Benedict Cumberbatch at “The Hobbit” Premiere

Posted on December 03, 2013

Benedict, we realize the ladies stopped reading this post right after the word, “Benedict,” but we need to have a word with you, sirrah.


Benedict Cumberbatch attends the premiere of “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” in Los Angeles, California.

This is all kind of not our thing because while we love a good Dandy look, this comes off more like something Vincent Price would’ve worn around his 80th birthday. We think the bridge too far for us is the jacquard lapel and tie. We didn’t need that bit of texture when you’ve already got:

  1. Merlot red
  2. velvet
  3. vest and
  4. shawl collar

going on. Not to mention the too-long pants and slightly too-small jacket.

Even so, it certainly is a look with style and it suits him well. We can’t fault him for not putting the effort in or failing to play to his strengths. He is, after all, the epitome of the Romantic Englishman model of malehood at the moment. It’s a title that gets passed on every five years or so. Colin Firth is an alum, as is Jude Law.





[Photo Credit: Andrew Evans, Izumi Hasegawa, Janice Ogata/]

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  • thecitysleeps

    He’s so attractive. Not loving the jacket though.

    • Vtg Fashion Library

      I guess I see why people think he’s attractive, but I’ve never been able to get over him in Atonement. I just don’t think he’ll ever do it for me, after that role.

  • gabbilevy

    WHell. It’s not my favorite look for him, but then again, my favorite look for him involves substantially less clothing.

    Also, this is applause-worthy just for the effort. And that lapel.

    • lunchcoma

      At this point, the boy stars have lowered my expectations enough that I’m happy when I see they’ve bothered to wear ties.

  • kimmeister

    This might be the best I’ve ever seen his hair look on the red carpet. That vest does not even come close to going with that jacket, which I cannot take seriously. That jacket is something Hugh Hefner would wear over his satin pajamas.

    • WendyD

      Completely agree on the hair. Love the waves.

  • Eric Stott

    This is a beautiful smoking jacket (though a little snug at the waist) but it is only supposed to be worn in the privacy of a gentleman’s home, not at public affairs.

    • MoHub

      Reference Christopher Walken’s The Continental.

      • kimmeister

        All we’re missing is a glued on moustache that is halfway falling off.

      • BKagainwiththesweatpants

        AHAHAHAHAHAH. “Would you like to see [piano flourish] THE BEDROOM?”

    • SewingSiren

      True, but the lady stars have been wearing slips and nightgowns for years.

      • Eric Stott

        Yes, providing giggles for us all the while: (“Darling – do you think she just hopped out of bed and onto the runway, or is she planning a nap afterward?”)

  • Jen

    Damn. Just… I can’t even critique the fashion.

  • Cee Layton

    I love some Cumby, but I don’t normally find him terribly attractive. That being said, this is the best I’ve seen him look,outside of Sherlock.

  • WendyD

    I personally love it, but a bit because it reminds me of the time that David Tennant rocked a full-on velvet suit and looked amazing doing it.

    I think he looks completely dashing! He can really do no wrong in my book these days. I cannot wait to see ‘The Hobbit’ to listen to his dulcet and sinister tones.

    • Dangerfield5

      If this posts twice, I’m blaming Disqus, but I once saw David Tennant doing a bit of Christmas shopping wearing a beautiful forest green velvet blazer. Clearly a fabric he favours!

  • misstressofsylar

    That first pic with his open mouth. Bilbo approves.

  • lobsterlen

    I want to pet the velvet.

    • KateShouldBeWorking

      Is that all?

      • Domo_Konnichiwa

        It keeps the restraining orders at bay.

    • bitchybitchybitchy

      We’ll have to take numbers and line up in a queue.

  • marlie

    I love this. This is perfect for his “English gentleman” persona! But yes, the jacket is a skosh too small. And he should know better about the pants hem.

    • jen_vasm

      The vest/shawl collar combo is causing me a bit of vertigo. Plus he’s got an enviable long torso so the jacket looks a bit short. Because it’s Cumby, it gets a pass, but on any less of a man we’d be ripping it shreds.

