Title text: My Redwall/Jurassic Park crossover fanfic is almost complete!
The first panel shows the similarity between the story of Martin the Warrior (from the book Mossflower) and Aragorn from The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien. The joke is that while Martin and Aragorn introduce themselves separately, they then go on to describe their particular story, which turns out to be exactly the same for both of them. Subsequently Martin jinxes Aragorn. Jinx is a common children's game that is initiated by shouting "Jinx" after somebody speaks the same word or sentence at the same time as you. That person is then jinxed, with one form of the rules dictating that they are then not permitted to speak until unjinxed by some specific action (usually somebody saying their name). For a similar children’s game, see 392: Making Rules.
In LOTR, orcs are unequivocally and without exception the bad guys, capable only of hate and violence (although to be fair, in some of Tolkien's unpublished writing, orcs are corrupted elves, so it is clear that they are not intrinsically bad). Similarly, Redwall's rats, foxes, ferrets, ermine, and weasels are mostly evil manipulators, while mice, rabbits, squirrels, hedgehogs, and badgers are always the good guys. On several occasions, characters explicitly state that "vermin stays vermin." This is the overarching rule, notwithstanding the rare exception (e.g. Grubbage from Triss). Conversely, one of the so-called "good species" has never become evil in this book series. Though it is more likely than not that this is simply the result of a planet of hats - where a single species all share the same characteristics and personality, so that authors / readers don't have to spend time fleshing out / getting to know every new character - Randall nevertheless indicates that this "moral absolute" is problematic and has some "racist undertones," regardless if it's intentional or not. (Note that Tolkien's work is probably not actually racist—the Easterlings are portrayed as non-evil people who were deceived by Sauron. The Orcs are evil by definition, thus being incapable of doing good.)
The second panel deals with the fact that Redwall mentions the name of Satan or The Devil 4 times, while it never mentions God or Jesus--somewhat surprisingly, given that the book is set in an abbey, and many of the inhabitants are religious brothers and sisters. Randall then points out that people who protest against Harry Potter because of the series' witchcraft, should take note that Redwall explicitly mentions Satan, although it has had little to no negative feedback from more conservative readers.
In the third panel, Randall comments on Redwall's often-used theme of critical messages being left in riddles throughout the Abbey for the occupants to find when they are in need. Randall suggests that he would use public-key cryptography to encode the messages, instead of the elaborate riddles used in the books (some of which are ridiculously easy, which doesn't exactly make for good security when dealing with sensitive information).
- Notes from reading Redwall books for the first time since childhood.
- Some of this feels familiar.
- Aragorn: Hi, I'm Aragorn.
- Martin: I'm Martin.
- Aragorn and Martin: I'm here to reforge my broken sword so I can lead an army against the tyrant threatening my people. I live in a world of moral absolutes and racist undertones.
- Martin: Jinx!
- It startled me when characters mentioned Satan.
- Redwall: "By Satan's whiskers..."
- Redwall mentions God/Jesus 0 times.
- Redwall mentions Satan/The Devil 4 times.
- (Harry Potter protesters, take note.)
- Even as a kid this bothered me: Why does everyone leave critical secret messages as simple riddles? It's silly to assume the intended recipient will be the only one to find and solve them. I would do things differently.
- Matthias: The inscription is a message from Martin!
- Brother Methuselah: What does it say?
- Matthias: Hang on, it's encrypted with my public key.
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