And on to my gripe for the day. It seems like a pretty standard announcement: [ASSOCIATED PRESS:] The musical adaptation of Dr. Seuss' holiday tale "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" will make its Broadway debut this fall at the Hilton Theatre, running from Nov. 8 until Jan. 7, 2007, according to a news release Monday. Previews of the show begin Oct. 25.
The widow of Dr. Seuss, whose real name was Theodor Geisel, will serve as an associate producer of the New York "Grinch" show. Geisel died in 1991. Read more.
But read that last paragraph again: Geisel's widow will be an associate producer; her husband died in 1991.
Y'see, while the good Doctor was alive
, he insisted that his characters not be used in marketing and merchandizing beyond the books. They lived very well off those books. There was plenty to go around on the books. Opening up the Cat in the Hat
and his other creations to licensing and merchandizing options would only serve to cheapen their meaningfulness. There was a couple expections -- a few animated features done in collaboration with Chuck Jones, for example -- but for the most part, Dr. Seuss was absolutely against using his characters towards any commercial uses such as cereal boxes, T-shirts, lunchboxes, toys, TV shows, movies, etc.
Six years after he dies, his wife, Audrey, opened the floodgates. We've seen a steady stream of Seuss-related crappola ever since: A couple of big-budget movie stinkers, a wide array of apparel, and countless goo-gags.
And now a Broadway flop-in-the-making.
Mrs. Seuss: You should be as ashamed, ashamed, ashamed as can be; to defile poor Teddy's legacy.