Curtailed of Fair Proportion?


Not sure if this qualifies as a #WastesofTime&Energy post.  Maybe I need to create a Wastes of Time & Energy: History Edition category?  Anyhoo…

The world’s gerbil-like attention span has long since moved on from the Richard III discovery to other things, but for the truly invested, committed, and obsessed among us (We few, we happy few!  Wrong king, I know…) there is decades’ worth of material to lovingly sift through and ponder.

One aspect that I’ve been dwelling on for the past few weeks is the facial reconstruction made from Dickon’s (his friends call him Dickon, trust me) skull.

Personally, I have never seen a facial reconstruction at a museum or any other venue that I’ve truly liked.  That has ever made me feel as if I’m in the presence of a real human that really looked like that.  They’re always ‘off’ somehow, the same way that CGI human faces are ‘off’.  They are too smooth, they have no character, no lines, no discernable age, and the coloring is for some reason always garish.  There’s a generic quality to them all, and Dickon’s is no exception.

I understand that this is due to the limits of the technology.  Working from a skull, the only features they can really create accurately are the jawline, chin, forehead and placement of the eyes in their sockets.  That leaves an awful lot…how full or sunken the cheeks are, lip shape, eyebrows, circles under the eyes, wrinkles…in short everything that makes a person look like him-or-her self…as guesswork.  And rather than guess wrong, the technicians tend to not guess at all and so the result is all of these bland faces.

Which is not to say that I totally hate the reconstruction of Richard.  The only thing I hate about it is the eyebrow situation.  Seriously? What is that mess?? Apart from that I do think it is a useful tool for helping us to form an approximate idea of Dickon’s appearance.  We can definitely learn a few facts from it:  Dickon had a very strong jawline and a pronounced, jutting chin.  Good cheekbones, too.  All of this stuff is also apparent from his semi-contemporary portraits, so that’s cool.

At any rate, after I spent a lot of time watching the videos and staring at hi-res images of Dickon’s alleged face, it started to look so familiar.  I knew I had seen a jawline like that, that jutting chin, and that hair, even the nose….somewhere before.  It nagged and nagged at me, but I just couldn’t place it.  Then one day it just hit me at random.

And then I watched Rattle & Hum (it’s free on Amazon streaming!) just to make sure.

What do you think, sirs?



Leave a Reply