Chris's Reviews > The Complete Tales of Winnie-the-Pooh

The Complete Tales of Winnie-the-Pooh by A.A. Milne
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Nov 06, 11


This review is for the Celebrity Death Match Tournament - Winnie-the-Pooh versus Hamlet.


One day when the weather was especially fine, Pooh and his friends were playing Pooh sticks. Pooh was thinking how nice it would be to have a playing-Pooh-sticks-with-your-friends-on-an-especially-nice-day sort of hum when...

"Hey nonny nonny..."

"Was that me?"
Pooh asked Christopher Robin. "You see, I was just thinking..."
"Silly old bear,"
said Christopher Robin fondly. "That wasn't you. It was her."

Everyone looked over the side of the bridge where Christopher Robin was pointing and saw a young woman floating in the river, clutching a ragged bouquet of wildflowers and stringing together nonsense words in a sort of song.

"Hey nonny nonny tiddly pom..."

"I shall have to remember that one,"
thought Pooh.
As she floated out of sight, Christopher Robin said, "Let's go on an expedition to find out where she came from."
So they did.

Following the river, they reached the edge of the Hundred Acre Wood at about half-past teatime and were surprised to find out they were in Denmark.
"Oh d-d-dear," worried Piglet, "Are there any horrible creatures in D-d-d-enmark?"
"Let's go ask at that castle,"
said Christopher Robin.
So they did.

The path to the castle took them through a graveyard. Clods of earth were being flung furiously out of a new hole being dug. Suddenly, they all heard a whistling sort of voice ask,
"Sssay, hasss anybody ssseen a ssskull around here?"
Up popped a gopher from the grave. He pawed in the pile of dirt a bit, found the skull he was looking for, and held it up.
"Sssee thisss ssskull?" he asked. "It'sss..."
"Oh hush,"
said Christopher Robin. "You aren't in the books at all. You were just an attempt to pander to American audiences and we shan't bother with you."
So they didn't.

Arriving at the castle, the first person they met was practicing with a sword, which was very exciting, and muttering, "If it be now, 'tis not to come; if it be not to come, it will be now; if it be not now, yet it will come," which wasn't.

This muttering swordsman noticed them and extended his hand.
"The name's Hamlet, title character in the greatest work in all of literature. Oh, and a prince."

Christopher Robin shook his hand and asked politely, "Excuse me, but why is it the greatest work of literature?"
"Because the play embodies Shakespeare's profound knowledge of human nature in all its complexity. I myself am a striking portrait of melancholia. Why I was just wondering the other day, 'To be or not to be...' "
"Better not,"
said Eeyore melancholically. "It never works out."
"And Polonius,"
Hamlet continued, "whom I, umm, killed a little while ago...he was all 'You should do this and don't do that, time and place for everything...' "
"Sounds like an excellent sort of chap,"
said Rabbit, "Nothing like plans and rules and explanations to know what's what, I always say!"
Hamlet frowned, his brow furrowed in thought. "But I am also a skillful portrait of mania. I'm especially proud of my antic disposition."
"Antic disposition?"
Tigger said bouncily, "That's what tiggers do best!"
Realizing that his human nature argument was, perhaps, not quite as strong as he thought, Hamlet brought out his final devastating argument, one he saved for last because of its embarrassing nature.
"Ummm, Mummy issues?" he offered, blushing a little.
Just then, Kanga's pouch roiled alarmingly and a fully grown Roo popped his head out.
"What did he say, Mama?"
"Nothing dear, no need to interupt your nap."


Dejectedly, Hamlet stalked out of the room with sword in hand, muttering about taking action.
"Heard that one before," one of the guards by the throne room door chuckled.
"Let's go watch the swordfight," said Christopher Robin.
So they did.

When it was all over, Christopher Robin was cowering in a corner shaking, the room was littered with highborn corpses, and Hamlet lay dying in Horatio's arms.
"The rest is silence..."
Horatio, who until that moment no one had noticed was a llama, said,
"That's what forgiveness sounds like, screaming and then silence."* Then he bent down and began eating Hamlet's hands.**
Christopher Robin whimpered and covered his eyes.

Just then, one of the room's tapestries billowed and out stepped Edna St. Vincent Millay. She crossed the room, pausing at the bloody tableau to intone,
"Your candle burned at both ends,
It gave a lovely light,
But for a lack of lithium,
You've gone and lost the fight."
***

She knelt gently beside Christopher Robin, handed him his stuffed bear, and said, "Childhood is the kingdom where nobody dies..."
A couple of survivors chipped in,
"What about Old Yeller?"
"And Charlotte the spider? Cried myself silly over that one!"

