Tag: The Cat in the Hat

Author Fight Club: Dr. Seuss vs Roald Dahl

Ignoring the broader themes of Chuck Palahniuk seminal work, Fight Club, we’re going to do what we do best and have two people fight each other.

Since we can’t talk about Fight Club (see rules one and two), we’re going to write about it. Specifically, we’re going to have two writers fight each other. Three rounds will determine their strength as we go through their power as description, their distinctive style, and their impact on the world at large.

Then, they’re going to beat the snot out of each other.

In one corner we have the creator of James and the Giant Peach, Matilda, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and many more (including all those Oompa Loompas). He’s the King of Pure imagination—although he didn’t write the song—he’s Roald Dahl. Dahl’s birthday just past so wish him some luck because he’ll be facing off against…

The creator of the Cat in The Hat, The Grinch, and the Lorax, the man whose made elephants hatch eggs and put stars on Sneeches. A brilliant author, a quirky illustrator, and the man who just breathes wondrous insanity and insane wonder: Theodore Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss—though he’s not a real doctor.

Let’s fight!

 

 

1-Whose Writing Style is More Descriptive?

You read that right. Who has the most expressive, pictorial, picturesque descriptions between these two children’s writers?

 

Theodor Geisel

Image Via All That’s Interesting

 

Now we’ll give it to Theodor Geisel: We all have the same picture The Cat in the Hat, The Sneeches, How The Grinch Stole Christmas whereas we all have different images of what the layout to Willy Wonka’s dangerously FEMA-violated haven of a factory in our mind, but we’re not talking pictures here.

No, we’re saving that for later.

Let’s compare passages from both author’s magnum opuses: Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and The Cat in the Hat

First is Roald Dahl up at bat:

 

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

Image Via Roald Dahl Wiki

 

Charlie Bucket stared around the gigantic room in which he now found himself. The place was like a witch’s kitchen! All about him black metal pots were boiling and bubbling on huge stoves, and kettles were hissing and pans were sizzling, and strange iron machines were clanking and spluttering, and there were pipes running all over the ceiling and walls, and the whole place was filled with smoke and steam and delicious rich smells.

 

Now let’s look at what the doctor’s got cooking:

 

The Cat in the Hat

Image Via Amazon

 

the sun did not shine.
it was too wet to play.
so we sat in the house
all that cold, cold, wet day.

i sat there with sally.
we sat there, we two.
and i said, ‘how i wish
we had something to do!’

too wet to go out
and too cold to play ball.
so we sat in the house.
we did nothing at all.

so all we could do was to
sit!
sit!
sit!
sit!
and we did not like it.
not one little bit.

and then something went BUMP!
how that bump made us jump!
we looked!
then we saw him step in on the mat!
we looked!
and we saw him!
the cat in the hat!

 

Which can you picture more: The house with the rain outside, or the room in the factory? Whose passages give us most illustrative words?

Well, our good ol’ doc might have the illustrations, but Dahl’s got the words, so we have to give it him. After all, can’t you just picture Willa Wonka’s factory? Maybe that’s just because of the Gene Wilder, and the Johnny Depp, movie, but we found ourselves on the side of Dahl.

 

Roald Dahl

Image Via Smithsonian Magazine

 

Dahl=1

Seuss=0

 

 

2-Style

 

Roald Dahl writing

Image Via The Telegraph

 

Whose got style? Who’s method of writing is more memorable, distinctive, and just all around fabulous?!

Roald Dahl is up to bat:

 

Charlie Bucket stared around the gigantic room in which he now found himself. The place was like a witch’s kitchen! All about him black metal pots were boiling and bubbling on huge stoves, and kettles were hissing and pans were sizzling, and strange iron machines were clanking and spluttering, and there were pipes running all over the ceiling and walls, and the whole place was filled with smoke and steam and delicious rich smells.

