Monday, September 21, 2009
RIP Review 1: The Phantom of the Opera
..."How awful!" she said. "How awful!"
"What about him?"
"Joseph Buquet is dead!"
The room filled with exclamations, with astonished out-cries, with scared requests for explanations.
"Yes, he was found hanging in the third-floor cellar!"
"It's the Phantom!" little Giry blurted, as though in spite of herself; but she at once corrected herself, with her hands pessed to her mouth: "No, no!--I, didn't say it!-- I didn't say it!"....
I am pretty sure that when writing The Phantom, Mr. Gaston Leroux did not mean for it to be humorous, but for some reason, I found it so. Perhaps it's because I grew up being a huge fan and lover of the musical production, and am equally in love with the newer movie version of the story as well.
I am a big believer in the "book is always better" philosophy usually, but I'll have to say in this case it's about even. One thing that made it humorous to me is that while in the movies Raoul may be a little naive, he is still presented as debonaire and charming. In the book, he is simply naive and makes a HUGE fool of himself... continously. Trust me, if you find yourself cheering for the Phantom in the musicals, you'll be his biggest fan while reading the book too. I mean, come on, let's be honest: who WOULDN'T want to live in a mysterious house on a lake, miles below the ground, with a psychotic genious in a dashing mask?
I won't post any spoilers in case someone comes along who would like to read it for themselves, but the book gives a more haunting and interesting background story for Erik, the Phantom, as well as giving more insight into how he pulls off his tricks.
All in all, I found this to be a very good, captivating read that has the perfect undertones for the RIP challenge.