Great 667 Re-Read: Week 10 - The Slippery Slope Jun 30, 2009 15:30:43 GMT -5 Jacques Snicket likes this
Post by Dante on Jun 30, 2009 15:30:43 GMT -5
Yes, I agree. It is a shame, because I do want the two to make sense. Perhaps Mulctuary Money Management hired Esmé as an outside consultant for the case?
OK, no actual inconsistency, then. Nevertheless, I feel there's a change of emphasis. The sense I got at the end of TVV was that the Quagmires had escaped, and were now in a safe place; the continued suspense concerned whether the Baudelaires would ever be able to join them. Now, the Quagmires are being written back into the story, with the apparent aim of giving them more adventures. I think at this point Handler probably did intend to bring them back.
Hmm. I disagree somewhat. I don't think there's a contradiction in that I think the SSHAMH is as safe as it ever was; however, I don't think it was ever a legitimate future option for the Baudelaires, in the sense that if they ever got there, it would be brought down. Indeed, I think a number of theories about TPP - or TNN, or B12, or any variety of titles it was known as up to a couple of weeks before publication - used this idea. I know I did.
(This raises the puzzle, of which more in due course, of when the message was left. The MWBBNH and the WWHBNB say it took them a month to burn the HQ, and the volunteers had gone before they arrived. But there are reason for thinking the message was left much later than that.)
Once again, I agree entirely. The entire set-up with the headquarters feels... well, very much like it was set up, like it's just a stage, a puzzle for the Baudelaires to solve. I'm actually very uncomfortable with it as it was always the spot which agreed most with the otherwise monstrous "it was all V.F.D. training" theory.
Well, my view still is that the 'long after' theory is supported by everything Lemony says; the 'just behind' theory comes from trying to reconcile different books. There's nothing in the letter to Kit itself which implies L is writing just after the events; it's just that we know, from later books, that Kit is dead.
Bit more suspense from "just behind," though - a bit more interesting, and one may argue that an ambiguous incident in TPP supports it. But still, look at us - in the position of having to argue that it may be a mistake to try and reconcile different books in the same plot-heavy series! Oh aSoUE. Some of the greatest works of art are the most flawed.
...and at the end of the paragraph it says that the SS 'disappeared into the darkness below'. But it is odd. Perhaps it was first written for another setting?
An interesting idea. I shouldn't be surprised. I had contemplated the possibility that at a later stage in the story Olaf and co. may have moved their location, or there would be something else worth climbing for at the top of the slippery slope. But evidently this is not the case in the finished product. Abandoned plotlines and drafts fascinate me, though, and I've often wished we had our hands on Handler's plot notes. Alas, since these apparently take the form of many, many tiny notes stuck up on the wall, I suspect they are long gone.
This is of course the most romantic chapter in the series.
Well - but yes. One couldn't quite class Klaus and Fiona's relationship as running quite so untroubled as Violet and Quigley's, no. I far prefer the former to the latter, though. I'll probably get a chance to raise my problems with the character of Quigley when going through later chapters, but I'm not that interested in him.
The question is raised whether Isadora and Duncan were in VFD. It would certainly be odd if they were and Quigley was not. I think the answer is 'no', or at least not in the way V and Q mean - but this must wait for the next chapter.
My theory: Recruited, without the actual kidnapping element, by the Prufrock librarian, much mirroring the case of Ms. K. and the replacement orphans. As such, Isadora and Duncan can, in some fashion, be in V.F.D. without Quigley having been cruelly left out. Poetry, check, journalism, check... cartography?! Get thee to the F.F.P., you are my son no more!
'We searched for days and days and couldn't find the sugar bowl.' This is the first (explicit) mention in this book of the SB (the letter to Kit didn't actually say 'sugar bowl', just 'tea set'.) I think Dante once mentioned a theory that there are actually several sugar bowls, and so far that seems quite plausible; we know VFD uses sugar bowls for some purpose; it would make sense for the MWBBNH and WWHBNB to want to find the sugar bowl kept at the headquarters, which would be different from the sugar bowl stolen by Lemony from Esme. But subsequent events do not bear this out.
The main attraction of the "multiple sugar bowls" theory is that it satisfies numerous conditions about the sugar bowl without being too ridiculous, and also maintains a sense of irony or cruel fate - you may find a sugar bowl, and discover to your horror that what is within, while interesting, has nothing to do with you. I've probably converted to it, insofar as I believe anything these days - this reread is increasingly making me distant and relucant to commit to any actual narratives, preferring to look at it from a step back. Ah well. The progression is a logical one.