The Man in the Iron Mask

QUESTION:  The Three Musketeers are Athos, Aramis, and…?
A)  D'Artagnan
B)  Porthos
C)  Pathos
D)  Pierre
ANSWER BELOW

Alexandre Dumas is one of the best-loved and prolific authors of the nineteenth century. French by birth, his novels tapped into a love of adventure that inspired translations into almost one hundred different languages. Eventually, two hundred interpretations of his films would also be created over the years.  Of course, Dumas' most famous characters are the Three Musketeers, colorful characters who created waves during the reign of Louis XIV. He serialized their stories during the day, including one loosely based on the true story of The Man in the Iron Mask. The "real" man in the iron mask was a prisoner of the king from right around 1670 until his death in 1703. One of the great mysteries of history is who the man was. Dumas contended that he was the twin brother of the king. 

Around a dozen interpretations of the story of The Man in the Iron Mask have been made since its first interpretation in 1909, but the one displayed in the Music Room here at the American Treasure Tour is from 1998. Its international cast includes Leonardo diCaprio, Jeremy Irons, Gabriel Byrne, John Malkovich, and even a Frenchman - Gerard Depardieu! The storyline only nominally follows the inspiration of Dumas, with the greatest differences being the character of the king versus that of his imprisoned brother. In Dumas' original, some of the Musketeers actually consider Louis XIV to be a better option as leader than his brother, while in the 1998 film written, directed and produced by Randall Wallace, Louis XIV was presented as evil and dangerous. A financially successful film, The Man in the Iron Mask was crititcally panned. DiCaprio even 'won' a Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Screen Couple, due to a lack of chemistry between his Louis XIV and his identical twin brother Phillippe.  C'est la vie.

ANSWER:  B)  Porthos.  D'Artagnan would have been the fourth Musketeer if there was such a thing.