  • Nancer

    I still love Colin Firth…. but Benedict does it for me too! Adorable.

    • kimmeister

      I don’t think there’s a Brit alive who can compete with Colin Firth’s perfection in a suit.

      • Rand Ortega


      • Nancer

        So with you on this! :]

      • bitchybitchybitchy

        Or in a wet shirt after a swim at Pemberley….

        • kimmeister

          My favorite CF moment in that whole series is when Elizabeth is playing the piano, and he stares at her adoringly. I could just eat him up.

          • bitchybitchybitchy

            Mr. bitchybitchybitchy will be out of town for a few days next week, so that will be the perfect time to slip the P&P dvd in the machine for another viewing-one can never see that too often!

          • kimmeister

            Last winter, I had a P&P watching party with some girlfriends on New Year’s Day and decided it will be an annual event.

          • bitchybitchybitchy

            what a splendid idea, and a new tradition!

          • calbear97

            We do it every year in January. Usually as a slumber party paired with a viewing of a “modern” version (which is never any good). Love that tradition!

  • imspinningaround

    I guess we’re not talking about the bronzer fail? OK then.

    • SewingSiren

      Yes, Bronzer mime.

    • sugarkane105

      That is a poor attempt at some Kardashian-level contouring.

      • Jessica Freeman

        For a man whose face needs no contouring.

        • I try to use the phrase “buffing my zygoma” whenever possible since seeing his AMA on reddit… (worth a read!)

          • Jessica Freeman

            I read it…he’s just too charming not to love.

    • Tatiana Luján

      it always happens in his red carpet pictures. He looks as if he had eaten Cheetos and then touched his face.

      • Nikko Viquiera

        Cheetos on Cumberbatch! YUM!!!! fingerlicking good!

        • YourBaloneyDontGotNoSecondName

          OH PLEASE! Like any of you BK’s would use your fingers to get the Cheeto dust off of him.

    • lunchcoma

      I don’t know why these pale English fellows insist on wearing so much of it. Hiddleston struggles with this too.

      • Bridget Smith

        I suspect it’s that they’re given makeup artists who are baffled by untanned English skin. “Let’s give them a healthy glow!” No, they just look like they’ve had furniture polish applied to their face. Men can be attractive with pale skin, too.

        • demidaemon

          As a pale man with another pale man, I totally agree.

    • Danielle

      *Scrolls back up to look* I didn’t even pay attention to his face the first time.

  • Julia

    Oooooh his hair is reddish again! THE POWER OF THE GINGER-BATCH HAS RETURNED!

  • Nikko Viquiera

    In related news, who’s excited for the Sherlock premiere? I can’t wait! Please do a recap Tlo. It’s just 3 episodes!

    • Nicholas

      Don’t forget the Desolation of Smaug.

  • He’s rather odd looking man when you first see him. Then you watch him on Graham Norton or Sherlock or Parade’s End and attractiveness all comes together. He’s a babe. But this velvet jacket makes me think of Vincent Price and cobwebs and a taxidermy raven on his shoulder.

    • AnguaVonUberwald

      I always thought he was someone whose features don’t really add up to “attractive”, but there is something so arresting about him on screen that you can’t help but watch him.

      • Vickiefantastico

        You nailed it! I never saw him in anything until I watched Star Trek recently, which made me look up Sherlock. Before, I would read how other BKs could barely contain themselves, and I just didn’t get it. Then, I saw (and heard those dulcet tones) and oh boy, do I get it now!!!

  • Clueless_Jock

    That outfit is so insanely anachronistic that it’s beyond reproach.

  • SewingSiren

    Love the jacket because of the Vincent Price whiff, not in spite of it. The make-up is very bad though. Bad.

  • nannypoo

    I love the extra ear in the next-to-last picture. Makes him look all Hobbity.

  • Jumpingjacks

    His face is a bit dirty.. oh wait, that’s make up…

    No one does British better than Jude or Ewan though

    • marlie

      Ewan {sigh}

  • He does absolutely nothing for me. He usually looks better though. Meh.

  • Claire Haley

    My immediate reaction was “Girl, no” but upon reflection I’m amending it to just trombone sounds.

