Friday, February 8, 2013

Anne of Green Gables Goes Blonde, Press goes Wild

Controversial cover
Tess Benger
Yesterday I was looking up places to visit in PEI, because Mary Ann and I would like to go there by motorcycle one day, and her sister has a cottage on the island.  So I started by looking up Mike Duffy's** address, and I thought we could pop in and say hello.  And since he lives in Cavendish, just a stone's throw from "Green Gables", where Anne of Green Gables lived, I put a pushpin on that location too.

But then, later that night a story broke (actually two stories), one about Mike Duffy not actually living in PEI, and the other about Anne of Green Gables being turned into a trollop.

I believe there may be something to the Mike Duffy Story, but a minimum amount of Googling indicates to me that the Anne of Green Gables story is the usual bu**sh** that comes through in the news all the time without any fact checking.

This is how Anne's story was presented in the press.  A new edition of the book Anne of Green Gables" is coming out, but the girl on the cover looks like a blonde sexpot instead of our impish red-haired, skinny and pigtailed 10-year old Anne.  As one commenter put it "The book is Anne of Green Gables, not Anne Does Green Gables".  And there were thousands of other similar comments.

Megan Follows as Anne
But here is what I found out.  The book is published in "Createspace", a website where all you need is an email ID to create a book.  Usually, these books are made with your own writing, not the writings of others, but these days, who writes their own stuff any more?  (Well, I do, and I'm The Lost Motorcyclist, and if you are reading this in another blog, it means my work has been stolen.  Once again.)  But I digress, let's get back to Anne of Green Gables.  The book Anne of Green Gables has been in the public domain for many years, and so apparently anybody can copy all the words off the internet, then paste them into their "own" book, slap on a cover page using the free graphic tools provided by Createspace.  Then wait for somebody to buy a copy.

So, there is no "Publishing Company" involved in the traditional sense.  More likely one person.  And there is no run of books to be printed, as it is all "print on demand".  There are no up front royalties paid, no advances, no expense accounts.

The only worry is that the image of Anne and Green Gables still belongs to the heirs of the author.

But who is the girl on the new cover?  Was she Googled and copied from some farm girl porn site?  I think she actually looks a lot like the actress playing Anne in the latest production of Anne of Green Gables, Tess Benger.  To me they look about the same.  So really the only heinous crime involved was not putting on Tess Benger's fake red wig with pigtails, and the possibly sexy pose.  Or maybe people should get worked up about choosing Tess Benger for the role in the first place.

Pictures: One is Megan Follows, one of the most well known actresses to play Anne Shirley.  Another is Tess Benger.  And the third is the "new edition" of the book with the controversial cover, that I think might be Tess Benger.

** Mike Duffy: Famous Canadian news commentator turned senator, currently mired in a controversy about whether or not he lives in P.E.I., the province he is supposed to represent.  He is not related to me in any way.

1 comment:

  1. Well, we all know that 'Sex sells.' Why not for 'Anne of Green Gables'?

    It'd be interesting to see what this cover does for sales figures ... LOL!