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Ford Prefect Essay

974 words - 4 pages

Ford Prefect is a remarkable, elemental figure of comic relief in the novel, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, a sci-fi by the legendary Douglas Adams. An adventuring hitchhiker through space, he and his best friend, Arthur Dent, embark on a quest to find the purpose of the universe. He brings out the humor and a broader view of events in the novel, and is the only other protagonist apart from Arthur who endures mostly the same problems, and yet his approach to these problems and witty characteristics are what makes him a very different character. He is Arthur's closest companion, the writer and presenter of the Guide to the Galaxy. He is wise, buoyant and levelheaded. Thus, he is the ...view middle of the document...

" Implying ironically that Vogon poetry is the worst form of punishment, and this advice is also mentioned in the Guide to the Galaxy. Hence, he makes the perfect author of the Guide, being brave and resourceful, as he enlightens his clueless and rather depressed human companion.
Moreover, Ford Prefect uses his wit and intellect to keep a tense atmosphere under control. His approach and knowledge of events is composed and neutral. Even as he turned to the barman, asking for a drink, "quickly, please, the world's about to end." his tone and attitude is casual, as though he puts up with these things incessantly. Another time Ford illustrates his composure is when he and Arthur are to be thrown off the Vogon ship, into the vacuum of space, he remains calm and serene, predicting the chances and situation, humming a tune of a Betelgeusian battle hymn cheerfully, "We are going to die after all." Even the quote on the cover illustrates his nonchalant personality with the words, Don't Panic. His attitude often exhausts the other characters, yet he is the element of calmness and keeps them ground together throughout traumatic affairs.
Lastly, Ford Prefect is the most optimistic and cheerful of the characters even in times of difficulty, making him a major element of comedy and humor in the novel. He is vastly different from Arthur Dent, who is broody, depressed and unaware of circumstances. Ford prefers a bottle of gin to Arthur's cup of tea, and is always looking forward to adventuring, parties and drinking, shaping him as a stereotypical icon of English youth. He seems just as human as anyone else, and is excellent at bending the will of others and winning them over. He possesses a certain charm emphasized by the narrator - he is pressed into being a suspicious yet clever...

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