  • Lisa M. (ReVoir) Kramp

    The jacket is too small. Other than that, Woof. I’ll be in my bunk if you need me…

  • In_Stitches

    The shape and curvature of the lapel is just weird. It broadens the lower rib cage instead of the chest, creating a very odd effect.

    • Tatiana Luján

      I couldn’t agree more.

  • Carleenml

    There must have been an “old school” memo going around Hollywood. This is silliness.

  • Imasewsure

    Finally got his hair right… and I like all the busy stuff on the top for all of it’s Vincent Priceyness… pants not so much though

  • ashtangajunkie

    Jacket too tight, pants too long. I feel like if I had never heard him in an interview, I could judge his clothes. But it’s difficult to criticize him once you know that pretty much everything he says is pure awesome.

  • MilaXX

    Lose the vest, hem the pants. Jacket looks a hair too small.

  • Scimommy

    Somehow it finally feels safe to come out and say that Colin Firth never did it for me. Phew, that felt good.

    Now Benedict, on the other hand…

    • Tatiana Luján

      Colin did it for me, Hugh Grant did it for me, Jude Law did it for me and so does Benedict (and Martin Freeman and Matt Smith). I must answer to a clear marketing archetype.

  • Jessica Freeman

    I think without the vest, and a better hem, he would have hit it out of the park. Finally got his hair right.

    Benny, we swoon over your pale skin, please stop applying what appears to be self tanner on your face. It’s not working. And this isn’t your first offense.

    • rag254

      Exactly. I love the freckles. It’s ok to let them show!

  • Kathy

    The clothes aren’t perfect. Nevertheless, he is making me very happy!. Thank you, Uncles!!!!!!

  • E2_Remote

    “He is, after all, the epitome of the Romantic Englishman model of malehood at the moment.”

    Yep, only he, at this particular moment in time, can pull off a claret smoking jacket like that.

  • Airkisses

    Can I be a Devil’s Advocate and say I’m not a huge fan of his acting? I’m not sure if it’s only because of the characters that he’s played that he seems to me as acerbic, arrogant, unsociable, and aloof. Did not like his interpretation of Assange in The 5th Estate. I think he relies too much on his exotic looks and his admittedly yummy voice. Would love to see more range from him. Compare, for instance, with Alan Rickman who has the voice AND the range, or Colin Firth with all his charm.

    Am I alone in this? Can you really picture him, for example, as a romantic lead?

    • Manna


    • Judy_S

      This isn’t a romantic lead but he has a smallish part in August: Osage County which is the opposite of acerbic, arr, uns, and al. Ford in 12 Years a Slave was not acerbic, unsociable, or aloof, though as a slave-owner he had his priorities. One theory is that Cumberbatch gets roles as aaua types because he can make them sympathetic, though.

      • Tatiana Luján

        Did you like August: Osage County and 12 Years a Slave? I’m still waiting for them to come to the cinemas in my city.

        • Judy_S

          August: Osage County has not come out yet, but because it is based on a play we know quite a bit about Benedict’s character, Little Charles.
          I did see 12 Years a Slave which is a superb film. All the acting is amazing.

          • Tatiana Luján


    • Tatiana Luján

      in Hawking he is very sweet.

    • Catiline

      I’ll join you at the unpopular opinions table, and state that I really didn’t care for BC in Star Trek. The individual parts of his performance were good, in the sense that I thought he excelled at individual emotional beats, but the sum disappointed me. He ultimately captured nothing of the original character he was playing. He may as well have been a generic villain that wandered in off the set of another sci-fi movie. The whitewashing aspect further sours my opinion.

      To be clear I blame the writers/JJ Abrams FAR more than Cumberbatch himself, but IMO he didn’t really help.

  • He is accessorized well with that huge British grin.

  • Sarah

    Enh. I’ll take the jacket and smoke in it myself. You guys can keep Bandersnatch.

  • Manna

    Love it! He is playing a dragon in the film and here we have dragon red and the texture of scales in the brocade lapels. He likes mixing it up a bit and having a bit of fun with his clothes.
    Look closely at his face and I don’t think the slight orange glow is make-up but just reflected light.
    I agree the pants are a bit long.
    It was a fun night and he reflects the fun atmosphere.