 

Here we have great comparison: “The place was like a witch’s kitchen!” Buzzing onomatopoeia: “boiling, bubbling, hissing, sizzling, clanking, sputtering.” Dahl shows us a knack for word order, notice how those adjectives rhyme?. Plus, he’s certainly has a knack for names. What’s Augustus Gloop’s main characteristic? What about Mike Teavee?

 

Theodor Geisel writing

Image Via LA Times

 

Now before we hand this over to Dahl, let’s take a look at what Dr. Seuss has to offer.

 

the sun did not shine.
it was too wet to play.
so we sat in the house
all that cold, cold, wet day.

i sat there with sally.
we sat there, we two.
and i said, ‘how i wish
we had something to do!’

too wet to go out
and too cold to play ball.
so we sat in the house.
we did nothing at all.

so all we could do was to
sit!
sit!
sit!
sit!
and we did not like it.
not one little bit.

and then something went BUMP!
how that bump made us jump!
we looked!
then we saw him step in on the mat!
we looked!
and we saw him!
the cat in the hat!

 

Oh. Dang.

Not counting pictures, you can just tell by the word choice and the way the good doc structures his sentences that he’s got a style that could rival Billy Shakes.

 

Dr Seuss 'The Cat in the Hat'=sit sit sit

Image Via Goodreads

 

Notice how Seuss uses ‘sit sit sit’, making each word take up page on the space to symbolize how much time them sitting takes up. We don’t know how long exactly, but we know it took a dang long time.

 

Dr Seuss 'The Cat in the Hat'=the introduction

Image Via SlideShare

 

Notice how he also stages for the introduction to the Cat in the Hat. The phrase “We looked!” is good on its own, but then we get the line “we saw him step in on the mat!”, building the anticipation. What’s next?

Another “we looked!”, empathizing the children’s stares at this magnificent creature. To further pound the hammer into that, we have the line “and we saw him!” before we finally learn what these children are looking at.

Yeah, but we already have a picture of the cat, I hear you say. But the words that build the anticipation, emphasis that this creature is not one the children normally see. The words and the pictures, they are intertwined.

It’s such a distinctive style that it’s the figure of parodies.

 

 

Now we’ll give it to Roald Dahl: We all can all picture what the layout to Willy Wonka’s dangerously FEMA-violated haven factory might look like, but know exactly what the Cat in the Hat and the Sneeches and the Grinch all look like.

See, I told you were saving that for later, and it came in good use, didn’t it?

 

Dr Seuss drawing

Image Via History

 

Each word, each space is used for maximum effort. Deadpool would be proud and he’s got Katanas, so in this battle of word use we have to the side with Seuss.

 

Dahl=1

Seuss=1

 

 

3-Influence/Impact

Both of these authors have made classics work, but how have they influenced pop culture?

 

Roald Dahl movie

Image Via The Wrap

 

We have Roald Dahl, whose work has been turned into great movies. We have the cult classic James and the Giant Peach as well as Matilda, the classic and iconic Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory that’s given us Gene Wilder as the ultimate Willy Wonka, and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, a movie that didn’t hurt anyone.

 

Dr Seuss movies

Image Via Yahoo

 

Then we have Dr. Seuss, whose film adaptations reminds us of the horrors of soulless consumerism. We have the Grinch, a movie where Jim Carry makes a man he hates kiss a dog’s butt…

 

The cat in the Hat Mike Myers

Image Via Amazon UK

 

The Cat in the Hat staring Mike Myers, a movie which I’m convinced isn’t really a movie but a portal to hell…

Other adaptations include Horton Hears A Who, an alright movie that never hurt anyone, The Lorax, which butchered the original message, and The Grinch, starring Benedict Cumberbatch, a movie that panders to children and adults at the same time creating a confused mess.

In fact, the only way Dr. Seuss’s film adaptations can even stand up to Roald Dahl is with the shorts, such as The Lorax (1972) and The Grinch starring Boris Karloff, but what do you remember more? The 1973 Sneeches movie

Plus, the most modern adaptation of a Roald Dahl work is Wes Anderson’s fantastic The Fantastic Mr. Fox and how can you fight the power of symmetry?

