|Evangelists for children's books are not doing themselves or books any favours by attacking children's TV or films|
I’ve attended several children’s book events where speakers have tried to champion books to a young audience by discrediting other media and my heart always sinks when I hear them doing it. More often than not, films and television are the targets.
Having denigrated television in this way, the Oompa-Loompas go on to sing the praises (literally) of books. Much as I adore Roald Dahl's work generally, I feel that this song crosses the line from amusing satire into prejudiced propaganda in a way that the other Oompah-Loompas songs don’t. Mike Teavee’s vice is one of overindulgence; he overindulges in television in the same way that Augustus Gloop overindulges in chocolate. Both things are bad in excess, but Dahl does not have the Oompa-Loompas denigrate chocolate in Gloop's exit song.IT ROTS THE SENSES IN THE HEAD!IT KILLS IMAGINATION DEAD!IT CLOGS AND CLUTTERS UP THE MIND!IT MAKES A CHILD SO DULL AND BLINDHE CAN NO LONGER UNDERSTANDA FANTASY A FAIRYLAND!HIS BRAIN BECOMES AS SOFT AS CHEESE!HIS POWERS OF THINKING RUST AND FREEZE!HE CANNOT THINK - HE ONLY SEES!