Whether you like them or not this particular sub-genre of Swashbucklers has the emotive content that is fascinating and simply captivating. I know many of you out there are now on cloud nine thinking as to what on earth is that, and well for consideration sake let me substantiate just a bit how this term started and its popularity began. Basically Swashbuckler or swasher is a term that developed in the 16th century to describe rough, noisy and boastful swordsmen. The word "swashbuckler", in the modern sense, generally describes a fearless romantic archetype, a fictional, adventurous, sword-wielding, male character who seeks to win the heart of a beautiful lady while rescuing society from the clutches of a dastardly villain. A classic swashbuckler exhibits exceptional courage and sword fighting skill, a strong sense of honor and justice, a chivalric romantic sense, and the capacity for wit, style, and resourcefulness under pressure. Such characters include The Three Musketeers
, The Scarlet Pimpernel, Robin Hood, Zorro. There have also been a few female swashbucklers, such as Maureen O'Hara in the film Against All Flags, Jean Peters in Anne of the Indies and Tessie Santiago in the short-lived Queen of Swords television series. "Swashbuckler" also denotes a fiction and film genre that is characterized by dazzling swordplay, an adventurous and romantic plot, a historic setting, and black-and-white heroes and villains. This genre traces its origins to the chivalry tales of Medieval Europe, such as Robin Hood and the King Arthur legends.
Stylized, jaunty, and wildly entertaining, swashbucklers are one of the most flamboyant Hollywood film genres, the opposite of cinema verite and modern realistic filmmaking. They first became popular during the heyday of actor Douglas Fairbanks, Sr., who became world famous for his cocky and charismatic portrayals of heroes such as d'Artagnan and Zorro. The genre subsequently attracted large audiences who loved the escapist adventure, historic romance, and exciting athleticism. Usually swashbuckling romances are set in Europe from the late Renaissance up through the Age of Reason and the Napoleonic Wars. In these eras, progress in metallurgy prompted the production of agile and resilient flexible blades, capable of inflicting grievous piercing wounds, thus emphasizing a lively and flashy sword fighting style. The earlier cleaving swings of heftier blades were meant to break and shatter as well as to cut. Sword fighting remained the favorite form of personal combat despite the advent of gunpowder, given the slowness and difficulty of reloading processes. During the 1960s, as popular culture became more cynical and morally ambiguous, the plots and morality of swashbuckling heroes were interpreted to be simplistic and quaint. Nonetheless, the romantic appeal of the swashbuckler still endures; contemporary examples include The Princess Bride, Pirates of the Caribbean
, The Mask of Zorro, and Queen of Swords. So what more could you have asked for if you are being presented with such fantastic and incredible opportunity of having the titles of your favorite genre?
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