Suzanne Collins confronted a predicament when she got down to write The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, a Starvation Video games prequel guide revolving round a protagonist whose destiny readers are already well-acquainted with. Methods to make Coriolanus Snow, Panem’s tyrannical president, into a personality price rooting for in opposition to all odds?
Enter Lucy Grey Baird. The District 12 Covey lady whose title is drawn within the Reaping for the tenth annual Starvation Video games proves to be a problem for 18-year-old Coriolanus, whose household has misplaced the wealth and status they as soon as harbored following the top of Panem’s civil battle. Coriolanus is tasked with mentoring Lucy Grey to win the Video games, a near-impossible feat he plans on engaging in so as to win a prize that can pay for his college schooling. Issues get difficult when the 2 find yourself falling in love.
However, this is not a typical love story. Although Songbirds and Snakes is about many years earlier than we see Coriolanus’s rise as Panem’s despot in The Starvation Video games, his villainous arc is evident. He’s finally tormented by growing paranoia and completely dedicated to a sinister worldview, through which he continuously betrays these near him. Although Coriolanus and Lucy Grey’s romance abruptly ends on the shut of the prequel, many questions are left unanswered.
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The brand new movie adaptation, which stars Tom Blyth and Rachel Zegler as Coriolanus and Lucy Grey, would not stray removed from the guide’s authentic ambiguous ending. Forward, we reply each burning query you will in all probability have after watching Songbirds and Snakes.
Why does Coriolanus activate Lucy Grey?
Pushed by his ambition to rise to the highest, Coriolanus succumbs to his personal paranoia. Lucy Grey is not any exception to this.
Following Coriolanus’s homicide of Mayfair, the mayor’s daughter, the couple resolve that there is no such thing as a future left for them in District 12 and make a plan to flee to the woods. However, alongside the way in which, Coriolanus by chance reveals that he’s answerable for the deaths of three individuals, fairly than two deaths that Lucy Grey had already recognized about. Issues take a flip for the more severe when the 2 make a pit cease at a lakeside hut, the forest shelter that the Covey have usually taken refuge in, the place he discovers the weapon he used to kill Mayfair.
With the gun in his palms, Coriolanus instantly brainstorms methods to get rid of the proof so he can return to Panem as a free man. There’s just one loop gap: Lucy Grey is aware of the reality.
Within the guide, Coriolanus initially makes an attempt to rationalize Lucy Grey’s loyalty to him. “She would by no means inform,” he thinks to himself. “She’d by no means rat him out. It wasn’t her fashion, and it will implicate her within the murders as nicely.”
However, he grows extra agitated when Lucy Grey leaves the hut to gather katniss vegetation alongside the lake’s shore. Bringing the rifle with him outdoors, he follows after her however can’t find her by the water. As a substitute, he finds the orange scarf he had beforehand gifted her laying on the bottom. When he picks it up and a snake emerges from beneath it and bites him, he turns into satisfied that Lucy Grey booby trapped the headband and turned on him.
Did Lucy Grey truly booby lure Coriolanus?
Coriolanus could also be satisfied that Lucy Grey betrayed him, however his paranoia makes him an unreliable narrator. In the end, her true intentions are by no means confirmed. She might have clued in on his untrustworthiness, but it surely’s additionally completely believable that she had no plans on turning in opposition to him. The guide beforehand mentions that snakes are widespread on this a part of the woods and that Lucy Grey’s scarf usually got here undone, details that solid doubt on Coriolanus’s paranoid narrative.
Regardless of the case, getting bitten by the snake totally revolted Coriolanus. He thrashes via the woods to seek out her, capturing blindly at sounds that he deems to be her footsteps.
Lastly, he hears her singing “The Hanging Tree,” the haunting melody she had written earlier after witnessing the execution of a District 12 insurgent. Flying mockingjays choose up the tune and mimic it again to him, infuriating Coriolanus, who then opens fireplace maniacally in a circle round him.
Within the guide, he rationalizes his motion to himself: “If the Covey discovered Lucy Grey’s physique, they would not report it. They would not need the eye it introduced. It would join them to the rebels or reveal their hideout. If there was a physique. He couldn’t even affirm he’d hit her.”
Ultimately, Coriolanus quits his pursuit of Lucy Grey. He rows out to the center of the lake to drop the homicide weapons, thus securing his innocence, and returns to District 12.
Does Lucy Grey survive?
Within the guide and the film, Lucy Grey’s destiny isn’t confirmed. It is doable that she might have been wounded and even killed by a bullet, contemplating Coriolanus’s frantic firing on the final location she had presumably been at. The guide states that Coriolanus had heard a “faint cry,” and the film briefly reveals Lucy Grey working via a thicket of bushes. Nonetheless, her physique isn’t discovered. Moreover, she’s well-acquainted with the woods, which can have allowed her to outsmart and escape from Coriolanus.
Whether or not or not she is alive by the top of the story, Head Gamemaker Dr. Volumnia Gaul makes an attempt to erase her reminiscence in Panem by wiping out each copy of the tenth Video games. By the point of the 74th Starvation Video games within the trilogy’s first guide, it is briefly talked about that there have solely ever been two victors in District 12, with the primary by no means named. So, it is clear that persons are vaguely conscious of Lucy Grey’s existence, however not explicitly.
Her reminiscence lived on in different methods, nevertheless. The prequel reveals that the songs Katniss Everdeen had sung within the Starvation Video games—melodies that incited the revolution that lastly toppled the Capitol—had been written by Lucy Grey. These embrace “Deep within the Meadow,” the lullaby Katniss sings to Rue within the 74th Video games, and “The Hanging Tree,” which Katniss sings in a insurgent propaganda video.
“Specializing in the tenth Starvation Video games additionally gave me the chance to inform Lucy Grey’s story,” writer Suzanne Collins mentioned in a 2020 interview. “Katniss would not appear to know something in regards to the particular person price mentioning. Whereas her story is not well-known, Lucy Grey lives on in a major approach via her music, serving to to carry down Snow within the trilogy. Think about his response when Katniss begins singing ‘Deep within the Meadow’ to Rue within the enviornment. Past that, Lucy Grey’s legacy is that she launched leisure to the Starvation Video games.”
Actor Rachel Zegler, who portrays Lucy Grey within the movie adaptation, beforehand talked to Bazaar about her hopes for her character. “I at all times take into consideration what occurs to my characters whereas the credit roll for audiences,” she mentioned. “In terms of Lucy Grey, I prefer to suppose she’s free. I hope in the future I’ll get to listen to that from Suzanne, although.”