Arts & Entertainment

The Mighty Barribal’s One-Week Anniversary Today

 

It’s been one week now since Squire Bomble and his good friend Ocelot entered the North Jersey cyber landscape and what a week it has been! Wicked weather, impudent preteens and a vengeful giant appeared in quick succession, and it doesn’t look like the future is going to be much better. But for all their hemming and hawing, these accidental heroes are doing exactly what they do best, taking life by the horns and revealing what fine stuff they are made of.

Squire Bomble, for example, has a deep understanding of the world’s most urgent needs; reassuring a fearful innkeeper here, shielding a dwarf from bad treatment there, as well as calling an overbearing giant to account for his misdeeds, making it three good deeds in a row. That his efforts routinely fall short of the mark is but a nitpicking detail, of course.

But what about Ocelot? Does he really need all the turmoil from terrible outing? Here is a figure who keeps his eyes wide open and generally sees things for what they are. Barribal tearing down an old inn? That was really the wind blowing hard. A dwarf singing the praises of his mighty protector? Seeing is believing and hearsay doesn’t cut it. A monster in a cave? You cannot fight shadows anyway so just leave it alone.

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There you have it, heart and mind together in a great adventure. Would any of us ever want to go on our own journeys without taking both qualities along for the ride?

An intriguing new actor has also joined the story this week, the cerebral Professor Joachim Zicboq. Here is someone who—like Ocelot—has clear-eyed views of the world, but while Ocelot has a best friend in Squire Bomble to keep things real, Zicboq is very much a loner whose only friend seems to be his own sharp intellect. As of right now, he is busy exploring the monster cave high up in the mountains, so let’s give him time and hope he doesn’t get lost there.

For now, our two heroes seem safe, but how long will that last? Mighty giants don’t stay put forever in deep, dark recesses, and running away will only get you so far. And so, the words that launched the adventure seven days ago still apply today: ‘Little did he know what awaited them down the road...’

There’s only one way to find out. Enjoy the rest of the ride.

 

 

Tales from the life of Olivier B. Bomble, gentleman,’ was serialized in Dutch newspapers for many years, and Squire Bomble, his good friend Ocelot and many others have become household names in the Netherlands. This is their first appearance in the US after the successful translation into English by Adrian Meerman, a Sparta resident.

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