 

Willy Wonka

Image Via Gorton Community Center

 

…or Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka?

Just goes to show that just because people know you’re name, doesn’t mean that’s a good thing. Dahl lives in a world of pure imagination, while Dr. Seuss is now at the center of pure consumerism.

So Roald Dahl wins!

 

Dahl=2

Seuss=1

 

Winner: Roald Dalh!

 

 

The Match

Coming down from the Great Glass Elevator, Roald Dahl surveyed the black land. He had left as soon as Great Daredevil Sneelock flew into his troops, knocking down Oompa Loompas by the dozen before he met the might of a lone, Oompa loompa, smeared with blood and war paint, his head chopped off with a machete.

Landing on the ground, Roald Dahl took a breath. At his feet the enormous alligator and Trunky lay side by side. The enormous alligator had gobbled up The Cat in the Hat and choked on his hat. Trunk was dead when Horton flew a spear at his chest using his drunk.

Coming across the battle field, Dahl put a hand over his nose. Black smoke made his eyes water from when the ingenious Mr. Fox, against the orders of General Wonka and Colon Charlie Buckett, had crafted a bomb under the factory and blew it up.

With each step, Dahl stepped in the remnants of the giant peach. When the hordes broke through, the Grinch had raised the peach above his head like a Christmas sled and threw it at the factory. That was their only mistake. It didn’t kill them, in fact it made them stronger, well fed and ready to fight.

On the horizon lay what was left of Horton. Oompa Loompas had slingshot an every-flavor-dinner gumball and threw it in Horton’s mouth. The Horton turned violet, bloated, and soon, since no one could properly juice him, blew up. Dr. Seuss had been riding the elephant. What had become of him?

Dahl marched forwards and heard a soft scream from below him. On the ground, he saw nothing, but he knew that Sam-I-Am had eaten some green eggs and ham during the battle, unaware they were poisoned with George’s marvelous medicine.

The sun poked its orange head above the horizon, and in the light everything was clear to see.

The Wonka factory was in ruins, the Oompa Loompas were smoldering alongside with the hordes of witches. The BFG lay on his side, a gaping gushing bloody hole in his chest from a spear that shot straight through him when Horton threw a spear at him with his trunk.

The Lorax has called upon The Fox in Socks, Thidwick, Yertle and all his turtles, but they were all slaughtered, when Matila and her army of schoolchildren had come after them. They had taken on the Trunchbull; the Lorax and his army were chopped down like a Truffula Trees.

The Sneeches (star-bellied or otherwise) and all the other men in the Seuss army, from Nizzards to Quan and all the fish (yes, even the blue fish), were taken out from the bomb.

All the Seuss characters, all of Dahl’s characters, dead.

Walking over to the dead purple mesh that once was Horton, Dahl looked to the ground. There had to be something here, they had to be something that made all this madness worth it. Then he saw it, the cause of this war.

It was called the Helen of Troy, but it was no woman. It wasn’t even a human. It was a drawing pen that Thedore had stolen.

Picking it up from the ground, Roald Dahl smiled. Now he could create his characters once more. No, he would new characters, better characters.

Turning around, Roald Dahl danced through the battle field. Six foot six and he towered over the dead, basking in the sun.

But when he got the Great Glass Elevator and took out a notebook, he found that the pen was out of ink.

 

 

Featured Images Via History.com and Metro

12 Steamy Literary Couples That Should Totally Happen

Once upon a time, we reported that Draco Malfoy himself, Tom Felton, had attended the opening at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Orlando and joined AOL’s In The Know for a game of ‘Fact or Fanfiction?’ and, in the standout moment from the Q and A, Tom Felton was asked: What did he think of Draco’s relationship to Harry Potter?

 

Hmmm?

