Today I’m here to levy serious accusations of plagiarism and thievery at Joss Whedon, David Greenwalt, and company. In the midst of taking a shower, I was struck with a horrifying truth, almost as if I were a tree in the middle of a thunderstorm. This truth is burning away at me right now just as this hypothetical tree would be. The truth of Winifred “Fred” Burkle from Angel being a direct rip-off of the Library Kid from Recess. I mean, it’s so obvious once you think about it, and because the team behind Angel was able to get away with this creative theft for so long, I am as frustrated as I am baffled. How dare they try to pass off Disney’s work as their own? I’m getting ahead of myself here, but hear me out.
The Library Kid was a student at Third Street School (AKA the school from Recess) that ran in fear from other rowdy students in kindergarten into the library and was lost to the public for 5 years. Fred was a physics student that got sucked into a different dimension for 5 years until she was rescued by Angel. Different situation? Hardly. Clear and obvious rip-off? No doubt. Fred having been created only a year after Library Kid adds credence to this already airtight theory, and their personalities after they are “saved” further strengthens it.
When Library Kid is confronted by the gang from Recess, she is reluctant to go out into the outside world, still stuck within the walls of the library mentally. Fred is the same way after she is rescued from the hellish dimension she was once trapped in, completely withdrawn and unwilling to venture forth into the real world initially. The difference between them comes in the conclusion of their stories. Library Kid does eventually embrace the real world but totally loses control because she never experienced joy and excitement. When this happens she puts herself in great danger, gets saved, and then resolves to lock herself away in the library forever. Fred on the other hand does eventually “leave the library” forever, but what she finds in the outside world suggests that perhaps it would have been for the best to stay locked away after all.
Fred and the Library Kid’s characters both examine the pros and cons of staying withdrawn from the world, and both explore the strengths of giving in to your fear and staying away from society more than one would expect. So thematically and character arc-wise, they’re very similar, and this is on top of the other more obvious similarities they share. They look alike, they talk in a similar precocious style, and they even sound the same. I’m 110% certain that Amy Acker was cast as Fred because of her similarities to the Library Kid rather than any actual acting ability.
As I’m writing this now, I’m organizing a class action lawsuit in Disney’s name against the Angel team for their blatant intellectual theft. Based on this dead certain theory (that I once again must reiterate, hit me like a bolt of lightning) I’ve decided to seek justice for the little guy. Someone’s gotta stand up for Disney, and I guess that someone has to be me.
Quote of the Day:
“I know a lot about the law and various other lawyerings.”
– Charlie Kelly, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.