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harriet the spy does not need to be technologically relevant.

February 27, 2010

THAT WAS ALL VERY NICE BUT IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH MY NOTEBOOK. ONLY OLE GOLLY UNDERSTANDS ABOUT MY NOTEBOOK. I WILL ALWAYS HAVE MY NOTEBOOK. I THINK I WILL WRITE DOWN EVERYTHING, EVERY SINGLE SOLITARY THING THAT HAPPENS TO ME….WHEN I WAKE UP IN THE MORNING I WISH I WERE DEAD.

Harriet the Spy

It appears that the Disney Channel has discovered Harriet the Spy. And found it boring.

This isn’t anything so respectful as a made-for-tv version of the book (besides, if you’re looking for Harriet on screen, the 1996 Nickelodeon rendition is shockingly inoffensive). Rather, this is an entirely new story, about a 14 (or so)-year-old Harriet entering into some sort of blogging war with the kool kidz, and getting into all kinds of wacky hijinx in the process.

It’s as if (and by “as if,” I mean, “probably the case that”) the writers/producers/whoever vaguely remembered reading the book as children, but hadn’t actually retained anything about it besides spying! sassy children! a classic beloved by millions!

Problem is, Harriet the Spy isn’t wacky. It isn’t cute. It isn’t even really very funny. It’s a story about an eleven-year-old girl who loses her beloved nanny and parental stand-in, is abandoned by her social circle, and has what amounts to a nervous breakdown.

Depression is relevant. Alienation and loneliness are relevant. Especially if you’re ten, and seeing these deeply unsettling emotions described in print for the first time. There’s plenty of spice there already without tossing in a superfluous LiveJournal garnish.

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