View Full Version : Blaze *BIG SPOILERS*

01-01-2009, 08:56 AM
I did a search before starting this thread, but the only threads I could find were the voting thread (which is now closed) and an article in the collection section and the connections article. My apologies if I missed one.

I just finished this book, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. If I had a complaint it would be that I wasn't that keen on the ending. I expected it, and I found myself really rooting for the Title character even despite the bad things he had done. That being said, I'm not sure it could have ended any other way, and it raised some interesting points.

Blaze himself was a great sympathetic character. Someone who has certainly gone down the wrong path in his life, yet often or not due to circumstances beyond his control. That's not to say he shouldn't take some blame for his decisions, but he is the kind of character that could have become someone quite different if other things had happened. Even as a criminal, he didn't strike me as particularly bad. He is someone who wants to belong... and ends up belonging with the wrong people. A good example of what he might have been if his wretched father hadn't thrown him down the stairs can be seen in the life of his illegitimate son.

I find the way his mind works is interesting. He is borderline retarded, yet his mind will do strange leaps of intuition now and again. It's a common depiction of such characters in King's work. Often the lack of intelligence is like the surface mind, but there is often something more complex beneath. And often there is some kind of compensation for what they have lost.

In the case of Blaze, he takes to driving quicker than most. And when he misses something, George comes to tell him. Is George a ghost? Or his own mind, his undermind if you like, filling him in on things he has missed? I suspect it is the latter, but I found that element of the supernatural interesting, particularly when he knew George had had some of his teeth removed even though Blaze was stuff in prison at the time and had no way of knowing.

And of course there was the rather touching relationship between Blaze and baby Joe. He makes mistakes, is obviously not really suited to caring for an infant (although he does rather well considering!) but it's almost as if the baby could be seen as a source of hope for something other in Blaze's life, up there with the birds. It's an illusion of course, but again we see a kind of mirror of that other life that might have been.

One thing that I found particularly intriguing was in my consideration of Blaze and the police officer who is chasing him. I remember a scene where the officer interviews a woman and her son who saw Blaze in a shop. The boy ends by saying "He (Blaze) smiled at me."

Then when the officer ruffled his hair (or somesuch thing... I'm writing this from memory, I left the book upstairs, but I might edit this post later.) the boy says "Your hands are cold."

I know that doesn't seem like anything significant but it's an interesting insight into the personalities of the two men. One, supposedly a thug, who is actually rather warm natured. And the cold officer of the law, with a narrow view, who tends to see things purely by there surface value. Rich bereaved family lose son to kidnapping thug who must be hunted down and captured or killed. Preferably the latter.

Also look at the way the two men kill. Blaze kills at least 3 people (probably more as I doubt the man who murdered George survived that crunched skull.) However, in his case it's usually unintentional. (like the old lady and the first cop he hit) It's a reactive thing, born out of shock or anger, and he feels remorse afterward. He certainly seemed to wish the second cop harm, but again, it was a reaction to cop stupidly shooting into the cave and wounding the baby. Again I don't think he intended to kill him.... but again his great physical strength was his undoing.

Now look at the way the cop acts. He wounds Blaze as he runs away (fair enough he gave him a chance to give up.) Then, when Blaze is laying at his feet, unarmed and half paralyzed, what does he do? If you've read it (and I hope you have or you shouldn't be reading this) you will know. It could be argued he is reacting to the death of his colleagues too, yet there is something extremely cold about it. It's not done in a heat of passion just after the incident but 10 minutes later. Out of the two men, who is the real murderer?

A great story, fairly simple but with a lot more just bellow the surface. Kind of like the title character. (Sorry is that corny? The though just occurred as I was writing that.)

Hmmm, that turned into a bit of an essay didn't it? Hope it wasn't too boring.

Happy new year!

Ben Mears
01-01-2009, 09:45 AM
Well thought out and written. I would welcome your insights on 'salem's Lot.

01-01-2009, 01:08 PM

01-02-2009, 01:44 AM
I skimmed your post, and will read it more carefully after the holidays are over (a week from now), Blaze being one of my absolute favorites as of today, and your essay being really very interesting. http://i91.photobucket.com/albums/k291/mishemplushem/Facilitation/0134-bear.gifhttp://i91.photobucket.com/albums/k291/mishemplushem/Facilitation/0134-bear.gifhttp://i91.photobucket.com/albums/k291/mishemplushem/Facilitation/0134-bear.gif

01-02-2009, 03:44 PM
Thanks Jean. I got a bit carried away like I sometimes do. ;)

01-12-2009, 01:23 PM
How did Sterling know about the cave?
I like to think that he is Toe Jam grown-up and he does what he does to Blaze so no one will know he stayed at HH as a kid.
We never find out what Toe Jam's name really is.

02-13-2009, 11:46 AM
i loved this post! posts like this one are what drew me to this site. i love gettin other people insights into books i have read and loved.

and even better, i agreed with everything you said, the reader had sympathy for this supposed bad man and wanted the police man to fail in his job.

thanks for the post :borg::thumbsup: