Letter to Marius

Dear Marius,

Possible Major or Minor Spoilers:

Many people in the fandom never seem to see past your romantic side. They have even called you a jerk for the most absurd of reasons. That was only due to the fact that you had no clue Eponine loved you and they believe you don’t treat her fairly. I don’t believe that is true at all. You are not a jerk at all in my opinion. I am so thankful that you treated Eponine with kindness. She needed that due to how empty and lonely her life is. You were well aware of how dark Eponine’s life was. But you were able to provide light in her life. In addition, fans feel like you should have loved Eponine and not Cosette. Well, I believe you and Cosette make an incredible couple.

You are not just a romantic person in my opinion. You were also a revolutionary as well. Yes, once you fell in love with Cosette, you were more concerned with Cosette than the rebellion. You are such a sweet, kind, and compassionate person in my opinion.

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Wow, I cannot believe you faced so much trauma at the barricade. First, you had to watch Eponine die and later all of your other friends died in front of you. I cannot imagine how traumatic that most of been for you.

You did try to protect Eponine from getting shot at the barricade, but she still got shot. I am so glad you decided to be with her while she died. Some people think you were a bigger jerk at her death because you just realized she loved you. That is the silliest thing I ever heard. You were so sweet and compassionate here even though her death left you devastated. You decided to stay brave for her and decided to be there for her. You were quite compassionate in this scene and I love you for that.

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First Eponine and later you were the only survivor at the barricade. If you weren’t in love with Cosette, you would have died at the barricade. The letter you gave Cosette was read by Jean Valjean. Out of love for his daughter, he decided to head over to the barricade to protect you. If it wasn’t for him, you would have died as well. But still, I wish there were more survivors from the rebellion. All you have left at the end is Cosette and all Cosette has is you. Still you may be one of the survivors of the musical, but you still did not have a not so happy ending due to what happened at the barricades.

 

True Value of the Negative Musical Emotions

I already talked about on this blog about the importance of the negative emotions in the musical world. When I mean negative emotion, I am talking about the emotions found in the songs. Understanding the negative emotions is quite tricky and quite difficult to work with.

The negative emotions do hurt in the world of musicals. So what makes them an emotion worth feeling? The negative emotions may hurt, but in many ways, they are quite beneficial to a musical experience. It is easier to have an emotional connection to a character who expresses negative emotions due to amount of conflict that is part of their lives. There are some musical characters like Elphaba and Jack Kelly that you don’t experience negative emotions from them right away and already can have an emotional connection. There are some musical characters who mainly feel negative emotions throughout the entire show and you still have an emotional connection to them.

There are two ways to experience joy through the negative emotions. The first is you having an appreciation of feeling them in the first place. The second is found through any bittersweet moment. Those are moments like “For Good” and “A Little Fall of Rain”. The only way to understand joy in the bittersweet moments is to understand the characters who are part of those songs. “For Good” for instance is the moment where Elphaba and Glinda reunite with each other again, but its the last time they will see each other. I don’t view the song as a heartbreaking song even though it is a goodbye song. It is important to understand the relationship between Elphaba and Glinda because their friendship is core to Wicked.

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Another bittersweet moment is in Les Mis, which is “A Little Fall of Rain”. Now this song is heartbreaking, but still bittersweet. I know where the joy easily comes from in this song. This is the main moment of Eponine’s life where she is truly happy. Yes, it her death scene, but this is actually the happiest moment of her life. Its not because she is dying, but because she is dying the arms of Marius. If you don’t understand Eponine at all, it is nearly impossible to understand the joy of this song. She lived a very tragic life having to be raised by parents who don’t even care about her and raised her to be a criminal. She doesn’t have many good things happen in her life. In this scene, I am happy that Eponine finally is happy for once in her life. It is very important to understand how much Eponine loves Marius to understand the joy found in this scene.

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I love sad the most when it goes beyond the mild levels of that emotion. It starts at songs like “Santa Fe” from Newsies. But heartbreak is a very special degree of sad, which is an emotion which was once unidentifiable. Sad was an emotion that existed when I was younger and it did have some understanding, but I hardly remember what the emotion was like. I do remember it being in “I’m Not That Girl” and “For Good”.

