Let’s face it, you’re really not supposed to fancy serial killers. Unless you have ambitions to become a Death Row bride, fantasising about someone with a penchant for torture and murder isn’t just frowned upon: it’s wrong on every level. These aren’t just bad boys who sometimes cross the line, like Ray Donovan. They’re actual psychopaths. And yet, what Jamie Dornan in The Fall does is to mess with our heads; we know what he’s done, what he’s capable of, but his character, Paul/Peter Spector (they stopped short of calling him Phil), is still dangerously, irresistibly attractive. That incredible, seductive Northern Irish accent; those eyes; those cheekbones… that body.
We’re being manipulated, of course, by the creators of The Fall. Just as there are steamy/gratuitous shots of Gillian Anderson’s character Stella in the shower, pool, or in her trademark silk blouses (who hasn’t gone out and bought one? I know I have), there are plenty of opportunities to admire Jamie Dornan in The Fall. Not least in this week’s episode when he appeared wearing just a pair of black boxers *fans self*. It’s all anyone can talk about in my office and on Facebook and, I have no doubt, up and down the country. Put it this way, I wouldn’t have even considered seeing 50 Shades before The Fall. Now, it’s a definite possibility.
It’s the same, for me anyway, with Moriarty in Sherlock. For a start there’s the Irish accent (a definite theme here), the dangerously dark eyes, razor-sharp cheekbones. I can’t be the only one who finds him more attractive than either Sherlock or Dr Watson. And yet he’s another bloke with some serious issues.
What this does, of course, is to mess with our minds, to challenge the natural, obvious order; but that’s why The Fall is so clever. The astonishingly talented Jamie Dornan is luring us in, just as his character Peter/Paul lures his victims. We’ve even been given clues as to why he’s so mad and determined to torture and destroy women as though they’re his daughter’s Barbie dolls, although it’s unlikely we’ll start to identify with him or feel sorry for him any time soon. Ultimately, we know, he will have to pay the price for his hideous crimes, but for the time being, let’s just enjoy the ride. And those black boxer shorts *cough*.