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

Similarities and Differences between "The Speckled Band" and "Lamb to the Slaughter"

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Similarities and Differences between "The Speckled Band" and "Lamb to the Slaughter" In the following essay I am going to look at two stories "The Speckled Band" and "Lamb to the Slaughter" and examine their similarities and differences. I shall start by looking at "The Speckled Band" analyze its qualities and then contrast it with the second story "Lamb to the Slaughter". "The Speckled Band" is structured in a very traditional way, with the whole story building up to a violent climax at the end. All through the story tension is gradually built up to the violent climax, for example when the characters Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson were in a dark bedroom at the end of the story references are made to the time. "Far away we could hear the deep tones of the parish clock, which boomed out every quarter of an hour. How long they seemed those quarters". This is repeated in all the Sherlock Holmes mysteries. Conan Doyle always wrote Sherlock Holmes stories to a formula that is the same in every one. The three stages of the formula are the statement of the case, the investigation of the case and the climax which is normally exiting and violent. The author makes the climax exciting by suddenly releasing the tension in a burst of violence. "Quote p187". The characters in "The Speckled Band" are all two dimensional, we do not get the chance to see their thoughts and feelings, they are just expressed in conversion with other characters. ...read more.

Middle

The author of "Lamb to the Slaughter" Roald Dahl uses an entirely different plot to that of the "The Speckled Band". Tension is built up through the story until the violent climax at the end in "The Speckled Band", whereas in "Lamb to the Slaughter" the violent climax is at the beginning and then the tension of the story is all in the fact of whether she gets caught or not, this makes the later part of the story, in my view, less exciting. The "Lamb to the Slaughter" is made up of two parts, the first part lasts about two thirds of the story is extremely serious and sensitive and the last third is comical, where everything builds up to the ironic joke at the end. Both plots of the two stories work well for that story, but I feel that "Lamb to the Slaughter" has a better plot and structure except in the last third, because I feel that everything shouldn't head towards the joke at the end. The characters in "Lamb to the Slaughter" are much better than those in "The Speckled Band" because in Mary Maloney's case we empathize with her fully, which makes her a three dimensional character. Mary Maloney at the beginning of the story is a devoted wife, who is loving and caring for her husband and has an ordinary set routine. "Mary Maloney was waiting for her husband to come home from work...when the clock said ten minutes to five, she began to listen, and a few minutes later, punctually as always, she heard tyres on the gravel outside." ...read more.

Conclusion

The story starts to become more unrealistic as it becomes more comical. Everything starts to build around the joke at the end, and because of this Mary Maloney becomes a two dimensional character like those in "The Speckled Band". After Mary Maloney has committed the murder she returns to relying on routine to clear herself. This part of the story is clever, but unlike the character of Mary Maloney we know so far. The other characters in "The Lamb to the Slaughter" are two dimensional, we don't get to empathise with the husband and Roald Dahl doesn't have time to build the policemen into proper characters. The tone of the story is serious like that of "The Speckled Band" but unlike "The Speckled Band" the tone changes part way through to a comedy. Roald Dahl builds up tension by having Mary Maloney express her intimacy with her husband and then gradually giving us hints that things are not what they seem in their relationship. "Yes, he said. I'm tired. And as he spoke he did an unusual thing..." Roald Dahl releases the tension built up in the first part of the story in the violent climax, but he doesn't release it all so we keep reading. I prefer "The Lamb to the Slaughter" because I find that a story where you get to empathise with characters makes the story a more interesting and believable to read. Both stories have their own qualities and differences better and worse than each other in different aspects. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Roald Dahl 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 GCSE Roald Dahl essays

  1. Both Lamb to the slaughter and the Speckled Band share some characteristics of murder ...

    mainly a cold and calculating character as she feels practically no remorse, is very cynical and sarcastic whilst planning everything for self-preservation with the aim of avoiding the death penalty. This self-obsession is also true of Dr Roylott, whose motive was money not apparent jealousy.

  2. comparison of 'lamb of the slaughter' and 'the speckled band'

    An example of a clue is when Sherlock finds the phoney bell pull but does not explain why it is there. 'Lamb to the Slaughter' does not leave any clues as we already know who the murderer is and how they were killed.

  1. Comparing Rhoda Brook-"The Withered Arm" and Mary Maloney-"Lamb to the slaughter".

    All she does is to look after the house and cook food for him which is a reflection on the social standing of women. Being a house keeper is regarded as less important than being a police officer. Today a young married couple would both have jobs until they have

  2. Compare the Two Short Stories, 'The Speckled Band' And 'Lamb To The Slaughter'.

    reader feel as though we could never have interpreted and coming out as the hero at the end. He seems to give himself no constraints as to who the murderer is and how he did it. Compared to the careless methods Hayley Pearcy 11GIo and assumptions of the detectives in

  1. LAMB TO THE SLAUGHTER & THE SPECKLED BAND

    "Don't make supper for me. I'm going out." "Patrick getting even angrier as he is repeatedly saying that he doesn't want any supper." At that point Mary without any thinking she walked up behind him and threw the frozen leg of lamb on the back of his head, Patrick collapsed within four to five seconds.

  2. What are the similarities and differences between 'A Speckled Band' and 'Lamb to the ...

    In Dahl's 'Lamb to the Slaughter', the detectives are very different. They are unobservant, unintelligent and not committed. They are Holmes' exact opposites. The main detective in this story is sergeant Jack Noonan, although there are three others, which have a minor role in the story.

  1. Explore How The Women Are Portrayed In The Texts The Withered Arm and Lamb ...

    milking parlour that Farmer Lodge 'hasn't spoken to Rhoda for years' and the implication is that Rhoda has done likewise. Even though Rhoda has in many ways the worst life, she comes through as coping admirably in comparison to the other two, who are either swallowed up, in Mary Maloney's

  2. Lamb to the Slaughter and The Speckled Band are both examples of the murder ...

    We expect the gypsies to have something to do with the murder. However, Sherlock Holmes immediately discards this theory after inspecting the windows. This makes the gypsies the 'red herrings' in this story. The reason the girls kept their doors locked at night was because Dr.

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