• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month


Extracts from this document...


"THE TENSION CREATED IN SPIES" Putting a child into a fight or flight scenario is going to unnerve the reader from the start and create tension. Michael Frayn introduces the darker side of Steven and Keith's spying in chapter 6, whereby Steven has to take up the task of obtaining evidence to support their suspicions. It is Steven who is assigned to the after dark duty. It's his eyes and ears that Frayn uses to transpose tension to us the reluctant voyeurs. We the audience are first introduced to Steven's visions of the "darkness", defined by its "blackness" and "sound". We see nothing and feel our way along with Steven through his task reluctantly. Steven's senses are heightened and are more apparent because he is a child and vulnerable, as he mentioned before he commenced his journey, "I shall die of fear". We along with Steven want the "moon to lighten the world", and bring him comfort, but this event will only bring him more fear when it does occur. ...read more.


It may not be Pandora's box, but could have just the same level of devastation in the wrong hands. When Steven opens the box, he hesitates, but still puts his hand "cautiously inside", and then pulls his "hand away" quickly, leaving us with the idea that something has hurt Steven. No adult would do such a thing, but children are reckless and this will always fuel the outcomes uncertainty in this novel. When the "darkness" changes and Steven begs for the moons little eclipses of light we feel his desperation, "at any moment" the moon will reveal itself along with a lot of other things. Frayn has exposed Steven's naivety through his hope of light, which will only bring a cold kind of comfort. When Steven becomes aware of the "sound of the world changing" he identifies it has his own breathing that "no longer corresponds". We know at an instant what this means: Steven holds his breath to stop breathing, and in the process reveals another presence. ...read more.


The story has climaxed at this point. Steven and the intruder have realised each others presence, which has ended in a "raucous gasp" . Both are still, motionless and breathless, but Steven will not turn to look, as you don't when you are in a dreadful nightmare with a "terrible figure behind you,", Frayn has played the horror card well, as Steven's fears have reached new heights. Steven's wish for light has backfired, and now he wishes the moon to go behind the clouds again so he may be camouflaged. When this does finally happen the intruder scuttles away through the "wire fence" and into the "lanes". Frayn explains Stevens fear, as too severe to initiate any movement, he is as, "immobile as stone", and still racked with fear. We have a vision of Steven shaking, sweating and paler than white, but still able to take flight. We feel the dread of Steven's experience and are glad that Frayn's intruder flees, as Steven now can "hurl" himself into the tunnel he is familiar with all the fear attached, as he goes into the unknown again, or "booming darkness". ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Other Authors section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Other Authors essays

  1. How Effectively Does Frayn Use Barbara Berrill in 'Spies'?

    Finding a value for X is a recurrent theme in the story where X is something which is confusing or difficult for Stephen to understand, for example when he is trying to find the identity of the mysterious person who Mrs Hayward meets or when he and Keith read her diary.

  2. How does Frayn present young Stephen in the first three chapters of "Spies"? How ...

    way that the reader is instantly able to see where Stephen is drawing his criteria for a good father from. We do not understand why Stephen would want to have a father who does things like this, but then are able to realise that Frayn wishes us to see further

  1. Use Of Recurring Motifs In "Spies" By Michael Frayn

    All these major evens are centred on the "bayonet" which reinforces the idea that it represents their friendship. "The Germs" are the other major motifs in Frayn's novel; it is portrayed in the form of "slime" until the bridge. The germs are slightly less major than the previous 2 motifs;

  2. Analyse how Frayn presents relationships between adults and children in Spies

    In a counterpoint to Keith's father, Mr. Wheatley is kind and mild-mannered. While Mr. Hayward is 'like an ogre in his cave' (pg.26).He is quietly affectionate, worrying about the bullying that Stephen is subjected to, and putting his arms around Stephen after Keith has injured his throat.

  1. Presentation of Stevens - The Remains of the Day

    Stevens's desperation to be the best butler he can be is also emphasised here because he actually believes he can teach himself to be funny, yet it is an intuition to know whether or not to make a joke. Although Stevens does his best to please his employer, it is clear he has an attitude of superiority towards Americans.

  2. Discuss the relationship between Keith and Stephen that is presented in the first Six ...

    some inadequate insult' which shows how insignificant he felt and how he just wanted to lead a normal life like his friend Keith. We immediately notice the comparisons between the two boys' families and how they live such as Stephens' parents not being interested in the appearance of the house

  1. Discuss the Implicit Suggestion of a Class Hierarchy as Revealed in Pages 1 to ...

    Frayn introduces the Hayward's house with the three choppy sentences "No. 9. Chollerton. The Haywards." they are issued like an abrupt military statement and compared to the relaxed, long, flowing sentences in the description of Stephen's house- this is extremely noticeable.

  2. In her essay "Flight," Doris Lessing illustrates the story of an old man who ...

    but from the viewpoint of a senior, an elder, a grandfather ? as he endures the heartache of a kind of bereavement. The last of his many little grand-daughters has fallen in love and is about to marry - flying the nest for good, unlike the doves in his beloved dovecote ? over whose flight he has some say.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work