Monday, December 12, 2016

Is Modesty Barebone a Witch in Hiding? Day 1 of the 12 Days of #FantasticBeasts

On the first day of Fantastic Beasts, my true love said to me... Look! A witch in hiding!

Today we start the 12 Days of Fantastic Beasts! To celebrate, I'm sharing with you one of my character analyses from Fantastic Secrets Behind Fantastic Beasts (releasing this week!): Modesty Barebone.


Doxy artwork by Kayla Perkinson

Now, for those of you eager to start delving into the secrets of JK Rowling's newest work, here are a few thoughts on Modesty Barebone:

From Fantastic Secrets Behind Fantastic Beasts

At eight, Modesty is the youngest of the adopted Barebone children. We have no idea how long ago she joined the family, but as Credence informs us, she still misses her eleven brothers and sisters. Perhaps this is why she, above the older Chastity and Credence, shows more spirit and rebels against Mary Lou. You have to cheer when she throws her Second Salemer leaflets into the air in glee, despite Chastity’s warnings.

The biggest hint of something more going on with Modesty comes when Credence sneaks into her bedroom, believing her to be the Obscurus.
A single bed, an oil lamp, a sampler on the wall: AN ALPHABET OF SIN. Modesty’s dolls lined up on a shelf. One with a little noose around its neck, another tied to a stake.
(p. 201).
It’s a bleak room, witness to a bleak childhood. No wonder in her fantasies, magic would seem a wondrous gift rather than the abomination her Ma makes it to be. Perhaps that’s why she hid away the toy wand Credence finds.

In the confrontation that follows, while we know it is Credence who kills Mary Lou as the Obscurus, it appears to be Modesty who snatches the belt out of her hands with magic. Modesty who makes the belt slither out of her reach like a snake. And Modesty who looks back at her mother with defiance.

For Modesty is the defiant one. Defiantly she sought to protect her older brother against the foul Senator. Afraid and upset when their mother beats him, Modesty showed love in protecting her older brother from the woman who was supposed to love and nurture him.

It seems Mary Lou has been forming her family from the children of witches and wizards in order to squash the magic out of them. If the hint of magic in Modesty is real, I believe she will play a key role in saving Credence before series end.

One question regarding Modesty—where did she get the wand from? Was it really a toy, or was it given her as a nod of encouragement from an interested party?

I have more on Modesty in other sections of my clue book and will discuss the chant she hopscotches to tomorrow. Be sure to come back!

What are your thoughts on Modesty? Please share any thoughts about the movie as a whole or Modesty in particular below!

Join the Celebration:

I'm celebrating the 12 Days of Fantastic Beasts with clues and insight released every day and spoilery forums for all! To help spread the word, my publisher, Deep River Press, is offering some special incentives. If you're a blogger or active on any social media platform and would like to participate, drop me a note in the comments or email me at SPSIPAL AT gmail DOT com.

And be sure to check out the other 12 Days of Fantastic Beast here!

About the Book:
Fantastic Secrets Behind Fantastic Beasts

Explore JK Rowling's secrets, one clue at a time!

Fantastic Secrets Behind Fantastic Beasts is THE guide for all Fantastic Beast and Where to Find Them fans eager to experience anew the excitement of of finding clues and sharing speculation, just like they enjoyed during the height of the Harry Potter series. New fans will be amazed at the secrets lurking underneath the surface of Rowling's newest film. Diving deeply into the story's mysteries, S.P. Sipal offers a detailed analysis of the analogies, myths, and clues JK Rowling hid on screen and on page to charm her fans once again.

Discover and explore such questions as:
  • Is there an Animagi hidden in the story?
  • Why will there be FIVE movies?
  • What secret is Modesty hiding?
  • Did Frank wipe out ALL the memories from that fateful night?
  • And was Grindelwald already in possession of the Elder Wand?

S.P. Sipal has analyzed the mysteries behind the Harry Potter series for over a dozen years. A sought-after presenter at fan, writing, and academic conferences both at home and abroad, her books have also delighted writers, teachers, and fans alike. Now she turns her expert attention to investigating the beginning of Rowling's exciting new series. Join her as she prepares you to dig into the layers of subtext yourself to claim what treasures await...before the Niffler beats you to it!