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Characters / Vicious

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The Characters in "Vicious"

Freddie Thornhill

Played By: Ian McKellen

The partner of fifty years of Stuart Bixby, Freddie is an actor whose career has never really taken off. He views Stuart as his wife, letting Stuart wait on him, but is always quick to defend Stuart whenever someone upsets him.

  • Aww, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: He may often be the initiator of their arguments, and has even made Stuart cry, but there are a few occasions where Freddie shows he really does love Stuart.
    • When he expects Stuart's mother to disrespect their relationship, he tells her that he is proud of Stuart, and that he loves him. It turns out that Mrs Bixby isn't bothered but the amount he cares is lovely to see.
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    • And when Stuart cries about his mother's death he hugs, kisses and reassures his partner.
  • Comedic Sociopathy: Freddie enjoys insulting Stuart just a little too much.
  • Large Ham: He is an actor, after all, so what do you expect?
    • When playing a character, he can become a ham-within-a-ham. An example is when he plays the butler in series 2 episode 1:
    Freddie: You see, I never came from much, my mother died when I was six...
  • Straight Gay: The opposite of Stuart.
  • White-Dwarf Starlet: Freddie would like to think of himself as one but whatever heyday he'd had was so brief that no one ever noticed. He's now reduced to scrabbling for bit parts with minimal lines that usually get cut from the final edit.


Stuart Bixby

Played By: Derek Jacobi

A former bar keep, Stuart is the camp partner of Freddie Thornhill. Stuart doesn't work, relying on Freddie's unpredictable work for money, and does all of the cooking at home.

  • Aww, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: See above.
    • When Ash's girlfriend Chloe offends Freddie about his lack of acting jobs, Stuart defends him.
  • Camp Gay: The opposite of Freddie.
  • Flying Under the Gaydar: Stuart's mother, until the last episode of series 1, has no clue her son is gay, despite being in his mid seventies.
    Stuart:Well, I hoped she'd have figured out our situation by now. I have been dropping little clues.
    Freddie:Yes. Like living with a man for 48 years.
  • Manly Tears: Stuart cries in Freddie's arms when his mother dies.
  • Once an Episode: All but one of the episodes in series 1 start with Stuart on the phone to his mother.



Played By: Frances de la Tour

Freddie and Stuart's friend, whom they have known for fifty years. She is unlucky with sustaining relationships, and has a wealthier older sister who she doesn't really like.

  • Abhorrent Admirer: To Ash. Eventually subverted.
  • Dirty Old Woman: Flirts with and sexually harasses Ash, eventually even tricking him into getting drunk to seemingly seduce him.
  • Mrs. Robinson: To Ash
  • When I Was Your Age...: Invoked towards Ash due to the large age gap. For example:
    Violet: Has anybody said you remind them of Zac Efron? [whispering to Stuart] That's a person right? Or is it a place? [to Ash again] Well I'm certain I know you. Have you ever been to Zac Efron? [whispering to Stuart] I'm covered either way now.

Mason Thornhill

Played By: Philip Voss

Freddie's sarcastic brother who is a total cheapskate.

  • Only Sane Man: Mason thinks he is, but he is often just as bad as the others.
  • Precision F-Strike: A brilliant one in the first episode of series two
    Mason:You people are all fucking insane.


Played By: Marcia Warren

  • Cloud Cuckoolander: So much so she often has no idea what is going on, or thinks she is in another place.
    • She once mistook Mason for her deceased husband, Robert.

Ash Weston

Played By:Iwan Rheon

The young man who moves into the flat above Freddie and Stuart. Both of his parents are in prison, and he doesn't have much luck with girlfriends.

  • Family of Choice: Ash comes to think of Stuart and Freddie as replacements for his parents, both of whom are in jail.
  • Intergenerational Friendship: All of Ash's new friends are in their seventies.
  • Only Sane Man: Usually the only one who isn't doing something odd.
  • Mistaken for Gay: In the first episode, Freddie and Stuart try to find out Ash's sexual orientation. They are actually disappointed when he says he is straight.
    • Again in episode 5:
    Ash: I wanted you to be the first to know. I think I might be—
    Freddie: I KNEW IT! love with my girlfriend.
    Freddie: (beat) Oh.
  • Naïve Newcomer: He's a lovely and patient guy, helping Freddie and Stuart adjust to the outside world, but he's not exactly the brightest bulb in the bunch.

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