Image Via Redbubble

 

Now anyone with even a passing glance to the franchise would see Draco and Harry a simple rivalry, a tale for the ages, but Tom Felton said, I’m quoting AOL here, “Harry was constantly crushing on Draco…He just couldn’t hide it.”

Let’s look at the facts:

  1. Draco and Harry do definitely have some tension going on.
  2. (Image Below)

 

Draco vs Harry

Image Via Youtube

 

Case closed!

With this in mind we’ve decided to give you, dear readers, twelve literary couples that happened in an alternative universe. Taking twenty-four characters from all across literature, from different book series to classic standalone novels (copyright be damned!), we’ve compiled these characters into eleven distinct (and surely steamy) relationships that would have totally worked out…for the characters, at least. Trust us, we’re chemists here.

 

 

12-Bella and Count Dracula

 

Bella

Image Via Twilight Saga Wiki – Fandom

 

No more sparkling vampires, now Twilight‘s Bella Swan is getting an upgrade. Let’s face it: There’s a reason Bram Stoker called this novel Dracula and not Harker. Dracula’s got style, he’s got nice clothes, he’s not charm oozing from everyone pore.

 

Gary Oldman as Dracula Count

Image Via Pinterest

 

Heck, if Bella says “No, I’m married” then I’m asking Dracula out to get a nice love bite.

 

11-Steve Rogers and Bucky Barnes

 

Steve Rogers and Bucky Barnes

Image Via Pinterest

 

Far before Twitter decided to give us the #givecaptainamericaaboyfriend fan campaign, we had the comic books. See Bucky died, Steve Rogers became a Commie smasher, and then the Commie smasher was retconned, and then the real Steve Rogers was thawed out from the ice.

 

Steve Rogers thoughts about Bucky Barnes

Image Via The Mary Sue

 

But Bucky remained dead, and Steve was inconsolable in his grief over his best friend and partner in crime throughout the decades of Captain America comics. In fact, it was one of the most foremost elements of his character

Fans looked at this and took the small hop and believed that Steve’s profound sense of loss than met the eye

The only people who stay dead in comics are Bucky, Jason Todd, and Uncle Ben.

So Bucky came back. In fact, he came back as the Winter Soldier in a comic book called The Winter Soldier, and ever since then we’ve been clamoring for Steve and Bucky to get a little closer.

They’re perfect for each other. The two buddies have been with each other since the beginning and will continue to stay together “until the end of the line”. They’re both “men out of time” from 1930s Brooklyn and are war buddies with great rapport who totally get along. They have so much in common.

At least go on a date and see if there’s anything there.

 

Even when I had nothing, I had Bucky.

 

10-Ahab and Captain Hook

 

Jason Isaacs as Captain Hook

Image Via Express.co.uk

 

We have Peter Pan‘s Captain Hook, and this man has been through a lot. Yes, he’s trying to track down and kill Peter Pan like he’s an animal, but Peter Pan is an animal! This boy cut off his hand and fed it to a crocodile. Wicked, evil, and savage beyond belief.

 

Captain Ahab

Gregory ‘The Man with the Pecks’ Peck as Captain Ahab / Image Via The Guardian

 

Then we have Moby Dick‘s Captain Ahab who, like James Hook, wants to track down an animal whose savaged ships of all sorts.

But would they be searching for these monsters if they had, you know, found each other? Could their killer eyes turn into ones of passion and love if they only looked into each other’s eyes?

We here at Bookstr call out in a resounding, ‘YES!’

 

9-Boo Radley and Miss Havisham

 

Miss Havisham

Image Via Telegraph

 

Charles Dickens’ gave us Great Expectations, which us the tragic story of Miss. Havisham. Left at the altar as a young lady, she has preserved her house as it was on her wedding day and lived there ever since, shut away from the world. She has a heart of gold, but no one has treated it well.

