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This is discussion archived from a time before the current discussion method was installed.

For clarity's sake: "dreadful" is not being used here as an adjective. LT was using the term "penny dreadful", which was a phrase used at the time for what we now more commonly refer to as "pulp". A word of advice: always double-check your facts before correcting a stickler like Looney Toons.

Morgan Wick: Personally, I'd just hyphenate it. I prefer making it as clear as possible in the first place. Or maybe not use such an obscure term...

Looney Toons: It is in fact the proper and correct term for Victorian "pulp novels". The fact that you find it obscure does not make it any less so.

KEVP: Shouldn't the term "penny dreadful" at least be in quotes, as I just did (as well as the first writer above), and like Looney Tunes just did for the term "pulp novel".

Ununnilium: Yes. ^-^v

Looney Toons: Works for me.

Pepinson: And the awful thing is, less than a day after I made that edit, I read V for Vendetta and learned that "penny dreadful" was a real phrase. ^^;

Looney Toons: Like the OP up above says, I know my stuff. <grin>

Morgan Wick: Like the OP up above... Who was actually Whogus The Whatsler - seemingly starting to drop user tags...

Sirrocco: Also, the bit about the real Vlad Tepes is, to the best of my knowledge, false. Again, according to my best available information, the people he was mostly impaling were petty nobles, who hated him because he treated nobles and commoners the same under the law (which meant that a great many of the things that nobles thought of as fun ways to spend a spare week-end were suddenly impaling offenses.) In wikipedia (for what it's worth) it says "in Romania he is best remembered as a prince with a deep sense of justice and a defender of Wallachia against Ottoman expansionism." He is *also* remembered for being both capricious and cruel, and the oral tradition varies on which aspect is given primacy, but this is hardly a guy without redeeming features.

Janitor: Okay, Vlad Tepes was a Democrat demonized by Republicans. What's new? < puts on cynical helmet before the brickbats fly >

Stm177: I talked to one Romanian once about Dracula. He said that he died, and his generals put him in the saddle of his horse for some famous battle against the Turks. The Turks, knowing him to be dead, panicked when they saw him for this battle.

Shiralee: Yeah, that's a common superstitious-old-world-general trick... El Cid, Zhuge Liang, and a few others pulled it too. (though in ZL's case it was a trademarked crafty trapô he planned out before death and not his actual physical presence that led Wei forces to believe he was still alive.)

Derdelush: He didn't do that. But he did do this. Wich does make him more of a magnificent bastard than Dracula. This comes from a Romanian (if my nationality somehow has something to do with appearing more informed, although, much like the Romanian Stm117 talked to, I didn't pick up a history book in years). @Janitor: Seeing that my native language isn't turkish, he was a pretty good guy.

Wanders Nowhere: Two sets of pamphlets about Vlad Tepes were published after his death, and are the origin of most of the tales of his famous torture-fests. Scarily, while the German pamphlets paint Vlad as a horrific subhuman monster and the Russian pamphlets as a courageous, honourable patriot, both sets of 'Vlad Parables' largely tell the same stories, right down to the tortures used. I feel Vlad is a subjective figure - while no doubt much of what he did was exaggerated or made up wholecloth by his political enemies or post-mortem taleweavers, even during his lifetime he was famous for excessive violence, so it's a fair bet that at least the impalements were real. However, whether this makes him a monster or a hero in your mind is how you take it. I'd never defend the use of torture of any kind, but contextually, Vlad was born into a turbulent corner of Europe in a violent, treacherous age. All of the knights and nobles he mixed with used tortures similar to his, just not on the same scale or quite as extreme. He knew his Wallachia was a small kingdom, that the Ottoman forces were an overwhelming threat, that there were traitors and side-swappers everywhere, so his tactic was to be completely uncompromising (look at how he dealt with the boyars who killed his father and brother. Those guys had been playing political chess with the Wallachian royal line for centuries, and only Vlad had the balls to simply clean house and kill them all). In a dog eat dog world, Vlad Tepes simply elected to be the most vicious dog in the kennel in order to survive.

Man that turned into a novel. All I actually wanted to post was this - Whoever organised this trope into sections, good show, it needed that!


Wardog Does anyone think Mina Harker from is a classic example of a Faux Action Girl? The other characters were always going on and on about how she was such a Strong Woman, but she never really did anyting more daring than "Accompany them on their expidition" (and according to some of here correspondance with Lucy, "go bicycling".

H. Torrance Griffin: Considering the time of publication, the former was impressive by the standards of polite society.

R: While her contribution does amount to more or less being a secretary, she's very good at it and without her pointing out the obvious they probably would have never defeated Dracula...


[[tnu1138]] I would like to note that the connection between the historical prince and the vampire of the story is for the most part Retroactive Stoker came across the name when skimming a text and a note saying that it meant "Devil" and decided to take the name sure there is mention of "that voivode" but no more then that. and for the matter of Sunlight it wasn't the actual exposure to sunlight that weakened him. it was more related to the daylight hours so in other words daytime not daylight. common misconception.

R: Another thing that should be noted is that not all of his powers are necessarily a result of his vampiric condition, Van Helsing says that he made himself a vampire by the dark arts he studies, so the Count was also a wizard or something long those lines even before he became Un-Dead. Any abilities not shared with the other vampires could easily be attributed to him also being a spell caster.

tnu1138: He was an Alchemist actually never quite referred to as a wizard at least from what i can recall but certainly an Alchemist.


Gitman: I'm changing this sentence: "Later revisions of this character tend to bring the vampire and Wallachian ruler versions together, usually as punishment for being a sadistic killer."

It wasn't just later revisions. In the original novel, Van Helsing himself conjectures that the two must be one and the same: "He must, indeed, have been that Voivode Dracula who won his name against the Turk, over the great river on the very frontier of Turkey-land".

  • you reallty should check with other sources before making such changes. check this for example

http://www.ucs.mun.ca/~emiller/divorce.html