Friday, February 10, 2012
#9 - The Wolf
there was a wolf who stalked and roamed the gnarled and twisted lands of the Briar Patch. This Wolf had the unfortunate task of being the spy - the covert eyes and ears of the evil Baron Von Briar Thorn. And more unfortunately, he was very, very good at it. Having lived as long as he could remember within the dark lands of the Patch, the Wolf knew every twist and turn, ever nook and cranny, every knot and bend. He could slide through the land with ease and hide where he could hear every whisper and hiss. And all of this - all of his great skill - was most unfortunate because he dreamed of more.
The Wolf dreamed that maybe one day he would earn the chance to see everything that the world beyond the Briar Patch has to offer. He dreamed that if he served the evil Baron long enough and well enough that somewhere, deep in the dank corners of the Baron's... heart... the man would find it in him to allow the Wolf to go free.
Free to learn what the world has. Free to learn where he, the Wolf, came from, for you see, the Wolf was once a man... At least, the Wolf believed that he wasn't always a wolf. He believed that he was once a man. Somehow, for some reason, the Baron cursed him and transformed him into the Wolf, and somehow, he will learn who he was.
But until that day does come, he is stuck in his role waiting for a hint of a chance to see and find his true purpose in this world.
There are characters that just know - just know deep down in their very core that they are meant for so much more. Luisa in the Fantasticks knows she is more than just a girl sitting in front of a mirror. Tom Wingfield secretly dreams of much more than stacking shoes in a warehouse. The Scarecrow, Tin Woodsman, and Lion all want something to allow them to move further in the world. And the Wolf, along with his fellow captives of the Briar Patch (who we'll meet next), dream of a life free of the Baron's power.
The trio in the Wizard of Oz were definitely an inspiration in the creation of the Wolf and his compatriots, but in many tales of journeys into realms unknown the lead meets a bunch of odd folks. The Phantom Tollbooth, Labyrinth, Alice's adventures, James and the Giant Peach - gathering a group of strangers from different walks of life offers far more opportunities than a group of people and characters who are all too alike. Would the Narnia books be all that compelling if it was just the Pervensie kids? Thankfully we get Mr. and Mrs. Beaver, Fox, Reepicheep, and many others who spice it all up.
To me, the supporting characters can take a so-so story and launch it into greatness. The supporting characters (if you haven't been able to see from Vesper and the Therapist) in the Princess Knight are ripe for stealing the show with their various oddities and with their songs!
Posted by T.C.