The Black Cat Question #1 - Poe's Attraction

by Edgar Allen Poe

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The Black Cat Question #1 - Poe's Attraction

Unread postby Liz » Mon Oct 24, 2005 9:08 am

Welcome to the discussion of The Black Cat. We will begin on a light note (for this story) :yikes: with a Johnny question.

What elements of this and other Poe works do you think appeal to JD and Tim Burton?


NOTE: I will be posting a Poe poem for your reading pleasure every day of the discussion.
You can't judge a book by its cover.

The only thing that matters is the ending. It's the most important part of the story.

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Unread postby johnnybloom » Mon Oct 24, 2005 9:18 am

Most of Tim's films I can see a lot of Poe. Obviously the dark and gothic contents. I think the mystery of the unknown, and the supernatural probablly appeal to both Johnny and Tim. They seem to have that in common with each other and with Poe.
I have to say that Poe is my favorite author. I read his works daily, especially The Raven.
I think the fact that Poe can deal with death so easily probabably appeals to Johnny. After all a man like Johnny who has a tattoo reading "Death is Certain" on his ankle probably gets the theme??
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Unread postby Liz » Mon Oct 24, 2005 9:38 am

johnnybloom wrote: After all a man like Johnny who has a tattoo reading "Death is Certain" on his ankle probably gets the theme??


Good point, Johnnybloom. :-O
You can't judge a book by its cover.

The only thing that matters is the ending. It's the most important part of the story.

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Unread postby nebraska » Mon Oct 24, 2005 10:24 am

If the Black Cat and the Telltale Heart are representative of Poe's work, I would say Johnny is attracted to the tortured mind and souls of these characters. "Crazy" people, tortured, driven by forces they don't understand and can't control......there is a lot of mental stuff going on with these guys and I think Johnny is attracted to that sort of character, to sort out and define the inner forces.... and yes, definitely dark!

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Unread postby Raven » Mon Oct 24, 2005 11:42 am

I could not begin to know why anyone would like Poe, but I can tell you why I have loved this writings since high school.

For me, he gets to the story right away, there is no beating around the bush as it were. He also lets you know each hair raising thought that crosses his mind. You are sucked into the story, and if you are brave enough, you stay for the ride.
Scary!!! :-O

just my :twocents:
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Unread postby Liz » Mon Oct 24, 2005 11:53 am

nebraska wrote:If the Black Cat and the Telltale Heart are representative of Poe's work, I would say Johnny is attracted to the tortured mind and souls of these characters. "Crazy" people, tortured, driven by forces they don't understand and can't control......there is a lot of mental stuff going on with these guys and I think Johnny is attracted to that sort of character, to sort out and define the inner forces.... and yes, definitely dark!


Nebraska, that’s another very good point, and one I hadn’t thought of. He is attracted to those sorts of characters. I remember him saying in connection with “From Hell” (I’m paraphrasing here) that he has a fascination with Jack the Ripper. I can’t remember his reasoning. Does anyone else remember? His saying that reminded me that I had at one time been fascinated with the Boston Strangler. I don’t know why. It’s not like I can relate. But maybe that’s it. I think maybe it’s because the behavior is so bizarre that I want to understand the inner workings of someone who could commit such atrocities.

Raven wrote:He also lets you know each hair raising thought that crosses his mind. You are sucked into the story, and if you are brave enough, you stay for the ride.
Scary!!!


Some of us love to be scared out of our wits, don't we? It's a thrill--like a rollercoaster. Reading a story is safe, though, because it's not real deal.
You can't judge a book by its cover.

The only thing that matters is the ending. It's the most important part of the story.

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Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Mon Oct 24, 2005 12:17 pm

It's easy to see that Tim is attracted to dark subject matter when you look at his catalogue of films so it stands to reason that he and Johnny would hit if off. And that is a good point, nebraska. Johnny is interested in what makes people tick and those inner, driving forces.
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Unread postby luvdepp » Mon Oct 24, 2005 4:05 pm

nebraska wrote:If the Black Cat and the Telltale Heart are representative of Poe's work, I would say Johnny is attracted to the tortured mind and souls of these characters. "Crazy" people, tortured, driven by forces they don't understand and can't control......there is a lot of mental stuff going on with these guys and I think Johnny is attracted to that sort of character, to sort out and define the inner forces.... and yes, definitely dark!

