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The Most Dangerous Game and The Cask of Amontillado Analysis

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Occasionally, there are certain situations in life where a person might not know the underlying mischievous of those who may be against them, however, it is best to never let one’s guard down no matter what. The more awareness a person has, the better guarded and secure they will become. This idea pertaining awareness of one’s surroundings is often explored in literature. For example, in the short story, “The Most Dangerous Game” by Richard Connell, a character, Rainsford, was being hunted and was conscious about it, therefore, he was able to fight to survive. In another story, “The Cask of Amontillado” by Edgar Allen Poe, a character, Fortunato, was also being hunted. He did not know he was being dangerously pursued and eventually the aggressor got the kill. In comparison, both characters were both fooled by their aggressors, however, the two plots contrasted by the difference in each of the characters’ awareness of threatened danger.

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Even though the hunts had their differences, they both began similarly. Both of the aggressors tried fooling their prey at first displaying a facade of niceness and acting as ordinary people. Rainsford’s aggressor made Rainsford feel at home. For example, he says, “Well I suppose that’s only natural, after a long swim. You need a good restful night’s sleep . He even gave him a place to rest. Comparably, Fortunato’s aggressor acted friendly. He complimented him in public and bought him drinks. Some of the compliments that he would say to Fortunato was that he looked good and was a good friend. For example, ̈ My dear Fortunato, you are luckily met. How remarkably well you are looking today ̈ (Poe 84). Both of the aggressors were planning a cold blodded murder, and this was just the first step. The aggressors acted pleasurable to soften their prey and it works for one of them.

Despite the similarity, the hunts were mostly different. For example, the aggressors had different motives. Fortunato’s aggressor hunted for payback and revenge. Rainsford’s aggressor hunted him for the thrill. Fortunato’s aggressor made his reason clear by stating, “The thousand injuries of Fortunato I had borne as best I could, but when he ventured upon insult, I vowed revenge”. Fortunato killed someone in his aggressor’s family, and the aggressor waited for the perfect time for revenge. On the other hand, Rainsford’s aggressor, oddly, just wanted some enjoyment. He told Rainsford randomly that he was going to kill him. He said “Tonight, we will hunt, you and I” . Earlier in the story, the aggressor stated the animals were not giving him enough fun and humans reason better to him. This statement makes it apparent that he is seeking to hunt Rainsford without reasoning or notice. In contrast, Fortunato had a reason, which makes it that much more interesting.

Furthermore, another difference would be the fact that Rainsford knew he was being hunted and Fortunato did not. He was staying with Montressor, the aggressor, thinking he was a friend. Them staying together made the hunt that much more easy for the aggressor. Fortunato was heavily intoxicated and did not know he was being plotted against. Fortunato took heed of the command to go with his aggressor not knowing it that moment he was about to be killed. The aggressor said, “again took my arm, and we proceeded” . Fortunato, although intoxicated, still thought he was safe when indeed he was not. Moreover, Rainsford was aware he was being hunted. He caught on quickly. An example of that is, “The general was playing with him! The general was saving him for another day’s sport! The Cossack was the cat; he was the mouse”. This quote demonstrates the acknowledgement Rainsford began to grasp in that the general, the aggressor, was sparing him in the moment to be killed later. He recognized the he was the mouse being preyed on by the aggressor, the cat. The disparity in awareness is the difference in the outcome for each of these characters. Rainsford, being aware, made it out alive. Fortunato, not being aware, ended up being killed.

In conclusion, the two stories The Most Dangerous Game and The Cask of Amontillado analysis shows that they that can be compared and contrasted by exploring the detriment of lacking awareness of one’s surroundings. In “The Cask of Amontillado,” Fortunato’s aggressor schemed against him to get his revenge in which he ended up successful. In comparison, in “The Most Dangerous Game,” Rainsford was also plotted against for his death by his aggressor who was seeking a fun time. In contrast, while Fortunato allowed his guard to be taken down by his aggressor’s false friendship and was not aware, Rainsford was able to catch on to the scheme of his aggressor and save his own life. Though each aggressors’ motives can be contrasted as mentioned, the awareness of Foruntato and Rainsford would define their life or death. Fortunato was not aware of his life being threatened and was able to be fooled and killed while Rainsford kept his guard up and was able to save his own life. The lack of recognition of one’s surroundings can be detrimental as displayed in comparing and contrasting the literature.  

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