Horton Hears A Who was number one at the box office this weekend with over $45 million in earnings. That’s fairly substantial, but no entirely a surprise. Kids rule the box office. Parents will take then to see anything.

I’m kind of non-plused about the whole affair for reasons outlined in the comic. I recognize that Horton Hears A Who is getting good reviews, but there are just as many bad reviews and I feel like I’ve been burned before. I thought the live-action version of How The Grinch Stole Christmas was grotesque and the live-action version of The Cat in the Hat completely glossed over what made the book so endearing by adding it’s own unneeded elements. I suppose you can give a tip of the hat to Horton for avoiding the temptation of live-action. I’ll admit that the CG looks good. But isn’t there some kind of emo-kid that lives in Whoville? I could have swore I saw one in the trailer. Is this what Ted Geisel had in mind?

I realize that after a certain point and author’s creation is taken out of his hands and adapted to fit the sensibilities of a modern audience. Clearly all great tales do this. Their themes may be universal, but the details are tweaked to make them modern.

At the same time, the inventive mind of Dr. Suess was so completely beyond timeless, I think any attempt to anchor it to modern sensibilities is a mistake. You should breathe life into what was on the page but not give people cell phones, or whatever. I think that’s why the Chuck Jones’s animated version of How The Grinch Stole Christmas endures year after year after year. They didn’t see a need to embellish it. The story was perfect as it was.

Quibbles, I’m sure. I doubt anyone is losing sleep over my concerns. I know there are no longer any sacred cows. But, for me, Dr. Suess is deeply entrenched in my childhood memories and those books played a major influence in my life. If you’re going to adapt them for the screen, stay faithful to them so the next generation can be equally inspired.

Just my two cents.

Be sure to tune in to The Triple Feature podcast this evening where we’ll be talking about Horton Hears A Who and its diametrical opposite, Doomsday. The show starts at 9:00 PM CST over at Talkshoe.com. Just follow this link to be taken there 15 minutes before the show starts.

See you there!

↓ Transcript
What do you guys want to see?

What about Horton Hears a Who?

Ugh, no.

What's wrong with Horton Hears a Who?

Yeah, it's been getting really good reviews!

Because modern adaptions of Dr. Seuess's books SUCK!

Fool me once with How the Grinch Stole Christmas, shame on you.

Fool me twice with The Can In The Hat, shame on me.

"Horton Hears a Who?"

More like "Tom Could Give A Sh--

SHOULDN'T we be on our way?!