On Boxing Day the whole family sat round to watch The Borrowers. This is the latest TV retelling of the charming tale of the two inch tall people who live under floorboards, scavenging from us big people for food and other useful items.
Much of the plot of this version revolves around a professor played by Stephen Fry who captures some of the little people, wants to show them off to the world as an amazing new discovery of natural history and (and this is where it gets far fetched) threatens to dissect them. So the little people spend their entire time avoiding the big people and escaping from them. Which is my problem with The Borrowers.
It is typical of the misanthropy of the mainstream creative arts. Evil humans only want to dissect and eradicate little people. What should happen is that Stephen Fry reveals the little people to the world, and so begins a new age of emancipation for them. There is no question of dissecting them: the human rights activists would not stand for it. And think of the advantages of trade. No more hiding under floorboards and scavenging; the little people get all the benefits of big people technology and big people get all the benefits of little people labour. Not only could they do useful work in confined spaces, but they seem to have human equivalent intelligence so we could run our call centres and get our computer programming done in exchange for fewer resources.
It’s a win win, which supposedly doesn’t make for good drama.