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Coraline and The Alchemist: Comparing Their Hero’s Journeys

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Thesis: Coraline demonstrates the hero’s journey better than Santiago because she had a better ally, had a less selfish elixir, and stood up for herself in the final task.

Coraline’s allies are more significant than Santiago’s allies because they sacrificed more for her. Coraline had many allies but the main one was the cat. When Coraline lost the ghost child’s eye to a rat she thought she had lost everything and everyone. As Coraline sobs for her loss the Cat came with the rat who had the last eye and stated, “I don’t like rats at the best times but it looks like you needed this one” (Selick, Coraline). When Coraline needed help the most, the Cat came and gave her what she needed even though he doesn’t like rats. Coraline had and ally who helped her get exactly what she needed and sacrificed a lot for her, meanwhile Santiago’s ally did not. Santiago’s ally was a Crystal Merchant who had never followed his dream and seemed miserable. Thanks to the Crystal Merchant, Santiago thought, “I’m going back to the field’s that I know, to take care of my flock again. He said that to himself with certainty, but he was no longer happy with his decision” (Coelho, 66). Santiago is debating whether to go back to his home in Spain, or to the Pyramids, and thanks to the Crystal Merchant he made the right decision and went to Egypt. Coraline’s ally is better than Santiago’s ally because the Crystal Merchant didn’t sacrifice much meanwhile the Cat sacrificed his time and energy to get the ghost child’s eye.

Not only was Coraline’s allies better but so was her elixir because her reward was less selfish. When Coraline got trapped in the new world she challenged the other mother to a game and Coraline had a choice for what her reward was. The other mother says, “If you somehow win this game?” in which Coraline replies, “Then you let me go, you let my real parents go, the ghost children, and everyone you’ve gotten trapped here”. Coraline had a choice of what her elixir was and she chose something that would others not her. Coraline’s elixir was not selfish but Santiago’s elixir was a bit selfish. As soon as Santiago was beat at the pyramids he realized his treasure was where he started at the church. As soon as he got home he started digging and, “Half an hour later, his shovel hit something solid. An hour later he had before him a chest of Spanish gold coins. There were also precious stones, gold masks adorned with red and white feathers, and stones statues embedded with jewels,” (Coelho, 170). Santiago finally found his treasure and it wasn’t helpful to anyone and he didn’t really save anyone by finding his treasure. In conclusion, Coraline had a better elixir than Santiago because Santiago’s treasure was not as beneficial as Coraline’s elixir.

Finally, Coraline’s final task was better than Santiago’s because Coraline stood up to the villain. Towards the end of the game Coraline was told to locate her parents and she failed to do so. Coraline’s other mother was pleased, stating, “You’re going to stay here forever” in which Coraline shouts, “No I’m not,” (Selick, Coraline) and she throws a cat at the other mother. When Coraline had lost the game she didn’t take her death as an answer, instead she fought back. Coraline stood up in the final talk to the villain but Santiago did not. When Santiago finally reached the pyramids he started digging looking for treasure and he found nothing. Then, “As the sun rose, the men began to beat the boy. He was bruised and bleeding, his clothing was torn to shreds, and he felt that death was near”. When Santaigo had finally reached his reward he was approached by men and instead of putting up a fight against the odds he just stood there and let himself get beat. In conclusion, Coraline’s final task was better than Santiago because she actually put up a fight.

Works Cited

  1. Coelho, Paulo. The Alchemist. HarperCollins Publishers., 2014.
  2. Selick, Henry, et al. Coraline. Focus Features, 2009.  

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