Author has written 10 stories for Phantom of the Opera, and Hunchback of Notre Dame.
Hello. Welcome one and all to VampPhan's (formerly known as ECvampirephantom and before that phanphictionangel) profile. Now, go to twitter and follow @ComplexStalker and @robedcreeper, then go to tumblr and follow the blog: beautyandthepriest.tumblr.com . Thank you.
Yes this is a long profile. Just so you know, you probably will get NOTHING about my page unless you know what the Phantom of the Opera OR Notre-Dame de Paris (more widely known as the Hunchback of Notre Dame) is about. Just so you can visualize how obsessed I am, imagine a modern, crazed Twilight/One Directioner/other retarded pop culture fad fangirl. Multiply that by infinity, take it to the depths of forever, and you still will have not the slightest idea of what I am talking about. Obsession with a story is not measured by how many shirts with the main male character on the front you have, it is how well you understand and appreciate the plot.
Story of How I became a Mega Fan: I remember Disney's Hunchback of Notre Dame throughout my childhood and always liking it. It was turning into an obsession right before I discovered Phantom of the Opera (yes, the 2004 movie version) at my brother's house, literally the day after 5th grade ended. I was a weird kid...anyway. That just escalated quickly and became pretty much my life for the next few years. Found a fan video for Erik with the song "Tu vas me detruire" from the musical Notre Dame de Paris, loved it, then went and watched the original French cast on Youtube. Loved it for a while, but went back to being a phan (probably because the musical isn't as heart touching as other versions, though very good). I started roleplaying on Twitter as Erik. There, I met a fellow phan who asked if anyone was a fan of Notre Dame de Paris, we started talking about it then roleplaying in that fandom. So I made another RP account for Frollo and she made one for Esmeralda. Eventually, I got deeper into it, rewatched the Disney movie, explored other versions, read the book, etc, and now I'm madly in love with both tragic, beautiful classics.
And despite all of this, I do not live in my mother's basement and eat Doritos all day. Yay me.
What do you do when a Twilight fan who's been shot is standing in front of you? Stop laughing and reload.
Copy and Paste if you cannot understand anyone who saw POTO and did not immediately become obsessed with it.
Copy and Paste if you absolutely loathe when someone claims to love POTO and all they can say about it is "oh i love that movie i saw it like a year ago it was the one where the lady sings and he stalks her and oh my gawd his face was ugly...haha i know sooo much about it!" THESE are the people who give movie phans a bad name.
If you have seen a movie so many times that you have memorized almost all of the lines, and you still laugh at every punch line, copy this onto your profile.
If you do not understand why Oriental, Native American, Hispanic, Middle-Eastern AND blacks are considered "minorities" when 98 percent of the world has brown eyes, dark skin and black hair.
If you probably need a life but have no intentions of getting one, put it on your profile.
If you have seen a movie so many times you can quote it word for word, and do so frequently, copy and paste.
MOST of people on fanfiction believe that 98 percent of teenagers have tried smoking pot. If you are one of the few people who knows that statistic is a huge exaggeration, copy and paste.
Call no man evil who can still love.
Favorite POTO Lines
"AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!" --Christine, Highest Note Made By Any Human Being In the History of The World--otherwise known as the end of the POTO theme song.
"Soooooooooaaaaaaaaar"--Erik, HIGHEST Note Made by any MALE Human Being in the History of the World--otherwise known as the note that makes everyone burst out laughing in Music of the Night. (have to say, the little hand-lifting number wasn't helping whatsoever)
"BEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE"--Erik, LOUDEST Note Made by Any Human Being In the History of the World--otherwise known as the very loud, echoing note in MOTN.
"Niiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiigggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhtttttttttttttttttttttttt..."--Erik, Longest Note Made By Any Human Being In the History of The World--otherwise known as the end of MOTN.
(Okay I'll be serious now)
"Seal my fate tonight I hate to have to cut the fun short, but the joke's wearing thin, let the audience in, let my opera BEGIN!", Erik, Some Scene Before Don Juan
"If Erik's secrets cease to be Erik's secrets, it will be a bad lookout for a goodly number of the human race!"--Erik, Leroux
"Hell is full of burning bridges. I daresay that's what makes it so bloody hot."--Erik, Susan Kay's Book
"But...but people must have been killed!" "Oh yes...I daresay that's quite likely! It's really very difficult to become a murderer without killing a few people from time to time, you know."--Erik and Nadir, Susan Kay ("and it's really very difficult to kill someone when all your inner insticts would oblige you to take off your hat first!")
My thoughts on pairings (for Phantom of the Opera)
EC: My absolute favorite, always. As long as it's done right, logically and in character.
RC: If it doesn't hurt Erik, I don't care. If it's before Erik has come into the story, and before Christine has mentally 'grown up' , then I don't mind. When they are children it's kind of adorable. It only sickens me when I imagine them...yeah.
