Thursday, December 26, 2019

2019: In Review

2019: A Year In Review 

2019 was fun right? At least in Hiddles-Land. It felt like every day there was a new interview, a new photoshoot, a new performance. It was surprisingly difficult for me to narrow it down to a Top 5. Especially when you think about how this year was dominated by one particular thing - we will get to that later

Number Five: Hype Man Tom 

I promise that this is the only label that I repeat from 2018, but seriously I could say this about Tom every year. Whether you were a co-star, a charity, or a tennis player he'd only just met, Tom Hiddleston had you covered 150% all year. 

In February, Tom was the literal poster boy for the Equity #MyCardMyUnion campaign. Which was followed up by 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 charity auctions from Comic Relief, Omaze, Charity Buzz, BFI Luminous etc.. Exactly figures were never released but I wouldn't be surprised if Tom Hiddleston raised more than £100,000. Betrayal Broadway also went on to raise another $100,000+ for Broadway Cares. 

The Betrayal Broadway 'throuple' was an unstoppable force that extended far beyond the stage. Tom (and Charlie Cox) were there as Zawe Ashton reached some major milestones in her career: publishing her first book Character Breakdown and the debut of her first Off Broadway play for all the women who thought they were Mad

... and Tom also lent his voice to the #SaveDaredevil campaign. 

But my far my favorite moment was the US Open. So, Tom Hiddleston randomly meets tennis player, Johanna Konta. Thus began not only one of the greatest runs from a British female tennis player at the US Open, but also a masterclass in the kind of supportive energy everyone needs in their lives. 

Number Four: Stage Door Tom

I went back and worth about whether Stage Door should have been included in the overall Betrayal moment but no, Tom Hiddleston at the stage door is a moment. Stage Door Tom is a legend, an icon, selfie master, king of sass, sweeter than Southern tea. 

Between West End and Broadway, Tom had more than 200 performances this year - and he came out for Stage Door after nearly ever single one of them. Whether you were forming an orderly queue in London or mosh pitting in NYC, you were in for a treat.

I would estimate that Tom met more than 10,000 fans. There were some incredibly moving moments like when he greeted a deaf fan in sign language. ps: British Sign Language is very different than American Sign Language. 

And there were some hilarious moments.

And then there was the Sass King ready to help everyone improve their selfie skills. 

Number Three: InstaTom 

So long Twitter Tom, hello InstaTom. Tom Hiddleston finally remember his Instagram password in 2019. He posted more times in 2019, than in the previous 3 years he was on IG combined. Selfie game was strong. Came at you with the filtered aesthetic. Even threw out some emojis...  

I'm still crying over the fact that Tom's first Betrayal Broadway selfie...

A post shared by Tom Hiddleston (@twhiddleston) on

...was also his last Betrayal Broadway selfie. 

And that squash video with Charlie Cox? Blessed. 

Number Two: Dou Sen

Tom Hiddleston was here to shake all the forests in 2019.  

Your imaginary boyfriend fed us with his Centrum ad

Then he served us during the BAFTA China launch. 

And finally he shook us with the Bosideng campaign. Now I know why he is called Shaking Forest. 

Alexa, how do I say "thank you" in Chinese? 

Number One: Betrayal 

Tom Hiddleston would often joke that Kenneth Branagh referred to the year they did Ivanov, Wallander, and the Thor casting as his "Hiddleston Year". 2019 was undeniably Hiddleston's "Betrayal Year". There was not a single month this year where Tom wasn't either rehearsing, performing, or doing promotions.

Two continents. 234 shows. 200,000 audience members. 

When I started compiling this list it was clear that every road would lead back to Betrayal. Hype Man Tom (5) went hard for his co-stars Charlie Cox and Zawe Ashton. There can't be a Stage Door Tom (4) without him first being on stage. InstaTom (3) had 19 Betrayal related posts this year - which is like 9283298 in Hiddles-Land. Even Dou Sen (2) incorporated Betrayal into his commercial and took time to thank all his Chinese fans for coming to the play. 

 Tom Hiddleston said that his heart belonged in the theatre. And even if you weren't personally there, we all felt the joy in his heart for being on stage again. And on Broadway! 

I expect to continue to hear more from Betrayal in 2020. Tom and his costars are all up for WhatsOnStage Awards. I would be shocked if there weren't also Tony and Olivier nominations in the future. Fun factoid: Even though the play is 40 years old and has countless revival - no actor has ever won a major award for Betrayal. This cast may just have what it takes.

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