Thou shalt not question Stephen Fry.
— Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pip, "Thou Shalt Always Kill"
A man of intense intelligence and great coolness, Stephen Fry
is the host of QI
and starred in Kingdom
, about the life of a rural lawyer. He has also written and contributed to several books, namely The Liar (novel)
, The Stars' Tennis Balls.
and "Making History" (a time travel story about erasing Hitler from existence
), as well as two autobiographies Moab Is My Washpot
and The Fry Chronicles
, and The Book of General Ignorance
. He is very much the modern day Oscar Wilde
(though he's English) and is generally considered a British national treasure.
A Cambridge graduate and a personal friend of J. K. Rowling
(he won a Talkie for his reading of the Harry Potter
unabridged audio-books), he has appeared as several Melchettes
, played Jeeves in Jeeves and Wooster
, portrayed Oscar Wilde
, and starred as Fry in A Bit of Fry and Laurie
. His reading of the Harry Potter
audiobooks is a Crowning Moment of Awesome
for his acting abilities. Not only is his voice acting superb, the sheer breadth and convincingness of the accents he puts on for the various characters is stunning. Excellent accents are a particular quality of his.
He is openly gay (90% gay anyway) - which might surprise some people
- and open about having bipolar disorder. His early life resulted in him doing three months in prison for credit card fraud. On his release, he got a scholarship to Cambridge and joined the Cambridge Footlights, where he met Hugh Laurie
through a mutual friend
It is a sign of how well liked he is that when he vanished from a stage production he was a part of, literally missing his cue, and couldn't be found in the building, the British Tabloids published concerned articles asking him to come home, rather than the usual cruel mockery an actor would have got for such highly advanced stage fright. He only got a token mocking when he turned up in Belgium.
He also has a recurring role in Bones
. He appeared in V for Vendetta
(as Gordon Deitrich, a closeted
comedy television show host), as the title character in the satirical series This Is David Lander,
as the Guide in the film version of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
(mostly as a favor to the family of his late friend Douglas Adams
) in which he also displayed his awesome musical talents in the soundtrack with the bonus techno-rap song "Reasons to Be Miserable", is the narrator of the LittleBigPlanet
video game series (reprising the role in PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale
), and voiced the narrator in Pocoyo
, Hedonistic Sociopathic Hero
Reaver in the Fable
games, and played the main character of Absolute Power
. He made his directorial debut in 2003 with the film Bright Young Things
, for which he also wrote the screenplay, adapted from Evelyn Waugh
's 1930 novel Vile Bodies
He's produced and hosted
three very personal documentaries, HIV and Me, The Secret Life of the Manic-Depressive
, and Wagner & Me
which concern the result of the aforementioned disappearance to Belgium, eventual diagnosis of bipolar disorder and his difficulties dealing with being a Jew who lost family in the Holocaust and a fan of Richard Wagner, a notorious anti-semite who inspired Hitler. note
He was scheduled to write an episode of Doctor Who
, but the idea fell through due to time constraints on his part.
In addition, he has a lovely, comforting voice
He has featured on Top Gear
as the "Star in a Reasonably Priced Car", having lost about seven stone before the episode, as he went on a diet, prompting Jeremy Clarkson to ask where the rest of him was.
He also played Mycroft Holmes (Sherlock's older, cleverer, but indolent
brother) in Guy Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes
sequel. This was something of a Promoted Fanboy
moment for him, as he says in his autobiography Moab Is My Washpot
that he's been a fan of Sherlock Holmes
since he was a small boy.
that Douglas Adams
once told him in confidence "exactly why 42.
" Apparently, "The answer is fascinating, extraordinary and, when you think hard about it, completely obvious.
" However, he has vowed to take the secret with him to the grave
A self-confessed techie, averaging about a dozen Tweets per day
, he is also a vocal supporter of Free Software
while still being a diehard Apple fanboy, famously purchasing the third Mac sold in the UK after Douglas Adams bought the first two (Adams always insisted it was the other way round but appears to have lost the argument by dint of dying first). Although he's also admitted that he does enjoy switching between a HTC Desire (an Android phone) and an iPhone in a Twitter post.