RM: Very sweet in my opinion. Meg is the one who told Christine in the beginning "He (Raoul)'s so handsome". And she seems more his type, more simple (not necessarily in a bad way) and light hearted and would really love to be a Vicomtess. I personally think this makes a lot more sense than EM, which is very popular.
EM: Okay just because Meg PICKED UP HIS MASK IN THE END does NOT mean she loved him. And he never looked at her twice in any version. And Meg...she's just not his type. Most think Christine is an airhead, but if she is, then that makes Meg a complete retard. It simply would never happen.
EOW: All the same, for one thing, and some random woman coming in and making Erik automatically forget all about Christine and fall in love with her is just WRONG--to me, at least. And all ideas are overused--blind, slightly-deformed, a gypsy, a Persian slave girl, or a phangirl. Oh, and the really sick, pedophilic one--Christine's child. And still, if the woman is actually smart and original and Erik doesn't forget about Christine, it just doesn't compute in my head. The only way I have EVER made an exception for this is in my story "Insanity Ensues", where he falls for Emmy Rossum. It makes sense to me because this story isn't that serious anyway, and she's pretty much Christine herself except Erik actually gets to know her and has a real chance with her. If I hadn't started the story at the end of the movie, I would have probably gone E/C, but by the end, he has NO hope whatsoever with Christine.
EMG: Madame Giry is much too old for Erik, and if he loved her, that would mean loving his EX's adoptive MOTHER. So that's kinda wrong to me. Yes she saved him from the fair, but it doesn't mean she MUST fall in love with him or vice-versa. I think she's better suited for Nadir, if anyone at all.
ER: Sick. Just sick. I have nothing against gay people (in fact, I love them and want to give them all glomps) but two men destined to be rivals over a WOMAN, suddenly turning homosexual and loving eachother is just unrealistic, awkward, and freaky. And if that weren't enough, they would just be too different. (this goes for Persian/Erik as well. Can two men be friends and NOT be gay?! Seriously...)
(Pairings for Notre-Dame de Paris)
Esmeralda/Phoebus: I just hate it. In book-faithful versions, he's a promiscuous cad, and she makes me physically ill for loving him. In the Disney movie and other versions where he's a good guy, he's still annoying and a rather boring character.
Esmeralda/Gringoire: I used to like it, since our poet is pretty much the only sane and decent guy in the story, but after reading the book, I just couldn't see them together, seeing as he cares more about her goat than about her.
Esmeralda/Quasimodo: They're sweet as friends, but honestly...how would this work? Think about it. Even assuming he's more like the Disney movie where he doesn't have mental problems and deafness on top of his deformity, I just can't see it. It doesn't compute in my head.
Phoebus/Fleur de Lys: They annoy the hell out of me, both of them, so I guess they deserve eachother.
Clopin/Esmeralda: Possibly, in the versions where he's not a father figure or a relative. I have yet to really delve into this idea. I can see him being friend-zoned.
Clopin/OC: Dear god, the most overrated, Mary Sue pairing in fanfiction EVER (aside from maybe Erik/OC)
Quasimodo/OC: Sequel much? Sorry, I just can't.
Claude/OC: Same thing, just less popular. He's like Erik to me (well obviously, since Erik is basically half him and half Quasimodo) he can't care for ANYONE else except Esmeralda. Whether you think it's love or lust or obsession, whatever it is, it won't go away unless it results in sex or death, so...yeah. Even if the girl is intelligent, deep, and appreciates his brilliance and everything--a literate female in the Middle Ages doesn't make sense.
Claude/Gudule: Sure, they're the same age. But he's kind of obsessed with her daughter.
ANY Slash pairings: Again, I have literally nothing against gay people, and I love them. But in this story, or in any story that isn't set in modern times or ancient Rome, it would NEVER happen. They'd be instantly killed if they actually got to the point of acting out on it, which is also unlikely, because of the fact that they see it as worthy of death! Again--no sense.
Pairings I actually like?
Jehan/Esmeralda: I've never actually seen this except a little snippet in one fanfiction that was amazing, but it looks pretty interesting. I can see these two having a lot of fun causing trouble together. Both free spirits of the same age--and Jehan's brother happens to be obsessed with her. See, the plot goes somewhere!
Claude/Esmeralda: All time favorite. It's so doomed to end but I always am finding ways to make it work in a variety of versions, from the very sympathetic book Claude and innocent, naive Esmeralda, to the insanely evil Disney judge and the much stronger, more mature gypsy. Or a mixture of both, such as Disney Esmeralda and book Claude. Either way, they never fail to interest me.
PET PEEVES ABOUT CHARACTERS:
Erik: When he's favoritized (aka Mary Sue-ified) or his mood swings are exaggerated to the extent of wanting to kill Christine one minute and the next second they're making out. Or when he's practically abusive to Christine just because the author dislikes her. Or when he rapes Christine. Ever. It's extremely OOC. OR when even though he's had no experience with women, he's so overly sexual in the way he moves and acts. Personally, I don't like Eriks that aren't virgins or they've had a relationship before, but there are some exceptions. Usually the ex is a foil character for Christine. Hm..what else...oh! Yes, I hate the ones who lament about his face in every bloody paragraph. We KNOW! You can't just fill up space in your story with Erik bitching about his looks nonstop.