Heartbreak decided to exist in musicals in the most unexpected of ways. Good thing I already knew that sad was already existent and common in the musical world. It decided to enter my life through a heartbreaking musical. Growing up, I believed that all musicals were happy and comic because thats all I knew.

So I was quite surprised when I saw the Les Mis movie and that was when I realized heartbreak is a musical emotion. This was in December of 2012 and my journey began with Les Mis that same year, but did not become a true fan until early 2013. Its just when I realized Les Mis was a tragedy that I was thinking “is this a tragedy and I was like wait a minute, tragic musicals exist” and as a result watched the rest of the movie in shock and confusion and by the end “I was thinking did I just like a tragedy”, but still didn’t know if I liked it or not.

The true value of feeling the negative emotions comes from the fact that is shows that you care about musical characters. It shows a sense of sympathy and even sense of empathy and it shows that you have an emotional connection. Sad in the form of heartbreak is so wonderful. Heartbreak is stronger then an ordinary sad song. Heartbreak is a main emotion in the world of musicals. Whether that is in South Pacific, Wicked, Cats, Les Mis, Phantom of the Opera, or Rent, the negative emotions are worth it. The only time I honestly get nothing out of the negative emotions is when I see a musical that I don’t end up liking.

Heartbreak is an emotion that is full of fragility, honesty, insight and vulnerability. Due to heartbreak being existent, I quickly realized how much easier it was to pick up on the negative emotions in other musicals and even made it easier to pick up on inner conflict as well. The song “I’m Not That Girl” for instance changed from being a sad song to being a heartbreaking song and that is one of the best things that ever happened because it strengthened Wicked’s love triangle.

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I wouldn’t have realized “I’m Not That Girl” was heartbreaking if that emotion never decided to make itself known and glad I was able to realize the song was heartbreaking thanks to the help of “On My Own”, a more heartbreaking and stronger unrequited love song. Since the emotions of “On My Own” are much more obvious, it helped me understand the emotions of “I’m Not That Girl”. Due to “I’m Not That Girl” and “On My Own” being two unrequited love songs and due to one being more heartbreaking than the other, it shows that even heartbreak can be layered. Both songs share some common emotions like heartbreak and loneliness. “I’m Not That Girl” doesn’t have room to be fully heartbreaking since Elphaba just found out she loves Fiyero literally just moments before she sings that song, but it does have great insight built in to it. Both “On My Own” and “I’m Not That Girl” go beyond the unrequited love.

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Les Mis and Wicked are two musicals that I have a strong emotional connection to and feeling the negative emotions in each are worth it due to my love for each of them and my emotional connection to the material. Another realization came from “Memory”. I always knew about “Memory”, but it was one of those songs where I don’t know if I knew its emotion or not. I knew I always loved the song, but through “I Dreamed a Dream”, “Memory” decided to be a heartbreaking song. What makes a song heartbreaking is based off of how you interpret a song. The value of the negative emotions comes from the fact that you are showing that you care.

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If it wasn’t for Les Mis, the negative emotions wouldn’t have changed the way they did. The realization of heartbreak made the negative emotions even more worth feeling. It shows a sense of relationship and shows a sense of understanding. Les Mis was able to show me that heartbreak is an actual musical emotion. The negative emotions are tough to work with due to just how much they can actually hurt. There are other negative emotions besides the obvious sad and heartbreak.

The hardest negative emotion to work with is uncomfortable. That mainly happens in “Lovely Ladies”, but due to understanding the importance of the scene, I learned to tolerate it and feeling uncomfortable in that scene is highly important. In Les Mis, if you don’t understand Fantine, you will feel so lost in the plot. Anger is another negative emotion, which is an emotion that is part of conflict. Without the negative emotions, characters would feel less real. Theatre is a safe place to discover negative emotions. While the negative emotions do hurt, it is worth feeling them if you have a strong emotional connection and a love for the songs. If you fall in love with the songs, you do find yourself falling in love with the emotions.

The negative emotions have changed a lot over the years. Heartbreak was what drastically changed the emotion. It made me understand negative emotions in a more empathetic way and in a more beautiful way. Heartbreak shows strength. It is so difficult to describe the negative emotions since they vary so much in what they are capable of. They have an incredible amount of beauty, fragility, vulnerability, insight, honest, and strength. To be a true musical fan includes understanding the negative emotions.

