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Who Censored Roger Rabbit by Gary K. Wolf

Who Censored Roger Rabbit (1981)

by Gary K. Wolf

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360630,197 (3.47)8
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    The Great Dinosaur Robbery by David Forrest (jonathankws)
    jonathankws: Two novels of adult content which were "translated" into kids films... "Who Framed Roger Rabbit" and "One of Our Dinosaurs is Missing"

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Showing 1-5 of 6 (next | show all)
Cleverly written, lots of fun dialogue and descriptions. Homage to The Maltese Falcon, DOA, the Arabian Nights, and all the other hard-boiled detective stories with femmes fatales. 'Toons are treated like second-class citizens. The ending was unexpected and satisfying. ( )
  raizel | Nov 27, 2016 |
Who Framed Roger Rabbit was one of my favorite movies growing up, so I'd been curious about reading the book it was based on for quite a while.

It's a fun, fast read. The plot is pretty different than the movie, but Roger, Jessica and Eddie Valiant are all here. The book reads like a straight-up mystery, except that it's set in a place where humans and Toons co-exist.

I enjoyed Wolf's humor--the guy knows how to write a simile. He's got the hard-boiled detective voice down but gives it a unique twist because Valiant has to deal with a bunch of kooky Toons.

Looking forward to seeing the movie again!

Note on the Kindle edition: There were some formatting issues in the eBook. Occasionally a line that should have been a new paragraph was on the previous line, and I noticed a missing period here and there. It wasn't bad enough to ruin the experience, but be aware that this is not the cleanest eBook translation in the world. ( )
  wethewatched | Jan 7, 2016 |
Twenty-five years after Zemeckis establishes Roger and Jessica Rabbit as nostalgic icons in "Who Framed Roger Rabbit," I was delighted to discover that the rather silly film from my youth is in fact based on a novel by Gary K. Wolf published six years earlier: Who Censored Roger Rabbit?

Wolf's novel again demonstrates the familiar adage that the book is better than the movie. While Zemeckis' film is goofy and cute but ultimately shallow (to memory - it's been a very long time), Wolf's novel is a brilliant and entertaining satire. A parody of gritty noir novels, Wolf's novel paints a grim picture of racism and prejudice, establishing Toons as a second class of citizens trying to better their own lives. Responding to a rumor that someone is attempting to buy his contract and make him a star, Roger hires Eddie to look into his employer, who apparently refuses to sell. Along the way it comes to light that Jessica Rabbit has left Roger for this same employer, and it's not to play patty-cake.

The further Eddie gets into Roger's case, the more complicated it becomes, as elements of racism and criminal activities compound the seemingly useless investigation. Eventually bodies start piling up, and Eddie is left with conclusions that some character's don't want to hear.

For me, it is the conclusion that makes this story: the ridiculous resolution at first seems to challenge narrative development, but in reflection is perfectly suited to the Toons involved. Ultimately, it is the characterization - and the confirmation that even good guys can be bad guys - that makes the story so satisfying, regardless of the turn of events.

I am so glad I found Wolf's novel; Roger Rabbit will never seem the same, and I like him better for it. ( )
  Luxx | Oct 8, 2013 |
I liked this book, but not as much as I had hoped to. What I liked about this book was that it was loving pastiche of the noir/pulp genre, complete with snappy dialogue and some truly laugh out loud witticisms from lead character and cynical private dick, Eddie Valiant. It's a quick read, nothing overly cerebral (wouldn't really be a nod to classic pulp that way, would it?), but a fun jaunt in a ridiculous world where cartoons and people co-exist.

Of course, like most people raised in the 80's, I had seen the movie (many, many times in my case, I love that damned movie), but it is very different than the book. I had heard the book was geared more towards adults, and while it is, it's also perfectly acceptable for older kids to read. It might be a bit darker, but the careful dancing around any blue language makes me give it a G rating.

I have one major complaint with this book however, which is why it has 3.5 stars rather than 5.

The ending. The last 20 or so pages are the epitome of deus ex machina, even in a ridiculous world such as the one in this book. That was a pretty big let down. I actually quite enjoyed the mystery and the tandem relationship between Roger Rabbit and Valiant, and Valiant's slow warming-up to the rabbit.

My biggest complaint with the ending is (and there's a big spoiler, so I suggest you don't read the next bit unless you've read all the way through the book): Can anybody explain to me why in the hell Roger picked out Eddie Valiant, when they had no prior relationship, to take the fall for him? I just did not buy it. It's ridiculous, a huge let down, and doesn't make much sense in the story. Not to mention actually seemed quite out of character for the rabbit.

Barring that, it was still a fun little read, and I couldn't predict exactly where it was going (even if the payoff was a let down).
( )
  xitomatl | Apr 6, 2013 |
Interesting just to compare the two mediums. ( )
  lemuralley | May 27, 2010 |
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To Bugs, Donald, Minnie, and the rest of the gang at the B Street Smoke Shop.
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I found the bungalow and rang the bell.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Gary K. Wolf creates a wonderfully skewed -- and totally believable -- world made up of equal parts Raymond Chandler, Lewis Carroll, and Walt Disney. A riotously surreal spoof of the hard-boiled detective novel. Packed with action and laughs. Wolf's cult classic, highly praised novel is the basis for the blockbuster Walt Disney/Steven Spielberg film Who Framed Roger Rabbit.… (more)

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