Christine: Hate the simpering wimps that just let the practically abusive Eriks walk all over them. I like it when she changes him by not putting up with his crap. However, I don't like her when she's portrayed as a heartless, cold bitch (yes, we all love Erik, but if you didn't know him and were put in a situation where you were being stalked by a deformed nutcase...I doubt your initial reaction would be to jump his bones). I also dislike when she comes back to Erik in the last five seconds, yet again. For the reality of Christine Comes Back fics, read Just Don't Ask, it's on my favs.
Raoul: When he's absolutely fine with the fact Christine leaves him for Erik in EC fictions, or generally doesn't give a damn about her. And of course, the abusive Raoul.
Meg: When she's a ridiculously exaggerated dumb blonde/slut (or insane like in LND). She's slightly ditzy in my modern day story, but not a bimbo. There's a difference.
Claude: When he's made to be literally abusive (i.e hitting, slapping, beating, etc.) Even in the Disney version. Yeah, yeah, I know "but he was going to kill her!" I don't care if he was waving a torch around in her face, he still never actually hit Esmeralda. Besides, domestic violence just bothers me in fanfictions, no matter who's doing it. Now rape, pretty much all the versions TRY it but never get anywhere. I doubt any of them could actually go through with it anyway, (aside from the Disney one, for obvious reasons.) The reason I think most other versions couldn't do it is mainly because Frollo probably wouldn't even know HOW to have sex, due to the complete lack of education about it for those destined to be in the clergy. So book faithful versions follow this theory. And if he DID know how to, I can only see him get to a certain point, suddenly feel awful about what he's doing, then break down crying and begging for forgiveness.
Esmeralda: Alright. I absolutely ADORE the book, it's a positively gorgeous piece of literature, BUT...book Esmeralda is the most annoying, idiotic female character I've ever read about. (Though most everything before 1960 portrays leading females as the exact same character, over and over, this one is the most insulting.) She literally volunteers herself to be Phoebus's mistress then his personal, shoe polishing slave "when I'm too old and ugly for you to love me". REALLY?! So if she's portrayed like that in a fanfiction, I probably won't keep reading unless she changes soon. Or unless she's just innocent and naive but not a complete idiot.
Clopin: When he's made to be this ridiculously sexy guy.
Gringoire: When he's made to be this ridiculously sexy guy.
Jehan: I've never actually seen anyone mess up Jehan. He's one dimensional, but awesome.
Phoebus: When he's like the Disney movie and is a nice guy. It's too convenient and perfect and cliche. I hate him either way.
Fleur de Lys: When she's overly diabolical and evil. It's just...strange. She was basically just ignorant of everything going on in the book so I don't know why she's often Esmeralda's top enemy in fanfiction. Probably because of the musical, awesome though it is.
Quasimodo: When he's the central character. I know, I know, he's been made to be the main character in movies since forever, but that's not what he was intended to be in the original novel. It's actually about Notre Dame herself. Even in movies that try to make him the main character, the attention of the audience almost always veers towards -gasp- Frollo and/or Esmeralda. They are the real catalysts in the story, not Quasimodo.
How I Write My Characters:
Phantom of the Opera
Erik: Sometimes will be very sensual and powerful, other times very sensitive and weak. Depends on the story. In The Voice and the Violin, he's possessive, but still very naive and shy towards love--in that one, his overall appearance is NOT based on Gerry. Find your local skeleton man and there's my image. And I'm not sure what he is in Demitri...he's kind of dark in there, but not much. As for his looks, it's mostly Gerik, but sometimes I change it up a bit. Except none will have a wig. That part was just silly in my opinion, so Erik's straight black hair will always be natural. God, I sound like a hairdresser...but still, that's what he'll look like. I like the mismatched eyes from Kay, so I'll use those a lot. As for his face...I mostly lean towards the movie, while mixing in the Leroux or the musical deformity. But I will never do a whole face deformity (and it will always be from birth for me, not a burn or an attack or anything).
Christine: I actually support Christine so I'm not completely changing her personality or worse, make it me with her identity, but I do lean towards a slightly more independent version of her, even if she is sweet and innocent. Her looks? She will always look like Emmy Rossum, with pretty brown hair and eyes. I've thought about making a blonde Christine, but it reminds me too much of Meg.
Raoul: I like bashing in parodies on occasion. Come on, people, lighten up! It's a JOKE. Besides, they usually make fun of EVERYONE in those... But I dislike bashing in fictions that are supposed to be taken seriously. Like most phans, I hate it when people butcher his character because that's the only way in their puny minds they know how to make an EC relationship work. I try to keep him in character and sweet to Christine. A bit impulsive, but always good-natured. He'll always have dark blonde hair and any color eyes, and a boyish look. Look up blonde male models and you'll find my image of him.
