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The Literary Rants: The Long Haul, 13 Reasons Why, and Game of Thrones

April 17, 2017

Books that are turned into movies almost always cause literary rants.

A literary rant doesn’t have to be long.  Even though ranting bloggers can get long-winded, sometimes we want to be brief, especially when there are three rants instead of one.

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul

A new Diary of a Wimpy Kid movie (The Long Haul) trailer was released a couple weeks ago, and fans hate it.  It reminds me of how last summer’s Ghostbusters trailer was vilified too, but this time the movie cast can’t accuse the critics of being misogynist.

Who would have thought that the Diary of a Wimpy Kid cast would become iconic?

The thing is, the first movies were okay, but they weren’t THAT good.  It wasn’t memorable like the first Ghostbusters.  I thought at the time a cheap animated version of Diary of a Wimpy Kid would be better than humans simply because kids aging out wouldn’t be an issue with a cartoon.

I almost feel sorry for the kid playing Rodrick in The Long Haul.  The kid actor was probably ecstatic when he got the the role, and now everybody hates him.  It’s one thing to hashtag hate an adult, but I feel bad for a kid (#NotMyRodrick) who’s on the receiving end of that.

If it’s any consolation, I remember that Deborah Norville received a lot of hate too, and she made a comeback, but that was before hashtag hate existed.

13 Reasons Why 

13 Reasons Why seems to have replaced Stranger Things as the Netflix series that kids (such as my daughters and their teen friends) want to binge watch.  It’s based on a YA book, and so I expected my daughters to want to read it after they saw the show.

That’s what I always did when I was their ages.  I read James Bond books because of the movies.  I read classics like The Three Musketeers and War of the Worlds because of the movies.  I expected them to read 13 Reasons Why as well.

But my daughters didn’t seem interested in the book.

“You liked the Netflix series, right?” I said.

They nodded.

“Then why wouldn’t you read the books?” I asked incredulously.

“Because I already watched it on Netflix,” one daughter said.

It took me a while to understood the logic.  The Netflix series covers a lot more ground than a movie could.  A movie can only cover the basics of a novel, but a Netflix series can cover everything (and maybe even make up new stuff too).  After watching so many episodes of 13 Reasons Why, I can see why viewers might be too drained to read the books.  But I hope the author still sees a spike in sales in the book and can profit from it.

Game of Thrones

It’s April, and Season 7 of Game of Thrones is still about three months away.  I’m not obsessed like other fans, but its late starting date still irks me.  Football season (American football training camp) also starts in July, and I don’t want the two to conflict.  There’s no football in April through July, and Game of Thrones got me through a lot of boring weekends over the last few years.

Now I’m going to have to juggle Game of Thrones and football training camp.  And you can’t save watching Game of Thrones until later because everybody who watches it wants to talk about it right away.  I don’t blame them.  Everybody talks about football games right away too.

Nobody complains about spoilers the day after football games when we talk about who won and who lost.  It’s kind of like that too with binge-watching shows.  If you can’t watch an episode when it’s on, that’s your responsibility and the rest of the world doesn’t have to put themselves on mute for you.

That means for a few weeks, I’ll have to juggle football and Game of Thrones.  It’s bad enough that George RR Martin is late with The Winds of Winter.  Now some of that is rubbing off on HBO too.  At least football season usually starts on time.


What do you think?  Which books turned into movies or TV shows would you rant about?

  1. I just read 13 Reasons Why in preparation for watching the Netflix series but I hated it so much that now I’m not sure I want to watch the Netflix series.

  2. I could rant about almost every single book-movie ever. Eragon came up in a conversation a few days ago and I had a mini-rant about how awful the movie was.

  3. Beth Scriv permalink

    I must be old school, i still want to read a book before watching the movie. And yes, so many horrid movie adaptations to rant about – my most hated is The time travellers wife; i loved the intertwining complex story so much and i felt the film dumbed this down.

  4. I’ve read all 5 GOT books before I started watching the show. So for the first 5 seasons I’ve grown used to watching the show knowing what will happens next, so spoilers don’t bother me as much.

  5. I work occasionally in a high school library where they have five copies of 13 Reasons Why and have pretty consistently had a dozen or so students on the waiting list for it. So someone’s reading it. I am a little irritated that Game of Thrones is so delayed, too, but just a thought, April does have baseball and playoff hockey. I assume basketball is still going on, too, but then I’m not convinced it ever ends.

  6. I will defend Game of Thrones a little bit here. I am a die hard fan of the series and an even bigger fan of the books. The series is delayed because winter is here, and it was an unusually warm winter in there shooting locations making them wait for a good snow to fall. I cannot defend George RR Martin. He is my idol. Let me say that first, but I have read in numerous places that he may not ever finish the series and let HBO tell the ending. I hate that because I love the books even more than the show, and have never read any of his Wild Card series that he is devoting all his time too. So forgive HBO, but GRRM is free game. Lol.

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