From the “You can’t make this stuff up (unless maybe you’re Lewis Carroll)” Department comes this entertaining news item from the UK. It seems a florist in Blackburn had a wooden figure of the Disney Caterpillar in her store’s window display, complete with a faux hookah. A local protection officer was walking by the shop, and became concerned that the Caterpillar was breaking the local ordinance against smoking in the workplace. No, really. Or that the shopkeeper was actually running an illicit hookah den. To read the whole silly story and see photos of the Caterpillar caught in the non-act, click me.
Thanks to one of our mimsiest minions for sharing this little gem of a story. What would Lewis Carroll have said?
In case you missed all the advertising online, on TV, on buses, on billboards, and even the occasional giant mushroom out on the streets of Manhattan, ABC’s spinoff series Once Upon a Time in Wonderland premieres tonight (October 10th) at 8pm EST. To visit the web site, click me.
Here’s a preview of the premiere episode. It appears that this Alice has much to learn–including the proper way to hold a rabbit! If you watch the premiere, leave us all a comment to share what you thought of it!
Whatever you thought of Tim Burton and Linda Woolverton’s film, if you were a fan of the visuals, you might be interested to hear that Disney has a new game app out called Alice in Wonderland: A New Champion. The app is available from the iTunes store, and you can watch the trailer right here:
If you’ve played this game, leave a comment to tell us all what you think of it!
For those of you out there who are not regular watchers of the long-running (and frequently brilliant) animated series The Simpsons, we have a treat (not a trick) for you. This year, for the Simpson’s 24th annual Treehouse of Horror Halloween special, they’ve enlisted noted film director Guillermo Del Toro to put his own bizarre spin on the show’s ever-popular (and ever-changing) introductory sequence, also known to insiders as “the couch gag.” The resulting clip is already being hailed as an instant classic. And to make it even better, at one point Lisa Simpson finds herself becoming Alice! You may need to watch it more than once to catch all the horror and sci-fi references jammed into this slice of silliness (including liberal helpings of images from Del Toro’s own oeuvre, including Pan’s Labrinth and HellBoy). It’s also nice to see some authors of the genre honored briefly, as well.
The full episode (three unrelated stories) will be aired tonight (10/6) at 8pm on the FOX network. But the inspired intro has already been released and you can watch it right here, right now!
One of our mimsy minions reports the release of a new (and free) 60-minute audio adaptation of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by a Canadian collective known as Voices in the Wind. After a quick listen to parts, I can tell you that the adaptation is quite loose (and Alice does not have a British accent). There is also at least one Disney-esque musical number.
Click me to read an article about the recording.
Click me to go directly to Voices in the Wind’s web site.
The venerable Pollock’s Toy Shop in London offers an “Alice in Wonderland Shadowbox” featuring black-and-white images you can cut out and make into your own creative display. Their site also shows a couple of examples of finished projects. To view information and images for the Shadowbox, click me.
Pollock’s also offers a few other Carrollian items for sale. To view all of Pollock’s Alice-related offerings, click me.
One of our West Coast mimsy minions reports that Trader Joe’s carries Babble Wine, made exclusively for them by “a renowned vintner” (who apparently shall remain nameless) from Mendocino County. The label sports Tenniel’s image of The Mouse’s Tale. So, if you drink want and want a little touch of Wonderland at your table, look for it at your local Trader Joe’s. To read more about it, click me.
Note: This wine may not be available at all Trader Joe’s locations.
If you haven’t already seen this clip (or the film from which it comes), one of our UK mimsy minions pointed out that this parody of the Twilight series included a brief (and semi-violent) sight gag cameo from Alice. Perhaps the makers of Vampires Suck will next turn their attention to spoofing Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland. Unless that’s redundant. ;-)
We have just received this nice note from poet/author Jessica Young:
My name is Jessica Young, and I am a poet and teacher (at the University of Michigan). I have a poetry book coming out that seeks to re-envision “Alice in Wonderland” to try to figure out why Alice was having all of those strange dreams. The book is narrative poetry, so it tells a story–it has a plot, characters, etc. It’s extensively researched to be historically accurate (e.g., the plants mentioned are all plants indigenous to the area!), though of course the plot is a little wild. And of course there are lots of Carrollian influences, like patterns and Jabberwocky poems.
I would so love if you passed on information about the book, and would absolutely welcome any comments or questions. I’m out in Michigan in the US, but anyone is most welcome to email (email@example.com
) or call (209-POE-TICS).
And if any members happen to be in NY at the moment, they are most welcome to attend my release party. It’ll be August 31st at Poets House (in NYC), from 5:30-7:30. There’s a reading followed by a reception, and both are free.
One of our Mimsy Minions alerted us to this item: composer Will Todd (who wrote the Queen’s Jubilee anthem, among other things) has composed a family-oriented opera inspired by Alice’s adventures. He notes that it’s not a literal adaptation, more like a single adventure with Alice and some of the familiar characters.
The opera premiered this July in Holland Park, so we will have to see if more productions follow! To read more about the piece, click me.
And here’s a review of the production in London’s Holland Park.