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Learning to Read with Uncle Hannibal

"A" is for "Abdomen"
  (+19, -1)(+19, -1)
(+19, -1)
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Many television series and films have spawned versions aimed at audiences younger than those originally targetted. For example, there are Star Wars cartoon books aimed at pre-school children, the Muppets spawned Muppet Babies, and the UK government was adapted as Tellytubbies for the very young.

Nobody, however, has explored the transgenerational appeal of The Silence of the Lambs and its sequels.


MaxVision (a wholly-owned subsidiary of MaxComm Entertainment) is therefore in negotiations to produce an afternoon children's television programme, and an accompanying series of books, featuring "Uncle" Hannibal Lecter.

Hannibal himself needs almost no adaptation to appeal to preschoolers. Indeed, he is pretty much a perfect role model for children. He is polite, well-educated, yet able to converse with all people with equal ease. He is always neat and clean, does not swear, smoke or do drugs, and keeps his teeth well-brushed. He is always ready to explore new foods - surely something to be encouraged in all children - and does not satisfy himself with a quick burger. He is also patient and has a way with young children, as anyone will know who has seen the closing scene of "Hannibal".

Clarice Starling will appeal to the young girls in the audience (and perhaps the slightly older boys), and is again a perfect example for young children. She has elevated herself from humble beginnings, cares for animals, and seeks to uphold the law using her wit and intelligence.

Mason Verger is not quite so straightforward, but nor is he such a problem. Young children have a natural and innocent curiosity about facial disfigurement, and Mason will teach them about the problems of disability and about how to react appropriately to people of atypical appearance. The story of how his dog bit him because he was bad and took drugs is, of course, an ideal parable for the little ones.

In each episode of the series to be launched later this year, Uncle Hannibal tries to hide in a new country, whilst Clarice and Mason both try to find him using a series of alphabetical clues. In the first episode, Hannibal is disguising himself as a worker in an Abbatoir in Algeria, and the clues include an Airline ticket receipt and an Axe. Next week he is in a Bordello in Brussells, and so forth. By epidode six, he is in France buying Fava beans, and the clues are a Ferry ticket and a Foot.

Each episode also introduces a new educational game (each with its own song, commissioned specially for the series), such as "Squeak Piggy Squeak", "Which Internal Organ?", "Whose Limb is it Anyway?" and "Quietest Lamb". Several of the episodes also feature short, simple cookery lessons in which Uncle Hannibal teaches the children how to prepare basic but wholesome dishes.

In each episode, either Clarice or Mason may be the first to find Uncle Hannibal. If it's Clarice, she takes Hannibal back to his bedroom and he has to wear the Naughty Mask for running away. If it's Mason, he and Hannibal must try to trick eachother to see who is the final winner and who loses a body part.

Watch out for the free replica Death's Head Hawk Moths in Macdonalds Happy Meals!

MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 06 2010

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       You are truly more deranged than even I thought.
blissmiss, Feb 06 2010

       So like Count von Count, but for the alphabet, and with less light-hearted Muppet-ness and more actual gore.   

       Sesame Street vs Elm Street?
Jinbish, Feb 06 2010

       //truly more deranged// Lots of traditional children's literature is just as deranged, and in the same way. Hansel & Gretel, Little Red Riding Hood, &c. Bruno Bettelheim wrote a book about it, I believe.
mouseposture, Feb 06 2010

       I resent the use of the word "deranged". I was never ranged to begin with.
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 06 2010

       The day after the pilot airs, stores everywhere will experience a run on nice Chianti and Fava beans.   

8th of 7, Feb 06 2010


       Flies with that?   

       I love the concept of the show, I just don't like the 'hide and seek' stuff. Surely they wouldn't need the clues after a few episodes to realise that it was alphabetical and just ambush him in say Kenya? Maybe more randomly.   

       Or maybe they have to collect 5-20 other items with that letter to complete some sort of puzzle he sent them and unlock his location.   

       Bun for the teletubbies comment!
Riki, Feb 07 2010

       Abdomen, bladder, colon, duodenum, ethmoid, falx cerebri, gastrocnemius, hypothalamus, ileum, jejunum, kidney, liver, mammary gland, nuchal crest, omentum (greater), pancreas, quadriceps, rotator cuff, sphenoid, toe, uvula, Wharton's duct, xiphisternum, Y-ligament, zonule of Zinn;   

       Albania, Belgium, Czech republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Hungary, India, Japan, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, Nigeria, Oman, Poland, Qatar, Romania, Slovenia, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Vanu Atu, Wales, Xanadu, Yakut, Zambia.   

       Abbatoir, Bordello, Car Park, Ditch, Eddy, Farm, Gutter, Hoe down, Inchworm colony, Juicer, K-Mart, Lockdown, Mausoleum, Narthex, Orangery, Plateau, Quandry, Robot, Sanctuary, Tub, Unusualness, Vertex, Xenarthran, Yeti, Zander.
nineteenthly, Feb 07 2010

       Talks delivered via Hannibal's Lectern of course.
xenzag, Feb 07 2010

       [Riki] I believe Hannibal still has a position for a good man.   

       [Nineteenthly] you know too much.
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 07 2010

       Or, conversely, too little. Round here, it can be awfully difficult to tell ...
8th of 7, Feb 07 2010

       How f**king scary would story time be! 'Lean in my little friends, thats it, a little closer' [+]
S-note, Feb 08 2010

       Oh dear, [MB]. I expect to be incorporated into your meat bread any time now.   

       I've been thinking about this and it occurs to me that it could be made into a surreal, Spongebob or Bratz style cartoon (or Pinky and the Brain) and completely defused from the horror angle. Hannibal Lecter could just be this wacky mad professor character who absent-mindedly leaves bits of people lying about.
nineteenthly, Feb 08 2010

       + this is so sick, but you had me at the third paragraph! great writing skills my man!!
xandram, Feb 08 2010

       I was brought up on the original Struwwelpeter, with all the gory pictures. Mind you, I turned out like this, so not sure what this proves.   

       (And thanks, [Xan].)
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 08 2010

       We seem to have established that this is essentially a Good Thing and should now proceed to bake it.
nineteenthly, Feb 08 2010

       so true about gross childhood stories like Hansel & Gretel for instance. You're Welcome [Max]...and I turned out like this!
xandram, Feb 08 2010

       [MaxB] I got Struwwelpeter (with the scary pictures) when I was young too. Weirdly enough I found it not scary at all, whereas Maurice Sendak's "In the night kitchen" I found really quite disturbing. Odd how these things work.
hippo, Feb 08 2010

       while the idea is *ahem* interesting, I can't help but give you [+] for your exellent delivery
xxobot, Feb 12 2010

       [19th] Your List 1 is missing V: vas deferens? and List 3 is missing W: (sorry, can't help here.)
csea, Feb 12 2010

       Oh yes, um, vas deferens is one possibility but i'd like to come up with something more obscure, such as maybe vomer, and for W, er, wormery.   

       Wormian bones.
nineteenthly, Feb 12 2010


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