Meg: Will never be a snob/slut that she is often depicted as. That is all. I used to not be a real fan of Meg, but as you can see in my story "Selfish", and in "Demitri", she's a lot more important. Always blonde and cheerful.
Madame Giry: Always the ballet instructor, never a box-keeper. Sorry, I just think then she can relate to the story better that way. And she is amusing when she's dictating the ballet rats. She'll always have a long grey/brown braid and grey eyes.
Carlotta: Not in my stories much yet but I will make her a GOOD singer that just lacks good personality (you will see this in my upcoming crossover with Dracula). Not a fantastic singer like Christine, but still good. I just don't get how she's a lowing cow that for no apparant reason gets the lead roles just for argument's sake and to make our heroine the damsel in distress (with the exception of the Charles Dance version, which makes sense of this madness). She's always a redhead--because gingers don't have souls.
Nadir: I love Nadir, he's hilarious and I love how he's constantly checking to see if Erik's killed anyone yet. Highly amusing. Though I tried to avoid this, he kind of ends up being a backstabber to Erik in any situation, just because he has morals and well, Erik is a bit immoral. But his intentions are for the greater good, so he's always the 'good guy'.
Demitri: My own character, but I will have a little profile for him. He mostly is like Gerry's personality--outwardly fun and outgoing, but can get really deep and thoughtful when you ask the right questions. He also looks like Gerry in "Dracula 2000". But I don't rant about his hotness in every frigging paragraph, so Gary Stu haters are welcome! By the way, that story will probably not be updated anytime soon.
Claude: Book version entirely, except maybe a 1956/Musical appearance. Disney might slip in when he's frustrated/enraged.
Esmeralda: Disney version entirely, for now. Might write a more innocent, milder version of her one day.
Quasimodo: Book version. Incredibly strong, fiercely loyal, deaf and somewhat slow mentally. Just how he was supposed to be.
Clopin: As much as I hate the constant fangirling over him, his mischievous Disney version is the most interesting to work with.
Phoebus: Book version. Total cad.
Fleur de Lys: Might give her more of a backstory, not sure yet. I have an odd pairing in mind for her...
Gudule: How else can I portray this awesome woman? The ultimate mother character. Yet hardly anyone even knows she exists. God love her.
Everyone else: No plans as of yet.
Versions...by the way, I don't think any version is "real" and any other is an insult--besides Phantom of Manhattan, Argento, and Love Never Dies which all phans can see my point about. All adaptions are a story on their own and should be allowed to be appreciated. Now this does not mean I personally like all of them. Leroux and ALW are similar in some ways, and different in a lot of ways, but it doesn't mean either is "wrong". It's not like any of it really happened and you lived in the late 19th century and saw it all and know exactly what's right and what's not. Anyway, here it is, IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER...(well, some order, but I just got lazy)
Leroux: I give it credit because it was the first one, and I liked it. Though I wish it was written as a normal narrative rather than a report, it was very well-detailed, and I like the bits of insanity. My only problem is the fact that Christine is either a snivelling weak-willed little girl, or she's snapping at Raoul, changing her mind every five seconds and forgetting what she said. Also the Daroga seems to devote his entire life to making sure Erik isn't killing anyone. I think he should have more of a life than that. Pretty much everyone in the whole book is insane.
Cartoon: Hilarious. That's all I can really say...I've noticed...all Raoul's after the original but before ALW have dark hair and a mustache...
Lon Chaney (1925): I liked it, but the dramatic expressions were amusing. Like Raoul banging on the mirror after Christine disappeared and Christine's CONSTANT shocked expression. What kind of a crappy end was that, though?! Honestly, making the mob back off, then opening your hand, revealing the trick and laughing, then getting clobbered?! Idiot. Honestly, I don't know why this version is so popular other than the fact that it's 'classic' and all hipsterish and watching silent films somehow makes you sophisticated.
Claude Raines (1942): BA! Hahahahahahaha!! Heeeheee! Haha hee..hee haa...I only liked the hat and Carlotta's spunk. And Raoul and the other guy constantly bickering. But seriously, random other guy needs to go. And Claude Raines looks too much like my former Geometry teacher.
Herbert Lom (1963): How long has it been since he's had a bath? Couldn't he swim in the lake or something? And slapping poor Christine--EXTREMELY OOC. Erik is a crazy mofo, but he ain't abusive. Enough said. And squelching himself under his own chandelier? ...WHY?
Robert Englund (1989): Woah. Freddy Krueger. Time travel that somehow changes location as well. Hookers. Stitching skin to face. Um...well, this movie just screams the 80's in all it's tacky glory, but aside from that, there were a few good points. The graveyard scene was EXCEPTIONALLY similar to Leroux's and I loved it. I also liked the fact that Erik gets to pwn Carlotta AND Raoul--before Christine kills him and he still comes back for no apparant reason...
