking the Dead was another series, like Spooks, that I’ve followed from the beginning.

Below Trevor Eve reads an excerpt from Shakespeare’s sonnet “Is it for Fear to Wet a Widow’s Eye”:

Ben Daniels

No question that Ben Daniels has a lovely male voice that commands attention. He’s a graduate of LAMDA (London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art) and has appeared in several British television series,  and films, and has a distinguished stage career.
I know Ben Daniels for his role in the series Law & Order:UK as  Senior Crown Prosecutor James Steel.  For me he was the moral center of the series and the voice of justice. Daniels left the series this year and I miss him.

Below is Daniels as the Vicomte de Valmont  in Les Liaison Dangereuses with Laura Linney in a 2008 US  production.

Damian Lewis

Damian Lewis is playing another role as an American soldier in a fascinating new TV series, Homeland, on Showtime. Homeland can be seen on Sunday nights at 10:00pm, or on Mondays at the same time when I usually watch it.

However, my favorite Damian Lewis roles (before the current one) are in two British television series when he talked in his own native accent, as Soames in The Forsyte Saga (2002) and as Benedick in Much Ado About Nothing as part of the series Shakespeare Re-Told (2005).  Of course, audiences know him well from the HBO TV series Band of Brothers (2001) about World War II.

Below he reads a poem from the Great War (World War I) called "High Wood" written by Philip Johnstone (Lt. John Stanly Purvis) in 1918.


Do you have a favorite series or favorite actor that you miss seeing these days?  


  1. I've heard only of Damian, and as you know, I adore him. BAND OF BROTHERS and THE FORSYTHE SAGA were two projects he absolutely shined in!
    Unfortunately the idea and the genre of his new show, are something I don't do ...
    I wish he was Bond :)

  2. Dear Dezz :)
    Thanks so much for your comment.
    A red head as Bond? Well, we've had a blond Bond. Damian is a wonderful actor, so I'm sure he would be a great Bond, but I must confess my choice would be RA :)

  3. Great choices! I've loved Trevor Eve since his coffee commercial days in the UK in the early 90s and then, of course, Waking the Dead. Damian Lewis is amazing, no other word for it. Are you watching Homeland? I have the episodes building up on my DVR and am looking for a 5-hour block when I can just glom through them. He has a rare mix of comedy and drama ability and his work as Sommes Forsythe was the stuff of legend.

  4. Awesome post! I've been meaning to shine a spotlight to some actors that caught my eye lately (even had a bit of a crush on), so thanks for the extra nudge :D

    I've only seen a few episodes of Spooks. I like it a lot (both w/ Rupert and Richard), but I don't have patience w/ TV shows so I always end up abandoning it. I have to revisit it again at some point.

  5. @Kiersten Hi! Welcome!
    Didn't know about Trevor Eve's commercials, thanks for the info...he's never stopped working I think. Yes, I'm watching Homeland too, Damian is doing an excellent job as always. Very intense. Would love to know what you think after you watch it.

  6. @ruth Hi! Can't wait to see the actors you'll spotlight! I'll be on the lookout for it :)

    Hope you take a chance on Spooks and watch it from the beginning. The episodes are very fast paced. But you can also concentrate on the RPJ and Richard episodes of course :) Thanks for your comments!


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