Monday, April 6, 2009

The Stinker

My cat has something of the Gollum to her. Maybe this is true of all indoor cats that live apart from other cats. She used to be a normal cat, when she lived in a litter with other kitties, but then she turned away from the company of her kind and her mind became corrupted. Now she keeps to herself, distrustful, seized by alternating fits of violent rage and ingratiating grovelling.

I was reminded of this the other day when I saw part of The Return of the King at a friend's house. I hadn't seen the movie since it first came out, and I had forgotten how racist it is. I remember thinking this when I first saw it in the theater, but now I was still surprised that no one ever made a big deal out of this. Something to do with 9/11, the Iraq War, I thought. As I was falling asleep during a particularly long and boring speech from someone dressed as a viking, I realized—how had I never realized it before?—that in The Lord of the Rings, there's only one Jewish character: Gollum, whose real name, you'll remember, is Schmiegel.

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