Friday, March 12, 2010

Silbling Removalry?

Just had this thought.

Don’t worry...
I do not intend to do anything with it story-wise other than ponder it.

It can be argued that John and Michael Darling are sort of extraneous to the story of Peter Pan.

Argued, yes. Won, I don’t think so. For as “tag along” as they are, they do serve a very important function in the tale. Among other things, it is their forgetfulness of their old life in London (such as not putting down the right answers about it on Wendy’s quizzes and thinking Wendy is in fact their mother) which prompts Wendy to realize they had been in the Neverland too long. Thus, the journey home begins.

But -

What if John and Michael weren’t in the Neverland? What if Pan had said “no” when she asked if they could come… and he forced (either by “roughhousing” or pure charm) Wendy to come on her own? Would she have stayed with him then, with no sounding board, so to speak?

Something to ponder.


Anon said...

You make good points, but even if Peter had gotten Wendy into the Neverland without John and Michael, aside from the fact that she'd probably be missing home even more (why else did she ask if they could come?) but Peter's exact feelings for her would still be "those of a devoted son."

She's still growing up and she still would eventually get "too big" to be in the Neverland. I still think that the outcome would have been the same, it just might have been arrived at somewhat differently.

Peter Von Brown said...

Also a good point, regarding Peter Pan's feelings would most likely remain unchanged, which in turn would disgruntle Wendy anyway.

Whether or not she would have grown up charts into the territory of whether or not one thinks the Neverland keeps its inhabitants "frozen" at the age they arrive. ;)

Anon said...

I'm not so sure it does--the book says Wendy was one of those people who WANT to grow up. I don't think the Neverland would prevent that in her case.

Peter Von Brown said...

Ah, yes. However, that factors in to how I think it "works" anyway.

I'm addressing that aging (with a modicum of ambiguity) in Peter Pan: Betwixt-and-Between.

And yes, regardless of that answer, Peter Pan remains a "special case."

Danielle Mari said...

Wendy's sibs, in literary terms and according to your description here, seem to act as foils. Their reactions emphasize the evolution of Wendy's character.
But of course she has to take them along. Her definition of her gender revolves around taking care of men (or boys as it were). So she has to take her kid brothers otherwise she's not being a proper woman.
Unfortunately, I don't know that in the original work she evolves much past that (thank YOU for giving Wendy at least a little more backbone and texture!). Barrie, for my money, has a failure of imagination in that realm, somehow actually believing that it's every girl's fantasy to stay home, clean house, and darn socks while the boys go fight pirates. Yes, Wendy leaves when she realizes he won't play husband to her wife, but she doesn't go home and slay dragons.... she goes home and gets married and has kids with a man (presumably) who is willing to play husband in her new game of House. I always push Wendy (or for goodness sakes her daughter, whom she sends to Peter- creepy!) to tell Peter to suck it, that she's going to go fight pirates too. But I digress.

And of course Peter's feelings would not change regardless of the presence or absence of John & Michael. Nothing can change a narcissist's feelings! (Sorry- you know my issues with his character.)

[wotd: nosess.... the queen of the olfactory?)

Peter Von Brown said...

Indeed! Brava.
That's a very good point, too, that by nature Wendy would not have allowed Pan to take her without them. And foil[s] - yes, that's it exactly.

I'd been thinking how originally Barrie had it so that Peter Pan used force on her - which I'm sure, Danielle, does nothing to endear you to him. :) Which is why when I borrowed this idea for part of Peter Pan's NeverWorld, I changed it up just a bit, which you sort of mentioned.

Like I said, it just had been a passing thought... and you've both headed it off at the pass.

Well done.