23 March 2008

Thorn The Archetype

The Complete Bone
Jeff Smith


So on Wednesday we had what may be one of my favorite class discussions so far. We talked about literary and artistic archetypes, connecting them to Bone and the characters therein. I think, given this, that it'd be a good time to talk about Thorn.

I like Thorn because she gets to be three archetypes at once. At first she's a good maiden type, almost but not quite a damsel in distress. She gets in trouble, and then people save her. She's also an exotic foreign girl--not so much to the reader, necessarily, but certainly to Fone Bone and his brothers. Then, once we find out her background and she gets her sword, she gets to be a warrior princess.

I also like Thorn because of the all-ages aspect of Bone I was talking about last post. She's pretty and intriguing without being overly sexual. The chronology of the story suggests that she's about twenty, but she looks like a normal person instead of some blonde bombshell. And she's a good example.

Not that I think all kids should be like Thorn, but she's worth looking at as some sort of role model. She's smart, and generally reasonable, and good to people. Sometimes she gets really angry, but generally not without good reason. Sometimes she goes tearing off when it's not a good idea, but it's not like she's just being wild and rebellious. She does get unreasonable occasionally, but for the most part she's a good person.

So she also gets to be a fourth archetype, one that's less traditional: she is the awesome young lady. That's the one who's not a wilting flower damsel, not necessarily exotic and sexy, and not necessarily an ass-kicking type. She's just a girl who knows where her head's at. She's like an older version of Neil Gaiman's character Coraline. And that's really cool.

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