From the “Tall Book of Nursery Tales”.
The Little Red Hen and the Fox
The Big Black Fox is hungry. His mother tells him there’s nothing to eat. So he decides he’s going to go out and catch the Little Red Hen.
Long story short, the fox catches the hen, and stuffs her into his sack. Then he stops and takes a nap. In the mean time, the hen escapes, and finds a big rock and puts it into the sack in her place.
When he gets home, his Mother has a big pot of boiling water ready to cook the hen. The fox dumps the contents of his sack into the cauldron and…
…SPLASH!!! Scalding water all over the place, including the foxes!
“Never again did they bother the little Red Hen…”
No, I guess NOT.
They were probably too busy getting skin grafts in the Burn Ward.
The Wolf and the Kids
Mother Goat lives in the woods with her kids. Whenever she goes out, she tells the baby goat-kids to beware of the “wicked old wolf”.
One day, when Mother Goat is out (abandoning her children again), the wolf comes knocking at the door.
But he’s crafty: he’s eaten honey to make his voice sound sweet, and he’s put flour on his paws to make them look white. So when he knocks at the door, the kids let him in…
aI love the look of sheer malevolence the artist gave the “wicked old wolf”. You just KNOW he’s up to no good, and he’s going to eat all those stupid herbivores. .
Which he does. He gobbles them all up, “one at a bite“, except one kid that gets away.
Then he decides he’s tired and takes a nap.
Look at the bucolic calm setting of this illustration. Look how peaceful and content the wolf is. You almost want to pet him and rub his belly. Until you remember he’s got six GOATS in his stomach which he’s slowly digesting.
Anyway, Mother Goat eventually comes back (great parenting!) and the one baby goat that got away tells her what happened.
So Mother goat finds the sleeping wolf, takes out her scissors and thread, and then (I quote): “…snip, snip, she cuts a big slit in the bad wolf, and one, two, three, four, fix six, out bounded the little kids, as good a snew“.
So let me get this straight….she GUTS the wolf while he’s sleeping? And he doesn’t wake up? And the baby goats are as “good as new”?
Even when I was five, I found that hard to swallow. But for arguments’ sake, let’s agree the wolf is a VERY sound sleeper, and obviously doesn’t chew his food.
The story doesn’t end there, though.
Mother now instructs the kids to each find a big rock, which she fills the wolfs’ empty the stomach with, and then sews him up again.
(And of course, he continues to sleep through all this).
When the wolf wakes up, he feels thirsty, so goes to a stream to take a drink. But the stones are so heavy, he falls into the water and DROWNS !!!
Gee. But what a GREAT bedtime story for children.
It’s got everything you’d want: neglectful parents, predators terrorizing young kids, vivisection, drowning, and murder.
The LIttle Old Woman and Her Pig
You’ll love this one. The little old woman in this story is worse than Hitler.
A little old lady wants to take her pig to the market, but the pig is stubborn and won’t move.
So she asks the dog to bite the pig.
But the dog won’t help, so she asks the stick to beat the dog so the dog could bite the pig.
But the stick would not help, so she asks fire to burn the stick…
Notice a pattern here…? Do you see where this is going?
Anyway, this is how the little old lady finally gets her pig to the market:
What an orgy of violence and killing! How many animals (including a human) are are being tormented and killed, all for the sake of ONE PIG?
The fire and water are the least scary. They’re inanimate objects.
The stick is the worst. It looks like some kind of twisted demon from hell…imagine how terrifying it would be to see this in real life? Look how ANGRY it is!
I especially like the rope trying to choke the butcher to death.
The poor man is being subjected to a slow painful death: all because he didn’t instantly jump to kill the ox like the old lady asked him to.
I’m sorry..that’s just MESSED UP. There’s no justification for taking a human being’s life, just because they didn’t drop what they’re doing to help you.
Well, the old lady eventually did get her pig to the market….but only after getting half the village to do her evil bidding.
And Lord help anyone or anything that wouldn’t help her.
Like I said, worse than Hitler.
Good night, kids.