He’s Big and Bad, or is he?

Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs sing a song entitled, “Lil’ Red Riiding Hood and it seems as though Sam may be the nightmare that mother is worried about.  In Charles Perrault’s Little Red Riding Hood, the little country girl finds herself in the belly of a wolf.  The moral of the story is, never talk to strangers.

Although this sentiment may seem dated, it is all the more relevant in present culture.  Often times, one lets themselves trust in something unknown if they believe that is the way it should be.  No one wants to offend another person with doubt or fear, because what if they are wrong? Little Red sees the big, bad wolf, but simply lets her mind believe that it is her grandmother with the physical ailments of a cold.  

The song that Sam and the Shams sing goes to show the predatory nature of these hairy creatures.  Although the band seems to spin a positive and sexy light onto what they are singing about, it is sexualized patriarchal power coming to the forefront.  The song paints the picture of an aggressive man using sly and smooth tactics to dig his sharp teeth into the unsuspecting flesh of an innocent vagabond.  

This is a perfect example of werewolf culture- foe or friend, stranger or acquaintance, victim or predator.  All of these roles are questioned in both Little Red’s original story and the song adaptation.  On one hand, the wolf is a big scary, hairy creature, and on the other hand, he is a regular being seeking companionship.  It all depends on how you look at it.

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