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Beyond the Barricade: A Les Miz Alt. Reality Parody/Fanfic

PostPosted: Thu Apr 16, 2009 2:53 pm
by animagusurreal
This is meant as an ironic and playfully cynical parody of what might have happened if the tragically doomed revolution depicted in the musical “Les Miserables” had succeeded. It’s written in the form of a newspaper article.

Please note that I am a fan of “Les Miz”. I recently reviewed a local production and I almost had tears in my eyes by the end :).

Some of the characters behave differently than they do in the musical. In fact, that’s the idea :).

This is not meant as a reflection of the history of the real event, the June Rebellion, (from which the novel “Les Miserables” took inspiration,) about which I know very little. :).

“M.” is the abbreviation for “Monsieur” (like “Mr.” for Mister)


ONE DAILY MORE - “The Paper of the People”

June 6, 1842


The Revolution, 10 Years Later: At the End of the Day, How Far Have We Come?

By V. Hugo, One Daily More correspondent

ENJORLASVILLE (formerly Paris) - Today marked the tenth anniversary of the June Rebellion, the first battle of La Revolution de les Miserables, as it would later come to be known. The event was commemorated with a public celebration. Chancellor Enjorlas, who commanded a rag-tag contingent of student soldiers in the battle, retold the well-known story of how they were about to be wiped out by the National Guard, when, like the turning of a tide, Paris came to their side.

“I dreamed a dream in time gone by,” proclaimed the triumphant Chancellor, referencing his famous “I Dreamed a Dream” speech, “and now, I can proudly say that that dream has come true for every Frenchman!”

This was met with cheers from the crowd, particularly from those who had fought by the chancellor’s side. However, one member of the ruling party – one stalwart soldier of the battle that was being commemorated – was noticeably absent: Former Justice Minister Jean Valjean, who was forced to resign following the revelation that he had once spent 19 years in the prison of Toulon on charges of thievery. Curiously, this news broke soon after Minister Valjean had begun to openly criticize the direction taken by the Enjorlas Regime. In particular, he pointed out the ever-declining conditions at the once exemplary Gavroche Memorial Orphanage and Fantine Memorial Health Clinic. When an angry ABC Party supporter asked “Who are you to question the Chancellor?” he replied: “Who am I?! WHO AM I?! I’m Jean Valjean!” M. Valjean was subsequently charged with embezzling funds from the national treasury and is currently on the run.

“We will not make the same mistakes as the previous regime with regards to Jean Valjean,” vowed Chancellor Enjorlas. “We will not leave his capture in the hands of a single man who is less physically strong than M. Valjean, yet refuses to call for backup, and who pauses in mid-pursuit to metaphorically compare himself to celestial bodies.”

M. Valjean’s son-in-law, military leader Gen. Marius Pontmercy, initially supported and defended the embattled minister, demanding his re-instatement in what became known as the “Bring Him Home” campaign. He charged that the real thief in the government was recently appointed Finance Minister Thenardier. He even went so far as to call his government colleagues “empty heads with empty morals.” However, before long Gen. Pontmercy began parroting the official stance of his party on all matters. Naturally, this move was met with severe criticism here in the slums, but a rumor is also circulating that the general only capitulated because the government threatened the safety of his young son, Jean, who ironically is named after M. Valjean.

Minister Thenardier, meanwhile, has escaped further accusations by once again milking the martyrdom of his daughter, Eponine – famously, the first casualty, and subsequent symbol of the revolution.

Chancellor Enjorlas also continues to credit Minister Thenardier with solving the regime’s severe monetary crisis.

“We were in the red,” said the Chancellor, “but now, we are in the black.”

M. Thenardier first gained public favor with a very open display of grief at the dedication of a statue of his daughter, on the former site of the barricade where she was slain. Also in tears on that occasion, (though probably with more sincerity), was Gen. Pontmercy. Eyewitnesses claim that they saw a tinge of regret in his eyes as he gazed upon the statue, lending credence to the rumor that Mlle. Thenardier had an unrequited love for M. Pontmercy, and that she died in his arms on the barricade. The general may have been reflecting on the recent end of his marriage to Cosette “The Coquette” Pontmercy, whose sometimes scandalous behavior had led her to be known as “The Life of the ABC Party.” “She’s never content,” Gen. Pontmercy was once heard to complain. “She’s always looking for some castle on a cloud.” Following the passing of restrictive new social reforms by the Enjorlas Regime, Mme. Pontmercy suddenly left for America, leaving the general to care for their son. Her only explanation was a note which read, “I guess I take after my father. No, not Valjean. The other one.”

But enough about the romantic affairs of the ruling class. Here in the streets, unrest is in the air. The persecution of Minister Valjean is being used as a rallying point by student protesters, much as the death of Gen. Lamarche was 10 years ago. However, these would be revolutionaries have hit a stumbling block – they have thus far been unable to come up with a battle march as catchy as “Do You Hear the People Sing”, which became the National Anthem shortly after the ABC Party took power, and which recently underwent a severe lyric change:

Do you hear the people sing
Singing the songs of happy men
It is the music of a people
Who will not complain again

It has been deemed that simply changing back to the old lyrics is not revolutionary enough.

PostPosted: Mon Apr 20, 2009 3:14 am
by Al-Bob
Wow...just one question.

Could you possibly explain what Les Mesierabe tried to evoke? for someone like myself who is completely ignorant about that causes or ideas behind it the fanfic can be terrorizing but also quite mysterious.

PostPosted: Mon Apr 20, 2009 11:13 am
by animagusurreal
Al-Bob wrote:Wow...just one question.

Could you possibly explain what Les Mesierabe tried to evoke? for someone like myself who is completely ignorant about that causes or ideas behind it the fanfic can be terrorizing but also quite mysterious.

Part of the plot of Les Miserables is about a student revolt sparked by the death of General Lamarche, who is said to be the only man in the government who cares about the poor. The revolt takes place in a Paris slum, where the poor live in terrible squalid conditions. The student rebels are portrayed very sympathetically as the champions of the poor.

The real lyric of "Do You Hear the People Sing" goes:

Do you hear the people sing
Singing the songs of angry men?
It is the music of a people who will not be slaves again
When the beating of your heart
Echoes the beating of the drum
There is a light about to start when tomorrow comes

Will you join in our crusade
Who will be brave and stand with me?
Beyond the barricade
Is there a world you long to see?
Then come join in the fight that will give us the right
To be free!


They think the people will rise up and help them fight, but when this fails to happen, everyone but two of the main characters dies tragically in a single battle, and the revolt ends right there.

This fanfic speculates satirically on what might have happened if they had won and gone on to become the leaders of the country. In this case, speculating cynically and jokingly that they too would have become corrupt.

There are also numerous references to characters and songs from the show. Costette, for example, is a very sweet, innocent ingenue, so I thought it would be funny to make her scandalous.

PostPosted: Mon Apr 20, 2009 5:59 pm
by Al-Bob
This isn't america right?

This is like France or Spain??

PostPosted: Mon Apr 20, 2009 6:14 pm
by Halos Nach Tariff

It's set in the Paris slums, and the titles in French, great production, my college just finished doing it, fantastic.

Animagusurreal, I like it, a bit of satire never hurts right?