Peter Pan Killed Lost Boys in the Original Book

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peter pan killed lost boys

Would you believe that Peter Pan was as much a villain as Captain Hook, maybe even more so, and that he killed for fun? The lovable character known all around the world, Peter Pan killed lost boys for fun.

I wonder sometimes what was going through the minds of some authors. The original book of Peter Pan, much like the original tales of The Pied Piper of Hamelin, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and Snow White, was at times cruel, sinister and dark. The tale of Peter Pan we have all been told is a very sanitized version much kinder to children than the version that originally existed. Of all the film adaptions that have currently been made, not one has truly shown his dark side.

In the original text, Peter Pan was a very mischievous boy, and this behavior even had a dark side. In the literary world his personality would be a match for characters such as Hannibal ‘the Cannibal’ Lecter or Freddy Kruger.

One of the sinister things that Peter Pan would do is  “thin the lost boys out ” when there were too many of them or when they got too old. In other words, Peter Pan would kill lost boys, his own friends. Now that behavior could be seen by some as a way to preserve their lifestyle or maintain a sustainable living environment, but it would appear that it was more a part of his psyche rather than forward thinking for the greater good of the Neverland community.

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Peter Pan killed Lost Boys in other ways too

The thing is, Peter Pan killed for fun. Apart from going out on “pirate hunts“, killing pirates just for the fun of it, he would also cause havoc in the middle of battles. While the lost boys were in the middle of a battle, Peter Pan would sometimes switch sides and start killing lost boys for fun, as can be seen with the Indians. No other reason, just fun.

These personality traits were an attempt by the author to showcase his failure to understand or appreciate human life, much in the same way that many young children fail to fully understand the permanency or tragedy of death. In one line he says,

To die will be an awfully big adventure“.

~Peter Pan clearly showing his immaturity and disconnection with the permanency of death.

Having just read how different Peter Pan was, wait until you read about Pinocchio.

This is of course our own interpretation of the text. The author, J M Barrie, never explicitly reveals what “thin them out” means. It could actually mean that he sends them packing, but it doesn’t really fit in with the darker theme of Peter’s personality.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/100003016515948 Jordan Downs

    Thats just really fucked up

  • http://www.facebook.com/851980360 Sarah Silva

    “I wonder sometimes what was going through the minds of some authors. The original book of Peter Pan, much like the original tales of The Pied Piper of Hamelin, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and Snow White, was at times cruel, sinister and dark.”

    This is entirely the point. These are morality tales, cautions, warnings, etc. Peter Pan is about the selfishness of childhood and the idea that we all need to grow up when the time comes. Peter and Hook are both running from time, while Wendy (the hero of the story) accept the end of childhood.

    Red Riding Hood was about staying on the path and not talking to strangers. Cinderella was a warning about what happens when you are greedy and selfish.The Pied Piper warns about what might happen if you break promises.

    The world is at times cruel, sinister and dark. Story is one way that humans have used to prepare people for the world since we first started gathering around fires.

  • http://www.facebook.com/100003613451968 Tanja Verspeek-van Zwienen

    “One of the sinister things that Peter Pan would do is ”thin the lost boys out ” when there were too many of them or when they got too old. In other words, Peter Pan would kill lost boys, his own friends.”

    No, in other words: he would make them leave Neverland. And most probably by forcing them to return to the real world. Because, why not? The same thing happened to Wendy and her brothers. And I like to know the source for the ‘switching parts’ fable.

  • http://www.facebook.com/750130523 Sarah Rowlands

    No, it COULD also mean he kills them. In the context of the Barrie text, which has some very dark undertones there is no way of knowing for certain whether “thins them out” means kills them or makes them leave. I take issue with the OP stating that it’s killing as fact BUT it is equally not fact that it doesn’t mean that.

    For the issue of changing sides. I find no reference to it for the Lost Boys (I think that one is a fable). However he DOES pull this trick with the Indians in battle for, according to the text, the “fun” of it. (I’m going off the 1924 edition here.

  • http://www.facebook.com/750130523 Sarah Rowlands

    No, it COULD also mean he kills them. In the context of the Barrie text, which has some very dark undertones there is no way of knowing for certain whether “thins them out” means kills them or makes them leave. I take issue with the OP stating that it’s killing as fact BUT it is equally not fact that it doesn’t mean that.

    For the issue of changing sides. I find no reference to it for the Lost Boys (I think that one is a fable). However he DOES pull this trick with the Indians in battle for, according to the text, the “fun” of it. (I’m going off the 1924 edition here.

  • Palesa Floret

    In the original there was no hook. But Barrie needed a scene so that the crew could go from Neverland to London etc.

  • http://www.facebook.com/100000152967286 David Crossett

    .

  • http://www.facebook.com/100003036164920 Michael Tooker

    ..

  • http://www.facebook.com/100000421220635 Cameron CavemanRogers Bradley

    .

  • http://www.facebook.com/100001955173909 Keith Douglas

    Wow

  • Steve

    what a bunch of crap

  • randell

    thin out simply means he cut the ranks either by telling the ones that got to old to leave the camp or taking them home to the regular world

  • panait ciprian

    I do not think they ever left Neverland.Remember that only Peter and tinkerbell knew the way and that they could only get that dust from Peter. I know you want to believe they left Neverland but this is impossible. Yes Wendy and the twins left Neverland, but Wendy was special and forced Peter to bring her back. Even if they were not killed directly they were forced to attach themselves to adult groups in Neverland , one of which is the pirates which Peter actively hunted. About switching sides the thing is most of the dark actions of Peter are just one sentence here and there. You usually do not see them unless you search for them Re-Read the book and look for it. Is a single sentence pretty cleverly hidden.

    Chapter 7: “It was a sanguinary [cheerful] affair, and especially interesting as showing one of Peter’s peculiarities, which was that in the middle of a fight he would suddenly CHANGE SIDES.”

    These dark parts of Peter are well hidden and unless you are searching for them is hard to find them.