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Lions Roar : November 2017
a soft demand from Fezzik for loyalty and friendship, a com- mand I was happy to follow. The WWF persona was a man to fear, the kind of giant who might throw you off a cliff if you triggered his wrath. Not Fezzik. Fezzik was on my side, your side, our side. Not just some colossus, Fezzik was a tenderhearted poet (“Anybody want a peanut?”), the kind of comrade who would carry you and several friends up the sheerest of cliffs, even the Cliffs of Insanity; or who would nurse you back to health from your brandy-amplified PTSD; or who would bring you four per- fect horses exactly when you needed them to make sure you got away safely, reaching a place where no bad guys could ever find you. Fezzik was the friend of all friends. The Princess Bride is, first and foremost, a story of friendship. More specifically, it is a story of loners who finally find their real pals. It tells of an unforeseen “bromance,” one of the great- est bromances ever to inhabit the silver screen. Their friendship begins with a post-traumatic, mercenaries-turned-besties alli- ance between the Turkish giant Fezzik and the Spaniard Inigo Montoya. This partnership later includes Westley, the Farmboy turned Dread Pirate Roberts turned back into Westley again. These three unlikely friends overcome their personal demons to support each other’s journeys in grief, revenge, and, of course, storming the castle to liberate the Princess. Like most friendships, theirs is a beautiful accident of circumstance, a harmonizing of shared suffering, a camaraderie that is only just beginning when the story ends. Friendship is never a guarantee. In this story, each hero begins as a loner. In the book, by William Goldman, the kar- mic origins of their solitude are further examined. Fezzik and Inigo have come together as mercenaries, and are already close friends when the movie begins, but their origin stories mark them both as social outcasts who each lost their parents too soon. Inigo’s mother died in childbirth, and his father was brutally murdered by the Six-Fingered Man, leaving Inigo alone at the tender age of eleven. In the book, Fezzik loses his parents inexplicably during a young wrestling career in Mon-