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What on earth were they thinking?!

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Well, if you read the article you'll gather what they were thinking... but seriously how on earth did this get past all the gatekeepers?


http://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-28703254


The fact they say it's intended for adult audiences makes it worse, to me. My mind is frankly boggled.
#1 - August 14, 2014, 03:25 PM

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 :yoiks


I'm a little speechless...
#2 - August 14, 2014, 03:28 PM
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Oh, Franzilla, this hurts my heart. And I agree with you entirely. How can this be for **adults**? Weird and creepy for kids, but downright perverse for adults.


Bummer is that I might have liked to get a special anniversary copy for my children but now I won't. Instead, I'd get a copy from a used bookstore.


#3 - August 14, 2014, 03:31 PM

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Apparently, they were unencumbered by the thought process.


I honestly thought that it looks like a child beauty pageant ---- and I don't mean that in a flattering way.


And, while I'm at it:  does a title with the word 'chocolate' in it really need anything else?    :beating
#4 - August 14, 2014, 03:34 PM
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Whaaat?
#5 - August 14, 2014, 03:37 PM

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I actually checked to see whether it was April 1st once I saw the image. It just seems so, so wrong. I cannot understand how everyone signed off on this. And now of course I want to see the other classic cover images.


TARKA THE OTTER, for example, is a beautiful, sad book... *spoiler alert* so will it have a picture of a slain otter on the front?!


This is definitely one of those situations where you just slap your hand to your forehead in disbelief.
#6 - August 14, 2014, 03:42 PM

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Are you kidding me?

"We wanted something that spoke about the other qualities in the book," Penguin Press's Helen Conford told the Bookseller. "It's a children's story that also steps outside children's and people aren't used to seeing Dahl in that way."

How does the cover in any way convey the messages at the heart of this story?

#7 - August 14, 2014, 04:11 PM
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Exactly. The other thing that I just don't get (and makes me wonder whether this is actually a publicity stunt at heart) is that they say the girl isn't supposed to be any of the characters in the book. So, erm, who is she then?
#8 - August 14, 2014, 04:15 PM

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Oh, my. It's awful. I can't imagine picking up a book that has a cover like that, and to have it be for Charlie and the Chocolate factory makes it just...beyond creepy.

I think someone should be seeking employment elsewhere.
#9 - August 14, 2014, 04:26 PM

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>>Apparently, they were unencumbered by the thought process.<<

So, so, so true. :(
#10 - August 14, 2014, 06:35 PM

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Thud. Just plain thud.
#11 - August 14, 2014, 06:48 PM

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Ewww. I feel icky now that I've seen it.
#12 - August 14, 2014, 07:26 PM

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What has the world come to? I'm sure this cover went through dozens of meetings with big shots, artists, executives, etcetera. And not one person raised their hand to object to this ridiculousness?  :old
#13 - August 14, 2014, 08:26 PM
« Last Edit: August 14, 2014, 08:28 PM by randi-revill »

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I really don't get it. What other themes is a doll on a girl's lap supposed to convey? What am I missing???
#14 - August 15, 2014, 04:35 AM
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It wasn't a doll. That was a little girl.
#15 - August 15, 2014, 05:59 AM

This has to be one of the strangest things I have ever seen, especially since I can't fathom
any relation of this cover to the book itself. Just TOO weird. And just wrong!
#16 - August 15, 2014, 06:23 AM

Uhh...wow. I just had one of those "Is this real life?" moments.

Ditto what Nanci said.
#17 - August 15, 2014, 07:50 AM

To see the image alone, without connection to Chocolate Factory, was disturbing only in that I find the adulterization (that IS a word in my own mental Funk & Wagnall) of children in pageants/advertising/etc. disturbing.

But when I read the pub's words describing their reason for it (justifying it), they didn't make sense. Their words actually disturbed me more than the photo.

Can anyone say, "Let's stir the money pot?"
#18 - August 15, 2014, 11:08 AM
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You know, when they first announced it, they did it (I think on Twitter) without the title on the book and asking people to guess what the book was; I knew immediately. 