Charles Dance: (1990 T.V. Series) LOVE IT LOVE IT LOVE IT!! Everything except for the following--Philippe (replacing Raoul, who is a complete playboy. I usually am fine with 'the rival', but I could not stand this one. Except for he's the only truly handsome Raoul character I've seen, I'll give him that. What also annoyed me is Christine saying she's not worthy of Erik. At least she asked instead of just yanking the mask off. Then, Erik changing the top mask everytime he changed his socks was just random and teased the audience like "Oh he's going to show us! What's it going to be?" only for him to NEVER show his face. I understand leaving it to our imaginations, but don't dangle it in front of us. Lastly, I wanted Erik to push that blasted playboy off the roof. Or better yet, only bring him up if he could get away with Christine. Lastly, if I was Gerard Carriere, I still would not shoot my son. Erik can always escape.
Kay: I loved the sarcasm, humor, and then the deep emotional parts. One of the rare books that made me cry. But I did hate the khanum being attracted to him, the whole drug addiction and how in the end from the roof to where Christine kissed him he sounds like he's doing it all for his "master", meaning the devil. That part was too wierd--Erik only serves himself and Christine. There was a disturbing amount of pedophilia in the book--with the gypsy man and giving away of Christine as if he was her father...and I did not like the implication that Christine's son was Erik's (no doubt what lead to Phantom of Manhattan). Damn you Kay, don't you see what you've done?
Phantom Lover: I actually enjoyed most of this. I know it was basically a remake of Song at Midnight, but I have not seen that one yet. However, the abuse of the Christine character was a bit over-the-top.
Eyes Without A Face (1960): Not TECHNICALLY a phantom movie, but it is the story of a deformed girl named Christine who's father cuts faces off of young girls to replace Christine's ruined face. It sounds phantom-ish to me. It was VERY creepy for a black and white movie, but a little weird when she calls her ex boyfriend...who thinks she's dead.
Phantom of the Hollywood: Pretty damn terrible. Cheap, stupid ending, bad acting, the deformity looked like mild acne scars (I could hardly tell there was anything wrong) and he dressed like a bloody knight and stomped around 1970's Hollywood. MGM...why???
The Secret of the Phantom of the Opera: David Copperfield...don't do movies. Ever. I couldn't tell if this was supposed to be a realistic documentary or...I don't even know what to call it. It starts out like a documentary, but then the cameramen follow David when he travels back in time (after seeing a very obviously modern photo of Christine that's supposed to be an antique) and then he meets Gaston Leroux, completely ignoring a dead body on the floor. It was just weird.
Phantom of the Paradise (1970) : Makes me glad I didn't live in the 70's. I know it was a joke, but I could hardly understand most of it, it was so trippy. By far the weirdest Phantom I've ever seen (even weirder than Argento, but not worse because it's not serious). As for our gay man version of Carlotta...alright, I loved him. Enough said.
The Abominable Dr. Phibes (1971): Another one of those movies that has it's decade written all over it. Once again, not a real phantom movie, but VERY similar to it. And really good! Kind of a mix between Phantom and Saw.
Love Never Dies: It's garbage, and ALW just spewed it out on paper to make a quick buck, then lied about us phans actually wanting this to happen. Now, I listened to the soundtrack and I can say he hasn't completely lost his musical talent, because I could see the appeal in 'Beneath a Moonless Sky', 'Devil Take The Hindmost', 'Til I Hear You Sing' and my favorite, 'Beauty Underneath'. Don't kill me just yet--I enjoyed the songs, but they had NO place in a serious adaption of Phantom. Maybe a phanfiction soundtrack. 'Beneath a Moonless Sky' was FAR too awkward for Broadway, 'Devil Take the Hindmost' was funny but not confrontational enough, 'Til I Hear You Sing' represents what's wrong with the entire plot (Erik's sacrifice in letting Christine go, only to trick her into coming back), and 'Beauty Underneath' was way too rock n' roll for the stage. Not to mention Gustave just shouldn't exist. EC babies are a no for me. And as an adopted person with a not-so-great dad, I can say that when you've been raised by one man your whole life, you aren't going to to off to some strange guy you don't know just because you figured out he's your biological father. If I knew who mine was, I would want to meet him, yes, spend time with him, yes, but I wouldn't just leave the people who RAISED me because I share some blood with the guy. That makes NO sense. Oh, and did I mention that ALL the characters are warped? EVERY. SINGLE. ONE.
Angel of Music: I would not be bashing it quite so much if it weren't a serious movie sold on Amazon. It looks fanmade, but I've seen middle schoolers on YouTube make better movies. Christine has the poker face of Kristen Stewart and looks 40 with has serious eye bags while Raoul looks pubescent. Erik has a 50 cent ALW mask (the plastic kind with elastic) thats too small for his face. There are just a LOT of problems, even for a budgeted film.
Argento: -goes to puke- Telepathic/telekinetic mind controlling phantom! No deformity! WIG! Ratmobiles! Rape! Ratsturbation! Female smell! Carlotta's breasts! Rabid Christine! Prince playing Raoul! Turkish baths! Pedophiles shoving 20 pounds of Swiss chocolates down ballet girls's throats! Seaweed/hair dresses! Maids getting high! Screaming naked men in a flaming rat trap in the sky! And the director casting his DAUGHTER as a girl who gets naked at least three times AND raped during the movie. DARIO! IT'S YOUR DAUGHTER! That's all I can say about that.
