Phantom Phan Phights

Last Someday, a charming reporter was wandering the streets of Somewhere City, and stumbled upon a group of people arguing. Using her excellent reporter skills, the reporter listened to the argument, taking notes. This is what she has uncovered.

There are basically two categories of Phantom of the Opera “phans”: those indoctrinated by Andrew Lloyd Webber, convinced that he was the one that made it all up, and the ones willing to go beyond the musical and accept the novel written in 1911 by Gaston Leroux as the Phantom Bible, with additional support from Susan Kay’s book.

“Our Phantom is charming and wonderful. He’s kind of attractive, even though he was held in a circus and wears a half mask. I think someone threw acid on his face. He’s got cool magic skills and an awesome voice,” Webber fans gush. “He even wrote a play: Don Juan Triumphant.”

“Our Phantom is a composer, architect, ventriloquist, magician, born with deformity, capable of blowing up the entire Opera House, and left-handed. As for the attractive? Well, unless you find a corpse attractive, then it’s possible to draw that conclusion. Don Juan Triumphant was indeed what he wrote, but it was never meant for human ears,” Leroux fans explain.

Webber fans, losing their ground, try to bring up another point. “If Christine were smart, she would have totally picked so-and-so if the mob hadn’t messed things up.”  At this point, the Webber fans prompt engage in a civil war on whether Christine should have stayed with the Phantom or Raoul.

In the world of the Gaston Leroux fans, there is no civil war.

“Erik knew that Christine loved him–something that no one had ever done.  Erik realized that though Christine loved him as well as Raoul, she would be much happier with Raoul. So, with the Phantom’s blessing, Raoul and Christine walk away from the lair, leaving a very happy Phantom to live out the remainder of his days in peace. Besides, a basement full of gunpowder can be very convincing!”

At this, the Webber fans are still consumed in their civil war and have not bothered to notice the reply.

 The Leroux fans turn their attack on a new target, Mr. Webber, demanding one simple thing: “WHAT have you done with Nadir the Persian?”

“Persian?” Webber fans demand. They have finally stopped fighting at the unfamiliar term. “What Persian? You’re being ridiculous–there IS no Persian in Phantom of the Opera! Don’t go making up random characters out of thin air.”

“Nonsense!” scream Leroux followers, thumping their well-read and heavily annotated copies of the books like a religious group. “If it weren’t for Nadir, there wouldn’t BE a Phantom to tell about! That Persian was critical for helping Raoul find Erik’s lair–the poor guy would have never made it past the first level of the basement without him.”

“Hold the phone!” say the Webber fans. “Who the heck is this Erik guy you keep talking about?”

At this statement, Leroux’s devoted fans smash their faces into their books. “He’s the Phantom!”

“The Phantom has a name?” Webber fans are flabbergasted, and furiously flip through a copy of the muscial. “It’s not in here!”

“Of course he has a name! Everyone has a name! Even the Phantom of the Opera has a name!” Leroux fans point out. They are now surrendering, but not because the Webber fans are right. It’s because the Webber fans haven’t explored the wide world of the story of the masked musical genius and his love for the opera singer.

At this point, the reporter notices a third party approach the arguing phans. “The Phantom of the Opera? You mean that maniac with a bad sunburn and no singing talent?” they ask. “Puh-lease! He was normal compared to poor Elphaba, the Wicked Witch of the West. A facial deformity can easily be hid, but you can’t hide your skin color.”

The explosive argument that followed was not recorded by the reporter, who claimed to have the rest of her notes stolen by two villains known as O.G. and Elphie. Authorities are still trying to catch the culprits.

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~ by w1s3r on May 26, 2011.

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