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Re: but what does it really all mean?

> Without that new interpretation there
> really is no ending and no meaning/message that I can see.


I've always felt the ending was Tommy's realization that even though he
has the answer, it's all but impossible to give it to another (and
sometimes dangerous)...it has come to one on a personal level. This was
learned in the 60's by many "seekers."
On the album, his followers wanted a "quick-fix," easily understood
answer. What Tommy went through obviously didn't mean the same to
them...it didn't bring them to the same place, and feeling betrayed they
took it out on him. In my interpretation, they actually make him
physically deaf dumb and blind ("Gonna rape you") from which Tommy still
finds the positive message that he still has the answer, and that's
what's important. Or perhaps he's happier back in the womb-like world
he's known most of his life.
As an alternative read, they may have simply abandoned him ("Let's
forget you better still"), but it's hard to believe it's much of a
punishment to Thomas...only recently being aware of the worship.
So IMHO, the message is: Tommy's answer may have been correct but the
method of transmission flawed. Or at least not universal enough. For
attempting to bring the world enlightenment, he is sentenced to eternal
darkness. Yet he rises above it, being truly enlightened himself.
Both the movie and the play have different endings...just as the movie
QUAD had as opposed to the album. Good ol' Pete.

- -- 

            Cheers                ML

 "There's a million ways to laugh/And every one's a path..."

            Pete Townshend