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

1118 Words 5 Pages
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
…show more content…
Edgar Allan Poe creates a stereotypical villain in “Tell – Tale Heart”, because the killer always stalks the man in the “dead of the night”, especially when he is asleep. The realisation of this is that the victim is left vulnerable; a perfect scenario for the villain to assassinate. The killer is “patient” too, which would symbolise him deadly because a stereotypical murderer assassinates and scrutinises his victim without knowing his presence. The villain proves that he is bloodthirsty as he “dismembers” the corpse, by cutting off the “head, arms and legs”. This directly devises images of disgust as the corpse is mutilated, which would portray the slaughterer’s villainy temperament. He believes: “what you mistake for madness is but over – acuteness of the senses?”. We are unsure of his sanity, because he amazingly adjudicates his rights when we know his actions are unreasonable in society.

Dr. Grimsby Roylott is an antagonistic person, who constantly finds disgust of other characters in his presence in the story. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle has included great detail of the description of Dr. Roylott; “high, thin fleshless nose.” It establishes a depiction of a bird to kill a prey to replenish his hunger. This relates to the portrayal of a stereotypical villain, because it manifests evil from death. A
Open Document