Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Well, its Tuesday. And what better to do on a Tuesday than trace the Spanish roots of the Legend of Zelda?

The Symbolist themes seem clear enough. Zelda, our girlfriend in a coma, is the classic pale Ophelia of Knopff and Millais. These artists were not so much a part of an art movement as part of a mystic underground influenced by the same ancient Greek and Norse myths that would influence Tolkein or Harryhausen's monsters in Jason and the Argonauts.

Adventure of Link takes the Zelda aesthetic in a decidedly "Iberian" direction. Listen to the Phrygian scales in the musical introduction. I can hear it a little in the first Zelda, but they make it pretty obvious here when they go straight into the flamenco chords for those willing to wait past the first seconds of echoing notes. The towns are very flat and sandy, with a wild west main drag and flat rooftops. The harbor town of Mido even has a mission. The women look like they are about to break into a tango. Maybe it is not so much Spanish as it is Latin American. Or Mexican. Maybe we are to believe its a Western?

Did I mention that I am completely serious?

The Thunderbird itself, the final boss, comes from North American mythology. One was apparently shot out of the sky by cowboys and was described to look much like a pterodactyl.

I am not saying that this is hard to believe. I am just asking, did you ever notice it? So much for Tuesday.

No comments: