Robson and Jerome. It was a love affair of double portions, a couplet of housewife-vouched sex appeal. For a brief candle in the 90s, Mother’s Day was covered – Robson and Jerome had your back.
It all started when Robson Green and Jerome Flynn’s characters in Soldier Soldier sang Unchained Melody. Watching at home was a young but wise Simon Cowell, who, with impressive foresight, saw an opportunity – an opportunity to monopolise the unassuming Heartbeat generation. He didn’t bother checking whether either actor could sing or not – this wasn’t important.
They were the sentimental woman’s Ant and Dec. First up was Robson. What he lacked in stature he made up for with those twinkling eyes so blue that housewives were known to get drawn into them, never to be seen again. And then Jerome, an Alpine chiseled tower of masculinity with enough cheekbone to grate a pound of Edam. A paragon of hen night-approved good looks and schmaltz; they specialised in cheesy nostalgia-mongering covers to make your Nan cry. As a result, the nation wanted them Up on the Roof all night long.
Great Britain was enamored by the debatably dulcet sounds of Robson Green and Jerome Flynn in an instant, and the pair soon ditched Soldier Soldier to have a bash at this singing lark full time.
What they lacked in credibility and the respect of the music press, they made up for in piles and piles and piles of CDs sold. So sought-after were the sounds of Robson & Jerome that Pulp, Oasis and U2 were all kept from the number one spot, with Unchained Melody quickly became one of the best-selling singles of all time. They were also the only artists ever to release a number one Triple A-side – pretty out-of-the-box thinking for a duo with such a strait-laced image.
And then, at the apex of their musical careers, controversy swept camp R&J. It was revealed that they didn’t record all their own vocals – instead drafting stand in singers for the higher parts (a bit like that dog on Britain’s Got Talent that wouldn’t do the tightrope trick).
While the music critics were gleeful, the nation was outraged, and the world felt cheated by men they’d thought they could trust. We were a populace of lovers scorned, and it was shortly after this that both Robson and Jerome drifted away from the pop charts and back into their cosy home of ITV dramas.
But while Robson also got proper into fishing – Extreme Fishing on Channel 5, to be precise – all those years of keeping company with Simon Cowell had seemingly taken their toll on Jerome, who retreated to a dilapidated farm in Pembrokeshire and joined the Andrew Cohn sect. We jest not. He refers to it as “a very intense spiritual life, equivalent to being a monk for eight years”. Yikes.
However, after this ‘intense’ stint he got stuck back into acting, and after a role as a tough Victorian cop in Ripper Street, ended up with a part on little-known TV drama series, Game of Thrones. You might have heard of it. Yes, in one of the most astounding transitions in the history of popular culture, the blonde one from Robson and Jerome became grizzled Ser Bronn of the Blackwater, capable-of-killing-anything-that-moves and always on hand with a lewd comment. Yes, Jerome is Bronn.
And that’s it, we officially can’t cope and are done for the day. We’re off to a dilapidated farm in Pembrokeshire to have a lie-down.
However, if you are still craving your Robson & Jerome fix, then there is always the dedicated Vevo channel that features their Greatest Hits. Including this…