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Comparing the Portrayals of the Villains from "Tell-Tale Heart" and "The Speckled Band"

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Comparing the Portrayals of the Villains from "Tell-Tale Heart" and "The Speckled Band" The two villains in "Tell-Tail Heart" and "The Speckled Band" both have similarities and differences in their portrayals of murder, conveyed in the stories. They have disparities between motives and methods of murder, although there is a resemblance in the masterminds of murder. The villain in "The Speckled Band", Dr. Grimsby Roylott was married to Mrs. Stoner in India who is prosperous with her wealth, but she had died in a train crash and bequeathed the sum of �1000 to Dr. Roylott. This money was enough to fulfil the family's needs as they moved into an old ancestral house in Stoke Moran. Roylott unfortunately in dismay fears that the family will deteriorate into financial decline as his step- daughters will be leading their lives through marriage. It was an unmanageable situation for Dr. Roylott to elucidate this matter. He was inconceivable to murder his step daughter, Julia Stoner with his knowledge of deadly snakes in an ambitious attempt to stop her, despite the fact that his motive was reason enough to keep him focused. Dr. Roylott had planned to target his next victim, Helen Stoner. It was only then that Sherlock Holmes intervened and impeded his plan. Edgar Allan Poe delineates a murderer's mind thoroughly as it is the murderer who relates the story to us. ...read more.


Dr. Roylott had also "beated" his butler to death in a "fit of anger" caused by robberies in the house. This indicates that Dr. Roylott's behaviour is psychopathic and has a serious mental disorder. Dr. Roylott had achieved a "medical degree" as a skilled profession, so not only he is brawny he has good intelligence. Both villains are brought to ruin by their crime; in The Speckled Band, Sherlock Holmes discovers that Dr. Roylott had used a "swamp adder" to kill Julia Stoner. A "thick bell rope" was used to escort the snake into her room. This would eliminate clues of the murderer because using a form of "poison" could not be discovered by using chemical tests. Dr. Roylott had deserved his comeuppance when he committed suicide, using his poisonous "adder" snake. This circumstance is not a stereotypical villain, as the hero would supposedly end the villain. Dr. Roylott was imprudent to be killed by his own murderous snake as described "indiscreetly playing". He is less astute than the villain in Tell - Tale Heart, because he reveals his dishonesty in other characters which portrays him a strong villain. It turns out that this villain is brawny and is dissimilar to the Tell - Tale Heart villain, who is the opposite. In Tell - Tale Heart, it was perfect timing for the villain to conceal the corpse before confronting the officers. ...read more.


His patience is continuous and shows good persistence in the story until he murders: "with a loud yell". This action would have frightened the man to his death, as it was sudden for the faint - hearted man. Dr. Grimsby Roylott has parallels with the Tell - Tale Heart villain, because his strength of nerve to act is tolerable as well. In the murder scene Holmes was unable to find any "satisfactory cause of death" for Julia Stoner, this tells that the villain was careful with his timing and pursued the victim, until her death. Helen Stoner had informed Holmes that she had died "two years ago"; an astonishing amount of time for Roylott to pursue Helen to generate an absolute indistinguishable murder. Roylott had used his time to manipulate his passion for Indian animals as an excuse to "lock doors" during the night so there was no evidence of a forced break - in, which would drive him far from the involvement of murder. He had deliberately secluded the ancestral house with "blotched windows" etc, which constructed a perfect crime scene to leave its victim vulnerable; a truly sinister and stereotypical villain. Both stories enable viewers to establish a connection between stereotypical villains from their devious murders, and how the writers have conveyed it through their writing techniques. These stories relate to us in modern society, how and why murders happen and are contemplated, which all reflects the demonstration of villainy. Silky Ng Comparing the portrayals of the Villains English Coursework ...read more.

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