KAT - 23 - FEMALE
REVIEWS AND GENERAL OPINIONS ABOUT BEAUTY AND THE BEAST-GENRE MEDIA!
the most aggravating fans are the ones that become huge fans of a villainous character but just can’t handle the fact that the villainous character does villainous things and instead said fans invent a million assbackwards headcanons about how the villain is TOTALLY not a villain at all and is some tragic blob where nothing is their fault even up to and including murder and genocide
i am just so baffled by this
and Christine tells him that looks don’t really matter to her at all and that to her he’s still the little boy who ran into the sea to fetch her scarf. And she gives him lots of kisses too.
I’ve actually considered an AU where Raoul tries to fight the Phantom after he and the Persian almost drown, and the Persian misses the scuffle because he was unconscious. But Raoul winds up being knocked unconscious himself after sustaining serious facial injuries that cost him sight in one eye and leave him with heavy scarring.
This is a great question!
Let’s start with Raoul, since he’s the easiest case to analyze. In “The Enchanted Violin,” Leroux writes an interview between M. Mifroid, the Commissary of Police, and Raoul. In it, Mifroid asks Raoul, “Vous êtes superstitieux?” — “Are you superstitious?” To which Raoul replies, “Non, monsieur, je suis croyant.” — “No, monsieur, I am religious” (literally “a believer”). Since the majority of France was (and still is) Catholic, and since Raoul came from an old French family, it is almost certain that he was Catholic.
Christine was born in Sweden, and as such, was most likely raised a Lutheran, since that was (and is) the country’s dominant religion. However, it is likely that she and her father became Catholic after they moved to France when Christine was a girl. Daddy Daaé is buried in a Catholic cemetery in Perros-Guirec, and when Christine goes to visit her father’s grave, she requests that a mass be performed in his honor, and then spends many hours in prayer in the Catholic church there. There were Lutheran churches in France at the time, so if Daddy Daaé had been particularly adherent to that faith, he probably would have been buried in a Lutheran cemetery.
As for Erik, I’m pretty sure that he was, in his own way, still tied to the Catholic faith. He was most likely rather ambivalent about God for much of his life, but I don’t think that he was an atheist, and I strongly doubt that he had notions of devil worship like Susan Kay wrote for the Erik in her novel.
He writes masses in the Catholic tradition — of course, with his own spin, and usually to commemorate the death of some unfortunate soul.
When Christine first tells him to show her his face without fear, he “leva vers le Destin ses mains décharnées, et tomba à mes genoux avec des mots d’amour” — “he raised his skeletal hands towards Destiny, and he fell to his knees before me with words of love.”
He insists that he and Christine get married properly in the Madeleine Church — Erik is a stickler for rules (at least the ones that he decides are important); he tells Christine, “j’ai toujours eu la maladie du décorum” — “I have always had an obsession with etiquette.”
When Erik speaks to the Persian about Christine at the end of the novel, he says, “Seigneur du ciel! vous m’avez donné tout le bonheur du monde!” — “Lord in Heaven! You have given me all the happiness in the world!” It is Christine’s act of crying with Erik that ultimately revives and saves the man in Erik, and allows the Beast to perish. Remember that the line “Jesus wept” is from the Lazarus story — John 11:35 — which Leroux uses throughout his novel.
All of this is to say, I am pretty sure that Erik wasn’t an apostate from Catholicism (as numerous fanon traditions would have him be), but had a very complex relationship to faith, and was redeemed in many senses of the word by Christine’s kindness and compassion.
The last review I posted was about two weeks or so ago, and it’s around time for me to poster another. It might be a bit before I post another, unfortunately.