  • Jecca2244

    you guys always do your pretty guy of the day or week and im always like ehhhh. but him (and Tom Hiddleston) make me go ahhhh. so i guess i have a type! Does he have a partner?

  • Seriously. Do. Not. Get.

  • formerlyAnon

    If the jacket fit I could forgive all else.
    My hormones don’t rise to the bait – but he’s got lovely oddball bones in that face.

  • Anna_Cecilia

    Not usually my brand of vodka. But from the neck up, I will concede: Yum. LOVE his hair. It almost cancels out the bizarre contouring/bronzing. Almost.

    So basically, if dear Benedict here keeps the hair, washes his face and loses the Vincent Price 80th birthday outfit, I’d consider adding him to the roster.

  • Rebekah B

    Colin Firth. Swoon. I’m not a huge Benedict Cumberbatch fan at all, but I do hear the appeal in his deep voice. Maybe I need to get into Sherlock so that I appreciate him more.

    • not_Bridget

      Yes, you need to get into Sherlock. Both series to date are streaming on Netflix (3 shows per series). Series 3 will run on PBS in January–not very long after the UK premiere….

  • asherlev1

    I feel….like he is dressing too old for his age?

  • jilly_d

    I cannot with all that facial self tanner. Like that hair though! And the jacket.

  • Frank_821

    Yes the big problem is there’s too much going on. All together it doesn’t gel. If he were to justt say remove the vest, the look would elevate

  • TLJezebel

    Gotta give it up for the hair, though. Amirite?

  • boweryboy

    Not to mention the pants are tuxedo striped pants. Plus the vest is textured. It’s a case of too much look.

  • msdamselfly

    Dont understand the attraction for him but I do think he looks great here.

  • Tatiana Luján

    I don’t like the shape of the lapels, but the texture doesn’t bother me.
    Whoever chose a merlot velvet jacket for him is a genius.
    His hair looks great.

  • wisenhar

    Bond, Sherlock Bond.

  • Sue_Asponte

    Colin Firth has passed on the title? I don’t think so.

  • Jonquil

    This man renders me incapable of forming sentences; I end up sounding like doge. “Much velvet. Very hair. Kitty eyes. Such gentleman. So ovaries. Do want. Wow.”

  • Not applicable

    I still think he looks like an alien…. sorry- it’s not meant to be mean- but his eyes/forehead freak me out…

  • Stephanie Troisi

    Sorry to disagree but I say Tom Hiddleston is the current owner of the “epitome of the Romantic Englishman model of malehood.” Long may he reign. Not that I’m complaining about Cumberbatch…as to the look, too short jacket, though I guess he’d go well with the red wine I’d request him to serve to me, oh you dashing”continental”

  • Qitkat

    Benedict is great in Sherlock, but not really my cuppa tea. However, I LOVE everything he’s wearing. Sometimes too much of a muchness is Just Right.

  • Rand Ortega

    The jacket’s too tight. Other than that, somebody get the smelling salts.

  • Laura F.

    Yuck. He is so unattractive. There, I said it. Have at me, fangirls.

  • Jaeda Laurez

    In theory, this could have been really interesting, but the jacket looks like me trying to fit a wrap dress around my boobs.

  • JDreesen

    mmmm…..Vincent Priiiiice….

    [bubble pops]

    sorry? what were we…? oh yes. too too. maybe lose the velvet but keep the merlot.

  • Ginny Ellsworth

    He borrowed Martin Freeman’s Hobbittesses jacket.

    Squeek! Twelve more days here for the Desolation of Smaug and another month for the newest Sherlock. Finally, something to watch!

    Well, other than getting toasted with the BK’s on PR Rawk Starhs night.

  • frannyprof

    Sirrah! I must remember to use that in a sentence today.

  • jjtxgrrl

    Jude law or Colin Firth he will never be…..he’s just too ODD looking.

    As is that tiny velvet jacket.

  • greymain

    seems he ALWAYS has his jacket a wee bit too tight!