In you opinion, what is the true value of the negative musical emotions?

Analysis of the Finale (Do You Hear the People Sing Reprise)

During the past two days, I have been working on an watercolor art project with my dad. It was inspired 100% by me and I knew I wanted it to be Les Mis themed and I actually did do about 95% of the work when painting. I found the picture in a page to screen Les Mis book that I had. It was hard to figure out how to create a gigantic crowd of people. In the case of the barricade, it took a while till it actually looked like a barricade. We first drew the buildings and the barricade in pencil and then inked on top and then painted them in. In the case of the barricade, it hardly looked like a barricade before it was painted. But as several kinds of brown were painted in, it finally was noticed as a barricade. This picture is from the finale of Les Mis in the movie of the musical.

Spoiler Alert:

To love another person is to see the face of God

Do you hear the people sing lost in the valley of the night. It is the music of the people who are climbing to the light. For the wretched of the earth there is flame that never dies. Even the darkest night will end and the sun will raise. They will live again in freedom in the garden of the Lord. They will walk behind the plough share. They will put away the sword. The chain will be broken and all men will have their reward.

Will you join in our crusade who be strong and stand with me. Somewhere beyond the barricade is there a world you long to see?. Do you hear the people sing? Say do you hear the distant drums? It is the future that they bring when tomorrow comes…” ” tomorrow comes

-Finale, Les Mis

fullsizeoutput_705This scene happens at the end of Les Mis. A few scenes back, Jean Valjean was dying and he died with Cosette, his adopted daughter, and Marius, his now son-in law, by his side. The spirit of Fantine appeared thanking him for raising Cosette. Marius thanked Valjean for saving his life at the barricade and seeing her adopted father die, Cosette was quite devastated.

The sad part is that Jean Valjean died on the night of Cosette’s wedding and by the end, Cosette and Marius have lost everyone that meant something to them expect for each other. Once Valjean dies, the spirit of Fantine escorts him to heaven and at the entrance the bishop welcomes him. Valjean lived his entire life through the example the bishop showed him. That is why he agreed to raise Cosette, why he turned himself in when an innocent man was believed to be Valjean, why he was able to forgive Javert and why he went to the barricades to rescue Marius. All of Valjean’s actions makes his redemption feel so strong in the end.

The song, “Do You Hear the People Sing” appears twice in the show. The first time it is shown as a revolutionary anthem of hope sung by all the students. But when sung a second time, the song is still hopeful, but in my opinion represents heaven. All of the people who died during the uprising reappear as spirits and so does Fantine. The ending is one of the biggest reasons why Les Mis makes you feel uplifted. Valjean’s redemption is so strong at the end and he is welcomed into the kingdom of God. The characters in Les Mis show hope, sacrifice, love, and forgiveness to others.

The students represent a hope for a better future for France. All of them sacrificed their lives for a love of France. Even Gavroche who is just a kid was heroic at the barricades even though he died as well. Both Fantine and Eponine showed love for the one they loved the most and sacrificed their happiness to protect the one that they loved. Fantine did everything she could for Cosette and Eponine protected Marius and did everything she could to make him happy. Even though the love for him was unrequited, she still sacrificed her life for him. In the movie version, Marius was about to get shot, but when Eponine noticed this, she got in the way and took the fatal shot herself. Even Valjean sacrificed his happiness for the sake of others. He loved Cosette so much that he was willing to go the barricade in order to protect Marius because Cosette loves him. Through all of these actions, it shows just how much Les Mis is inspirational and why it is ultimately about humanity.

As a matter of fact, Fantine, Eponine, Gavroche, Enjolras and the Students, and Valjean did not die alone. Fantine died knowing that Cosette was going to be in good hands since Valjean was by her side and promised that he would raise Cosette as his own. Eponine got to die in the arms of the man she loved and it actually was the happiest moment of her because she really lived a very empty life and felt unloved and she got to spend the last moments of her life in the arms of Marius. Gavroche, Enjolras and the students all died with each other.

The finale to Les Mis is one of the most powerful and one of the most perfect ways to end a musical. Right before the reprise begins, Valjean, the Bishop and Fantine all sing the famous lyrics, “to love another person is to see the face of God. Feeling uplifted during the reprise of “Do You Hear the People Sing” makes you realize that feeling all of the misery and heartbreak was so worth it.