Edna St. Vincent Millay quelled them with a look. "As I was saying, childhood is the kingdom where nobody dies. Look around you Christopher Robin. What do you see?"
"I see dead people."****
"Precisely. And here are all your friends around you safe and sound."

Pooh gave Christopher Robin an especially reassuring squeeze with his paw. Standing up a little shakily, Christopher Robin said, "I don't like it here! Let's go back to the Hundred Acre Wood."
So they did.

Shortly after entering the wood, just as dusk was stretching shadows into hephalumpine and woozly shapes, they came to a fork in the path which they had never noticed before. It was marked by a signpost. One arrow pointed down one path, reading HELL. Another arrow pointed down the other path, reading ROOM 101.

Robert Frost popped up from behind the sign.
"Two roads divgered in a yellow wood..."
"Get lost, Robert,"
growled Edna St. Vincent Millay. "I'm the only poet ex machina in this review!"

They continued up one of the paths, Pooh humming happily,
"The more I win, tiddly pom...


Winner: Winnie-the-Pooh (Seriously, have you seen Hamlet? He's dead! And are you going to tell Christopher Robin his teddy bear isn't really alive? Well, are you?)



*Check out Llamas with Hats, especially 1 and 2, on Youtube.
**Seriously, Llamas with Hats.
***Hamlet is obviously bipolar. Lithium could have helped immensely. Of course one of the common side effects of lithium is tremors, so he probably still wouldn't have won the fight.
****An oldie but a goodie. I couldn't resist.
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Comments (showing 1-20 of 20) (20 new)

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message 1: by Mark (new)

Mark well done, really made me laugh.....so I did


☯Bettie☯ Seriously, have you seen Hamlet. He's dead! And are you going to tell Christopher Robin his teddy bear isn't really alive? Well, are you?

No ma'am
:O))


Manny They continued up one of the paths, Pooh humming happily,
"The more I win, tiddly pom...


I presume the next line is "The more I grin, tiddly pom". But then what? Do Edna or Robert have any suggestions?


message 4: by Hayes (new)

Hayes Bettie wrote: "Seriously, have you seen Hamlet. He's dead! And are you going to tell Christopher Robin his teddy bear isn't really alive? Well, are you?

No ma'am
:O))"


nuh-uh! me neither!


message 5: by Chris (new) - added it

Chris Manny wrote: "They continued up one of the paths, Pooh humming happily,
"The more I win, tiddly pom...

I presume the next line is "The more I grin, tiddly pom". But then what? Do Edna or Robert have any suggestions?"


The next lines are entirely dependent on just which path Pooh and his friends are on, which remains to be decided.


message 6: by Manny (last edited Nov 06, 2011 08:25AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Manny The next lines are entirely dependent on just which path Pooh and his friends are on, which remains to be decided.

Too damn right.

I don't suppose you might feel inspired to contribute a pro-Dante review as well? 1984 is still putting up resistance, and a Pooh-Dante final would be such a fitting conclusion to the tournament!


message 7: by Chris (new) - added it

Chris Tempted, but I'd be seriously faking it as I've never read The Divine Comedy. If I can fake it after a bit of Wiki research, I may give it a go. I am rooting for Dante. Somehow, I just don't want to know what's in Room 101 for Pooh. This tournament has given me enough disturbing images of Pooh to almost drive a stake through my childhood.


Manny The Divine Comedy is so much a part of our culture that even people who haven't read it... um... just go for it!

You're right, we don't want Pooh in Room 101. If we get a Pooh-Dante final, I can promise him a far better fate...


message 9: by Hayes (last edited Nov 06, 2011 09:18AM) (new)

Hayes Is the race that close? I thought Dante was miles ... er, kilometers ahead.


Manny Brian's pro-1984 review is steadily picking up votes... quite rightly so, it's very good!


message 11: by Hayes (last edited Nov 06, 2011 09:23AM) (new)

Hayes Yikes... might have to do something! But I haven't read 1984 in so long... don't remember bupkis!


Manny I can do my part-of-the-culture speech again :)


message 13: by Hayes (new)

Hayes Thanks, I got it the first time... I am not a natural at this game, so it's gonna be a lot of work (that's me you see burbling about in the Fifth Circle).


Manny I loved your Dante-Dumas...


message 15: by Hayes (new)

Hayes :-) That one wrote itself... sloth is my middle name!


Manny Hayes wrote: ":-) That one wrote itself... sloth is my middle name!"

So your defense is that it was just accidiental?


message 17: by Hayes (last edited Nov 06, 2011 12:22PM) (new)

Hayes No, not accidental. Serendipitous would be a better word (if it is actually a word).


Manny [that was meant to be a pun...]


message 19: by Hayes (new)

Hayes I missed it sorry... :-(


Manny Okay, it was kind of on the obscure side :)


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