Well, it’s that time again, when thoughts turn to snow, winter, and yet another Narnia movie, all to remind us that Jadis is awesome. It also re-riles up my feathers, for I am fiercely pro-Jadis, anti-Aslan for reasons that make up the core of who I am. It is a war I have waged upon the internets for almost five years (seriously?). Some of you are from that ideological battle, but many more here do not know. Therefore I present;
The Why of Sidja (The ‘written for Tilda Swinton’ version, as the original was lost in the great MySpace RP massacre of 2008)
When you played the White Witch, I doubt you knew you were actually playing a tragic character. Not many people know She is tragic, but it is a ghost that haunts me, and the world at large it seems. I never read the Chronicles of Narnia until I saw your face on the movie poster and the books gave me little to work with. It wasn’t until I saw the movie that I was held aghast, and seemingly alone on this.
According to ‘the Magician’s Nephew’, the hall of images in Charn shows that by the time Jadis was born, the nature of the people and the royal family in general had deteriorated. She was born with a sister, forcing Her to be forever on guard and fight, for power equaled survival and Jadis was not about to die. It wasn’t greed, but fear. When cornered and facing death She blew up the world, blew up a million people She never knew. In Her mind everyone was an enemy, She would not miss them.This is Jadis, a woman who equated all that we hold dear, love, mercy, peace, with death and suffering. There is only power, control, and ultimately, security.
C.S. Lewis wanted to make Her a faceless evil, but then gave Her a history. True She was not the most likable sort, a lean, sharp-witted and solitary person. But She was not evil. She was lost. But the worst was the lion, the bringer of all things She was not. Why didn’t he save Her? Why did he kill Her? She was never a threat to him. No, the lion needed an enemy so he could appear great. He let Her live in Her world of delusion for 100 years, leaving his land to let Her dig Her own grave. He even drew up a prophecy that put four children in Her path and for what? The children did not kill Her, he did, as he could have at any point. He told Her that four children would be the death of Her and She did as She always had; defended Herself. Jadis was many things, cold, a bit cruel, certainly bitter, but not evil. She didn’t deserve the life She got. And no one cared.
How many lost souls are there? How many withering away in prison would not be there is someone had shown them love or compassion? As an autistic child I was shunned by all but my parents. I could have ended up like Her, lost and demonized, perhaps for someone else’s gain. But I was rescued. There are many of us waiting, so many Jadises waiting for someone to brave the storm and reach them, even if they don’t know it yet. Perhaps some are lost for good, but if we never try…
And so Sidja was born.
‘Sidja’ is Jadis with the letters rearranged, to symbolize that there are other sides to Her we can’t easily see.
Tilda wrote back and assured me, all around the world children flocked to her, just so they could hug the Queen.
Sidja, you are loved.