Why Andrew Scott is so alluring
Andrew Scott is attractive because he plays charismatic roles that reflect humility, anger, passion, understanding, and happiness. The characters he plays reflect what he stands for as a person and actor.
It’s hard to talk about Andrew Scott without mentioning his “hot priest” role in Fleabag. It’s not his face, height, or body that is sexy. We weren’t taught to think that men that look like Andrew Scott are hot. The way he carries himself and his roles is what makes him attractive. And his looks come second. His looks are heightened because of his personality.
If we look around, there are many more examples of men and women who are not traditionally good looking but are very attractive because of their beliefs, their roles, most importantly, their talent. This positive attitude towards actors and stories tells us about our social climate. Andrew Scott is one example of this phenomenon.
There are spoilers to Fleabag, Present Laughter, Modern Love, Delinquent Season, and Sherlock Holmes. Although, I try not to spoil too much — I mostly just explain the character Andrew Scott is playing.
Andrew Scott chooses to play complex characters. The Priest character in Fleabag is a role that is written for him by Pheobe Waller-Bridge. The people that work with him feel the energy he lets out in his acting. She told BBC Radio 2: “Andrew is just the greatest actor of our generation, I think. I worked with him 10 years ago on a play together, and I remember being on stage with him and just thinking what we were doing was real.”
The director of Fleabag, Harry Bradbeer, makes a decision to lengthen the silent moments. There are pauses between responses in conversations. We see moments where Andrew Scott is given space to act and react in the present moment. And that is where we see his facial expressions transition between lines and thoughts. He provides the audience with signals through his posture and facial expression. But what’s so intriguing is that we don’t know what to feel in these scenes. We are passively present with him in the scene.
We think, “how is he even going to respond to Fleabag’s standing up during a Quaker meeting and saying she wishes her tits are bigger….” However, we are watching Andrew Scott and intrigued by how he’s going to play this out. We are watching Andrew Scott’s interpretation of a character. A great actor can disappear into a role — we no longer see Andrew Scott; we see a priest.
I remember my first encounter with Andrew Scott. From the opening scene, I want to see more of him. Specifically, I want to see more of his character, Professor Moriarty. Sherlock is great, but if someone writes a show about Jim Moriarty played by Andrew Scott, I will watch that show. His character is sneaky and revels in his own genius. He’s the kind of character that would kill himself just to not lose to Sherlock. He knows that after his death, he’ll continue to play with Sherlock. Andrew Scott is the perfect actor to play this intriguing character. You can see he has fun playing his roles.
He plays very human roles. He understands emotions and how to reflect them on screen or on stage. At times, we can’t take your eyes off because he’s hard to read; we don’t know which feeling to focus on.
In Modern Love, he’s a character that grows through his mistakes and anger. So within half an hour, we are watching a regular man, and then a provoked angry man, and then a compassionate man who’s learned his lesson. We experience three sides of one man, and that gives the character depth.
In the Delinquent Season, he doesn’t spend much time on screen. However, his character is memorable. He plays a husband who is cruel. Then it’s revealed to us that he’s dying. Mark O’Rowe, the writer and director, decides to give us a not-so-happy ending. Every mark on the road has led us to this ending.
Yet another example where the character he plays is complex and shows multiple sides. We’re also not sure what’s going to happen. He isn’t the main character. However, his role is a crucial part of the plot and the destinies of the two protagonists. Everything that happens to the characters in the movie is very believable.
There is no drama without contrast. Contrast includes calm or laughter. Present Laughter is a comedy that consists of a hefty amount of tension. It helps us reflect on oneself and society. In Modern Love, the character’s calm and loving environment is disrupted, which leads to drama. Fleabag shows us how to laugh at our lives while teaching us how to deal with our internal problems.
All of these roles share commonalities. All of them tell stories of complicated characters. I’d argue that even Professor Moriarty is a complicated man. The characters are experiencing things that we can relate to. We are entertained because they lead us into a different reality. We see anger, happiness, calm, softness, laughter, growth, and normalness.
Andrew Scott is a drama actor. He plays complex characters that draw lines between the array of emotions. We love watching him because he portrays real-life people.
The depth of these characters reflects the kind of characters we are craving as a modern society. We want complex characters. Diversity and relatable stories are long-time overdue. It’s the same reason why the latest Joker movie is a hit because we crave to make sense of his actions and understand him. This style of story-telling and character building is what’s “trending.” It’s the same reason why we find Andrew Scott appealing and sexy.