Today, I decided to talk about a character parallel in the book world. In my opinion, I think Rowling got some inspiration for Harry Potter from Lord of the Rings. There are several similarities.
The Golden Trio
In Harry Potter, The Golden Trio consists of Harry, Hermione, and Ron. They are best friends, who go through many trials and challenges throughout the series. Whenever something “bad” happens at Hogwarts, it always seems to involve them. Their toughest challenge was finding the horcruxes —–they can be any object and there is no way of knowing where they are. Harry wanted to do this challenge alone, but his best friends wouldn’t allow it—-they really are that loyal to each other.
Sam and Frodo
Just like the Golden Trio, Sam and Frodo are also best friends. Sam was one of the members of the fellowship. It was Frodo’s job to destroy the ring, an object that can easily corrupt and weaken the ringbearer. At the end of the first book, Frodo was going to leave everyone, but Sam wasn’t going to leave him. He stayed with him on his entire journey.
I did once mention that those who love Harry Potter will also love the Lord of the Rings series. Both have a number of parallels. One of the many parallels comes from Frodo and Harry Potter’s best friends. What is in common between Sam, Ron, and Hermione?
Okay- would Frodo have made it to Mordor without Sam? In addition, would Harry have defeated Voldemort without Ron and Hermione? Here’s what I think- I do not think that would be possible. In both cases- they had to depend on their best friends. Frodo had to destroy that one ring and Harry had to destroy the horcruxes in order to destroy the dark lords.
Here was the challenge with the ring and the horcruxes. The ring can easily corrupt and weaken the ringbearer. The horcrux can easily corrupt as well-the other challenge is where to even find them and figuring out how to destroy them. There are multiple horcruxes to destroy.
Both Harry and Frodo wanted to do this challenge alone, but Sam, Ron, and Hermione would not allow it. They knew there was no way Frodo and Harry would not easily do it alone. Throughout the Harry Potter series, Ron and Hermione stayed loyal to Harry- they were with him every step of the way. Harry, Ron, and Hermione had to do more than just destroy the horcruxes- sometimes it meant going down the trap door or going into the Chamber of Secrets to destroy the monster snake or when Umbridge wasn’t going to teach them Defense the Dark Arts do it instead- so when something happens, they were always there. Their hardest task though was destroying the horcruxes.
Frodo really did not want Sam to be with him after Fellowship of the Ring. He wanted to continue on the Quest alone. Sam would not allow it. Sam was with Frodo every step of the way.
I have talked about my favorite friendships in musicals and my favorite friendships in literature. I thought about doing a post where I combined all of those different friendships. Musicals in so many ways are like literature- they have character, plot, and setting: they just add dance and song to all of that to make something more powerful and emotional. MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD.
Frodo and Sam
Would Frodo have made it without Sam? Frodo wanted to do the quest alone after the end of Fellowship, but Sam wouldn’t allow it. He stayed loyal to Frodo to the end. He was always there- whether that meant rescuing Frodo or carrying him. He was that loyal companion. The Ring easily corrupts and weakens the ring bearer, which gets heavier as you get closer to Mordor- that is why Frodo wouldn’t have made it without Sam.
Merry and Pippin
They are best friends, and at the same time troublemakers. You might be thinking what on earth are they doing on this quest? Why are they there if they always are causing the group trouble? You eventually find out- they have a reason. Of everyone in the books, it is the four hobbits- Frodo, Sam, Merry, and Pippin that I am attached to the most.
Harry, Ron, and Hermione
Would Harry have defeated Voldemort without his two best friends, and would the series be the same if the trio never existed? Just like Sam, Ron and Hermione are loyal to Harry. In the last book, Harry wanted to look for those Horcouxes alone, but his two best friends wouldn’t allow it. In all of the books- they ended up having to go on some mission, which meant breaking a lot of school rules. He needed the two of them to defeat Voldemort. Those Horcoucxes are a lot like that one ring- the difference is there is no way of knowing where they are and they would be anything. Harry couldn’t have found them alone- it would be impossible.
Nicholas and Smike
One of the things I about the most about Nicholas Nickleby is all of the compassion he has. He especially showed it towards Smike. Smike is someone who wasn’t shown much compassion. At the school he was working, he did defend Smike, which later caused Smike to follow Nicholas after Nicholas quit that awful school. For the rest of the book, the two of them stayed together- Nicholas was there even at Smike’s death. These two are my favorite characters from Nicholas Nickleby.
Friends of the ABC
This is an overlapping literature and musical theatre friendship I love. That means it is in both versions of Les Misérables- the book and the musical. The difference between both versions is that in the book you get to know them as individuals, and in the musical, you only get to Enjolras as an individual and the rest as a group. The other difference is that in the musical, Marius is close to the students (which doesn’t exist in the book).
This group is a political group led by Enjolras, the most passionate member. They are like a group of brothers, and in so many ways a family. They are planning an uprising due to the weak government. They have high hopes for the cause they believe in. I do love how they take in Gavroche, who is Eponine’s brother.
