A bandersnatch was in the news today, but it was widely assumed to be a typo. The actor who plays the titular role in BBC One’s Sherlock, Benedict Cumberbatch, had his already-Carrollian-sounding name apparently spectacularly autocorrected by the Washington Post into “Bandersnatch Cummerbund.” Thanks to @Alex_Ogle on Twitter for the picture before. Anyone hoping for a sober correction – something along the lines of “The Washington Post deeply regrets mistakenly printing the name of the actor Benedict Cumberbatch as Bandersnatch Cummerbund blah blah blah” – will be disappointed. The Post responded that it was not a typographical error, and issued the following statement:
UPDATE: It has come to our attention that there is raging debate, in re whether we intentionally referred to Benedict Cumberbatch as Bandersnatch Cummerbund in The TV Column and blog.
MSNBC.com’s Alex Johnson, a gentleman and a scholar (and former Post staffer), leapt to our defense, noting I correctly identified Cumberbatch on first reference in the column item, and explaining that we are “a titan of snark” who “gets away with that kind of stuff all the time.”
Johnson was perhaps recalling the time, back in 2009, when Politico wrote about the sorry state of The Washington Post’s copy editing, citing something we had written about “American Idol” in which host Ryan Seacrest was called “Seabiscuit” – until some people explained to the author in the comments section, that we had used the nickname for Seacrest during many years of “American Idol” recapping. (The report vanished from the Web site).
But Poynter’s Craig Silverman, a skeptic, bet Johnson a beer on it, asking Johnson, like he meant it to sting, did he think the Post’s copy desk would let that through without any kind of wink to readers.
Silverman owes Johnson a beer.
But, we would like to give credit where credit is due. The nickname “Bandersnatch Cummerbund” originated with one of the serious students of television who join me each Friday to chat about all things TV. And that person would no doubt want to give credit to Lewis Carroll, who first wrote about the “frumious Bandersnatch,” in “Jabberwocky,” in the late 1800’s. We loved it then, we love it now. Oh — and, wink wink!
Call to artists to represent the Tulgey Wood monster wearing a tuxedo sash.
The Bellman from the The Hunting of the Snark (2012)
The stop motion animated version of The Hunting of the Snark, long in the works and coming out June 2012, has finally released a trailer. We learn several new things about the movie, including that there is a female character named Hope (as in “They pursued it with forks and Hope.”) Also, Severus Snape makes a cameo at 41 seconds into the trailer.
The image of the Bellman figure above was taken from the movie’s Facebook page, which has many pictures from the creation of the animation.
Alice in Wonderland-themed weddings: a sweet idea or a fatal mistake?
In an upcoming episode of CSI, the team are called to investigate a robbery-homicide at a Wonderland-themed wedding in Vegas. According to the trailer below, the Caterpillar conducts the ceremony, the White Rabbit wields some kind of semi-automatic weapon, and investigator Russell gets to say the line “curioser and curioser” in a vaguely appropriate context. This is clearly required viewing for Alice/violent crime fans everywhere.
Roger Daltrey, former lead singer of The Who, is to lend his voice to the Caterpillar in a Wonderland-themed episode of the ABC show Once Upon a Time. The executive producers of the show apparently said that The Who’s rock opera “Tommy” was “a huge inspiration for the show,” so, who could be better, really?
“Once Upon a Time” is a fantasy drama set in Storybrooke, Maine, a fictional town populated by fairy tale characters who have been exiled to the real world. The episode, entitled “Hat Trick,” will air on Sunday, March 25th on ABC. Other guest stars will include Sebastian Stan as the Hatter, who you may (or may not) remember as the bad guy in the movie Hot Tub Time Machine. In the episode, producer Edward Kitsis promises, “we find out how the Mad Hatter became mad.”
Sebastien Stan as the Mad Hatter in "Once Upon a Time"
You know how it is. You read an email alert which leads to a blog, which leads to a YouTube clip, which leads to you spending 6:31 minutes watching a 1987 spoof of Madonna’s “Material Girl” starring Alice and six men in Tweedle suits, shot entirely on location and out of hours in Disney World, Florida.
It’s brilliantly awful, but if for any reason you can’t quite watch it all, at least skip to the end to read the extensive credits. Prominent thanks are given to the Walt Disney World Character Wardrobe, on the principal that sometimes it is easier to ask forgiveness than permission, I assume.
If you went to google.com on Friday, you probably noticed a girl in an Alice-blue dress doodling on their logo. Their daily Google doodle honored classic stylish Disney artist Mary Blair, on her 100th birthday. (Google often replaces its logo on their home page with topical art spelling the name Google.) From the L.A. Times blog Nation Now:
Mary Blair in her home studio. Credit: Courtesy of the nieces of Mary Blair (LA Times, Nation Now.)
Mary Blair, honored Friday with a Google Doodle, is the woman to thank for the Disneyland boat ride It’s a Small World.
Blair’s doodle coincides with a Los Angeles tribute to the longtime Disney artist. Thursday night, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences hosted “Mary Blair’s World of Color — A Centennial Tribute” to celebrate the woman, born a century ago, who made a place for herself among Disney’s famous founding animators, the Nine Old Men.
The Los Angeles Times’ Susan King, a writer and expert on classic Hollywood, reported Monday on the tribute and says Blair is best known for her contributions to the 1950 animated “Cinderella,” 1951′s “Alice in Wonderland” and 1953′s “Peter Pan” — as well as the aforementioned design for It’s a Small World.
