Matthew's Reviews > The Adventures of Captain Underpants

The Adventures of Captain Underpants by Dav Pilkey
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Mar 21, 08

bookshelves: childrensbooks
Recommended to Matthew by: A 3rd grader.
Recommended for: Anyone. Everyone. I love Dav Pilkey.
Read in January, 1999

O CAPTAIN! my Captain! your fearful underpants don't shun;
George and Harold have weather’d every rack, the prize they sought is won;
Evil is near, school bells I hear, children all emoting,
While follow eyes the steady keel, the vessel grim and daring:
Underpants! Underpants! Underpants!
Ms. Ribble, mean with eyes of red,
Where on the deck my Captain fights,
Professor Pippy Pee-Pee Poopypants cold and dead.
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Comments (showing 1-5 of 5) (5 new)

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Dawn Best review ever!


Matthew Thanks. I'm glad that there's someone out there who has read the works of both Dav Pilkey and Walt Whitman.

I see that you gave Mr. Pilkey's book a paltry 2 stars. Maybe you have to be a boy to like the books. I read them years ago when they were new and was just starting my student teaching. I didn't want to read them but felt that I should if my students would be-- so I did and I loved them.

Since then, I've read other Dav Pilkey books and not all are in the same silly vein. The Paperboy is a beautiful and thoughtful picture book with beautiful paintings. Dogzilla is silly but not "potty humor". And his Ricky Ricotta series is great for 1st and 2nd graders and is very similar to Captain Underpants, but (again) without the potty-humor. It seems like you are interested in young-adult and children's fiction, so try them. Let me know what you think.


Dawn Hi Matthew,

I'll check out the other Pilkey books that you suggested, thanks! I read some reviews where people commented that Captain Underpants books were "vulgar." I didn't find anything vulgar in the first book, is there anything that might be considered vulgar in the following books?


message 4: by Matthew (last edited May 02, 2008 09:14AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Matthew I have read all, or nearly all, of the Captain Underpants books because I work as an elementary school counselor and my office is in the back of a school library. They are 15-minute reads, and funny, but I don't remember much of what is in the books. So, I wouldn't recommend that you go out of your way to read them, but they are fun to read.

The other books, especially The Paperboy, are worth the extra effort. If you work with kids (or have some of your own) read them all with children. They are great. My own young daughters LOVE Dav Pilkey’s Cat Kong and Dogzilla; the artwork is fun and interesting and the story is funny.

As far as vulgarity goes, there is a lot of potty-humor in the Captain Underpands books. The books all seem to follow the pattern of the first book with lots of references to underpants, toilets, poo, and pee. I'll admit that it's not highbrow humor but it isn't sexual, graphic, or hateful. But, since the definition of vulgar is what it is (coarse, rude, and unrefined) then, yes it is a bit vulgar.

I guess my problem was that I didn't read them expecting to be offended and, therefore, was not.

I've had this same experience with other books that people find offensive. (E.g. The Higher Power of Lucky, which has a reference to an apparently offensive body part-- a dog's scrotum-- on page 1 and goes on to be a simple and lovely story without any other reference to unsightly dog parts.) I have a lot more trouble with my daughters reading Seventeen Magazine or something else which actually INTENDS to distort and sell their unrealistic version of sexuality, normalcy, and beauty than having them read a silly book. Does that make sense?



Dawn Yup! Thanks for the input :-)



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