November 24th, 2007


Biggles/von Stalhein

Every now and then I go trawling through my memories of childhood reading, trying to recapture a thought or two about various books and what they meant to me. Today's subject is Biggles. I had stacks of Biggles books, H&S and paperback. Although I wince now when I recall the racial stereotyping and "white man's burden" tone of many of them, I still have a very soft spot for the heroic Bigglesworth - and his arch-rival Erich von Stalhein.

I suspect that the nature of the relationship between Biggles and von Stalhein paved the way for my later appreciation of slash far more than any 'reading' of Biggles' relationships with Ginger, Algy or Bertie. The sidekicks were just that - I never took to them much. On the other hand, von Stalhein was a wonderful antagonist. And the books had lashings of one or the other being thumped on the head, held at gunpoint, tied up... mmmm, I can see where many of my peculiar kinks came from!

When it comes to Biggles' appearance I'll cheerfully admit that these days in my mind he looks a lot like John Barrowman (am shallow *g*). However I've been trying to find pics of von Stalhein on the internet and the only one I've found that looks anything like him is here:
He still doesn't look like the von Stalhein of my imagination *sigh*. Ascetic, lean, yes, and with trademark monocle, but better looking (better hair, definitely), less weasel-like.

Dose anyone share my secret passion? And if you do, who would you cast as Biggles and/or von Stalhein in a made-for-fans epic adventure?

ETA: I found more von Stalhein pics that are much closer to my image of the man:
It's the "I shall have to be going" one.