Eponine and Elphaba Comparison

Major Spoilers:

Elphaba and Eponine are two of the best musical characters ever. Elphaba is one of the two main protagonists in Wicked (with Glinda being the other) and Eponine is a lead character in Les Misérables. I find Elphaba to be a dramatic character and Eponine to be a tragic character. I find dramatic and tragic characters to be quite similar, but the biggest difference has to do with fate. I can’t help but see some wonderful similarities between the two girls and I feel like some wonderful differences come out of their similarities.

Elphaba and Eponine are both loving, complex, young and strong female characters. We meet them at two stages in their lives. Eponine starts out as a child and we see her again as a teenager and we first meet Elphaba as a teenager and we see her progress to young adult. They are both the eldest sibling in their family. Elphaba’s younger sister is named Nessa and Nessa is a character that I always tend to forget about in Wicked and Eponine actually has four younger siblings (all are in the book, but only one makes it to the musical), who are Azelma, Gavroche (one in the musical), and two brothers younger than Gavroche.

One place where you see a similarity in these characters is through their family situation. They live in a broken family, but there are still some obvious differences. In Elphaba’s circumstance, her father hates her because he blames her for the reason why Nessa is disabled and why her mother is dead all because Elphaba was born green. So Elphaba has been treated like an outcast in her own home. Her sister is put on a pedestal and is absolutely spoiled, but later in act two, Nessa betrays Elphaba. However Elphaba feels fiercely protective of Nessa.

As for Eponine, I feel like her family is even more broken than Elphaba’s. At first, when Eponine was only eight, she was spoiled and appeared to be loved by her family. However, following her parent’s lead, she also mistreats Cosette and through “Master of the House”, you get an idea of the environment Eponine is going to be growing up in. Right after Valjean takes Cosette away, Eponine gets the same treatment that Cosette got. She becomes so unloved, abused, lonely, and neglected. Her parents basically drag her into the criminal world. Eponine is completely alone and has never received love from anyone. This situation sounds even worse than the situation that Elphaba finds herself in when it comes to her family.

Another obvious example is coming from a love triangle, but once again there are some obvious differences. Both love triangles seem to have some kind of coincidence involved.  In the love triangle in Wicked, it starts out with Elphaba feeling unrequited love for Fiyero. At first, Elphaba thinks Fiyero is super rude and even quite annoying. She has no clue she loves him until the scene before “I’m Not That Girl”.  The coincidence with this love triangle is that her best friend also loves Fiyero. I am beginning to wonder if Fiyero had a crush on Elphaba without realizing it in the first act. I am saying that because of how he was interacting with Elphaba before “I’m Not That Girl”, and the scene that follows where Fiyero cannot stop thinking about the incident with the lion cub. I was trying to see if there were clues in act one that would help explain Fiyero’s decision in act two.

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Through a major plot twist, Elphaba somehow ends up with Fiyero. It was during “Thank Goodness” where Fiyero realized that he loves Elphaba and never has loved Glinda. He is quite frustrated by all of the rude comments people are making about Elphaba. So Elphaba and Fiyero start a relationship. Elphaba and Fiyero are my favorite musical couple because they are a couple you wouldn’t expect to exist due to Elphaba having unrequited love for Fiyero in act one. The switch of unrequited love in Wicked is why my favorite love triangle is in this musical.

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With the love triangle in Les Mis, things are quite different for Eponine. Unlike Elphaba, Marius is the only thing that matters in Eponine’s life. I believe that Eponine loves Marius more than how much Elphaba loves Fiyero, which is part of why her unrequited love for Marius is even more heartbreaking than Elphaba’s unrequited love for Fiyero. A lot of Eponine’s story revolves around her unrequited love for Marius. The coincidence with this love triangle is that Cosette and Eponine love Marius and that is coincidental because both Eponine and Cosette were once living in the same house. Eponine has in fact realized that Marius only has eyes for Cosette and realized that her life and Cosette’s life have literally switched places.