  • quiltrx

    But…but…I think EVERY MAN should look like Vincent Price! At ANY age. Damn, that man knew how to wear clothes…and SO suave.
    On that note, Benny, he would NEVER have worn a jacket so small. I actually like all the too much muchness, but it needs to fit, darling.

  • NMMagpie

    Man alive, I just do not get it with this guy. He always strikes me a somewhat reptilian. If you are looking for fabulous looking men at the same photo call, why not just feature his costar, Richard Armitage?

    I may be biased but I am happily so.

    • Pennymac

      I am biased right along with you. He skeeves me out, for reals.

  • YoungSally

    something Vincent Price would’ve worn around his 80th birthday

    — actually something VP would wear just about anytime anywhere.

  • Trickytrisha

    He is not a pretty man, but he IS interesting and intriguing. All in all, the jacket is a mistake, but he still looks like a Nobel prize winning scientist ready to address a Royal Society gathering.

  • capybara_cafe

    I love me some BC, but I just can’t sign off on that jacket. It doesn’t go with the rest of the outfit at all, and it looks like someone shrunk it for him.

  • Rand Ortega

    TLo: This is all kind of not our thing because while we love a good Dandy
    look, this comes off more like something Vincent Price would’ve worn
    around his 80th birthday.
    That’s a bad thing? I guess for a 36 year old it may not be great, but to me great style transcends age.

    My mother taught me how to cook with some help from “A Treasury of Great Recipes” by Vincent Price (I still have it. The quiche recipe is the best I’ve ever used). There are wonderful pictures of VP wearing a similar jacket (@ 54) & he looks splendid!

    • Monabel

      Wonderful cookbook! The lasagne verde is worth all the effort.

  • CeeQ

    Sorry, what? Yeah, I stopped actively listening after “Benedict”…..but yes, not loving the velvet jacket….

  • bitchybitchybitchy

    Well, yes,the jacket is a tad too short. Benedict, just come over here and I’ll adjust it for you! Damn!!!!

  • majorbedhead

    I think maybe if he unbuttoned the jacket, it would look better. I’d be happy to help with that. Other than the fit/button issue, I have no quibbles about this outfit at all. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to finish licking the screen.

  • CommentsByKatie

    Man, he looks so much better without that Sherlock hair. This is Rhett Butler Realness and I am loving it.

  • I really like it, except for the too small jacket. And his hair looks good.

  • Ugh, he looks just like the snotty guy I knew in high school who thought he was better than all the rest of us theater geeks because he, well, he was a THESPIAN. #irrationaldislike

  • River

    God his hair is perfect like this, keep it up. Yeah, jacket too small, pants too long. I’d give him a pass if the fit was better.

  • A strong effort, but no.

  • ItsDicey

    I totally agree with you guys, but at least it’s not boring.

    BTW I don’t get the “hotness” appeal, but I do enjoy him immensely as an actor.

  • Nicole Walraven

    do not get the fangurling. no irrational hate or anything, but i see nothing attractive about the man. i am, however, all for a merlot velvet jacket. unfortunately the fit is just off, and i’m not a fan of the shawl lapel or whatever you call it. looks wonky.. also, back off on the bronzer maybe. or learn to blend. there’s some serious patchy patches on the sides of his face.

  • claudemtl777

    To my eye, the vest is de trop…

  • SS

    Oh I don’t know, I can forgive this on Hiddles. Not anyone else, mind.

  • Lauren Frankel

    Nobody’s going to comment on the orange face? No?
    Although I will admit it is a pretty face. Albeit just slightly orange.

  • gefeylich

    Agree about Firth being an RE alum, but not Law – he’s a bit too lad-y. Ralph Fiennes, maybe. Daniel Day-Lewis before he went totally weird and hermitlike, possibly.

    I don’t like this on Cumberbatch. Fit is wrong and the whole thing is Trying Too Hard. NEXT.

  • julnyes

    I love it because he dressed up as Smaug for the premiere. It is 100% Venue Appropriate (+2 to you Benny!)

  • Stacey Smith

    Love it, Double love it because he actually put some effort in compared to the others.