 

Boo Radley

Look at those sultry eyes/Image Via Pinterest

 

Harper Lee gave us To Kill A Mocking Bird, which introduced the world to Boo Radley. Our Boo has lived in a house since he was a child, hidden from the world, but he has a heart of gold, giving young Scout a jacket on a cold autumn day.

If these two shut-ins have closed their doors to the world, would they open their doors for each other? Boo Radley most certainly wouldn’t leave Miss. Havisham at the altar, and Miss. Havisham wouldn’t let our precious Boo feel unwelcomed.

 

8-White Witch and Sauron

 

C S Lewis and J R R Tolkien

Image Via CNN

 

Now this pairing might not be great for the world at large, but they would be great for each other. Both live in fantasy world, the authors who created them were in real life great friends, and both crave ultimately power.

While both skilled in the powers of magic, it wouldn’t take magic to get these two working side by side.

 

White Witch

Image Via Denver Post

 

Imagine it: the White Witch would kill all the lions and the hero in the land, freezing them in ice just in time…

 

Sauron

Lord of the Rings Wiki – Fandom

 

…for Sauron to get to swinging his mace around

Talk about a power couple. The White Witch might even slip the One Ring of Power on Sauron’s little finger….

 

 

7-Pinocchio and Voldemort

 

Pinocchio

Image Via Entertainment.ie

 

Carlo Collodi’s Pinocchio grows every time he lies, and he’s made of wood, so lie a few times and cut off the excess, and Voldemort doesn’t have to be called He-Who-Must-Not-Have-A-Nose.

 

Voldemort

Image Via Harry Potter Wiki – Fandom

 

Yes, Voldemort is a racist and a tyrant who thirsts for power more than a camel thirsts for water, but Pinocchio isn’t the pinnacle of innocence. After all, there’s a reason he’s cursed to have his nose grows every time he lies.

Plus, if he and Voldemort got together, Pinocchio can use his nose for…

 

6-Ariel and Jaws

 

The Little Mermaid

Image Via The South African

 

Prince Eric isn’t a good fit for Hans Christie Andersen’s The Little Mermaid. He has legs, Ariel is half-fish, and if she gets together with him then she has to abandon her family. That’s a bad move, Ariel.

 

Jaws

Aw, he’s holding him / Image Via Pinterest

 

But if she wants to take a walk on the wild side and still remain in the ocean, she can always go with the shark from Peter Benchley’s Jaws. Call him what you will (I call him Bruce, but others have called him Jaws or Sharkie or even Craig), but he knows his way around the wide ocean and can show Ariel a whole new world under the sea.

Ah, they always say there’s plenty of fish in the sea, but at least these two fish found each other. Maybe that’ll be the new plot for the new Disney remake!

 

5-Mrs Robinson and Oedipus

 

Mrs. Robinson

Image Via CharacTour

 

Mrs. Robinson from Charles Webb’s 1963 novella The Graduate is trapped in a loveless marriage. She’s only married to her husband because she got pregnant and needed to avoid a scandal, and thus she hooks up with young Benjamin Braddock. But Benjamin is only into her because he’s bored. He doesn’t love her.

 

Image Via Study.com

 

Oedipus from the seminal play Oedipus Rex has a thing for older women. Yes, he didn’t know he was married to his mom, but she was still older than him. So maybe we can avoid the whole I-gotta-pluck-out-my-eyes thing and just have Oedipus meet up and see where things go with Mrs. Robinson. She’s old enough to be his mom, and that should be enough for dear old Ed.

 

4-Paul Bunyun and Jack Torrence

 

Paul Bunyan

Image Via NEA

 

Straight from American folklore is the biggest and the best lumberjack in the business: Paul Bunyan.

 

Jack Torrance

Handsome! / Image Via Salon

 

Straight from the mind of Stephen King is Jack Torrence. Now Mr. King was quite unhappy with the changes Stanley Kubrick made in his film adaptation, so we’ll have a chance to mend things here.

