I think we’ve discussed how I have a British boy addiction. I think we’ve also discussed that British boys are real people with real thoughts and real feelings. They don’t exist just to be in my fantasies.
So, when I had the opportunity to actually sit down with a real life British boy living in America to drill him on the ins and outs of being British, I couldn’t resist. His name is Rob Gilbert. He’s very handsome, very dashing and very willing to demystify the British boy mythos for this American girl.
Where in England are you from?
I’m from North London, a little place called Totteridge.
Do all actors from England know how to play dashing gentlemen and charming villains?
Believe it or not, we can do other things! I myself actually do a lot of comedy. As well as occasionally dabbling in some stand-up, I also improvise at The People’s Improv Theater in New York with a team called Day Camp Kids. Our show consists of us improvising a fairy tale and more often than not, I end up playing a prince of some sort, although I do have more hair than William!
I also host the theater’s weekly podcast on which I am anything but dashing. I usually end up acting incredibly childish and finding stupid ways to annoy my co-host. As for charming villains, I don’t think I’ve ever been cast as a villain in any play or film ever. The closest I came was when I was in a show called The Trestle At Pope Lick Creek where I played a character charged with the murder of a girl and spent most the show in prison. I did an American accent for that show though so it probably doesn’t count.
Do you ever feel like Jane Austen set the bar too high for guys?
Absolutely! I remember when all the girls at school were studying her books. Suddenly us regular Joes weren’t good enough for them anymore. Then I came to America kind of expecting women to be a little more chilled. It’s totally the opposite. If you don’t roll up for a date in a horse drawn carriage whilst wearing tux and tails, you can see the disappointment etched across their faces. (Me: In my defense, we were promised horse drawn carriages.) It was even worse when the movies came out and Hugh Grant and Colin Firth became universal sex symbols.
Do you ever feel like Colin Firth set the bar too high for guys?
Maybe even more so than Jane Austen! He brought her character to life and melted a million hearts in the process. Even I felt a little tingle in my trousers when he was on screen. Colin Firth is actually one of my idols, though. He is such a phenomenal actor and incredibly diverse. I think if I ever met I’d scream like a 12-year-old at a Justin Bieber concert.
Football or Cricket or American Football?
Football. Always football. I hide it around certain people, but I am a football nut. Not one of those hooligans that Vinnie Jones always plays in movies (fun fact: he played for the team I support), but one of those guys who suffers a wave of depression every time his team loses. I even write a football blog! Since I’ve been here though, I have definitely started to appreciate American Football more and more, and by “appreciate” I mean that I now know when to scream at the TV so I can blend in at a bar.
Does Downton Abbey matter at all to you?
I watched the first episode of Downton Abbey the other night and really enjoyed it. Unfortunately in England we make a lot of shit television programs, which was one of the main reasons I came to America to pursue my acting. But when we get it right, we really get it right. Downton Abbey is everything a television show should be, and it’s also making tops and tails sexy again which is always a good thing.
Does Doctor Who matter at all to you?
Not in the slightest. Never watched it, never will. I probably get asked about Doctor Who more than anything else by Americans and they are always disappointed that I don’t have an interest in it. Sorry. (Me: You should be.)
Does Big Brother matter at all to you?
It did 12 years ago. Back then it was amazing because none of the contestants really knew how famous they had become. Now it’s just a bunch of crazy people all thrown into a house and forced to have sex or kill each other. It actually got dropped by Channel 4 and everyone thought it was dead and gone until bastard Channel 5 decided they to stick it in their line-up. Now we have ‘Celebrity’ Big Brother which features some of the worst people on the planet, most are hardly even celebrities. In fact, a few years ago they ran Celebrity Big Brother and put someone who wasn’t famous in the house… she won.
Do you think Prince William and Kate Middleton will stay together?
Of course. Didn’t they just get a puppy? Those are for life. They will stay together for the puppy.
Good idea, bad idea: The Spice Girls as a musical act in the London Olympics opening ceremony.
I’m very worried about our Olympic Ceremony. The one in Beijing was mind blowing and I think all we have in store is for David Beckham to hit a couple of balls into the crowd whilst Leona Lewis sings a sad song. Perhaps the Spice Girls would be a good idea – it’s retro enough to be cool again now right?
Snog/Marry/Kill: Elizabeth Bennett, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Queen Elizabeth II
Hmmmm. Well nobody wants Charles as King so let’s not kill the Queen. In fact, I’ll marry the Queen so I can live in Buckingham Palace rent free. I think I’d song Elizabeth Bennett, but only if she is played by Keira Knightly. I want to hate Keira Knightly, I do. But let’s be honest: She’s pretty damn hot. So, that means I’m going to kill Elizabeth Barrett Browning, but she’s already dead so everyone is a winner!
So, there you have it…British boys are real and would murder Elizabeth Barrett Browning.