Abused Advanced-Placement English Skills
I've been in need of a writing exercise worthy of the three and a half years of AP English I was sentenced to back in high school. For those of you who don't know, AP English basically gives you a short little piece of literature and a prompt that says, "Here's a completely asinine topic: Discuss." So, I've been looking around for something totally moronic like finding instances of Christ-imagery in a particular passage of a random literary semi-classic So, while watching my weekly DVD purchase tonight, I came up with something so utterly fatuous, I almost don't feel the need to expound upon it, since the very act of coming up with the topic was an act of genius. Or insanity. I'm not sure which. So here it is:
The Two Towers as an Allegory for World War II
-----------(I might add that this is an unpolished first draft, there will be no second draft, and it's all complete and utter bullshit, so don't start IM'ing me to say how I'm wrong and that the books were nothing like this. because I never read the books and I'm just filling space, here, so my two readers don't think that I've gone and abandoned another page)----------
If you ignore the majority of the movie and cut the heart from the story (such as the misplaced thing between Aragorn and Eowyn) and take The Two Towers as a film that is strictly about war, the astute viewer will find a film that parallels the actions of certain countries during the second World War.
For example, the Shire represents Switzerland. During the War of the Ring, the Hobbits are, by and large, completely neutral and/or oblivious to the coming war that will end their existence. They just sit around in the Shire the whole time and none of them care, because the Shire is the last damn place that Saruman or Sauron want. Of course, if the Scouring of the Shire sequence was actually in the movies, I might have a different opinion.
That unimportant example out of the way, Sauron and Saruman represent the two major countries of the Axis powers, those being Japan and Germany. Really, Saruman himself can represent both, of the countries' armies, while Sauron represents the Axis' political ties. Sauron is represented in the film as being as close to pure-evil as inhumanly possible, and Saruman is just this guy whose army goes out to whoop some ass. Of course, the Orcs represent the general Axis army, while the Uruk-hai represent the elite forces (perhaps the mechanized infantry or stormtroopers).
The Ents (tree-people) represent the United States, which maintained an official sort of neutrality during the war, until the U.S. was attacked at Pearl Harbor in 1941. By this rationale, the Ents stay out of the war until they find their forests have been... well, deforested. This pisses them off to no end, and they go out to whoop the asses of the aforementioned ass-whoopers. They succeed in their battle and put an end to Saruman's war-machine in a way that the humans were incapable of doing.
Sixteen minutes into the film, Saruman can be seen talking to a group of men who look like a cross between the torch-wielding villagers of the Universal Frankenstein and rejects from the Unabomber School of Personal Hygiene. Their opinions are easily swayed by Saruman and he needs to offer nothing but real-estate, to be taken from the people who currently live in Rohan. These guys represent countries like Austria that went, "Yee-haw!" when Germany annexed them, and then supplied plenty of soldiers for the Axis' takeover of Europe.
Theoden and the general populace of Rohan represent Western Europe. Brad Dourif represents Vichy France, which was only affiliated with the Nazis due to the occupation of France by the German army, and the fact that the French were just pansies to begin with. However, a number of the French army got across the English Channel at Dunkirk at the beginning of the war, and they are represented by Eomer and his banished horsemen. Or, perhaps they represent the American army, and the battle of Helm's Deep represents Omaha Beach on D-Day.
The Elves represent the Soviet Union, of course, because the Elves could really give two shits about the war; at least until it threatens to show up on their doorstep. That's when Elrond finally grows a pair and decides to commit some troops to fighting back, rather than just bailing for far-off lands like Siberia. With Russia handling the Eastern front of the war and the Western front being fought by Europe, there was little hope for the Axis to win in Europe.
I have no idea what to classify Gondor as. On another tremendously minor note, I'm going to come up with the completely bullshit suggestion that Frodo and Sam Gamgee represent the Manhattan Project, in that there is a certain job that must be done in order to end the war, and they are the only two who can do it. Battles can be fought forever, but the forces of Sauron could never truly fall so long as the One Ring is in existence. Hence, Hiroshima needs to be bombed, and that is the mission of these two Hobbits. Never mind that they're from Switzerland.
It's now five-thirty in the morning, and I need to go to sleep. If there's anyone I missed (like Gollum), then they're not that important, anyway. Maybe before I go out to see the band tonight (shameless plug for Five Year Jacket), I'll watch Daredevil, which I also got on DVD tonight. Gotta love the 2 for $20 deals at Hollywood Video. Haven't gotten a bad disc from them yet, whereas you're lucky if you get one from Lackluster (the Apollo's Coffee of video-rental chains), you're lucky if the damn thing's not shattered.
ICQ, MSN, Yahoo: Yeah, right, like I use those.