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Unlike Elphaba, Eponine will stick by Marius’ side no matter what. She will absolutely do anything for Marius even if he wouldn’t do the same for her. She risks her life several times for the sake of him. She helps find Cosette for him and warns him when her father is trying to rob Valjean’s house. She goes as far as disguising as a boy to assist Marius at the barricades. While Eponine is so aware that Marius is completely oblivious to her feelings for him, that does not change her opinion about Marius. It is clear in “On My Own”, that she is accepting the fact that Marius will never be hers and is even more heartbreaking than “I’m Not That Girl”.

All Eponine has in her life is Marius and that’s it. Eponine even at the end of her journey always has unrequited love for Marius. Even though Eponine dies through a fatal gunshot wound, I think her fate is such wonderful and even beautiful. She gets to die in the arms of the man she loves even though her death leaves Marius devastated.

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It is amazing how a lot of these differences come from some of their similarities. Another difference is that Elphaba is from the land of OZ and she has these magical powers that she can’t control and she is treated like an outcast in both her home and society.

The wizard uses Elphaba to his advantage and makes citizens believe that she is truly wicked. That sounds kind of similar to Eponine because her parents use her for their advantage and don’t even care about her and at the end of Eponine’s journey, her parents don’t even care that she got killed.

Between these two girls, I have a more personal and relatable relationship with Elphaba. I relate to Elphaba so much more than Eponine. Elphaba is the character that has been part of my life since 2006 while Eponine has become a favorite character of mine since 2013. I don’t relate to Eponine at all, but yet when I saw the movie a second time, I started having this growing love for Eponine and don’t know where that came from. I sort of wonder that because Elphaba is my favorite musical theatre character and because Elphaba shares many similarities with Eponine, I sort of feel like that might have something to do with my special love for Eponine.

Wrap-up of Les Mis Character Analysis

Major Spoilers:

For the past couple of days I have been analyzing the Les Mis characters. The ones I analyzed are Jean Valjean (protagonist), Javert (antagonist), Fantine, Cosette, Marius, Eponine, the Thenardiers, Enjolras, the students, and Gavroche. These memorable characters are one of the biggest reasons why this musical is so successful. These analysis’ shows how interlocked their lives are. It shows how they directly and indirectly they affect each others lives. They all belong in Les Mis because something no good happens to every single one of them. Most of them die by the end of Les Mis and the only survivors are Marius, Cosette, and the Thenardiers.

Below I will give a few adjectives to describe the characters. If I put an arrow, it shows if their personality changes.

Jean Valjean: bitter, harsh, angry> compassionate, merciful, forgiving

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Javert: obsessive, strict

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Fantine: loving, heartbreaking, tragic

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Cosette: broken>curious, romantic, considerate, hopeful

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Marius: revolutionary, romantic, compassionate, kind

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Eponine: spoiled> loving, lonely, neglected, unloved, brave, fearless

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Thenardiers: abusive, greedy, selfish, cruel, unloving

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Enjolras and students-passionate, brothers, Enjolras (leader)

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Gavroche: brave, heroic

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There is a reason why all of these characters are so loved. It is very hard to pick a favorite even though I love some more than others. As for the females, my favorite is Eponine and have no idea why. These characters are quite complex and you feel like you get to know them. They are so important and though most may die, most die not alone, but with somebody like Valjean being by Fantine’s side when she dies or Eponine dying in Marius’ arms.

What are your thoughts on the Les Mis characters

 

Analysis of Enjolras, the students, and Gavroche

Major Spoilers:

This is my last Les Mis character analysis.

-1832

This is when we first meet these characters. We first get introduced to both Gavroche, Marius, and Enjolras in “Look Down”. Marius and Enjolras are trying to rally up people to support their upcoming uprising. General Lamarque, the only person in the government that cares about the poor, is dying of cholera.

Enjolras is the leader of all the students and is also the most passionate about the cause. There are eight other main students, which includes Marius. They are basically like a group of brothers and their relationship is close. They basically take in Gavroche, a Thenardier and a street urchin.

As a bit of background about Gavroche, the first thing we discover about him is that he is a street urchin. In the book, you learn that he is in fact one of the Thenardier children. He was kicked out of the house at such a young age and never actually really had a family. The students become like Gavroche’s family in a way. He sort of becomes this mascot of the upcoming uprising. One scene that was fun reading about in the book was when Gavroche basically took in his two younger brothers without knowing they are related. His home is basically inside this elephant. Despite being a Thenardier, he still has some kind of compassion inside of him.

