It's getting hot in here: Four on-screen 'couples' with insane chemistry

Some duos can turn slouching on the couch into a pretty incendiary affair

09 February 2020 - 00:00 By Matthew McClure and Sarah Buitendach
You can almost feel the sizzle between Idris Elba and Ruth Wilson's characters in ‘Luther’.
You can almost feel the sizzle between Idris Elba and Ruth Wilson's characters in ‘Luther’.
Image: Supplied

Ingrid Bergman and Humphrey Bogart had it, Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton oozed it - the zing, the connection, that thing! How is it that onscreen couples can have so much chemistry that, lying on the couch or slumped in a movie house seat, you feel it too? The frisson, the click, the wave of energy connecting two people.

The golden oldies weren't the only ones who radiated that palpable connection. Here are a few of the couples - steaming, odd or otherwise - who've captivated us over the past decade.

JOHN LUTHER AND ALICE MORGAN

Sure, Alice Morgan is a certified psychopath but that didn't stop her and DCI John Luther (who has to investigate the murder of her parents - by her, potentially) from being one of the most smouldering onscreen duos.

It also helps that Idris Elba and Ruth Wilson, who play them in the eponymous BBC series, Luther, are both devastatingly good looking and top actors.

We couldn't get enough of their sexy, totally toxic, often terrifying and entirely mesmerising portrayal of a police detective and his, erm, sidekick/love interest.

MIKE LOWREY AND MARCUS BURNETT

They've been together for over 20 years. Through loss, raising kids, drug deals gone bad, high-speed car chases, used bullet casings and dodged so many shoulder-fired missile launches that we've lost count. Talk about #couplegoals.

Martin Lawrence and Will Smith's on-screen chemistry is as strong now as it was in their first 'Bad Boys' film.
Martin Lawrence and Will Smith's on-screen chemistry is as strong now as it was in their first 'Bad Boys' film.
Image: Supplied

In 1995's hit movie, Bad Boys, Will Smith and Martin Lawrence played a smart-talking, suave detective duo in the Miami Police Department. Regrouping for a lacklustre sequel in 2003, they're back on our screens right now in the brilliant Bad Boys for Life.

Older, absolutely not wiser and as curmudgeonly with each other as ever, theirs is a bromance for the ages.

FLEABAG AND THE HOT PRIEST

Heaven help us all! If you were able to watch the electrifying scenes between Fleabag and the Hot Priest in Season 2 of smash-hit series Fleabag without immediately wanting to have sex yourself - or, alternatively, bursting into flames - then, well, we just don't know.

Part of the allure must lie in the thrill of a layperson (Fleabag, played by girl crush Phoebe Waller-Bridge) falling for a very unavailable man of the cloth (the Hot Priest played by Andrew Scott) - with extremely unchaste moments ensuing.

Will they, won't they? Phoebe Waller-Bridge as Fleabag and Andrew Scott as the Hot Priest in ‘Fleabag'.
Will they, won't they? Phoebe Waller-Bridge as Fleabag and Andrew Scott as the Hot Priest in ‘Fleabag'.
Image: Supplied

But it's the fact that said clergyman understands and emotionally connects to our complicated heroine, Ms Fleabag, that seals the deal.

Oh, and it most certainly helps that Waller-Bridge and Scott are two of the best actors of their generation. And yoh, do they have spark! 

QUINCY AND DOUGLAS

Eastsiders is an American LGBTQI+ TV series depicting the emotional ups and downs of a group of straight and gay friends in the Silver Lake neighbourhood of LA.

Stephen Gaurino and Willam Belli as the title characters in 'Quincy and Douglas'.
Stephen Gaurino and Willam Belli as the title characters in 'Quincy and Douglas'.
Image: Supplied

The series shot to fame from its humble beginnings on Youtube in 2012 to being bought by Netflix, and the lighthearted and touchingly irreverent first 12 minutes of Season 3, Episode 1 gives you an idea of why the streaming giant backed this crowdfunded production.

Douglas, played by Willam Belli of Ru Paul's Drag Race fame, is stuck in a broken-down convertible with his new beau, Quincy (Stephen Gaurino), on their way to a drag gig in Palm Springs. The resulting altercation manages to be touchingly sentimental, rip-roaringly funny and reflective of the real-life challenges of men who brave the world and relationships in heels, skirts and full makeup.

Watch it, because we all need to be reminded that we deserve someone who accepts and loves us warts and all. And because it's so funny I replayed it six times. 


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