The dialog between the wolf and Little Red Riding Hood has its analogies to the Norse Þrymskviða from the Elder Edda; the giant Þrymr had stolen Mjölner, Thor's hammer, and demanded Freyja as his bride for its return. Instead, the gods dressed Thor as a bride and sent him. When the giants note Thor's unladylike eyes, eating, and drinking, Loki explains them as Freyja not having slept, or eaten, or drunk, out of longing for the wedding.
Folklorists and cultural anthropologists such as P. Saintyves and Edward Burnett Tylor saw Little Red Riding Hood in terms of solar myths and other naturally-occurring cycles, stating that the wolf represents the night swallowing the sun, and the variations in which Little Red Riding Hood is cut out of the wolf's belly represent the dawn. In this interpretation, there is a connection between the wolf of this tale and Skoll or Fenris, the wolf in Norse mythology that will swallow the sun at Ragnarök.
Ethologist Dr. Valerius Geist of the University of Calgary Alberta wrote that fables on the Big Bad Wolf were likely based on very real events and were not a case of ignorant superstition, contrary to what is claimed by some wolf advocates. Little Red Riding Hood, he argues, served as a valid warning to parents and children not to enter wolf infested forests and to be on the look out for such. Wolves were an occasional, but widespread threat at the time of the story's genesis, and the society of the day did what they could to keep the minimising the danger, even though controlling wolves was very costly and rarely successful. Even then it was known that wolves did thrive in wilderness settings, and, consequently, that destroying wilderness by turning it into meadows, cultivated fields, orchards, villages and towns robbed the wolf of living space. Wolves and wilderness were treated both as enemies of humanity in that area and time span.
Several recent interpretations of the Big Bad Wolf show him as being a character with relatively good intentions, mostly considered "Bad" due to a misunderstanding. These include, but are not limited to, appearances in the films Shrek, Hoodwinked, and The 10th Kingdom; and the comic book series Fables.