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Out of all the students, Marius appears to be the least passionate. He has fallen in love with Cosette and he now has two passions. All he seems to think about is Cosette and the students and Enjolras don’t think he really cares about the uprising.

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During “Red and Black”, the students are planning their uprising and they are very confidant that this uprising will be successful. But the true anthem of the revolutionary students is “Do You Hear the People Sing”. All of the songs the students sing are very passionate songs. Throughout “One Day More”, you become aware of how much passion Enjolras has for the uprising. Marius is conflicted weather he should fight in the uprising or be with Cosette. Ultimately he decides to fight and join his brothers.

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The next day, the students start to build their barricade and it appears as if they have a chance of actually winning. Eponine has in fact joined the revolutionaries out of love for Marius, but Marius sends her away with a letter to Cosette to protect her. Javert is also there and is only there to spy on the students and he agrees to spy on the government for them, but they cannot tell that he is an inspector.

The loud hailer does in fact warn the students that they in fact have no chance at the uprising, but they don’t listen and still strongly believe in the uprising. When Javert arrives, he does talk about their plans, but Gavroche sees through his disguise and tells the students who this spy really is.  Right after Javert is caught, Eponine returns to the barricades. She got shot fatally and dies in Marius’ arms. This scene does show the students what they are up against and they agree to fight in her name. They become so hopeless in this scene and they now realize that their chances of surviving are quite slim.

Valjean does arrive and spends some time with the students. He arrived in order to protect Marius and the students don’t trust him at first. They just think he is another spy just like Javert. But after the second attack, they know that Jean Valjean is on their side. During “Drink With Me”, you can just feel how hopeless they really feel and you also see how special their relationship is. There is line in this song that describes what is about come and Grantaire sings it. He says “Drink with me to days gone by. Can it be you fear to die? Will the world remember you when you fall? Could it be your death means nothing at all? Is your life just one more lie?”. This scene is quite sad actually and is actually sadder when you know how unsuccessful the uprising actually will be. They end up resting for the night and Valjean prays to God to save Marius from the uprising.

The next day, the students have run low on ammunition and they need someone to climb over the barricade to collect more. Gavroche, despite being a kid, climbs over and he dies in the attempt. This scene actually shows how heroic and brave Gavroche is. The Thenardier children are the first two characters to die at the barricade. The loud hailer warns the students once again and despite feeling hopeless, the students are in fact still passionate about their cause. Enjolras and the students agree to still attack and sadly all of them, but Marius, lost their lives. Enjolras, as a matter of fact, has the most heartbreaking death out of all the students.

I love all of these characters due to how passionate they are about this cause. It was important that they all lost their lives because the June Rebellion of 1832 was actually that unsuccessful. I love how much of a strong leader Enjolras is. Enjolras and Marius are close friends and as a matter of fact, all of the students have an amazing relationship.

Tomorrow’s post is a wrap-up of these analysis’

 

Analysis of Eponine

Major Spoilers:

Eponine is a character I have a special love for.

-1823

We first meet Eponine at the Thenardiers’ inn. The Thenardiers, who Cosette is lodging with, are Eponine’s parents. At the time the Thenardiers horribly abuse young Cosette while spoiling their daughter, Eponine. Eponine appears to be living in a loving family. The money that the Thenardiers receive from Fantine is used to spoil Eponine and is used to help the inn. At the time, their inn is in danger of going bankrupt. In the next scene, we learn that the Thenardiers are in fact pickpockets and we start to get an idea of the kind of environment Eponine is going to be growing up in. Soon after Valjean takes Cosette away, Eponine starts becoming horribly abused, neglected, lonely, and unloved.

-1832

This is when we start to get to know Eponine the most. The Thenardier family has become bankrupt and they are living in extreme poverty. They basically dragged Eponine into the criminal world and Eponine’s life has become even worse. In addition, Eponine has fallen in love with Marius unrequitedly. It becomes clear during the Robbery that Eponine does not want to  get involved in her family’s schemes even though she is a Thenardier. She would rather be faithful to Marius than being involved with the schemes that her father and his gang are involved in.

