Fairy Tales 2010

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Fables and Into the Woods

Both of these "stories" were interesting and unusual. Fables seemed to be more modern than Into the Woods, but both incorporated a variety of fairy tale characters. In both cases, there were some elements of the fairy tales that were included to maintain the recognizability of the characters, such as Bluebeard's reputation and the wolf meeting Red Riding Hood in the Woods. But because the characters from different stories were interacting with each other, some details had to be changed. For example, no one tried to take Little Red Riding Hood's cape and Bluebeard did not marry Rose Red.

I guess in the sense that these were all originally fairy tales, a compilation of them must also be a fairy tale? Many details are left that would not coincide with the new story that is being formed with all of the characters in Fables, such as Snow White's evil stepmother or the seven dwarfs. That is made to be part of her past, so that instead of combining the fairy tales, they just use the characters to form another fairy tale that presumably occurs after the events of the original tales.

Into the Woods, on the other hand, more or less maintained the actions of the original tales, but had the characters interact with each other in the infamous forest that many stories use. Cinderella is still trying to get to the ball despite her stepmother and stepsisters and Red Riding Hood is still trying to get to her grandmother's house.

In a way, Into the Woods is more like a traditional fairy tale than Fables because it maintains the separate story lines, and Fables is a mystery, which is not typical for fairy tales. There is not a great deal of magic in Fables, and it feels more like "a day in the life of a fairy tale character." Though they both combine elements of well-known fairy tales, the end products are not the same.

1 comment:

  1. Katie, I completely agree with you that Into the Woods is more like a traditional fairy tale than Fables. Fables takes stock fairy tale characters, rids them of their past, and drops them into a murder mystery plot. It, therefore, becomes a referential work of allusions rather than a new fairy tale in and of itself. What we know about fairy tales is used to make jokes and provide a background/framework for how to read each character's actions and relationships with one another. The only real fairy tale moment is perhaps the short story of how the fables were exiled from their homelands.