Stage Show: As of July 2010, I have seen the stage show at a beautiful theatre. Though I didn't care for the voices (the Erik had previously played Raoul over a thousand times, which might explain his performance), I loved the production. The sets, the scene changes, the chandelier, the extra scenes not shown in the movie...the "Bravo Monsieur" part was a favorite. Generally I loved around 96 percent of it.
Michael Crawford: HATE him. And Sarah. Not all MC fans are bad, but quite a few I've seen have made me dislike this version more because they jump on me for liking the movie. He sounds like a little girl, he's smothered in white makeup, he's overly creepy--yes, even for a Phantom--and Sarah, as many can agree on, can't act. And personally, I don't like her voice either. They may be professionally trained, but that doesn't mean it automatically sounds beautiful. I'm not a fan of the universal, over-the-top Broadway voice. There's nothing unique about it, and the emotion sounds fake.
The 2004 Movie:
WARNING WARNING RANT AHEAD!!
Okay, this is what I have to say...despite what you may think, it was made for more reasons than than to attract younger audiences and make "stupid, hormonally-charged, squealing phangirls" take over. Before you start screaming at me for my views, your statements have most likely been answered:
Statement: "Gerard's voice sucked"
Response: Since that is a matter of opinion, here is mine...Michael Crawford was previously a comedy actor. Gerry has done many different genres, and knows how to portray human pain. His voice shows that better than anything. Also, if ALW hired him, he must have done something right. And since when was the Phantom supposed to have singing lessons? It makes sense that it would be good, deep, intimidating, but not officially trained.
Statement: "His deformity wasn't bad enough" (and you still think that sunburn joke is sooo original)
Response: Think about the time period. People back then were not phangirls who know about science and have probably seen worse everyday in the movies. For entertainment, we watch things like 'Saw' now. We're much more immune now than back then. Also, the musical's version was made for distance, so the far-away audience could see it better. The movie has close-ups, which doesn't require such dramatic make-up. Sure, it could have been done better, but if you must insist that it's way too easy to look past and Erik makes such a huge deal out of nothing, that just adds another tragedy to his story, doesn't it?
Statement: "Emmy looked like a goldfish/Deer in the headlights"
Response: Erik is supposed to be entrancing her, luring her in. She doesn't have many thoughts. Also, if you thought you had seen an angel, you'd be staring too. And Sarah stared more than Emmy did. At least Emmy looked more entranced and seduced than Sarah--Sarah just looked shocked. (then again, I would be too if MC was feeling up my boobs.) She had more than one expression during the movie. If you still think she's bad, watch any movie with Kristen Stewart and I think you'll forgive Emmy.
Statement: "Emmy was too young"
Response: Hello! She's sixteen in all versions! Of course she's going to be young! And if you've seen any of her interviews, she's past mature enough for such a role, despite her age.
Statement: "Gerard was too muscular"
Response: He travels five flights of stairs to get anywhere, he can climb ropes, AND has the capacity to kill a person. I think a person who could do all of that would be very well-built. Truly skeleton-like guys are hard to come by, anyway. No, it's not Leroux canon, but neither is any other version (except Lon Chaney, who wasn't skeleton like either)
Statement: "Gerard was too tan"
Response: Did you notice how dark the kid version of him was at the fair? He already had a dark complexion, which he cannot change, no matter how long he stays underground. I realize he's caucasian, but for example, a Hispanic person would not turn ghostly after being underground. And I personally would rather him be "too tan" than covered in so much white make-up (MC!!) that you can't tell the difference between the mask and the rest of his face.
Statement: "That movie caused all of the Phantom world to turn into screaming teenage girls who can't spell for crap and write dumb stories.
Response: Oh really? Just because you are a glorified Leroux-thumper or MC-fan (the majority of the anti-movie movement) doesn't mean your stories are automatically a gift from God. Some of those fans write poorly too. It depends on the person, not their preferences.
Statement: "You're stupid if you like that movie."
Response: You're stupid if you think I give a damn.
Original Novel: If you haven't read it, do so NOW. (spoilers ahead, by the way). So. Entertaining, witty at times--I absolutely LOVE Jehan--though the random college theses about architecture could have been left out...even so, it's quite possibly the most soulful, gorgeous thing I've ever read. Claude's monologues rival even the beauty of Erik's in the Leroux novel. They go on for pages and pages, but...I don't mind. It's heart-wrenchingly beautiful. The descriptions are equally long but equally brilliant and vivid and unusual, even if Hugo is describing something horrifying, it's so clear in my head that I can't forget it. Before I read the book, I was already a fan of Frollo, but I didn't understand everything he did and thought something inside him was indeed inhuman or evil. Then I read it, and I understood EVERYTHING. By the time Esmeralda is actually hung, I STILL understand Claude. After him offering her at least 20 propositions for life, each becoming less and less demanding, on top of the fact that he's most likely slowly going insane from stabbing himself (from the emotional pain of hearing her tortured screams), you can't help but see how he would finally just give in and give her what she obviously wants. And kind of deserves. Maybe it's mostly because Esmeralda is so ridiculously stupid in this version. But whatever. If you've read it, you should know what I mean by actually wanting this girl to die.
