English Block 3X
Due: 24 March 2014
Comparison of the Lord of the Rings: Gollum and the Tempest: Caliban
The Lord of the Rings movies and book collection is known to people throughout the world. Its’ story of adventure, magic, and suspense captures people of all ages. The also popular Shakespearean masterpiece, The Tempest, is also a story of adventure, magic, and suspense. Not only do their genres have a similar direction; their characters do as well. Caliban and Gollum are similar because: they both are created from a dark source, both have similar physical characteristics, and they also have very similar personalities.
The characters in Lord of the Rings are especially similar to the characters in The Tempest. This is especially correct for the two characters, Caliban and Gollum. Both characters are born similarly. In Lord of the Rings, Gollum used to be a hobbit, a shorter human-like person, named Sméagol. He finds the One Ring, a mystical ring that Sauron, a dark lord, creates so that he can control the world. He is controlled by the ring and becomes obsessed with it. In The Tempest, Caliban is the son of a witch, Sycorax, and his father is the devil, according to Prospero. "Thou poisonous slave, got by the devil himself/ Upon thy wicked dam, come forth!" (I, ii, 391-393) Both characters are created of dark magic, and dark people.
Another of Caliban and Gollum’s' similarities are their physical characteristics. Both are described as monster like, especially Caliban, who is called a monster numerous times by Trinculo. "I shall laugh to death at this puppy-headed monster. Scurvy monster! I could find in my heart to beat him—" (II, ii, 163-165) Gollum is also described as a "wretched creature" (book 1, ...
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...orship this dull fool!” (V, i, 357-360). Gollum also shows a type of softness, especially for Frodo. When Frodo and Sam are sleeping, he caresses Frodo’s’ knee. “Then he came back, and slowly putting out a trembling hand, very cautiously he touched Frodo's knee— but almost the touch was a caress...could one of the sleepers have seen him, they would have thought that they beheld an old weary hobbit…”
In conclusion, Caliban and Gollum are similar because they are created by dark sources, they have physical similarities, and because they both behave similarly. Both characters, though placed in different scenarios and different worlds, have deep physical and physiological connection. The argument that Gollum was perhaps based off of Caliban is stronger than it may seem. Many books and movies are based off of Shakespeare's works, so perhaps this is just one of the many.