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March 05, 2013

Fabling the Pastiche-When Different Fictional Worlds Collide


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Class,

In the comment box below, . . .

. . . the note-taker/scribe from each group should retype the question your group discussed today in class and provide an answer with quotations from the text to support your answers. You MUST put the page number (or, paragraph number if there are no page numbers) in parentheses after any quotation used.

Enter your work on this text as prescribed in class. For example:

Remember: I have to "approve" all comments so you won't see it immediately after posting. After hitting submit, you should see a screen that confirms this.

We are beginning to use some concepts in our discussions that you may or may have had practice using before. I want to be sure that you have a clear understanding of the words we use in class (no more blank stares!) so be sure you are looking up words you don't feel you yet "own" (means, making it a part of your personal vocabulary) by utilizing your dictionaries to the fullest.

Dr. Hobbs

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Posted by lhobbs at March 5, 2013 10:45 PM

Readers' Comments:

Group #2:
Nicole Natoli &
Joseph Schwartz
Character Questions: Snow White

A. How is your group’s character different from their original fairy tale?
Snow White is still somewhat “pure and fair,” but she is certainly not innocent. Willingham’s Snow White is much more mature and even jaded. She has control over Fabletown and is portrayed as intelligent and motivated by her responsibilities. She is not the “damsel in distress” from the original fairy tale and is not dreaming of a prince to fall in love with. Instead, she is annoyed and has cut ties from her pathetic prince who is actually a womanizer. This is a more pessimistic, but obviously more realistic version of Snow White.

C. How does your group’s character stack up to the Disneyfied version of the character? Has Disney done a service/disservice to the character by changing them?
Snow White from Fables is different from the Disneyfied version of Snow White in the same ways as she is different from the Grimm version of Snow White. Basically, she has more control and is less naive.
Disney has done a service to Snow White because she seems slightly less gullible than in Grimm’s version of her. In Grimm’s version, she is easily tricked by the stepmother Queen three times, but in Disney’s version, she is only tricked once. Disney shows that she’s not quite so clueless. Disney has also emphasized her pure heart as more important even than her beauty.

E. What information from the story is Willingham’s intellectual property?
The fairytale characters are public domain and may be portrayed however the author sees fit. It is Willingham’s particular characterizations matched up with his created plot lines that make his stories unique and his own creation. If someone were to copy his plot lines in addition to his characterizations, then there would be an issue in regard to stealing his intellectual property.

Posted by: Nicole Natoli at March 1, 2013 06:50 PM

Deirdre Rowan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 CA01 ST: Graphic Novel
1 March, 2013

Group 3: Bigby Wolf

Question 3d: Has Bill Willingham done a good job adding roundness to your group's character, or does he further stereotype them (or, both, somehow)? How so?

Answer 3d: Willingham's depiction of Bigby Wolf (Big Bad Wolf) is very dynamic. In the original folktales, the Wolf is a flat, simple villian: he is, was, and always will be evil. Cutting him open is the only solution for taking care of him. Fables reveals that even though he has destroyed property, eaten innocent creatures, and stalked a little girl, he is capable of reform. Wolf places limits on himself (does not leave the city), has realistic struggles with his anger management, and is eventually entrusted to the position of sheriff, the keeper of the law.

Question 3e: What information in Fables is Willingham's intellectual property (not part of the public domain)?

Answer 3e: Willingham's intellectual property of Bigby Wolf is having him be a chain smoker and restricting the character to living inside the city out of the knowledge and fear of what he can do if proded the wrong way.

Posted by: Deirdre Rowan at March 1, 2013 08:59 PM

Kathleen Weldon
Dr. Hobbs
Eng 300: Graphic Novel
3 March 2013

Question: Some readers have noted that characters in Fables are/ act so ‘different’ than they do in their original fairy tales. If you also find this premise to be true, how is your group’s character different? For example, is Bigby “wolfish”? Is Snow “pure/innocent/ fair”? Is Beast “Beastly”? Is Beauty a beauty (her personality)? Is Charming very charming? Is Flycatcher toady? Is King Cole merry?
Answer: Rose Red is different than her original counterpart. In Fables she is mischievous and outgoing whereas in her fairytale she wants to stay inside and do housework. She also is able to plan her own death in Fable and almost cheat someone out of money whereas in her fairytale she watches her sister marry a bear.

Question: In what way are they similar to their characters?
Answer: The only real similarities are how other people treat her. People tell Rose Red in Fable that she shouldn’t go outside because she’ll get hurt which is what Rose Red was told in the fairy tale as well.

Posted by: Kathleen Weldon, Douglas Phillips at March 3, 2013 04:16 PM

Kevin Michael Schuster
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300 ST: Graphic Novel
Group #3: Bigby

a. While Bigby acts differently for the most part (acting as sheriff in Fabletown), he does retain his wolfish qualities. He is rather hirsute, he acts like a predator, and he relies on more than just his eyesight, much like a wolf would.

b. In the story, Bigby is still very much like his original character, he is still a violent, terrifying figure. The only real difference is, there is a thin veneer of control most of the time (readers see that control slip when he confronts Bluebeard in Jack's cell).

c. Disney (and for the most part Hollywood in general) has done the Wolf a grave disservice. Most of the iterations of the Wolf character have been "tamed" for lack of a better term. The Wolf is not as violent, not as terrifying in film adaptations, two things that the character is virtually built on in the fables.

Posted by: Kevin Michael Schuster at March 4, 2013 10:55 AM

Joseph Schwartz
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 300
03/1/13

(b)In Fables what ways/how are the characters similar to their original characters?
In the graphic novel, Fables, the character of Snow White takes on a modern age personality. She is a strong woman who despite her literary reputation is independent and devoid of a ruling dominant masculine hero (Prince Charming). In this way, Snow White differs from the original literature. Although Snow White in Fables has been changed, there are specific instances in the text where Snow White harkens back to her original character arc. Although Snow White is an independent and strong leader she can be gullible (or maybe out of the loop), with some of the trends happening between other fables in the text. This can be especially true for the fables on Animal Farm. Although Snow White does not rely on a masculine hero in the text, she does trust Bigby Wolf with her investigation into her sister murder. Bigby Wolf solves the murder/mystery plot before her and provides a great deal of insight into the investigation. Snow White is submissive to Bigby’s impressive skills at social observation, something that she greatly lacks.
(d)The Russian Formalists and the New Critics teach us that in order for characters to be “round” they must be dynamic. In other words, they must change or transform. Otherwise, they are flat, i.e. static characters. Since fairy tale characters, by their very nature, frequently seem archetypal, has Willingham done a good job adding roundness to your groups character, or does he further stereotype them (or, both somehow)? How so?
Snow White within the graphic novel Fables has a more dynamic personality then her previous depiction in folklore. Her character in the original folklore is flat; she does not have any dimension and she is reliant on Prince Charming to save her from her problems. In Fables, Bill Willingham does a good job creating a realistic version of Snow White. In the graphic novel, she is strong and independent of Prince Charming (the first book is her proverbial separation from her original folklore motif). The roundness of character allows the reader a greater understanding of her story. Bill Willingham allows Snow White to be multi-dimensional, because it is a departure from her earlier more stereotypical portrayals. Willingham does a good job of connecting some of Snow Whites attributes from her folklore (gullible) with her character in the novel.

Posted by: Joseph Schwartz at March 4, 2013 10:58 AM

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