6 Thoughts I Had Reading Peter Pan for the First Time (They Aren’t What You Think)
The character of Peter Pan first came to life in the stories J. M. Barrie told to five brothers — three of whom were named Peter, John, and Michael. Peter Pan is considered one of the greatest children’s stories of all time and continues to charm readers one hundred years after its first appearance as a play in 1904. The adventures of the three Darling children in Never-Never Land with Peter Pan, the boy who would not grow up. -Synopsis from Amazon-
Before now, my version of Peter Pan was a light-hearted one – bright and full of the innocent, bubbling happiness that comes only in childhood. Boy – was I wrong.
This book has given me so much anxiety, you don’t even know (unless of course, you do). It has been determined that when I go to Neverland, Peter Pan and I will NOT be friends. Want to go for flight through the sky on the whim of fairy dust? Do it! Just not with Peter Pan as your tour guide. Unbeknownst to me, it actually takes days to fly to Neverland as opposed to the few hours I had imagined. Being an experienced flyer, Peter is much faster at drifting through the night sky than the Darling children. He is a terribly forgetful child and gets bored quite easily – not the best comrade to have in arms while flying for your first time. He flies off and forgets about them, leaving them alone for days at a time and being unsure of who they are when he meets them again. Oh, were you thinking of catching some shut eye on the flight over? Think again. Pan finds it humorous to allow his travel companions to fall asleep mid-flight and plummet speedily towards their death – unless of course he feels like showing off, in which case he will fly down and save you at the last minute. He will expect a round of applause for this kindness.
I will not be flying with Peter Pan anytime soon, I’ll stick to Delta Airlines, thank you.
I always assumed that either the Lost Boys didn’t grow up at all or that they became Pirates – BEEP. INCORRECT. It is strongly hinted, almost blatantly stated that Peter kills off the lost boys when they grow too old. He kills them off. He kills them, okay? Goodbye happy thoughts!
As you may recall, the Lost Boys live underground beneath a patch of trees. Each Lost Boy has his own tree which he uses to hide his unique, individual tunnel down to the house beneath the soil. If at any point you grow too old (or too fat) for your tunnel, Peter will gladly remove any protruding portions of your person in order to make sure you fit.
Friends, don’t let friends, hang out with Peter Pan – one could lose a limb or two.
I love food, I love it, and while I’m all for imagining, Peter forces his cohorts to eat imaginary meals even when they’re super hungry. Basically – do what Peter says all the time OR ELSE… even if you really want a donut. You can’t have one. Not when he’s around.
Peter is the poster child for all the worst habits of children, the author, J.M. Barrie, almost didn’t add the infamous Captain Hook, as he though Peter Pan was villain enough.
The bottom line…
This story is one that has lived in the hearts of children for generations and will continue to do so. While it is a far cry from the Disney interpretation I know and love, I can still see the charm in this story. As dark and anxiety-causing it may have been for me, this little tale becomes sweeter towards its end and is full of the kind of whimsical nonsense we’ve come to know and love in other popular children’s stories.
If the shiny stars of Hollywood have glimmered you into thinking that only the brighter side of this story is true, think again.
Pick up a copy and find out for yourself – will you be flying to Neverland?
Click the cover to find out.