For some reason, Eponine has not fully developed her parent’s ways, which might have something to do with Marius. Eponine is quite brave and despite being a Thenardier, she still is able to fall in love. She has never received love from anyone. In one scene, Eponine realizes that Marius has fallen in love with Cosette and that is where this love triangle comes from.

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Eponine realizes that her life and Cosette’s life have literally switched places. She remembers Cosette. She realizes how much better Cosette’s life has become. Cosette is living in a loving family and is not living in extreme poverty. But with Eponine, she is living in extreme poverty and was dragged into the criminal world by her family. Cosette has fallen in love with Marius and Marius has fallen in love with Cosette. The switch that happened between Cosette and Eponine is very intriguing.  It is one of the most interesting parts of Les Mis.

Marius does in fact ask Eponine to find Cosette for him because he knows she is streetwise due to her family’s schemes. She reluctantly agrees because she realizes it will make him happy. Throughout her entire story, everything she does is for Marius and it becomes clear how much she loves Marius despite the fact that Marius doesn’t love her. She risks her life several times for Marius.

Another time she does a favor for Marius is during the Attack at Rue Plumet. Marius and Cosette have just confessed their love for each other and Thenardier and his gang arrive and try to rob Valjean’s house. Out of love for Marius, Eponine stands up against her father and screams to alert Valjean. At this point, Thenardier basically disowns his daughter. Eponine is basically left to fend for herself on the streets. There is more to Eponine’s life than the unrequited love for Marius.

Considering how much she loves Marius, she disguises herself as a boy to join the revolutionaries at the barricades in order to assist Marius. Marius recognizes her and sends her away with a letter to Cosette. Eponine still cannot believe that Marius still cannot see that she loves him. In “On My Own”, it becomes clear to Eponine that Marius will never love her and she finally accepts the situation that she is currently in.

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Previously (stage show), Valjean has warned Eponine not to return to the barricades, but she doesn’t listen. She returns just to tell Marius she did the favor for him. But as a consequence, she gets caught in the crossfire and becomes fatally wounded herself. Despite knowing that she is dying, she still has the strength to climb down the barricades to find Marius.

The first thing Marius asks is if she saw Cosette and this might seem like Marius is being a jerk to her, but he really isn’t. He has no clue that Eponine is dying from a gunshot wound especially because Eponine is hiding it from him. He soon finds out after she collapses in his arms. Marius tries to get help, but Eponine stops him. Eponine would rather die in Marius’ arms than die when it comes to the law. She is just happy that Marius is there. Marius is literally the only person in her life that has ever showed her kindness.

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Marius is devastated that Eponine is dying because she means a lot to him and sees her as this little sister in a way. He thinks it is too soon for her to leave, but he decides to be compassionate to her till she dies. He offers her peace and comfort and stays brave for her till the end. Even Marius knew how dark and horrible her life truly was. After she dies, the first thing Marius says to the students is “Her name was Eponine. Her life was cold and dark, yet she was unafraid”. That shows how brave and fearless Eponine is despite how horrible her life was. The students decide to fight in her name because she was the first to die on the barricade.

Eponine is quite an interesting character. There are two things that are key to Eponine’s character. The first is that she belongs to the Thenardier family and the second is her love for Marius. You would think she would grow up to be just her parents, which means to be selfish, greedy, and to even want to be involved in a life of thieving. But Eponine knows that her parent’s way of living is not right. That is one of the most interesting parts about Eponine is how she does not become like her parents and that is quite a miracle. I still think that has something to do with Marius. I think Eponine loves Marius so much because of the kindness that he shows her. He is the only person who does offer her kindness even though he doesn’t love her romantically, but he loves her like a friend.

She chooses to be faithful to Marius and that drives all of her actions in Les Mis, which might seem like one of her weaknesses, but in reality it actually is a strength. Her love for Marius is what keeps her thriving even though it eventually leads to her death on the barricades.

As a matter of fact, dying in Marius’ arms is the happiest moment of life. I don’t know why, but Eponine’s death is my favorite death scene in all of Les Mis. There is something special about “A Little Fall of Rain” and I feel devastated that one of my favorite characters is dying, but I also feel happy because I am seeing Eponine happy for once in her brief life. You do feel bad for Marius during that scene as well.

Next analysis is for the Thenardiers, Eponine’s parents.