Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Pan vs. Poppins?

Having recently read the first set of adventures of the most famous creation of P.L. Travers, I couldn’t help but think of a match up between her and Sir J.M. Barrie’s most famous creation. Is it a coincidence that they both use initials? [Of course it is, but it’s fun to note!]

Just imagine it…
Mary Poppins trying to discipline Peter Pan.
They’d be quite the nemesis for each other, don’t you think?

Pan would hate her. And she’d certainly be cross with Peter.

Sunshine suggested that he’d want her umbrella and bag. I then countered that Peter would probably turn both of them inside out. Actually, I can see him being as fascinated as Jane and Michael Banks with the bag and then turning it inside out in frustration when he can’t fathom its magic. He would probably not be so interested in the umbrella since he can fly himself and make fun of her for needing it. Not realizing that she can float on her own [think Uncle Albert's tea table] and her surprising him to dismay.

Mary, on the other hand, might not be able to cope with a flying boy. She’d be given a taste of her own medicine, for sure. By that I mean not being the only one with special powers. She might even be able to be lulled to sleep by his pipes. Then what mischief would he dish out for her?

I can also see her being so damn severe in her tone and look that he feels the need to obey her - for a time.

They might just do each other some good - if they don’t kill each other first!

This isn’t the first time I paired Pan with another character for fun. I also did it here.

But how about you? Any scenarios you can envision between Mary Poppins and Peter Pan?


Danielle Mari said...

I'm enjoying an imagined scenario where Pan steals Mary P's hat, causing her to chase him to NeverLand (or NeverWorld, if we're talking about your book!). What can she do to and in his world?! Do the Lost Boys love or hate her? Fun post, Petey!
And I LOVE your juxtaposition of the photos...

Danny said...

I also thought of Peter Pan when I first read Mary Poppins.

Both stories feature London children in an Edwardian nursery, whose lives are changed by a magical character who drops out of the sky.

The children in Mary Poppins are called Michael and Jane, both of those names having appeared also in Peter Pan (Michael as one of the Darling children, Jane as Wendy's daughter). And the father in both stories is called George!

Furthermore, both stories in some way feature a transformation that takes place in the father. In Mary Poppins, we actually see George change from stuffy Edwardian banker to loving sensitive dad; in Peter Pan, it is handled more symbolically: after Captain Hook is slain, the father (traditionally played by the same actor) is seen as having changed.

And they both involve kites!

Anon said...

There are other parallels: P. L. Travers apparently noted J. M. Barrie as inspiration, and her first publisher was Peter Llewelyn-Davies. Also, as Danny suggests, Disney told more or less the same story with his adaptations of both, even though they weren't there in the same way in the originals.