Saturday, February 14, 2015

The Phantom of the Opera - Grace and Truth

[Second of a series on female characters, feminism, and all that jazz. Previous: Agent Carter - Victimhood and Humility.]

It's very hard to take The Phantom of the Opera seriously when one was raised singing along to Riders in the Sky's Phantom of the Chuckwagon (I recognize, that by linking to that, I have probably sacrificed any credibility this post will have.) And sure enough, when I watched a performance of Phantom for the first time, it was easy to mock. Ostentatious, theatrical, melodramatic, shamelessly populist - it's a mishmash of 80s rock, Broadway musical numbers, and just a bit of real opera, all knitted together by the plot of a 1910 novel, Le Fantôme de l'Opéra. But there's something more than that - an honesty lacking from many such stories.