Category Archives: Man Candy

Romance Trope: The Redheaded Heroine

We here at Olivia Waite love a good discussion of tropes almost as much as we love not being sick—but we’re only going to get one of those today, and it’s not the second one.

Lately both Smart Bitches and Dear Author (though I can’t find the exact citation on the latter, sorry) have mentioned the prevalence of redheaded heroines in romance. It’s true the statistical probability of women with red hair is much higher in romance than in the dull and tawdry realm known as “real life”—but then, Romancelandia is also populated with an immoderate number of heroes with Mighty Wangs, so let’s not pretend that a strict adherence to probability is our first and greatest concern.

Someday perhaps I’ll combine those two tropes and write about a well-endowed, redheaded hero, like this handsome dude:

A muscular, lantern-jawed, slightly bearded young man with shoulder-length red hair. He stands in a sunny forest, wearing a grey t-shirt, and holding a fishing rod in his right hand.
This may be the single most attractive picture of a redheaded man I've ever seen. I mean—wow.

In fact, the high number of redheaded heroines makes total sense if you know where to look.

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Let Us Now Praise Benedict Cumberbatch

A pale background for Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes: A dark-haired man with pale skin, his mouth slightly open, looks off-frame to the right with an expectant expression. Text reads: I have a serious Benediction.
via Miss Anthropic Principle

A very happy early birthday to noted British actor Benedict Cumberbatch, who according to IMDb has been acting his pants off (if only!) but who first came to my attention as Sherlock Holmes in the modernized BBC adaptation. Have you seen this yet? If not, get thee to a Netflix because it is virtually perfect.

As Sherlock, Mr. Cumberbatch is cold, antic, calculating, and often unexpectedly vulnerable. He plays more to the sociopathic side of Holmes’ nature—the side that can’t quite get past seeing human beings as rather curious machines. But all that intellect breaks down every now and again in some very quiet, awkward, charming ways. It’s a delight—and I admit that I am also quite envious of this Sherlock’s long wool coat and anarchic scarf.

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Thirteen Questions About The Most Bangable Male Characters in British Literature

This morning, we here at Olivia Waite were delighted to discover that a Facebook friend had posted the Awl’s list of 111 Male Characters of British Literature, in Order of Bangability.

And it left us with a few questions—thirteen of them, to be precise.


A Pride and Prejudice screencap of Colin Firth in a see-through wet white poet shirt, looking somewhat despondent.
Looking sad because he's only Number 3.



  1. Seriously, Mr. Darcy is only number 3? Behind Rochester and Aragorn? Even though the latter is a total prig in the book and the former has that whole wife-in-the-attic problem?
  2. Aslan is considered bangable, even though he is a resurrected Jesus lion? And he’s higher on the list than King Arthur? Who, it could be argued, is also a resurrected Jesus lion?
  3. Aslan—more bangable than Severus Snape. You’re really going with that? On the internet?
  4. Continue reading Thirteen Questions About The Most Bangable Male Characters in British Literature

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