The website indiegogo.com is a good place to raise money for an independent art project. Some filmmakers in San Francisco – Chandra Reyes (Writer/Director), Laura Chenault (Director of Photography), and Jorna Tolosa-Chung (Co-Producer) – are campaigning there for a future Carroll-derived indie movie, Behind Shattered Glass. Their creative vision is written for their campaign:
The film is about a young woman who, with the sudden loss of her love, takes sanctuary in a new strange world. Deep in this wonderland she discovers an elusive Man in White who tempts her to follow him down a dark path. There she encounters many other frightening characters who threaten to keep her in Wonderland. Will she break free from his hypnotic trance or is history destined to repeat itself even deep within her own imagination?
I believe that every filmmaker that grew up reading or watching Lewis Carroll’s fairy tale has an Alice in Wonderland story within them that needs to be told. Carroll’s story is about a girl who’s curiosity leads her into strange and new places that she’s not all that ready to be led into. It’s a story we all can identify with. In my reimagining Alice is no longer a young naive girl, but a woman who is stuck making the same mistakes over and over again. Wonderland isn’t just her sanctuary, its her opportunity to break free. [continue reading]
As of today, they’re only $266 out of a proposed $2k. There’s perks to investing in this project, besides feeling good about helping someone enter another looking-glass. For $25 you get a poster of the film, for $50 you get that and a copy of the film, and yet greater thank-you prizes as the donations increase – ($500 gets you an illustrated version of the script.) Follow progress of the movie on twitter at @bshatteredglass and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/behindshatteredglass.
Original movie poster for The Care Bears Adventure in Wonderland (1987), from Wikipedia
I wasn’t aware of the existence of the movie (if it can be called that) called The Care Bears Adventure in Wonderland, but the Nostalgia Critic, from the website That Guy with the Glasses has done a hilarious review of it in his newest episode, and I think you will enjoy it. When I was a little girl, I used to love the Care Bears, and I still find them cute. I also still love the Alice stories, so I was a little excited when learning there is a movie that combines the Care Bears and Alice. The excitement towards the movie quickly diminished. Here’s why. Although I haven’t watched the whole movie, the clips from the review were enough to help me form an opinion, one that isn’t too positive, but I will let you be the judges of that. I do want to point out some things about the movie before commenting on the Critic’s review.
The stories have changed. What a surprise! Alice visits Wonderland but her adventures are completely different from the books. Are they better than the book, you ask? I think we all know the answer to that.
There is one thing I like about this movie (“like” might be too much of a compliment). I should say, there is something I don’t dislike so much about the movie: the Queen is not evil, so it moves away from the usual “evil witch, evil women” most children’s stories present. The Queen might be, as one of the commenters observes, a version of one of the Queens from Looking-Glass but which uses the idea of the Queen of Hearts because she is more recognizable.
This is the most important point. WARNING: After watching the movie clips some of you might feel the sudden urge to poke your eyes out or chop your ears off because, get this… THERE IS A RAPPING PSYCHEDELIC CHESHIRE CAT!
What was up with the ‘80s and ‘90s and the constant need to rap? Ironically this is the character in this movie the Nostalgia Critic “kinda likes,” acknowledging that the bar has been set phenomenally low, so a rapping cat sadly counts as an “up.” Not to give too much away, but if there is one reason to watch this review, it is actually to listen to all the rapping nonsense taking place, and the wonderful remix the Critic produces using other rapping animated artists from other not-so-wonderful movies. This is something the Critic does wonderfully: his references to pop culture, which include the Mario Bros. game and movie, Disney movies, other songs, and even Double Mint gum add to the hilarity of his review. In addition, when the fall into Wonderland occurs, the Critic makes reference to the Disney movie, not Tim Burton’s, but the animated feature from 1951. He refers to it as the “much better Disney movie.” This of course is a point of debate for many of us Lewis Carroll fans because there are very differing opinions about it. I do believe the Critic is referring to the animation in that movie, which was excellently executed and really brought Wonderland to life in a way that not a lot of movies have been able to.
At one point the Critic also comments on the names in the movies, indicating that the Princess’ name is Princess, the Queen’s name is Queen, and the Wizard’s name is… you guessed it, Wizard. This is not only funny but it also makes one think about the absurdity of the movie and makes one wonder how much thought the writers actually put into it. There is one character, however, which is given a name, but I will let you find out for yourselves and laugh at the absurdity, and of course laugh along with the Critic’s comments.
Amid the jokes and screams of frustration, the Critic demonstrates his knowledge of the original books and the period in which they were created. For instance, there is a robot (yes, you read correctly) in Wonderland that needs to be destroyed for some reason. The Critic comments that this is “clearly fitting the Victorian-based novel that this hacked film was loosely based on, but hey, if Tim Burton can throw in breakdancing I guess Care Bears can throw in giant robots.” Robots in Wonderland? This movie seems to be a mixture of Wonderland, Looking-Glass, Care Bears, Transformers, and pure nonsense (and not the good nonsense only Lewis Carroll could so perfectly create). But I don’t want to spoil all the fun of watching the review, which is actually truly funny, and the “fun” of watching clips from the movie. So I will leave you with these wise words about the movie from the Nostalgia Critic himself: “Not only do they insult the intelligence of the younger audience watching this, but now they insult the intelligence of the timeless Lewis Carroll books…” Enjoy!
Warning: This contains some spicy language! Furthermore, our blog posted That Guy with the Glasses‘ review of Alice in Wonderland a few years ago here. Additionally, someone has put the original onYouTube: