With every passing year more and more of our cultural touchstones tumble into the public domain, becoming available to the evolutionary process of “re-telling”. Spin-offs and re-imaginings can illicit delight or despair. They might give us more of what we crave from our favorite characters —or they might dash our previous conceptions of something we thought familiar.
Deeply embedded stories and fantasies are precious to us. They can invoke righteous passions if someone dare alter that which we hold as “truth”. For an example just look at the responses to Blood and Honey, an off-color horror comedy take on A.A. Milne’s Winnie the Pooh after it entered the public domain in January 2022.
“Who is allowed to tinker with classic works of literature?” might read as a somewhat odd question to those who don’t have a dog in the fight—but for die-hard fans of the classics, it’s an unsettled battlefield of ideologies.
Brian Viner, of the Independent, did a fantastic job digging into the proud tradition of playing with classic literature while analyzing if Frank Beddor “had the right” to embark on his bold retelling of Britain’s beloved classic Alice in Wonderland.
For the full story, read Brain’s article: Tinkering with Mad Hatters and March Hares.