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The Scarlet Pimpernel vs The Mark Of Zorro


Both stories feature a disguised hero who pretends to be a perfumed dandy.

Clearly, one inspired the other.

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Funny, but they both kind of inspired each other. The novel The Scarlet Pimpernel was published in 1908. The serialized story that Zorro first appeared in, The Curse of Capistrano, was written in 1919.

In the movies, Zorro hit the screen first in 1920's The Mark of Zorro. It was a silent film. The Scarlet Pimpernel came along in 1935 and established a lot of those traits you mentioned. The 1940's Tyrone Power film, The Mark of Zorro incorporated many of those traits of the foppish dandy being a hero by night. If you've ever seen the Zorro spoof, The Gay Blade with George Hamilton, the "gay" Zorro character acts very much like Percy Blakeney right down to the line "sink me!"

In some ways they are almost cousins.

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