John Hurt: Spending my life admiring the man

It was a repeat, I wasn’t the first, and it was way past my bedtime. But the night I first watched John Hurt’s performance in A Naked Civil Servant something clicked inside my adolescent head. Being queer was no longer a lonely path. Being queer (and oh so fabulous) was something to aspire to, no matter how fraught the journey. Sure your portrayal of Quentin Crisp wasn’t exactly a lesbian role model (I had to wait a little longer for The Well Of Loneliness and Stephen’s Gordon’s obession with a certain horse!) but he was everything I wanted to be. Brave, brash and defiant. I’m not sure I got all the way there but thanks to your work Mr Hurt I started my queer attempt. You shall be missed. You brought me Quentin and Winston Smith and John and Control and The War Doctor and Max and John Merrick and Kane and therefore Ripley. I owe you. We all owe you. RIP dear man.