I did assume there would be a cover for each child, a la People magazine.

I'm disturbed, too.  I'd have to reread the book to see if it makes sense to me.  It's not one of my faves so I have only read it a couple of times.
#19 - August 15, 2014, 11:18 AM
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Anne Marie, you crack me up. It's not your favorite book, so you only read it a couple times. I can't struggle through most books that don't wrangle me in the first paragraph, and then keep me so tied up that I can barely breathe. (In other words, I jealous.)
#20 - August 15, 2014, 11:37 AM
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Very bizarre! I don't see what it has to do with the story at all.  :ranting: :mad
#21 - August 15, 2014, 12:29 PM
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You know, when they first announced it, they did it (I think on Twitter) without the title on the book and asking people to guess what the book was; I knew immediately. 




How did you guess?! Did they give you multiple choices or simply say, Guess which book out of all the billions of books out there this is?


I think it's the girl's expression that makes it particularly disturbing. To match a character in the book she'd have to look a bit more full of energy. But that's what gets me - this isn't supposed to represent a character? Then what does it represent exactly? If it represents 'the dark side' of Dahl's writing, then they're saying the image shows something dark - what exactly? That she's adulterized? (Thanks, Arona, good word!) But I don't think Charlie and the Chocolate Factory covers adulterization? (Thanks, again, Arona!)


Anyway, silly billies, those Penguin people. Well, the ones who said yes to that anyway, I'm sure the rest are all genius expert people!
#22 - August 15, 2014, 06:20 PM

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#23 - August 15, 2014, 07:09 PM
VAMPIRINA BALLERINA series (Disney-Hyperion)
SUNNY'S TOW TRUCK SAVES THE DAY (Abrams)
GROUNDHUG DAY (Disney-Hyperion, 2017)
among others

 "Ewwww" and "Gross". If they wanted to shock people into talking about it and misrepresent the subject of the book-- good job, but I'm not sure it would translate into sales. 
#24 - August 16, 2014, 08:33 AM
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Wait, so the blonde is a human, not a doll? And she is a girl sitting next to an adult? LOL! I can't even tell what it is.
#25 - August 16, 2014, 08:37 AM
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Oh. I dislike the cover because I fear the world might be changing. That's helpful to know.  :faint
#26 - August 16, 2014, 08:46 AM
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That's an interesting article, Anne Marie. I have to admit, I read it as a kid, recently re-read it with my six-year-old and just enjoyed it for being full of ridiculousness. Of course I realised the parents were 'spoiling' their kids (hate that word but you know what I mean, I hope) but I didn't get the impression that the children were having to behave like parents themselves. Some of Dahl's books really are dark, though, like MATILDA. That book makes me sad, angry and worried, all at once!
#27 - August 16, 2014, 04:07 PM

Two things that spring to mind on viewing that cover: 1) Dahl was a children's author, for the main part (I can only remember one of his adult-marketed books) and 2) I am sorry but I think the cover portrays a child from a beauty pageant and I find those completely wrong. That is a personal opinion.
Dahl brought out the impish, devious side of children and their tendencies to misbehave. That's what he played on.
The original illustrations of Quentin Blake are a far cry from the image of that book.
It just looks totally wrong.
#28 - August 17, 2014, 04:01 AM

Franzilla, as soon as I saw your title I knew what you were going to be talking about!

It makes sense to me if this is supposed to be Veruca Salt. (Like Anne Marie said, if they had multiple covers, one for each character.) The vacant, vapid mother also reminds me of Violet's (?) mother from the newer movie adaptation. But not supposed to represent any character ... ?
#29 - August 17, 2014, 04:43 AM
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Franzilla, as soon as I saw your title I knew what you were going to be talking about!



Ha ha, yes, I think it's obvious because it's such a common reaction to that cover!


Thunderingelephants, Dahl actually wrote a lot of adult books. Something I discovered as a child when I happened upon my parents' Dahl books. What a disappointment they were for me, expecting magical stories about children like the others!




#30 - August 17, 2014, 03:36 PM

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