The Tragedy of Bert

Our Tragic HeroFor the last six days I’ve been sick. I’ve had a fever that kept coming and going, a non-stop cough and I felt really weak. I slept away pretty much my entire weekend. Actually, my house has been the perfect storm for illnesses, with my son recovering from pneumonia and my daughter dealing with croup… but enough about them, let’s get back to me.

So while in one of my fever moments I started having a weird debate with myself.

Granted, this happens a lot but more so when a fever is included. And after one memorable (fever-induced) debate I have come to this conclusion.

Bert is the most tragic character in all of the Disney films.

Yes, I am talking about Bert, the lovable bloke from Mary Poppins. The one always up for an adventure and a song and dance. That Bert. And, yes, he is more tragic than Cinderella’s dad (who I still think was murdered by the step-mother) and all of the other lost parents in their cartoons (which is another good reason you don’t want your daughter to be a princess). Bert takes the cake and I carefully constructed this argument to prove my point.

This will not be a jolly holiday. Continue reading

Book Review: Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury

I first read Something Wicked This Way Comes while as a teenager. I was going through a massive Ray Bradbury kick, and I was devouring his books like many do pizza. Something Wicked found its way in between some of his other works in the monthly large pile I got from my local library, and I must admit at the time it didn’t make a dent on me.

It didn’t emotionally touch me as Dandelion Wine or inspire me like The Martian Chronicles or R is for Rocket. I can clearly remember spending most of my time reading it comparing it in my mind to the movie version by Disney I had seen a few years earlier. Yet, when people talk about his classics, especially after his death, Something Wicked is always discussed; so to honor the great man I decided to reread the book again.

Something Wicked This Way Comes is the story of an evil carnival that invades the town of Green Town, Illinois (A town that will not sound unfamiliar to readers of Mr. Bradbury). Two boys, Jim Nightshade and Will Halloway, are the only souls in the town that are able to see the carnival for what it is, a place of evil magic and sinister characters. It is after the carnival workers (under their leader the illustrated man, Mr. Dark), realize the boys are on to them that things start to become more intense.

Something Wicked has an interesting history to its creation. It first began as an abandoned short story, then Bradbury turned it into a screenplay after being inspired by Gene Kelly.

No, I’m serious. Continue reading