Good vs. Evil has long been expressed through movies and books throughout history. Batman beating the Joker, Spiderman banishing the Green Goblin, and Arthur and the guys defeating Dracula are all examples of literature based on the theme Good vs. Evil. In Bram Stokers, Dracula, Jonathan Harker represents the good, while the vampire, Dracula, represents the evil antagonist. One thing these four pieces share is that evil never fully overcomes good. They all start off as regular human beings, or on the good side, until their spirit and soul becomes taken over by a sense of evil. Gothic elements, such as, an atmosphere of mystery and suspense, supernatural events, gloom and horror, the tyrannical male, and the woman in distress are all present in these stories. The movie Interview with a Vampire, The Singing Springing Lark, and the story Interview with a Vampire can relate to Dracula because of their themes and gothic elements.
The movie Interview with a Vampire is very similar to the story Dracula. It starts off in a dark night scene filled with dull and heavy music. Also, during the fight scene, the setting included thunderstorms and pouring rain. This shows metonymy because the dark and heavy music represents death and terror and the thunderstorms and rain were used to create a setting of darkness and fear. Other gothic elements shown in this movie were Lucy’s pale skin, the castle setting, and the exchanging of blood. In the Lindauer 2
story Dracula, Lucy’s skin starts to become very pale because she has been bitten by Dracula, which is what happened in the movie. This represents the gothic element tyrannical male, because of Dracula’s presentation of overpowering the other characters, more specifically Mina and Lucy. This directly relates to the gothic element women in distress because the women in both stories were treated poorly and were taken advantage of due to their weaknesses.
In the story, The Singing Springing Lark, there are also many similarities to Dracula. For example, as in Interview with a Vampire also, most of the scenes take place in a castle. This shows the gothic element setting in a castle. As in most stories, a castle usually represents evil spirits and terror, which Dracula and the Beast both represent. Another gothic element shown is an atmosphere of mystery and suspense. In the story, the prince was hesitant to meet the girl’s family because “for if a ray from a burning light were to fall on him there, he would be transformed into a dove, and would have to fly with doves for seven years.” This is an important quote because in the story Dracula, the boys had figured out that Dracula’s evil spirit was weakest during the times of sunrise and sunset. If they didn’t get to him before the sun set, his powers were going to be restored. In other words, the change from dark to light represents a change from evil to good.
In the story Interview with a Vampire, the plot line is almost exactly the same. For example, “The mere sight of a bared throat could bring about in me such a taste of arousal that I became like an animal, incapable of language or restraint.” This quote shows tyrannical male because it compares how Armand and Dracula are both similar in the way they kill their prey. They both attack where the blood is rich just like animals do and dominate their prey. It also Lindauer 3
shows a sexual side because the mere fact of killing got both of these characters aroused. For example, “With his left hand he held both Mrs. Harker’s hands, keeping them away with her arms at full tension; his right hand gripped her by the back of the neck, forcing her face down on his bosom. Her white nightdress was smeared with blood, and a thin stream trickled down the man’s bare breast which was shown by his torn-open dress.”(Stoker 283) This quote shows women in distress because it describes how Mina, in a sense, was raped. Just Armand, Dracula finds pleasure in killing, and transforming good into evil.
One thing that all of these pieces share is that evil never overcomes good. Although evil makes its presence known and dominates at first, good prevails in the end. The movie Interview with a Vampire, The Singing Springing Lark, and the story Interview with a Vampire can relate to Dracula because of their themes and gothic elements. As Theodore Roosevelt’s once said, “The forces that tend for evil are great and terrible, but the forces of truth and love and courage and honesty and generosity and sympathy are stronger than any before.”