I absolutely love Pierre Bezuhov: he is my favourite fictional character ever. More sympathetic than Marcel Proust; more flawed than Elizabeth Bennett, more human than I, Claudius and much, much nicer than Rebus, Pierre is my hero. Warm, affectionate, forgiving, flawed and fatally indecisive, he is truly mon sembable: the character I most identify with.
I will never forget the first BBC adaptation of ‘War and Peace’:
I watched it obsessively, then bought the books and read them which, even though I skipped a lot of the ‘war’ bits, is no mean feat for a 15-year-old. I was completely involved with the story: I mourned with Natasha, fought with Andrei, hated Count Bolkonsky and wept for Sonya – but most of all I loved Pierre. As interpreted by Antony Hopkins I thought he couldn’t be bettered, but Paul Dano is, if anything, even more brilliant. His eyes shine with goodwill and his feet stumble with ineptitude; both characteristics which get him into all kinds of trouble. He is a character to rival Dostoevsky’s Prince Myshkin.