Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Tolkien's Opinion of Shrek

Upon reading Tolkien's On Fairy-Stories, I have noticed that Tolkien is fairly critical of many stories that are  often referred to as "Fairy-Stories." Tolkien reasons that certain stories are not true "fairy-stories" because they do not meet certain criteria, like creatures are simply used as "masks upon a human face" or because all the adventure occurred within a dream. 
As I was reading a question kept coming into my mind, it seemed like a silly question so I decided  not to post it here, but then Tolkien mentioned "Puss-in-Boots" (324) and I knew it was a sign. So here is my question...
Do you guys think Tolkien would have counted "Shrek" as a fairy-story? Why or why not?

Personally I am conflicted because the multiple fairy-story characters in Shrek make it difficult to judge. Some of the individual characters may meet the standard and some may not. I am not sure if Tolkien would look as the stories as a whole or make his judgment based off of if Shrek himself meets the standard. What do you guys think?

1 comment:

Anna Adams said...

I'm not sure if Tolkien would consider Shrek a fairy-tale. He seemed pretty strict in his criteria for what a fairy-story should be, and honestly I am still not entirely sure what qualifies. If he looked at it as a whole, I think he might have considered it a fairy-story despite the characters from the beast-fables. He did say there can be talking animals in fairy-stories. I don't know. Does anyone else think there are too many main characters that are talking animals in Shrek? Does this make it a beast-fable?