Sunday, 2 October 2011


When I was a girl, little plastic doll trolls were all the rage. The dolls had large noses and eyes and hair with flaming colours. Those dolls formed my mental image of trolls in the stories I read.

The first literary troll I remember is the troll under the bridge attacking three Billy-Goats Gruff. What a loser for a troll, stuck under a bridge, waiting for his meals to trot his way. That troll was easily deceived into waiting for the next Billy-Goat brother to come his way. And then, it only took one push off the bridge, and the troll was a goner, no longer to trouble anyone.

As I reflect on this, trolls seem to get a rather bad rap in most modern literature. Tolkiens trolls in The Hobbit were also easily dealt with, fooled by Bilbo into staying up till the sun turned them into stone. There can’t be any dumber-looking creature than the troll taken down by the little wizards in the HP movie.

Have you ever seen a nice troll?

What do trolls look like? Are they little, ugly, naked creatures with bright hair or frightening giants carrying clubs?