Gail Williams feels the on-screen sizzle.
There are plenty of on-screen romances, and a fair few that have boiled over into real life romances, Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton for example. There are, of course, people that just look good together and sometimes that means they will get cast together even though they are playing completely different characters, and as a viewer I've found that really jumps off the screen at me. So this is not a story of love, but one of on-screen chemistry.
Let's start with the obvious, and one which is a slight cheat. Sarah Michelle Gellar and David Boreanaz. This pair first appeared in Buffy, and made the unlikely pairing of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angelus/Angel the Vampire with a soul. An unlikely pair character wise, but boy did they look good together. Let's face it, when they started he was the slight gaunt and haunted hero and she was the fresh faced ingenue. Their second pairing, and this is where the cheat comes in, was in Angel, when they played Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angelus/Angel the Vampire with a soul. By then of course, he'd put on a bit of weight and she'd lost too much baby fat, no longer such an attractive couple and so that was the last of their on screen pairings.
Naturally one can't mention Sarah Michelle Gellar's on screen chemistry without mentioning Freddie Prinze Jr. Their first movie together was I Know What You Did Last Summer, when Sarah played the absolute opposite of Buffy as Helen Shivers and Freddie was Ray Bronson. There were various other movies, notably, though you might prefer to forget, they were in the two Scobby Doo films, he was (predictably) Fred and she was (a bit more predictably) Daphne. To be fair they did look right for the parts, but the odd thing is, I don't think they do have on screen chemistry, to me they both looked stiff and unnatural. Which you have to admit is pretty odd given that they are a real-life married couple.
Then we have the platonic couple, mates who just like to hang around together. See David Tennant and Catherine Tate (I make no apologies for the fact that Donna Noble is my favourite companion of the Nu-Who sequence). Tennant and Tate did a wonderful sketch together Ffor Comic Relief, when she played Lauren Copper and he was Mr Logan, her teacher, right up until he produced a sonic screwdriver to minimise Lauren into a Rose Tyler figure and say the immortal line "A rose by any other name would smell as sweet." Tennant also appeared as the Ghost of Christmas Present in Nan’s Christmas Carol. Of course I would have loved to see them as Benedict and Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing, but those tickets sold out too quick for me to get there.
Whilst we mention mates hanging out together who have great on screen chemistry, how about Simon Pegg and Nick Frost? Have you seen the Cornetto Trilogy? In particular watch Hot Fuzz for the bromance. Then there was Paul. I thought I'd hate Paul, but I actually found it really funny.
And I can hardly go without mentioning that Martin Freeman and Benedict Cumberbatch have a great on screen chemistry as Holmes and Watson, but they were equally good as Bilbo Baggins and Smaug/The Necromancer in The Hobbit.
To get back to the the standard definition of couples, how about Heath Ledger and Shannyn Sossamon. You’re likely to know this pair from A Knight’s Tale when they played William Thatcher and Lady Jocelyn, what’s less well known is that they were also together in The Sin Eater. Odd film. Even more oddly, Mark Addy is in that one two.
My next stop on this whirl wind tour is to A Town Called Eureka, where Erica Cere plays Deputy Jo Lupo opposite Niall Matter as bad boy brainiac Zane Donovan. I will grant that the bad boy and the girl cop is hardly an original idea, but these two gorgeous people do look great together, which is why the pairing jumped out at me when I saw Warehouse 13 episode Duped in which they play married couple Jillian and Gary Whitman using an artefact to win at the casino.
My final pairing is from Firefly (Loved Firefly!). Jewel Staite plays genius mechanic Kaylee Frye, while Sean Maher is sexy (and one time rich boy) Dr Simon Tamm. I think this pair make a lovely, quirky couple, and the chemistry they display in their final scene of Serenity shows that. The chemistry is equally on display when they play Loretta and Sheldon in Warehouse 13 episode Mild Mannered. It's so cute that he uses an artefact to try to protect the woman he loves - that the artefact is a pair of briefs is less cute, but at least the guy's trying.
These are plenty of other couples with great on-screen chemistry, these are just eight that I’ve enjoyed spotting and sharing. May a little romance light up your life this Valentine's Day, and if not, grab the ice-cream and watch the on-screens instead.
Gail Williams lives in her own private dungeon populated with all the weird and
the wonderful she can imagine. Some of it’s very weird, and the odd bits
and pieces are a bit wonderful. Well okay, she lives in Swansea with
her husband and daughter. And the world’s most demanding cat. To find
out more about Gail, check out www.gailbwilliams.co.uk - Dare you!