1923 Movie: I know it was some sort of law about not insulting the church, but that's kind of hard to do with a story that's entirely about the church. So what do they do? Literally butcher Claude Frollo. Like, cut him into two different characters, Claude and Jehan. Brothers, but NOTHING like the book. Claude is basically a nice archdeacon who has nothing to do with the plot except raising Quasimodo, and Jehan has nothing to do with the plot except lurking around being creepy. No real Frollo, no real entertainment for me.
1939 Movie: I call this the Crazy Cat Man version. (They did this like the silent movie, so there's nice-guy Claude and evil Jehan.) Jehan Frollo, our villain, literally has about 237 cats. And a horse (I think his logic is that people suck, so kill them all, save the cats.) Oh yeah, this is also Disney's inspiration. The judge, the horse, the hat...ha. I can't decide if I love or hate this version. I'm not too fond of the Esmeralda, except in this scene with quite possibly the rudest Frollo I've ever seen. Even as he's railing on her about her being a witch and to get the hell out of his cathedral, she's just so sweet back to him and you can visibly see him melting. Then she looks away and starts going on about animals or something and he kind of zones out then starts staring at her chest blatantly, glancing back up the moment she looks back. Smooth. Then they bond over a mutual love of animals, and every Fresme bone in my body is spazzing out with joy, then...he gets cockblocked by Quasimodo and goes back to being a murderous jackass. This is when I start to hate it. There are a LOT of plot holes in it, no cell scene, no attempted rape then rescue scene, disappointing death of Frollo.
1956 Movie: Though there is no cell scene, Esmeralda's dance is a bit weird and lasts wayyy too long, Quasi is frankly, just ugly in the face with a perfectly straight back, Esmeralda seems a bit too mature to be falling for Phoebus's crap, and her death was random and not nearly dramatic enough, I love this movie to death. It's the closest to the book. Alain Cuny is a bloody BRILLIANT Frollo. Good voice=good Frollo. The fact that he's so still and quiet throughout most of the movie just makes it that much more suspenseful, and the moments when he actually flips out much more dramatic. This version also has Gringoire, a cad Phoebus, Fleur and her whole noble family, and even Jehan! So, I love it.
1982 Movie: A lot of people like this one because of the Frollo, but I hate it for the same reason. He's ridiculous. He doesn't look the part, he doesn't sound the part, I actually laugh at him sometimes because of how absurdly UNintimidating and lame he is. Derek Jacobi NEVER should have played someone like Frollo. I could accept Esmeralda looking the way she does if they had included the plotline about her actually not being a gypsy by blood, but they don't, so she ALSO doesn't fit the role at all. Could they not have at least dyed her hair? The only thing I liked about this was Anthony Hopkins playing Quasimodo, really.
Disney Movie (1996): I can go on and on about this movie. And probably will. Let's start with what I hate, because there's a lot that I love that I'll get to later. Ok, first, the gargoyles. I LOATHE them. They had a few good one liners ("What are they saying?" "Frollo's nose is long and he wears a dress." "Ha! told you! Pay up." or "Fly, my pretties, fly!"), but they were mostly annoying as hell (i.e. 'A Guy Like You'.) It was like the movie makers realized they just made the most twisted, racy Disney song to EVER grace the screen (more on that later) and had to make up for it with some random kiddie BS. And the fact that these talking gargoyles turn out to be real just kills the cold, cruel reality of the rest of the movie--a rare, beautiful thing in Disney movies. What else...Quasimodo seemed to have a kind of emo kid complex, though I can't really blame him for it. I wished he was actually deaf in this version. But that would ruin his singing, now wouldn't it? And Phoebus is, of course, the good looking good guy! Shocker. Ugh. He's funny but I still don't like him. Too bland. Now Esmeralda on the other hand...she is still by far, the best version. I know she's entirely different from the book, but that's a GOOD thing here. She's just kickass on every level. She should have been the main character. I'd like to know more about this version's backstory on our gypsy. Now onto my favorite person...ok, again, what I don't like first. The fact that they split his character, once again, with the archdeacon vs. the judge, bothers me now. But when you're dealing with kids and have to make the movie no longer than an hour and a half , you can't build up too much character. As many, many others have ranted about him, he's by far the most evil, most realistic, most human Disney villain to ever exist. Which is why he's amazing. Completely different from the novel, completely skewed everyone's perception of who this character is supposed to be, and yet...he's just too damn amazing. Mainly thanks to the late, great Tony Jay. I'm still a bit depressed over the fact that we'll never hear that voice again (which I saw once described as 'honey mixed with liquid evil'.) Anyway, his song--not only the best Disney villain song, not only the best Disney song in general, but probably one of the best musical scores I've ever heard from anything. Best example of not understanding something as a kid, yet loving it, then coming back to it when you're older and loving it even more. The music and visuals for this film are unmatched by any other animated film I've ever seen, and overall, I'm just in love with the movie. I wish it was longer. No, I wish it was a TV series that never went off. At least as long as they didn't venture into sequel land...don't even get me started on that monstrosity.
