Okay, so I recently finished Catching Fire and Mockingjay (Yeah, maybe I was a little late on those too. I read The Hunger Games years ago, but didn't read the second and third book until after the movie came out), and as I was reading the books, something really nagged at me about the character of Finnick Odair-Not the image of his beauty that is constantly mentioned, but his attitude. I knew I had seen that attitude somewhere before, in another character completely unrelated to Collins' works-and when driving home from work yesterday, it hit me: Phedre, specifically, Phedre's attitude in Kushiel's Dart.
The Hunger Games novels are set in a dystopian future, and are based on the idea that because of a rebellion that happened many years ago, each "district", which is kinda like a state in the USA, I guess, in Panem (the future America/USA), has to send two members of their community (one male/one female), referred to as tributes, from the ages of (I THINK. Can't completely remember here.) 12 to 18, to fight to the death in a public arena. This is The Hunger Games.
The final survivor is The Victor.
Finnick Odair was the victor several years before Katniss Everdeen (the main character of the novels) volunteered as a tribute to save her sister. You are given the impression in Catching Fire that each of the victors has had their own personal struggle with The Capital (which, I guess, in some small way, could be compared to Washington DC); where the persons in charge of The Games live. Children from The Capitol are exempt from the games. It mentions how two previous victors' families and/or significant others were killed upon their refusal to live by the rules of The Capitol after winning The Hunger Games, and how one victor's life was controlled by forcing her into a very public marriage to a man she wasn't sure she loved...And then, there's Finnick. Because of how attractive Finnick was, The Capital chose to basically use him as a plaything to be passed around in exchange for goods or money from capital residents. Eventually, because he already had his money from winning the games, and seeing as how he was in love with a girl from his home in District 4, he chose to turn down the money and when asked by Katniss why he allowed himself to be used like that for no profit-especially with loving another girl, he told her that he did it in exchange for secrets because people get loose tongues during post-sex pillow talk.
Finnick Odair reminds me a tiny bit of a male Phedre no Delaunay...I mean, obviously, he isn't an anguissette; and there is nothing holy about the way this is handled-no Naamah, no worship, no Kushiel, etc. Also, Finnick didn't love any of (in fact, it gives the impression that he actually hated most of) his benefactors/"lovers", but the idea of providing sexual favors for secrets...That reminded me of Phedre and Anafiel-"The Whoremaster of Spies".
Okay. Now that I have that out, I'd like your opinions; and if you have yet to read Collins' novels, they're a good, quick (but somewhat simple) read, and I do recommend them for light fun-in-the-sun style reading! :)
(Cross posted to hungergamesfans)