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Sun, Jul. 11th, 2004, 07:12 pm
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban from a rat's perspective

Well, I finally broke down and saw it.

First off, let me say how disgusted I was when reading the book on discovering Scabbers was evil. There are so few positive role models for rats in the mainstream media, that we tend to clutch at straws. Even as poor a rat as Scabbers was to be admired, until we find out he is in the evil employ of He Who Must Not Be Named. I would however suggest that everyone keep an eye on that rat in the last book.

Also worth mentioning was Professor Lupin. A lot of subtlety and ambiguity surrounding this character was unfortunately cut to fit in the movie's time frame, but he looked gorgeous as a werewolf! Still scary and menacing, but also graceful and elegant, and he walked as comfortably on four legs as he does on two.

There's more I could say, but these were the two most important bits.
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Sun, Jul. 11th, 2004 06:23 am (UTC)

Well, not really that much of a role model, but the star of Rat is quite definitely non-evil. Just a bread delivery driver, who, upon returning home from the pub one night, turns into a rat. This causes some problems for the family, and results in a certain amount of local media interest. It's all quite low-key, making for a nicely dark comedy, even if there's no actual TF shown - just before and after.

Oh, you're in Brisbane? If you're interested in very good food, you might want to try Jameson's sometime - I had the good fortune of enjoying their tasting menu in 2001, while visiting a friend in Corinda. I could enthuse more (much more!), but I'll contain myself. ^_^

Sun, Jul. 11th, 2004 02:15 pm (UTC)

As I recall, the human in question was an unfaithful alcoholic. Not exactly a role model that Ristin would want me to follow. ;)

I will look up Jameson's, though. I'll take Ristin there when he moves up here.

Sun, Jul. 11th, 2004 09:29 am (UTC)

My wife could probably recount the "Oh, sure, the rat has to be evil and cowardly" rant from when I read the third book. :)

It is certainly hard to find any good rat characters. Rats of NIMH, as Ristin mentioned. I also have a fondness for Death of Rats, a minor character from Terry Pratchett's humorous novels. Other than that... I think there was an Animorphs with a rat... But I'm stretching to think of anything else.
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Sun, Jul. 11th, 2004 02:12 pm (UTC)

That's brilliant! I was always offended by the specieism in Redwall, but you've intuited the truth and why the Redwall propaganda machine has to portray the rats as unrelentingly evil. It is always the victors who write history.

The mention of Death of Rats reminds me of Terry Pratchett's Maurice and his Amazing Educated Rodents which was about a group of naive rats who were trying hard to be good and honest even though they were being bamboozled by a shyster cat. Through all the references to rat lore I could tell that Mr Pratchett really understands rats. My favourite part was that they would eat their fallen comrades, but "only as a mark of respect".

Sun, Jul. 11th, 2004 05:27 pm (UTC)

IIRC, Splinter from TMNT was a rat, and a mentor to those crazy little turtles...

Tue, Jul. 13th, 2004 12:49 pm (UTC)

I've read Laurell K. Hamilton's Anita Blake series, and the rats in her books are portrayed as honorable beings, with a few bad apples.

I like Redwall, even though they portray the rats (and other species, I might add!) as evil. Well, in this particular case they are evil. Eating other beings (sentient beings, I might add), torturing families etc. AFAIK Redwall tried the nice route (let us share what we have), but the rats wouldn't hear of it.

Back on topic:
The one playing Peter Pettigrew was absolutely wonderful. He had the twitchy nose and the pawing down pat. Too bad he had to be a coward rat and not one with honor.
The one playing Lupin.. *sigh* Puurrfect...;-)

Rat stories:
There is a story in Scandinavia (Niels Holgersen's Journey), which has rats in it. Very heroic they are, if a bit down on their luck. Native Brown Rats vs. Foreing Black Rats and the brown rats gets their tails handed to them.:-( But thus is progress. *shrugs*

Aye, better end it now..
HP and prisoner of Azkabahn rocks!!!