From a Terry Mattingly column
A reader sent this: Gilligan equals sloth and the skipper represents anger. Then Thurston Howell III equals greed, Lovey Howell is gluttony, Ginger is lust, the professor is pride and, finally, Mary Ann represents envy. Who knew?
Maybe the metaphors can be extended. The refusal to follow God (navigation error) resulted in them being lost on an island, just as the Israelites were lost wondering in the wilderness for forty years. I can easily imagine Gilligan bringing back reports of spotting the Anakim and the other residents on the Island being concerned about this report. The Israelites also probably thought that leaving Israel through the divided sea would only be a three hour tour. This is evident by the fact that they were soon complaining and wanted to head back.
The Theme to the Exodus
Just sit right back and hear the Exodus tale
a tale of faithless slips.
That started from an Egyptian port,
Reed Sea just a drip
Moses was a mighty prophet man,
Aaron grave and unsure
Israelites went on the trail that day
for a forty year tour, a forty year tour.
The Israelites started getting gruff,
the Commandments they were tossed.
Moses interceded for the faithless Jews,
the Manna looked like frost; the Manna looked like frost.
Israelites finally saw the promised land across Jordan in single file
with Joshua, the son of Nun
but Moses had lost his life,
the Reubenites, and the rest,
(the Reubenites, the Gadites and Manasseh)
This country became Israel
I’ve been repeating that info about the seven deadly sins and Gilligan’s Island for several years, after I read an interview with creator Sherwood Schwartz in the Chicago Tribune back in the ’80’s, back when I was teaching ethics at Loyola Academy in Wilmette. When I discuss this, adults look back at me in amazement, and then it clicks, because it really worked. The allegory is lost on today’s kids, ’cause most of them have never seen GI, even on TVLand.
I had considered Gilligan to be a little slow on the uptake, but not deficient in character. He never complained, tried to help (even if it always resulted in hilarious disaster), never blamed anyone for the situation they were in (an amazing fact for the length of the series; the people on Survivor are at each other’s throats after about seven minutes). The rest of the analogy seems pretty right-on.
The way I heard it was that Gilligan exemplified gluttony (remember how he wolfed down those banana cream pies?) and that sloth (acedia) belonged to one of the Howells (I would guess the Missus.)
The Seven Capitals Channel
I was planning to blog this as part of a follow up to my pity-party-post, but the Curt Jester beat me to it in The Seven Deadly Gilligans. The idea is that each of the castaways exemplifies one of the…
I don’t know about Gilligan’s Island, but a priest I once knew insisted that the seven Von Trapp children in “The Sound of Music” exemplified the Seven Deadly Sins….
You are so going to hell.
Skipper = anger
Thurston Howell III = greed
Lovey Howell = sloth
Maryann = envy
Ginger = lust
Gilligan = gluttony
Professor = pride
Boy, you guys gotta get out and think more.
Let’s start with the obvious; Ginger. Of the seven deadly sins, she most clearly /doesn’t/ represent anything but Lust. But is she lustful? Rarely. She _inspires_ Lust.
So let’s go back over the list. Mr. Howell: he certainly tries to inspire Avarice (to get his way) all the time. What about Gluttony? Who inspires that? /Maryann/: think about it; who whipped up all those gorgeous meals? (Which always left the question: where did they get them milk for all those cream pies? Coconut milk won’t work; it isn’t really milk. And there were no cows; what mammals are left?) And then there’s Lovey Howell – with her “let’s sit back and watch” attitude – always repping Sloth.
After that it gets a little shakier. How do you inspire Hubris? Or Envy? Well, I have to agree with everyone. The Professor has Hubris written all over him, but Wrath and Envy?
It seems pretty clear that Skipper neither inspires, represents, nor succumbs to Envy, so he’s Wrath (as often as he loses his temper, perhaps he’s trying to incite it in the others).
I’d like to say that Gilligan inspires Wrath, but he’s written as the loveable loser. That’s right folks; he can’t do anything but Envy the others.
So I hope that clears things up.