105 Ways to Give a Book

The Bastardization Of Pooh

The Complete Tales of Winnie-the-PoohWhen my first daughter was due to arrive in this world, I wanted to decorate her nursery with a Winnie-the-Pooh theme. But not that crappy Disney Pooh. No, I wanted Classic Pooh. And at that time — about ten years ago — there were two classic Pooh bedding sets priced accordingly for the snobby Yuppies who wanted them. Disney Pooh bedding you could get merely by singing “It’s a Small World” at the front of any participating store. Though I am generally financially careful by nature, I wanted the expensive classic Pooh set, and would have purchased it on my own, but my generous in-laws beat me to it. It was a worthwhile investment, though, having been used for my two girls and now for my baby niece.

It was fun at that time having the classic Pooh theme, because Disney Pooh had taken over to such an extreme that finding pictures, stuffed animals, clothes, etc. of the right kind was like a treasure hunt. I remember getting calls from friends telling me when some specific, out-of-the-way store carried Classic Pooh. Oh, and remember, this was 1996, before Internet shopping took hold.

Now you can buy classic Pooh stuff at Target. At TARGET.

On one hand, I am delighted that an entire generation may be exposed to Winnie-the-Pooh as he was meant to be seen.

On the other hand, you can now buy a crib set for what I paid for a Pooh and Piglet stuffed animal set. I’m a little bitter.

But even Disney Pooh didn’t prepare me for this travesty: Pooh Adore-Ables. A baby-version Pooh world which I had seen in stuffed animals and had hoped would die a quiet death. Unfortunately, that is not to be, as evidenced by the existence of this book, Lots of Pots.

This is a very easy reader for introducing the simplest of words. Fine. Whatever. But the babyfied characters! Oh, the horror! I refuse to put the picture on my site. You’ll need to link over to see it. And you should, since we need to know the enemy so better to fight.

5 comments:

Liz B said...

I'm with you: original Pooh.

But what bugs me? Try finding any original Pooh that isn't for babies. Key chain, Christmas ornament, even a T shirt or a bookend --- all Disney.

Jennifer said...

Ewww! Dd likes to watch Baby Looney Tunes on TV, and I don't like those, but those babyfied Poohs are worse. I mean, Pooh already is cuddly and sweet and innocent and baby-appropriate, right?

Charlotte's Mom said...

Amen.
I just reviewed one of these for ChildrensLit.com. Among other things (none too flattering), I had this to say, "It seems sad to reduce an iconic, classic children’s character to the status of Disney tool. Surely there must be a better way to engage children and to encourage adults to read with them."
Thanks for speaking out!

Library Lady said...

The original Disney Pooh movies are pretty good--especially considering what Disney has done to other classic books such as "Mary Poppins" and "The Rescuers". They opened the films with the Ernest Shepherd map, they set Pooh's "hums" to music and kept most of the original dialogue.Okay,they did add the groundhog character but he does say repeatedly "I'm not in the book, you know."

But that was the begininning of the selling of Pooh for toddlers and infants to the point where no self respecting school age child wants to read the originals or the Milne poetry. And both were intended for those same little darlings now reading either mass media trash or books intended for much older children!

(Or even worse, those dumbed down "Narnia" and "Little House" books. Shudder.......)

And it's happened in my family. Sadly, my own daughters have no interest in my beloved old Pooh books--childhood treasures from a favorite aunt. Sigh...

I do NOT stock the Disney books at the library. To satisfy the demand for "Pooh" I have a series of concept books (Pooh's 1-2-3, Pooh's ABD, etc) with the original Shepherd illustrations. And I try to use Milne's poetry, such as "The King's Breakfast" in my story hours.

Kaz said...

Boo to Baby Pooh!
Baby Elmo is bad too.
Don't grow up or down!

A haiku about my strong feelings on this topic! I hate all the babyfied characters like looney toons and sesame street. UGH!