"I've never made a secret of my admiration for HTC and Android. Happy to flip between iPhone and Desire." - 6:25 AM Jun 12th via Twitter for Android (2010).
He now has his own theme song
, courtesy of the good people known as Weebl & co
, which enjoys definite Earworm
status. As you may have surmised from this page, he has a very devoted fan base, some of whom are just mildly creepy, in a nerdily sweet sort of way
Oh, and, apparently, BRIAN BLESSED
calls him "Spunkbubble".
Tropes demonstrated by Stephen Fry:
- The Big Guy: He's officially 6' 4 1/2" and even after losing quite a bit of weight, he still has a husky frame.
- Boke and Tsukkomi Routine: Whenever he's paired with anyone in a comedy sketch, it will usually be this, with him obviously playing the tsukkomi. Namely Hugh Laurie, though he does it to a certain extent with Alan Davies on QI as well.
- Cluster F-Bomb: Despite his genteel demeanor, he holds the UK record for most uses of the F-word in a live broadcast — about 70 within a minute and a half.
- Gentleman Snarker: Many of the characters he plays are this, and he can be quite a good one in real life too.
- Hey, It's That Voice!: His voice is immediately recognizable, no less because he's done voice work (usually narration, although he has played Reaver and the Cheshire Cat in Fable II and Alice in Wonderland at least) for a phenomenal number of things.
- Large Ham: He's a pretty accomplished Thespian when he wants to be, but when the mood takes him he can give BRIAN BLESSED a run for his money. See his performance as Wellington and as General Melchett (both from the Black Adder franchise) as proof.
- Luvvies: The Trope Namer, at least according to the OED.
- Man of a Thousand Voices: As mentioned above, he can imitate almost any accent flawlessly, even within the same country. For example, name any American state you can think of, and he'll probably be able to give you an excellent impression of the accent of said state. Having actually been to every state in America probably helped with that, though he could do it pretty well before he made that TV program too.
- One of Us: Revealed he loved Star Trek on an episode of QI, made references to Worf, imitated Captain Picard and talked about Vulcan chess with one of the other guests. He even referred to himself as a Trekkie.
- Persona Non Grata: Was once thrown out of Salt Lake City because of sarcasm.
- Platonic Life Partners: With Hugh Laurie, even serving as both Laurie's best man and godfather of his three children.
- Precision F-Strike: He doesn't resort to swearing that often (though he has no problem with it), so when he does drop one of these it has quite an impact. One notable example happened on his podcast when he went off on a rant on the BBC Compliance officers (Compliance with what, with being an arsehole?). It ended with:
- In Qi, when getting into an argument with Rich Hall over why no there were no classic romantic songs dedicated to the Second Moon, he shouted, "BECAUSE IT WAS DISCOVERED IN NINETEEN-NINETY-FUCKING-FOUR!"
- In fact, Fry holds the UK record for most uses of the word "fuck" in a live broadcast (about seventy times in a minute and a half), while making a point about censorship. He remarks, "It didn't get a single complaint, I think, because of my voice and manner."
- Sophisticated as Hell: He can sound posh even when dropping an f-bomb.
- Sequel Hook: His second autobiography The Fry Chronicles ends in 1987 with what is effectively a stinger referring to his first experience of taking cocaine.
- Verbal Tic: "Baah!" (sometimes written as "M'aaah!") - actually General Melchett's, but it's used in impressions of Stephen himself so often that you'd be forgiven for thinking it was his, and Stephen frequently makes reference to it.
- What Could Have Been: Was nearly born in America, as his father was offered a position at Princeton but turned it down. Considering that Hugh Laurie was eventually cast in a series set in Princeton, this...quite interesting.
Now go back and reread this entire page in Stephen's voice, if you haven't been doing so already. Cheerio!