A perfect Sunday with...Samantha Béart

Squirty cream, the comic I call home and the worst people in history.

A perfect Sunday with...Samantha Béart

Every week, a top writer, artist, actor or creator reveals how they’d fill their perfect Sunday, sharing their favourite comfort reads, movies, food… anything that would make their weekend great.

Today it’s the turn of BAFTA Breakthrough Performer, Baldur‘s Gate 3 actor (and one of the best people I know) Samantha Béart.

Samantha’s perfect Sunday… brunch

Crêpes with bananas, strawberries, chocolate spread, and squirty cream. Yes, I said squirty cream. All cooked by my wonderful, long-suffering partner. Coffee and juice, please.

When I was a child Mum would cook us restaurant-quality Crêpe Suzette on Shrove Tuesday. That was the only day we’d ever have pancakes, and I’ve been chasing the high ever since.

Samantha’s perfect Sunday… read

I’ve been taking Vacationland by John Hodgman on holidays with me and very slowly making my way through it. He’s been a friend of mine for some years, but this memoir of times away from home has been bittersweet and revealing. I appreciate his vulnerability and candour.  

Samantha’s perfect Sunday… comic

The Sandman by Neil Gaiman. I was first introduced to this series via Death: The High Cost of Living at around 14 years old by another genderqueer goth kid, and I immediately saw why it appealed to them. The comics were vastly different to the superhero power fantasies I’d tried and failed to immerse myself in as a young adult. But this cast of very human non-humans empowered me to be true to myself, to own my mistakes, to find my people and hold onto them dearly. Getting to know Neil and playing Calliope (and other roles) in the Audible adaptations means I’ve reread them in the past few years. It’s like returning to a home inside myself.

Samantha’s perfect Sunday… movie

This is Spinal Tap. This film will never not be funny, and I try to keep rewatches down to a minimum so I discover something new each time. For the record, Blade Runner is my favourite film, followed by Withnail & I, but Spinal Tap has more laughs…

Samantha’s perfect Sunday... TV binge

Arrested Development. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve seen the whole thing in its entirety, but I discover new callbacks on each watch. Mitch Hurwitz and his writer's room were geniuses.

Samantha’s perfect Sunday… podcast

Behind the Bastards. Host Robert Evans manages to make deep dives into the lives of the worst people in history very entertaining.

‎Behind the Bastards on Apple Podcasts
‎Society & Culture · 2024

Samantha's perfect Sunday… album

Nightclubbing by Grace Jones. Something about Grace’s general badassery combined with Sly and Robbie’s laid-back reggae/funk vibes just does it for me. Packed full of some of the most innovative cover versions you’ll ever hear, Chris Blackwell’s production is impeccable, perfectly reflecting Jones’ transgressiveness and innovation. When I was a kid she was absolutely everywhere, a one-off when it came to her gender expression as an artist - and in an era where there were no words to describe this part of myself - she has been both inspirational and a great comfort in my life. Being the child of Irish and Jamaican parents with an international outlook myself, her own embracing of world cultures is encapsulated on this album; she described the band as “the United Nations in the studio”.

Samantha’s perfect Sunday… treat

Video games! One way to gauge success in the games industry is by measuring how little time you have to invest in playing them yourself; I’ve had a very good year. I’m slowly making my way through Final Fantasy XVI, with my friend Ben Starr in the leading role. It’s a truly cinematic performance and it’s been satisfying to see the love and recognition he received in playing Clive. Although this game is radically different to the other titles in the series - both tonally and in the gameplay - Nobuo Uematsu’s original themes run through Masayoshi Soken’s evocative score like DNA and take me on a journey through the games that came before. As ever, this latest instalment is at the forefront of graphics and sound, and the story has been an emotional rollercoaster. 

I’ve already dipped my toes, but I’m planning on tackling Alan Wake 2 properly next

Baldur’s Gate 3 starring Samantha Béart as Karlach is out now from Larian Studios.

Gather your party, and return to the Forgotten Realms in a tale of fellowship and betrayal, sacrifice and survival, and the lure of absolute power.

Mysterious abilities are awakening inside you, drawn from a Mind Flayer parasite planted in your brain. Resist, and turn darkness against itself. Or embrace corruption, and become ultimate evil.

From the creators of Divinity: Original Sin 2 comes a next-generation RPG, set in the world of Dungeons and Dragons.

Samantha Béart is a classically trained actor, and a BAFTA nominee and GANG Award winner for their role as Karlach in Baldur’s Gate 3. They are the first BAFTA Breakthrough performer to be admitted to the initiative on a video game, cult indie hit The Excavation of Hob’s Barrow.

Their extensive career also includes Random in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy for BBC Radio 4 and national theatre tours, Calliope in Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman for Audible, and Orr in Torchwood for Big Finish Productions. They also worked on Vienna with Cavan Scott. Other game roles include the Demon’s Souls remake and Bithell Games’ The Solitaire Conspiracy.

Samantha is also the creator and host of It Takes A Village, a streaming chat show on Twitch featuring a live audience Q&A. The show shines a spotlight on those who are so often overlooked - the people who make our games - on themes of collaboration, co-advocacy, and community. VODs can be found on Samantha’s YouTube Channel. Most recently they co-hosted the Future Games Show: Spring Showcase.