In the book Jack Torrence has a roque mallet, so maybe Paul can give him his iconic ax. Plus, since Paul’s ax might be a bit big for Jack, he can buy one here and, once Jack has his iconic ax, well…

 

Beautiful friendship

Image Via Giphy

Or maybe something more…

 

 

3-Katniss and The Chershire Cat

 

The Cheshire Cat

Image Via DeviantArt

 

This goes beyond the fact that ‘Katniss’ kind of, sort of, sounds like ‘cat’ and the Cheshire Cat is, well, a cat.

 

Katniss Everdeen

Image Via Scoopnest

 

For one, Katniss from Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games never really loved Peta. Two, Cheshire Cat from Lewis Caroll’s Alice in Wonderland knows his way around the block and would have helped her big time before, during, and after those pesky Hunger Games.

Plus, the Cheshire Cat is funny, and you know what they say….

 

what do you see in that guy?

Image Via Pinterest

 

 

2-Christine and Pennywise

 

Chirstine

Image Via Amreading

 

An evil car

 

Pennywise

Image Via OC Celebrity Marketing

 

..and an evil clown, what could be better? We already know Pennywise has a thing for cars…

 

Image Via Collider

 

So maybe it’s time for Christine to rev Pennywise’s engine.

 

1-The Grinch and Cat in the Hat

 

These two iconic characters from the Dr. Seuss universe are meant for each other.

 

The Grinch Grinches the Cat in the Hat

Image Via Amazon

 

Their first meet up might not have gone well….

 

 

A Match Made in Heaven

Image Via DeviantArt

 

…but we all know it’s a much made in heaven.

 

 

 

Featured Image Via 9Gag

Midnight Paintings

These ‘Midnight Paintings’ Were Created By Dr. Seuss in Private

The name Dr. Seuss needs no introduction. Famous for his children’s novels that blended his brilliant rhyming schemes with illogical logic, nonsense words, and surrealist worlds into popular works such as The Cat in the Hat, How the Grinch Stole Christmas!and The Lorax. Still, there was more to Dr. Seuss than just these works, despite being his most famous creations. He was also a renowned illustrator, creating artwork for magazines, political cartoons, and most interestingly of all, himself.

 

One of Dr. Seuss's Midnight Paintings, these drawings features a surreal humanoid bird holding a martini glass and looking slyly at the viewer
Image Via The Guardian

 

As discussed in this article by The Guardian, Seuss illustrated hundreds of surreal artworks in the late hours of the night, painting for himself. These paintings were kept private until Seuss’s death, after which they were released to the public in an exhibition in Vancouver in 2016, dubbed The Art of Dr. Seuss and Liss Gallery. As discussed in this article by The Star, Seuss historians believe Dr. Seuss created these artworks to fulfill his imagination, his unshackled creativity inspiring him to put his best work forward for his actual public artwork. The gallery showcased sculptures, paintings, and illustrations released by his Estate, showcasing the private mind of Dr. Seuss.

Below are some of the ‘Midnight Paintings’, allowing us a glimpse into the mind of the author whose works we grew up with.

 

A deer drinks from a twisted water spout while surrounded by a strange, surreal world of light and shadow in this painting by Dr. Seuss
Image Via The Guardian
A painting featuring surreal images of animals prancing across a starlit grassland, with fish jumping happily in a nearby pond
Image Via The Guardian

 

A bird-like creature gazes into a mirror sadly while surrounded by a splendor of color
Image Via The Huffington Post
A fish-like creatures swims through a surreal underwater landscape, surrounded by weird plants and coral
Image Via The Milwaukee Independent

The paintings were collected into a book called The Secret Art of Dr. Seuss. Featuring sixty-five color illustrations, the book allows one to see Dr. Seuss in a whole new light. Pick up a copy today and bask for yourself in the beautiful illustrations of Dr. Seuss’s private world.

 

 

 

Featured Image Via The Milwaukee Independent