In ‘The Darkness out There’ and ‘The Red Room’ the can easily deceived by the appearance of some of the characters
When you read the title ‘The Darkness Out There’ you immediately think it is a horror story. However the beginning of the story makes you change your mind because of the pleasant vocabulary and descriptions.
“Flowers”, “ox-eyed daisies.”
This makes you think that it is not a horror story. When you start reading ‘The Red Room’ you have a feeling that it is going to be about a room. It starts of with evil thoughts.
This makes you think that it is a proper horror story.
The way that the old folks are described in the two stories is different. In ‘The Darkness Out There’ the old people are described pleasantly.
“Dear old thing”, ” old popets”, ” Ever so grateful.”
This gives me an impression that they are friendly, kind and loving people. However in ‘The Red Room’ the people are described differently. They are described as evil people.
“Withered arm”, “pale eyes”, “bent”, “wrinkled.”
This gives me an impression that the old people in the story are going to be nasty, unfriendly and ugly. The image that it gives me is that Mrs. Rutter is going to be a kind lady and the three old people are going to be evil. They are creepy old people.
Hints of danger start to come into the story ‘The Darkness Out There.’ Penelope Lively starts to describe a place.
She starts to talk about it and puts in some myths and old stories about it.
“Girl attacked”, “German plane came down.”
This makes you feel that something is going to happen to Sandra in ‘Packers End’
Then it goes on to the woman in the cottage. The author starts describing the old lady. Gradually we get an impression that perhaps Mrs. Rutter is not the sweet old lady that we thought of her at the beginning.
“Her eyes snapped and darted.”
This makes you feel that there something sinister about her. This makes the atmosphere tenser.
H.G. Wells builds up suspense quickly. He uses words to build to the tension.
“Ghostly traditions”, “echoes”, “chilly and dusty.”
These words make you think about the man and what is going to happen. H.G Wells is trying to build up an eerie atmosphere.
As the story goes on we see the full horror of Mrs. Rutter’s
history. How she and her sister saw a German plane comes down went to it and never did any thing about the survivor.
“He was hurt pretty badly.”
The person in the plane who was still alive was mumbling to himself. Mrs.Rutter and her sister didn’t get help because ‘it was raining cats and dogs.’ Kerry was really surprised and he couldn’t believe it. That Mrs.Rutter and her sister just left a human being in a plane with a serious injury to die.
This shows that he was still there alive. She shows no regret or sympathy.
However in ‘The Red Room’ the suspense builds up rapidly. When the narrator lit all the candles and he was pleased that there was no ghost but unexpectedly one of the candles goes out.
“The candle in the alcove suddenly went out.”
He rushes to light it again. Doing this more candles go out. He thinks he feels something on the wall.
“Something seemed to blink on the wall before me.”
This makes you feel that there is a ghost in the room or something else. He starts to talk to himself.
” ‘This won’t do!’ I said”
This shows that he is nervous. He is panicking. He runs around lighting the candles one by one. Soon he didn’t know where things were and bumped into them hurting himself.
“I bruised myself.”
This shows that he is panicking and rushing about to keep the alight. This builds up suspense.
The language used and feelings expressed by Mrs.Rutter are not what we would expect from the picture that the author builds up at the beginning, is that author is showing the evil in Mrs.Rutter. When one of the German planes came down Mrs.Rutter and her sister cheered.
“One of theirs. We cheered.”
They were happy that a German plane came. They didn’t care for the people inside.
“Bang goes some more of the bastards.”
This makes you feel shocked that an old woman is using bad language. They went home even though one of the men in the plane was talking. They didn’t give a thought of helping him.
“Then we went back to the cottage.”
This makes you feel and think why didn’t they help him. She acts like nothing has happen and just walks back to her cottage.
While she was saying all this the boy dropped his spoon.
“The boy’s spoon clattered to the floor.”
This shows that the boy was horrified about the things that Mrs.Rutter was talking about. She doesn’t notice this. Then she shows bitterness to the guy in the plane.
“You had this coming to you.”
She is really being bitter her.
However in ‘The Red Room’ the vocabulary is in the end Victorian times. Around the 1890s. The author writes numbers back to front.
“Eight and twenty.”
If it were written in the modern times it would have been twenty-eight. Also the author uses lots of long sentences. He uses a lot of commas we would say one, two, three, but they say it a different way.
“Once, twice, thrice.”
Their numbers are totally different from the modern day. Instead of saying ‘I said’ they say it the other way
This shows how the language has developed over a long period of time.
Over all I think the message in ‘The Darkness Out There’ is that there is evil in people inside but they don’t show it from the outside. Appearance can be and are often deceptive. For example Mrs.Rutter. At the beginning she was described as a nice old lady. As the story goes on we find out that she isn’t nice at all.
The message in ‘The Red Room’ is essentially the same as ‘The Darkness Out There.’ But the author has described the old people as a bunch of evil people. At the end of the story the same old people are helping the man. Fear and horror are found in people not in spooky castles and houses. This shows that appearances are very deceptive.