02 June 2012


Faerie Tales for (the Day after) Friday

The day after Friday is Saturday, which is Locus Focus day on Shredded Cheddar--which is why you may be wondering what another meme is doing here. Well, it's very kindly substitute blogging for a feature that will resume next week. The theme will be Foreign Shores and every linked up post will be worth five extra entries in this month's interactive giveaway. (Yes, I wrote "giveaway." Read on . . .)

My original plan was to write more about Severino Reyes's Best of Lola Basyang (Option 13 in the June Giveaway) in a Character Connection post--but then I remembered another meme I used to love that seems better suited to showing off these short, folksy and fantastic bedtime stories for children: Friday Is for Fairy Tales.

Sadly, it looks as if Irena is no longer updating This Miss Loves to Read. But everyone loves faerie tales in the book blogosphere and I quickly found another great weekly blog event called Fairy Tale Friday, hosted jointly by Books 4 Learning and Literary Transgressions. And although they don't list "Faerie Tale Face-offs" in their list of post suggestions, I don't think they'd turn this one away. =)

The Forgotten Princess vs. Sleeping Beauty

There's just something about a princess in a tower . . .

Parents: Since both stories begin when their heroines are very young, we should start with those who had care of them--and who directly or indirectly contributed to their misfortune as they grew older. Princess Ogarta's father pulls the double whammy of marrying a second wife who makes a cruel stepmother and trying to force his daughter to marry a man she does not love. And she is unhappy for years because of his neglect and cruelty. Sleeping Beauty, on the other hand, has two very loving parents who want only the best for her at all times. Their one mistake was forgetting to invite the most awful faerie in the land to their daughter's baptism . . . an oversight for which nobody can really blame them.

Winner: Sleeping Beauty--because well intentioned mistakes often cause more damage than deliberate malice.

Princesses: As for our protagonists themselves . . . It would be unfair to have expected the latter to do anything heroic while unconscious (both literally and figuratively, depending on which side of the spindle she is on), but even if she had slain an entire drive of dragons with both hands bound behind her back, that still would have been nothing next to the former's accomplishment of giving birth in secret and having her child smuggled out of her prison to safety.

Winner: The Forgotten Princess--because what she did was strong, selfless and totally badass.

Prisons: We have three Ps and haven't got to "Princes" yet! Perhaps I should make the entire list alliterative . . . Princess Ogarta is locked in a tower for sixteen years--roughly half her life--her only consolation being that her lover and son are both free and unharmed. Sleeping Beauty is kept in her tower for a hundred years, but is in an enchanted sleep all the while. The innocence of her childhood has become the unconsciousness of adolescence, and until she awakes she is as powerless as any prisoner.

Winner: Sleeping Beauty--because while we all fear literal confinement, the real danger is its mental counterpart.

Princes: I use the term "princes" loosely because Princess Ogarta's true love is not a prince but a poor farmer. Why else would her father be furious enough to lock her up for life? Sleeping Beauty gets a more traditional lover: a valiant prince who braves the forest of thorns around her tower (and in some accounts, also a dragon) and breaks the spell cast upon her with a kiss.

Winner: Sleeping Beauty--because her man actually does something other than spend sixteen years wishing he had the guts to rescue the mother of his child.

Rescuers: And now the alliteration ends. =P I'm making a distinction between the man each princess loves and the man who actually rescues her. Princess Ogarta is freed not by her lover, but by her son, who organises a small army that marches on the palace and so overwhelms the king's guards that they surrender. Sleeping Beauty is awakened by her equally brave prince's kiss of true love.

Winner: The Forgotten Princess--because the most beautiful romance in the world is nothing next to knowing you've done right by your children. 

Sixteen: In both stories, turning sixteen years old is very important. It is at this age that Princess Ogarta's son learns the truth about his mother--at this age that he wakes up, you might say--and takes steps to free her at last. It is also at this age that Sleeping Beauty falls asleep--a misfortune everyone in the kingdom has been trying to protect her from since the day she was born.

Winner: The Forgotten Princess--because there's more to coming of age than just waking up from innocence.

Villains: It comes down to the female antagonists to decide this smackdown. The Forgotten Princess has an evil stepmother whose tyranny is doubled because she is also the queen. Sleeping Beauty has an evil fairy who lays curses on whomever displeases her. And this one is kind of easy . . .

Winner: Sleeping Beauty--because, let's face it: the more magical faerie tale always wins.

* * * * *

The Forgotten Princess vs. Sleeping Beauty

Winner: Sleeping Beauty

You can read The Forgotten Princess and other Filipino faerie tales in The Best of Lola Basyang by Severino Reyes, one of the books featured in my June Giveaway. If it sounds like something you'd be interested in, please try your luck! =)

And if you'd like to read more Faerie Tale Face-offs, here are some quick links to past posts:

Image Source: The Castle of Foix


Books4Learning said...

Wow! I really like your idea of a "Smackdown." It is such a fun and creative way to look at stories. I may have to steal the idea :) Thank you for linking up with Fairy Tale Friday this week. I hope to see you often.

Sullivan McPig said...

The forgotten Princess sounds intriguing. Still going for Po-On though ;-)

Enbrethiliel said...


Books4Learning -- Thanks! I love making perfectly friendly faerie tales fight. ;-)

Sully -- Very good choice! But now I feel challenged to come up with another book you might want more. Hmmmm! =P

Jenny said...

Sheesh! I've never even heard of The Forgotten Princess but it does sound interesting. Except that stupid farm boy! ;)

Enbrethiliel said...


Actions speak louder than words, but if Limpo's actions after Ogarta's imprisonment were translated into words, those words would be: "See? Your father was right about why you shouldn't have dated me!" =P