1997 Movie: Selma Hayek for Esmeralda? YES. Win. Now...as amazing an actor as Richard Harris was, and as awesome as it is that he played Dumbledore...he's too damn old to play Frollo. These remakes have got to stop copying eachother and read the actual book for once. Claude is only 36. Why is it that half the time, he's portrayed as over 50? Agh. Anyway. He was successfully intriguing as far as acting. I couldn't tell if this was going to be a 'good-gone-crazy' Frollo or a simply 'evil' Frollo. It turned out to be the latter, but he definitely kept the suspense up. Quite interesting. I didn't mind Esmeralda ending up with Gringoire so much in this one, because it wasn't as blatantly obvious it would turn out that way, as in other versions, like the 1939 version.
Quasimodo d'El Paris (1999): I laughed so hard. It's a parody, so I didn't take it very seriously, obviously, but kudos to the film makers for making Phoebus and Esmeralda total dolts, just like they were in the book, as well as Esmeralda originally being named Agnes. Very funny to see her blonde, as well. Quasimodo was pretty amusing, and the whole serial killer plotline with people being turned into gargoyles was hysterical. But of course, what made this great is the fact that Frollo, though one dimensional and villainous like so many other adaptations, was frankly...a total badass. Some sort of Van Helsing-ish kit, a Jesus mobile, a pet eel (and his being extremely attractive didn't hurt, either). On top of that, he uses sign language with Quasimodo, flips people off constantly, goes to a brothel and obnoxiously preaches about abstinence like a televangelist, actually gets to kill Phoebus, and even (creepily) mocks the ever popular spit-in-face attack that Esmeraldas tend to use in movies. There was a lot in this movie that I actually wanted to see in a serious spinoff (such as book references and showing more about the relationship between Frollo and Quasimodo), but it was just as good here.
Notre Dame de Paris (Musical): Only seen the original French cast all the way through. From what I've seen/heard, the English one is just atrocious (there's a fanfiction about how awful the translation is), the Russian one is weird (Frollo randomly rips his shirt off--seriously.) and I haven't really gone into other ones, but I've seen pictures and don't care for the popular slicked back hair look for Frollo. Doesn't fit the time period, doesn't suit him, just...no. So anyway, I love the entire French cast. Perfectly picked, wonderful voices, perfect looks, just...perfect. No one but Garou can play Quasimodo--everyone else I've heard sounds too..."normal". So far, only Helene Segara's voice seems worthy of being Esmeralda. Same with Daniel Lavoie being Frollo. So onto plotline...I wish they focused less on the gypsies. I honestly did not care at ALL about them. Their songs were annoying, their dances lasted too long, and I had no sympathy for them. I wanted them the hell out of there as much as Frollo did. So that's that...The parts with Gringoire and Frollo were great. I actually didn't care for the chapter in the book "This Will Kill That", since it was another bloody college thesis on architecture versus the printing press, but the song based on that chapter was very interesting. Quasimodo's story: This is one of the very few Quasimodos I actually felt for. I nearly cried at the end. Garou did a wonderful job. And his song about the bells was quite catchy (I don't believe it has a name.) Esmeralda...well, she was one step above the book as far as being annoying. But being book based, that's what you get. Phoebus and Fleur de Lys: Oh good, a Phoebus who is both an idiot and actually attractive. And finally! A version with Fleur! Though her being a villain was really strange. She just was a bit catty to Esmeralda in the book, but she never plotted her death...Of course, last but most importantly, Frollo: Loved every single one of his songs. He was wonderfully similar to the book as far as seeming to actually love Esmeralda (ex. the tearing up in "Ou est-elle?") It was building up the whole time but at the end...well, the whole mix up of the plotline from the book in order to save time just rushed the whole thing to a climax too fast and just suddenly made Frollo the 'bad guy'. On top of during the cell scene, this is the ONLY Frollo I've EVER seen specifically ask for just "an hour with you". All that build up, all those tears, all that show of obsessive love, just reduced to "oh just sleep with me one time and I'll be fine''...no. What? Are you kidding me? Bah. But overall, I did really, really like the show.
Der Glockner Von Notre Dame: Haven't actually seen it but I've done a bit of research. I like the costumes, the set looks good, like the fact that it's like Disney but even darker, but I do not like any of what I've heard Frollo is like (used to be a priest, quit, became a judge...gives a 'so what?' factor to his lust for Esmeralda, since he isn't bound by celibacy and obviously doesn't seem to stick to his morals about much..) so I'll probably not be a fan of it.
If you actually read all of this, you should probably know that you have supernatural abilities.
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