What a great point nebraska! I'm sure there is a lot of truth to that.
Raven wrote:
Some of us love to be scared out of our wits, don't we? It's a thrill--like a rollercoaster. Reading a story is safe, though, because it's not real deal.

I am not a big fan of horror. I don't enjoy being scared and jumping out of my seat. I do find that I can read horror, to a certain extent, much easier than watching a movie though.
"So we shall let the reader answer this question for himself, who is the happier man, he who has braved the storm of life and lived or he who has stayed securely on the shore and merely existed." ~HST~

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Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Mon Oct 24, 2005 4:34 pm

DITHOT = :baby:
I have been told by my oldest that I am not even allowed to watch The Ring. :blush:
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming -

Wow! What a ride!

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Unread postby Johnny Fan » Mon Oct 24, 2005 6:08 pm

nebraska wrote:If the Black Cat and the Telltale Heart are representative of Poe's work, I would say Johnny is attracted to the tortured mind and souls of these characters. "Crazy" people, tortured, driven by forces they don't understand and can't control......there is a lot of mental stuff going on with these guys and I think Johnny is attracted to that sort of character, to sort out and define the inner forces.... and yes, definitely dark!


I definitely agree with everything you said, nebraska. I think that's one of the main reasons that Secret Window appealed to Johnny...because Mort fits that description perfectly.

luvdepp wrote:

I am not a big fan of horror. I don't enjoy being scared and jumping out of my seat. I do find that I can read horror, to a certain extent, much easier than watching a movie though.


It's the exact same for me, luvdepp. I rarely ever watch horror movies (except for around Halloween), yet reading stories in the horror genre doesn't seem to bother me as much. I have always found Edgar Allen Poe's writing to be interesting. Instead of filling his writing with excess gore, the horror in his stories seems to be more psychological. I guess that's a little easier for me to handle than the gore and violence that is usually seen in horror movies.
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Unread postby cait » Mon Oct 24, 2005 6:19 pm

I read The Tell-Tale Heart for my Literature course. The gothic and sinister nature reminded me very much of Tim Burton's style.

The eccentric lunatic and tormented man seemed like the type of character that Johnny is attracted to. The style of Henry Clark's illustrations also have a TB feel to them. Very dark, creepy and almost stick-figure like.
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Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Mon Oct 24, 2005 6:37 pm

I'm in with Johnny Fanatic and luvdepp. I think reading it allows us to use our imaginations and less (or more) gore as we can handle it. I prefer the pshychological thriller, like Hitchcock did, to the graphic horror films.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming -

Wow! What a ride!

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Unread postby Betty Sue » Mon Oct 24, 2005 7:08 pm

Well said, everyone! So I'll just say: I agree!! :cool:
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Unread postby Liz » Mon Oct 24, 2005 7:41 pm

I agree with Johnny Fanatic, Luvdepp and DITHOT that it is much easier to read horror than watch it. A book is not as threatening and usually not as graphic as a movie. I'm a visual person. Thus a movie can really freak me out. I, too, prefer, the more psychological thrillers, like Hitchcock movies--except for Psycho. :freaked:
You can't judge a book by its cover.

The only thing that matters is the ending. It's the most important part of the story.

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Unread postby dharma_bum » Mon Oct 24, 2005 11:46 pm

Well said everyone…

I think both JD and Tim are attracted stories about people done in by their greatest gifts… their intellect and imagination. The idea that there is an incredibly thin line between what nourishes you and what damages you in life is very compelling concept. This angst runs through many Poe characters and there is an element of in virtually every character JD has played.
"You can't broom out your head. You certainly can't broom out your heart. And there's a hot wire between them, and everything shows in the eyes."
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