The story centers on Roy Hobbs, "The Natural," who fits the classical archetype of the tragic hero through his engagement in a quest making a comeback in professional baseballuse of a "magical" or lucky "weapon" Wonderboy, his baseball bat, an analog of King Arthur's Excaliburand his encounters with
Why does Harriet shoot Roy and try to kill him? She is a serial killer targeting the "greatest" in each sport. On the train to Chicago, Max mentions news stories about great athletes in other sports being murdered.
These are her doing.
For baseball, she originally targeted The Whammer, but switched to Roy after he struck out The Whammer on three straight pitches. In the novel, it is clear that she is insane and is obsessed with killing any athlete who does not play the game for the "right" reasons.
She asks Roy why he plays, and this is a form of the heroes test which he fails and as a result she shoots and tries to kill Roy.
Like the movie, originally she had intended to kill The Whammer, but when Roy strikes him out she switches her attention to Hobbs. Is the story based upon real people and events? Yes, the beginning is a thinly veiled retelling of an incident that happened to Eddie Waitkus in She shot him in the stomach and was later determined insane and committed to an institution.
Unlike Roy Hobbs in The Natural, Waitkus was only sidelined for a couple of months and played major league baseball for another six years. The rest of the story deals with professional ballplayers and the influence of gambling on the sport. This is based upon the Black Sox scandal, where several Chicago White Sox players conspired to throw the World Series in exchange for payoffs from gamblers.
Does the story include other elements? The name of the fictional team is the Knights, which is a prominent feature of ancient legends.
The Knights spend the summer in a quest to win the League pennant, a substitute for the Holy Grail of legend.Mar 22, · In Malamud’s novel The Natural, the protagonist Roy Hobbs mostly mirrors Perceval in that he too is raised by his mother and is good and wholesome. Roy has a natural talent for baseball in the same way Perceval does for knighthood, however, both characters are innocent and naïve.
The Natural & Roy Hobbs Great Book, Great Character (Arthurian Legend) for our students. Sports Literature is a growing movement and I feel that this Pulitzer Prize winning author is worthy of study by our students.
The novel can be paired with a viewing of the film at the end of the unit. Students will be able to compare the two and. His name is an obvious reference, along with his need to be "cured" by Roy. Roy Hobbs is the great knight Percival who is meant to return the Holy Grail (pennant) to Pop Fisher.
In Malamud’s version, Hobbs does not win the pennant and the reader is led to believe that Pop Fisher will fade into obscurity. Arthurian Legend Bernard Malamud characteristically blends mythology into his novels, and The Natural exemplifies this style that the writer would refine as his literary career progressed.
The novel mirrors numerous Arthurian legends, including the 11th-century legend of the knight Perceval's pursuit of the Fisher King's Holy Grail. Great importance is placed upon Roy Hobbs’s handcrafted bat, Wonderboy. In the story, the offensive tool that Hobbs is extremely faithful to is a reference to King Arthur’s sword from Arthurian legend, Excalibur.
The bat is a parallel of it – a second coming of the sword through a literary novel about baseball. Mar 22, · Hobbs is warily welcomed by the team and its coach, Pop Fisher.
Throughout the novel, Hobbs falls in love with Fisher’s niece, the manipulative Memo Paris, followed by the virtuous Iris Lemon. Malamud’s Hobbs can be compared to Malory’s versions of knights Sir Lancelot and Sir Tristan, two knights who have similar stories.