Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Literature & Princess Tutu

So I have to keep a blog for my literature class. I have dubbed it Der Schreibblock Einer Leseratte for whatever reason. It's nothing much to look at it now. I doubt I shall use it much, except when I have to. I'm not real sure exactly what Dr. Brewton wants us to put on there, but anyway.

So today in literature we discussed the whole Nutcracker story by E. T. A. Hoffman. It was a little... trippy, let us say. Also, I could not take the mouse queen Mouserinks seriously. With a name like that... really. Mouserinks. *snicker* Mouserinks. It just sounds stupid.

Let's just say that most fairytales should NOT be read by children in their original format. Hans Christen Andersen missed his calling. He should have been a horror writer. He would have done very well in that genre, let me tell you. Very well indeed. He would have outwritten Edgar Allen Poe.

Oh, you don't believe me? Well, let me make a believer out of you. Yes, I know what I am talking about. Once, I had the misfortune of checking out an anthology of Hans Christen Andersen's stories out from the Florence library and suffered through it.

Here's my favorite (paraphrased) example of why Mr. Andersen missed his calling:

This girl has a fiance. Her brother does not like said fiance, so he cuts off said fiance's head. The girl finds the body and the head. She is very sad and cries. She takes the head, puts in a flowerpot, puts dirt in the flowerpot (on top of the head, mind you) and plants a rosebush/flower of some sort in it. The plant grows. (Have fun imagining the roots sucking nutrients out of the dead guy's decaying head.) The plant bears flowers. Little fairies come out of the flowers and kill the brother with tiny poisonous darts. Neighbors come in and see the dead body of the brother laid out on the floor. One of the neighbors knocks over the flowerpot. The head rolls out. The neighbors then say, "Oh, now we know that he killed this guy!"
Moral of the story: do not kill people, lest fairies come out of flowers that grow from their dead bodies and kill you.
Also: do not contemplate how the neighbors were able to recognize to whom the dead head belonged.

Now, have I made a believer out of you?

Anyway, I found it hard to concentrate on the story of the Nutcracker, since my brain kept insistently wandering to the anime Princess Tutu. I believe I have mentioned it before on this blog. Well, it needs to be mentioned more. In another effor to make believers out of my non-existent readers, here is a really awesome video with a foreign language song (it may be Swedish) someone made in tribute to Princess Tutu. It manages to cover both seasons with very few spoilers.

I love Fakir so much. Fakir is the guy with the greenish-black hair and the darker skin, by the way. Any scene involving him, Uzura, Duck, and water is absolutely hilarious. It's actually Fakir's fault that I am a fan of this anime. I kept seeing it referenced on TVTropes and so I finally looked it up. That one guy in the characters sheet looked cool. And here I am now, posting this video on my blog...
One authentic touch I liked is that Mytho (the white-haired boy with the blank expression) has his name pronounced more or less like, "Mew-toe." This annoyed me at first, but then I realized that this is how 'Mytho' would be pronounced in German, and the anime is supposed to be set in Germany. (Fakir says something in German in Akt 8, but I haven't been able to figure out what.) So now it's one of my favorite little bits about it.
Oh, and Mytho's nickname in the fandom is 'the Pantsless Wonder', due to his habit of running around in a long white shirt and nothing else. Also, he jumps out windows. A lot.
Anyway, the main reason I kept thinking about Princess Tutu is that there is also a Herr Drosselmeyer in it. This Drosselmeyer, however, has written the story in that Prince Mytho comes out of, and is subtly controlling everything in the town from behind the scenes. Unfortunately, he's also rather sadistic and wants his characters to suffer for his own entertainment. Leads to... interesting revelations in season two. Let's just leave it at that.
Oh, and the Nutcracker march is played as his leitmotif. Yeah.
In Pace Christi,

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