Happy Halloween Everyone!
This will be a quick post as it has been a while and past overdue, but I’m a little short of time.
It’s Halloween and I just finished reading the book Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West, so I thought about writing a quick review and compare it with the musical that I love!
Unfortunately you can expect some **************SPOILERS!!!*************, therefore if you haven’t seen the musical or read the book… you shouldn’t read this…
When I first saw Wicked the musical I fell in love with it.
The music is fantastic and the characters incredible and it tells a nice story about a misunderstood Elphaba who faced by the ungratefulness of life decides to give up doing good.
The character of Elphaba is a strong, self-assured girl, that is intelligent and fights for what she thinks it’s right, besides her green skin.
Anyway, the musical brings the whole package with magic, surprises, romance, and more.
The only problem I see with the musical is the fact it doesn’t specify what is wrong with Oz or what the Wizard has to do with it all of it and why Elphaba hates him so much… And also, the fact that the Wizard seems to be a nice guy kind of contrasts with the fact that Elphaba is also a nice girl.
All that the musical tells you is that Animals (which are animals that can think and talk like humans) are losing their power of speech. Elphaba decides to ask the Wizard for help to stop this from happening, however he makes her give wings to monkeys instead, it is understood that the Wizard is behind the Animal problems and she decides to stand against him.
However, if the Wizard is such a nice guy why is he doing this and why isn’t more people taking the witches side?
Well, this is left behind in the musical so I decided to read the book to see if it clarified some parts.
I will not make a literature review of the book. All I’m talking about is the story itself and its characters.
So, there are some differences, of course!
For once the book has many more characters and the story is told differently.
Madame Morrible seems much more evil, and despises Elphaba.
The Wizard is an evil Tyrant that is enslaving Animals.
Dr. Dillamond (the Goat teacher) dies murdered, possibly by the orders of Madame Morrible.
And Elphaba was never a witch.
The last one is the greatest difference for me. For what captivated me was the character that, no matter the circumstances, fights for what she believes in.
There was very little fight in Elphaba in the book.
She did join a rebel group but that doesn’t go very far.
She is so weak that she doesn’t even do nothing when her friends are kidnaped by the wizard!
Her broom starts flying when a little girl plays with it, it’s not even the witches power that makes the broom fly…
I wanted to read more about an Elphaba like in the musical, that takes her Grimmerie and starts reading without even knowing what she s doing and hoping for the best, because that is better than staying there and doing nothing.
Her despise for Dorothy also never adds up. Dorothy was responsible for the death of her sister, and her minions, and the witch does see herself in Dorothy, but it seemed like the author didn’t know how to end the story… The witch develops a hatred for Dorothy even though she forgives the fact she murdered her sister, but what she can’t forgive is the fact Dorothy got her shoes…
The Elphaba we knew throughout the book, that broke down after Fiyero died, that lived with Sarima waiting forgiveness, that swore to do something and get Sarima back but never did, that faced the Wizard and all she did was beg for a kids life… would she have hated Dorothy so much and still had dinner with her, trying to have a normal conversation to then lock herself up a tower with the kid and try to kill her?
I don’t know…
And I have to admit, I missed the happy ending. I understand that the point on the book about the witch was the fact she didn’t believe in afterlife and therefore there wasn’t one when she died, but the fact the scarecrow is Fiyero enchanted and the water thing just a plot to pretend the witch died, I found it brilliant.
So I did prefer the musical…
Well, sorry again for the rushed post and a bit superficial as I didn’t have the time to read more about other reviews of the book and musical and didn’t even have the time to actually write all my views of it, but I think this summarises it alright.
Please if you have any more to add, either in favor or against my views feel free to write a comment ;)
See you next time.