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Month in review

Reviews:
Abramo's Gift by Donald Greco
American Rifle: A Biography by Alexander Rose
Birdsongs by Betsy Franco and Steve Jenkins
The Boy Who Sang for Others by Michael Meddor
Catamount by Marc Laidlaw
Changeling by Dean Whitlock
Cry of Justice by Jason Pratt
Don Quixote de la Mancha by Miguel de Cervantes
Does a Kanagroo Have a Mother, Too? by Eric Carle
An Elvish Sword of Great Antiquity by Jim Aikin
The Elephant Who Liked to Smash Small Cars by Jean Merrill
Fright Night Flight by Laura Krauss Melmed
The Gift of the Deer by Helen Hoover
The Guardian by Jeffrey Konvitz
Hurry Down Sunshine by Michael Greenberg
I Choose You by Tracey West
Legs Talk by D. E. Boone
Llamas in Pajamas by Teddy Slater
Mama Cat Has Three Kittens by Denise Fleming
100 Years of California Cooking by Martha Lee
Owl Babies by Martin Waddell
The Pigeon Wants a Puppy by Mo Willems
Q is for Quarry by Sue Grafton
Rapunzel's Revenge by Shannon Hale, Nathan Hale and Dean Hale
The Savage by David Almond and Dave McKean
Shadow of the Valley by Fred Chappell
Too Tall Alice by Barbara Worton
When Boston Won the World Series by Bob Ryan

Don Quixote:
Don Quixote: Judge a Book By Its Cover
Try to Remember
Divide and Conquer
Sancho's Big Score

Ulysses:
Episode 1 - Telemachus: Ed, Edd 'n' Eddy

Miscellaneous:
Don't Let the Pigeon Do an Interview

Previous month

Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

My Kind of Mystery Reading Challenge 2017 February - January 2017-8



Comments for Don Quixote: Sancho's Big Score

Robot DevilDon Quixote: Sancho's Big Score: 02/21/09

I know I promised two more posts from my reading of Don Quixote but I was so close to finishing it just made more sense to read all the way to end. Had I only read fifty pages, I would be writing about Scooby-Doo and the post would have been called "Scooby-Doo Meets Don Quixote." Seeing though that section in context with the ending, I feel Bender's Big Score makes a more apt comparison.

Before the novel begins to wind down, Don Quixote and Sancho Panza have one final adventure to Barcelona. Along the way they meet just about ever famous (real and fictional) character of their times. These numerous meetings remind me of the many heads in jars that play important roles in the Futurama world. In Bender's Big Score the head museum is the introduction of Fry's rival an arch enemy: Lars.

Although Lars is treated as a comedic foil for Fry while the main plot of the take over of Earth unfolds, his identity ends up being one of the most important details to the film. Likewise, Quixote's many sparing matches against other knights errant disguise the greatest threat to Quixote's well being and his ultimate downfall. As Don Quixote de la Mancha isn't science fiction, and Bender's Big Score is, the solutions behind these hidden identities are very different. Nonetheless, thematically they are similar in how they drive the plot.

In previous posts I have assigned the roles of Don Quixote and Sancho Panza to the characters in whatever film or television show I'm discussing. For Futurama as a whole, Don Quixote is clearly Fry who has taken on an entirely different life (though very simi liar in ways to his past one) in the future . His somewhat-loyal companion and Sancho Panza equivalent is clearly Bender. Bender starts off the series as a suicidal robot and through his friendship with Fry has become a God, a pharaoh, a famous actor, a famous athlete, a famous chef and so forth.

Don Quixote ends not with Sr. Quixana dying alone as Miles says in "Disarmed and Dangerous" but with his friends and family at his bedside. He dies relatively happy and fulfilled for the time spent adventuring. Of course for Futurama to continue it's plans of three more movies after Bender's Big Score, they couldn't very well kill of Fry. How then can he live and still be Don Quixote? That's where Lars comes in and science fiction takes over. Fry becomes both the Knight of the Mirrors and Don Quixote, playing out both sides of the final act through a temporal paradox.

In re-reading Don Quixote slowly and blogging about the process, I have come to appreciate the novel's continuing influence. Cervantes's novel manages to capture a wide range of literary tropes that are still being used today. Since beginning the process of blogging about Don Quixote last November, I have started to see Don Quixote and Sancho Panza in all sorts of unexpected places.

Read all of my posts on the book:

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Comment #1: Monday, February, 23, 2009 at 11:29:28

Heather J.

I have so enjoyed reading your pop-culture comparison to DQ! I'll definitely miss them now that they're over.



Comment #2: Friday, February 27, 2009 at 13:33:22

Pussreboots

Thanks! I'm glad you enjoyed them. This Saturday I'm starting an 18 week series of similar posts on Ulysses by James Joyce. My first post will compare the book to Ed, Edd 'n' Eddy and the importance of buttered toast.