|Duke of Wellington's Bezzer|
Lead character in a fine series of books by Bernard Cornwell, based on stories of an ex-ranker 95th Rifles officer in the Peninsular campaign of the early 1800s.
The books later covered some events post Portugal/Spain, such as the Battle of Waterloo and then, helped by the popularity of the TV series, "started again" with the time before his commission during the Indian campaigns of the late 1700s. In fact the whole timeline and continuity became so confused (and unlikely) that Sharpe even managed to muscle in on the battle of Trafalgar in the rather eponymously titled Sharpe's Trafalgar.
The novels, starting with Sharpe's Rifles, have been made into an excellent TV series starring Sean Bean, Brian Cox, Darragh O'Malley, Pete Postlethwaite and David Troughton. Appearances from other famous folk such as Paul Bettany, Oliver Tobias, Philip Glenister, Julian Fellowes, including a scene in Sharpe's Enemy where Liz Hurley gets her norks out.
Forthcoming works are:
Major Richard Sharpe of the 95th Rifles is abducted by space aliens who systematically anally rape him - despite his tough, uncompromising Yorkshire accent. When they've finished, he's ejected from their craft only to find he's been taken back to Ancient Greece, whereupon he enlists in the Thespian Volunteers [You think I'm joking?] and kicks Persian arse at the battle of Thermopylae.
So taken is King Xerxes by the tough, uncompromising Yorkshireman that he lets him go after the Spartans' shoeing, only for Sharpe to be accidentally run over by a speeding chariot and sent in to a coma.
In a deep coma, Major Richard Sharpe of the 95th Rifles awakes to find himself in 1972. He immediately enlists in 1 PARA and proceeds to lay waste the Bogside and its hapless inhabitants. His tough, uncompromising Yorkshire attitude strikes fear in to the IRA etc.
After spending thirty-five years in a social void, Major Richard Sharpe of the Parachute Regiment leaves the army only to find that society has changed dramatically: no Double Diamond on tap and a distinct lack of beige flares on the fashion scene. Outraged at the failure of society, he embarks on a voyage of revenge, recrimination and reprisal - blowing away slags and scrotes in a maelstrom of tough, uncompromising Yorkshireism. [Is there a pattern emerging yet?]
Major Richard Sharpe of the Parachute Regiment (V) is a TA Officer who is deployed to the Middle East and ends up working with the RAF but despite his rough uncompromising Yorkshire accent, he fails to get any work done as 'It's not their job mate'.
The show seems the many point of inspiration for the recruitment literature of The Rifles.
So far, the following episodes have been released on DVD:
- Sharpe's Rifles
- Sharpe's Eagle
- Sharpe's Company
- Sharpe's Enemy
- Sharpe's Honour
- Sharpe's Gold
- Sharpe's Battle
- Sharpe's Sword
- Sharpe's Regiment
- Sharpe's Siege
- Sharpe's Mission
- Sharpe's Revenge
- Sharpe's Justice
- Sharpe's Waterloo
- Sharpe's Challenge
Memorable Quotes include:
Sharpe: Gimme a pick-lock, Cooper.
Cooper: Pick-lock, sir? Catch me with a pick-lock!
Harper: They did, Coop. But when you got out of Newgate prison, you got another set, and that's the one the officer wants.
Cooper: Do I get it back, sir?
Sharpe: Trust me.
Cooper: It's very hard to trust a man who wants to borrow your pick-lock, sir.
Another oft-quoted line is 'Yer fat Southern bastard!' which Sharpe utters to just about everybody. Of course, in the books, he was a Londoner, which means he should be saying 'Yer fat Northern bastard!' but there you go...
Good screensaver available here.