Friday, 23 May 2014

Richard III: Archetypal Hero


My all time hero, a man who history has bullied and picked on relentlessly--much of the time without even bothering to study the facts.
I don't think he killed the Princes, whose deaths--as callous as this might sound--were necessary at the time, when England was an anarchic state, to prevent even more anarchy. This was how the country was, back then.
I first wrote this in 1987, at the same time as "The Piaf Legend". Piaf won, you could say. It was a big hit, and the publishers wanted a follow-up, and kept wanting a follow-up. Richard III and Edward IV, along with Darvinz, Dynham, Chanson all got held up in the queue. Then some kind soul decided to "blitz" publishers and ask them to stop promoting me--which led to seven contracts I would never have signed, including a trio of celluloid ones. So, Richard has been revised, and now joins the companion volume, "Edward IV".
Today, Richard's family lost the High Court battle which would have seen them deciding where to bury his remains. I voted for Windsor--if Henry VIII, the most evil king we've ever had, can lie there, then so can Richard. The societies, which I belong to, wanted York. Now it looks like he will lie in Leicester, where he was found. The problem is, all of these places are appropriate. Leicester did all the work, and in one respect if he lies there, then visitors will only go to see him. I certainly signed the veto to prevent his remains from being placed inside a glass case until then. The last thing any hero wants is to have gaggles of giggling Chinese tourists snapping him, then asking who he was.
Richard III was not just my hero, but the hero of many. His fan-clubs, around the world, have more members and followers than modern-day "heros" such as Justin Brat-Bieber and that talentless "thing" that wears dresses made out of meat.

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