Eponine and Marius
This friendship in Les Mis in only in the musical, not the book. Eponine is in love with Marius, the only person who showed her kindness and the only good thing in her life. However, Marius is unaware that she loves him. They are close friends and Marius is aware that her life isn’t easy. He does treat her fairly. I love that he is in her life- she needed that.
In “A Little Fall of Rain”, you can see how much he valued her friendship. Marius was worried about Eponine- that was why at the beginning of act II, he sent her away from the barricade because he was hoping it would protect her from getting hurt or worse killed from the uprising. However, she did return and got shot, which would turn out to be fatal. There was a reason why he asked: why she came back: he was worried about her safety, and when she collapsed, he released she was shot, and that she was dying. He was devastated, but despite how he felt, he decided to be there for her by holding and comforting during that moment. This scene in particular says a lot: it shows how compassionate Marius is, that he did value their friendship (after all, he was devastated), and he did realize that she did love him. It is a bittersweet scene: all that mattered to her was that he was there: more than the physical pain she was in: she was happy for once. The words he said after she died were “her name was Eponine, her life was cold and dark, yet she was unafraid”- those words were how I knew that Marius knew that she lived a tough life, but at least he was part of it.
The Newsies remind me so much of Enjolras and the students in Les Mis. They have a brotherly love for each other, and they are like family. They have a cause (the strike) they truly believe in, and never give up no matter what. Jack Kelly is their leader.
On a side note: I love the beautiful bond found between Jack and Crutchie. Cruthcie is the most vulnerable Newsie due to his bum leg, and Jack is his best friend. There is something amazing about their bond.
Lumiere and Cogsworth
Is it weird that I love a friendship between a talking candle and talking clock? There is just something about them that I find appealing in terms of their friendship.
Elphaba and Glinda
The ultimate friendship, as in my favorite friendship in musical theatre, is the one found between Elphaba and Glinda. It is a beautiful, powerful, and special bond found between two complex and strong young women- they did start out as enemies and later became best friends. They don’t let a boy get in the way of their friendship- they do both fall in love with Fiyero. Both of them do end up with unrequited love for him at some point: but they end up not stealing him away from each other. The song, “For Good”, is the most emotional song in Wicked and talks about how they have changed each others lives for the better and how they have made each other better people.
The first highlight of February was St. Louis. My mom and I went to see my grandma. St. Louis means a lot to me. Part of St. Louis included seeing Fiddler on the Roof at the gorgeous Fox Theatre. I only saw the movie of Fiddler on the Roof, but NEVER the stage show. St. Louis only was long weekend- a lot of the trip was spent inside. Never thought Fiddler on the Roof would start my musical year.
Lord of the Rings Films
Yes, this sounds like a crazy highlight. I fell in love with the series a while back. I wanted to watch the films, but the thing that held me back was the length of the films. This month I finally saw the trilogy- I am so glad I watched all three films. I am glad I did- I now want to own the trilogy films.
I did think Miss Saigon would start my musical year- instead it was Fiddler on the Roof. I discovered Miss Saigon through Les Mis- after all the music was written by the same people who brought you Les Mis. The musical made me feel love, joy, uncomfortable, fear, and heartbroken. I ended up forming a strong emotional connection to Kim and Chris- they are now a new musical theatre couple that I fell in love with. Now, there are songs that I keep on listening to. It is a good musical- if it wasn’t for Les Mis, I never would have seen Miss Saigon. I have come a long way since Les Mis.
One of the geniuses of Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings series are the characters. Character are highly important in any story. You want to care about them in order to get into the story. The first characters you spend time with are the Hobbits. The Hobbits are the characters I got attached to the most during the films.
As the main character of the series, we want to be able to like him. If we don’t why would the quest matter? I understand that if the ring isn’t destroyed Middle Earth would be in trouble. Still, you need to care about Frodo since he is the central character of the trilogy. In the film, I loved him from the start- before he had the ring. There was just something about him that drew me in.
He was brave enough to leave The Shire and to become the Ringbearer. He had a big burden to deal with- The Ring. The Ring easily corrupts and get heavier as the journey continues. The closer you are to Mordor, the weaker you become, but Frodo never gave up. He was determined throughout this journey. There was just something about him that makes him likable. He does have his flaws- you need a character to be flawed or else they wouldn’t be believable. Some of his flaws does come from the power of the Ring.
Sam is easily likable. I love his loyalty to Frodo. He is always with him no matter what. When Frodo tries to continue on his quest alone, Sam would not allow it. When Frodo is too weak to go up the mountain, Sam carries Frodo up. Sam stays loyal to Frodo in any situation they find themselves in. He rescues Frodo from Orcs when Frodo is captured. So I love his loyalty to Frodo the most. Frodo wouldn’t have made it that far without Sam.
Merry and Pippin are troublemakers and mischievous. You do wonder at first: why are they part of the fellowship: why are part of the quest and why are part of the story? They are the youngest Hobbits on this quest. Soon enough, you see courage in them. Their mischievous nature can get the fellowship in trouble at times. Later on, they have encouraged the talking trees to help protect Middle Earth, and these two Hobbits do some fighting. So they do care about Middle Earth. So they have a purpose- without them, parts of Middle Earth could be destroyed.