Ever since I first saw “Les Miserbles” of Broadway as an eighth grader on a French class field trip, I’ve had a soul crush on Javert.
He remains the antagonist, in every incarnation of this story, but in my eyes, he is a tortured and beautiful hero. As he’s playing headhunter/jailer and chasing Val Jean all over France to bring him back to prison for violating parole, there is an entire back story to this man that we’re only given a glimpse of. I often wish for a sequel or Javert spin off, as I think he’s a thousand times more interesting than the vapid Cosette or outrageously vain Marius. Javert was a servant to the law and sacrificed his life-literally- to this cause, however misconceived, that he stood for.
The story of Les Mis reminds me so much of the economic landscape spread before us over the Summer with the Occupy protests. I can understand why the lower classes and disenfranchised would feel nothing but hatred for cops like Javert. But really, whats so different about him? He’s going through the same motions, being fueled by the same passion, just for a different cause. It’s unfortunate that he doesn’t see the bigger picture; that the government was enslaving people whose only crime was trying to survive while they, the wealthy, sat in towers swathed in comfort.
Treat yourself and take a moment to watch the confrontation between Javert adn ValJean:
ValJean is swearing he’ll come back after three days. Javert has heard this story before. It’s total bullshit. Can you blame him for being such a hard ass? Also, he wedges in a few personal notes, as if trying to relate to ValJean, but they fall on deaf ears. Too full of self-righteousness, I suppose.
My favorite song of the entire musical is Stars. Click here to watch if you like. Javert gets deep. All he wants to do is a good job. I can relate to this feeling on a nerve striking level. If you cut this man’s arm open he would bleed nothing but sheer and blind determination.
It’s inspiring and devastating at once.
He’s come all this way, believing one thing, devoting himself to this one cause, and although one begins to sense he just barely allows himself to question this foundation upon which he’s built his entire life, its as though he knows his role and is humble enough to accept it, no matter the outcome.
Because its not always about being wrong or right. Both extremes can exist in all things simultaneously, and accepting this makes the world a much easier place to understand. Especially when you’re living in world with rules you don’t believe in, being enforced by people you don’t agree with or respect.
So if loving Javert is wrong, I don’t want to be right. This I swear by the stars.