Has anyone noticed the “untold stories” trend? Has anyone noticed that these “untold stories” often turn a story on its head, and, in so doing, make the traditionally-viewed “good guy” into the “bad guy”?
For instance, the earliest one I can recall is Wicked. Wicked told us the untold story behind the famous tale of The Wizard of Oz, and we learned that, in actuality, the WICKED WITCH of the West was not really wicked at all and had been kind of cheated and mistreated her whole life and gotten all kinds of bad stuff she didn’t deserve. We saw that she was actually a heroic sweetheart who may have made some unwise decisions, but nothing unprovoked.
Then there was Red Riding Hood, the 2011 film starring Amanda Seyfried. The WOLF in this one is a werewolf, a half-man/half-wolf who just unfortunately received this curse genetically. The (multiple) killings are mostly righteous indignation. The [were]wolf is just a misunderstood, albeit dangerous, being.
Now we have the brand-new Maleficent, telling us the story behind the EVIL STEPMOTHER queen character in the well-known fairy tale, Sleeping Beauty. We find out that she was betrayed and became really, really bad. But it’s totally not her fault. She’s actually a really nice person underneath, you know?
There aren’t a ton (maybe more than I’ve mentioned or can remember, though), but isn’t it kind of odd? Doesn’t it seem to send this message that there is no absolute right or wrong, but every case depends on your perspective? The evil character isn’t really evil, per se – it all depends on how you look at it! You can’t judge her actions; don’t you know her backstory?
I’m not sure I like this trend. Although it’s not exactly this, it feels much too much like “calling evil good and good evil”, if you catch my drift.