Pecos Bill by Brian Gleeson

Pecos Bill (1988)Blog 2 Info

Genre: Western / Humor / Adventure / Tall Tale

Year Published: 1988

Year Read: 2007

Series: Storybook Classics

Publisher: Rabbit Ears Books

Blog 1 Introduction logo

In the 80’s Rabbit Ears had made their trademark as one of the most popular series for children. “Pecos Bill” is no exception as this story won numerous Grammy Awards. With Robin Williams’ narration, Tim Raglin’s drawings, and Ry Cooder’s music, “Pecos Bill” is surely a story you will want to watch over and over again.

Blog 4 Pros

Robin Williams’ narration, Ry Cooder’s music and Tim Raglin’s illustrations are the true highlights of this story. First off, Robin Williams narrates with high-energy and a cowboy accent to boot. Whenever, Pecos Bill goes through any peril, Robin Williams is loud and excited about the situation as if he was there when Bill performed these spectacular acts. Next on the list is Ry Cooder’s country music. Ry Cooder’s solo guitar performance has provided the perfect mood for the story, going from a light and happy tune highlighting Pecos Bill’s early adventures to dark and intense when Pecos Bill goes against the cyclone, which Cooder’s music may have foreshadowed Pecos Bill’s disappearance from Texas in this scene. Finally, Tim Raglin’s colorful illustrations have greatly influence the mood of this story. Raglin’s drawings are colorful and rich as he greatly details the plains and the cyclone in fluent colors. Raglin also illustrates Pecos Bill’s life in a humorous way, such as, the scene where Pecos Bill is shown throwing around the rattlesnake like a lasso. Tim Raglin’s highlighted illustration was of Pecos Bill himself, as Pecos Bill is drawn with white, fluffy pants, a polka-dotted handkerchief, and suave red hair that make him have the appearance of a true hero.

Blog 6 Overall

“Pecos Bill” was considered to be Rabbit Ears finest half-hour story. Well, I think that they were right about that. “Pecos Bill” has everything that you would expect from a natural cowboy movie. The story has loads of adventure, comedy, romance, and suspense and each scene describing these genres is greatly enhanced by the narration, drawings and illustrations. “Pecos Bill” is loads of laughs and shocks and is a perfect film for the entire family.

Blog 7 Awards Grammy Award – Best Recording for Children Parents’ Choice – Best Video of Children in 1988 American Library Association – Notable Children’s Recording American Film and Video Festival – Red Ribbon International Monitor Awards – Best in Children’s Programming Media and Methods Portfolio CINE Golden Eagle Award Parents’ Choice – Classic Award


5 stars


Also reviewed at:  Rabbit Ears Book Blog

The Fool and the Flying Ship by Eric Metaxas


The Fool and the Flying Ship (1991)

Blog 2 Info

Genre: Surreal / Russia / Folktale / Traveling / Royalty

Year Published: 1991

Year Read: 1993

Series: We All Have Tales

Publisher: Rabbit Ears Books

Blog 1 Introduction logo

Rabbit Ears have created a wonderful series called We All Have Tales. The series had released a number of wonderful stories from around the world, but The Fool and the Flying Ship remained as my all-time favorite Rabbit Ears story. This story is based on Arthur Ransome’s classic Russian folktale, “The Fool of the World and the Flying Ship.” Of course, this version is funnier and more modern than the original Russian tale, thanks to the Russian voice talents of Robin Williams.

Blog 4 Pros

This is my most favorite story from the Rabbit Ears series because it is extremely funny, witty, and entertaining at the same time. Eric Metaxas’s writing is full of wit and humor and jokes that will have anyone laughing for a long time. My favorite part of the dialogue from this story was when the servant told the Tsar that there were peasants at the palace, but the Tsar thought that the servant was talking about pheasants. Robin Williams provided the voices for all the characters in the story in different Russian accents for each character, providing comedy relief from all characters. Also, I love the way how Henrik Drescher, the illustrator of this story, draws his characters with long and stringy limbs and weird attachments on their bodies, such as the Runner’s antlers on his head and the Sharpshooter’s popped out eyes.  The Klezmer Conservatory Band’s wacky European music is full of jazz and folk-like music that gives The Fool and the Flying Ship a very wacky and over-the-top feel to the story.

Blog 5 Cons

Parents should know that The Fool and the Flying Ship may be aimed at older kids and adults because the jokes in this story may not get through the younger audience. Some of the jokes, such as the one where the Sharpshooter talks about putting the flea, who had a bad cold, out of his misery and the Fool replies that it is the flea’s wife’s snoring that causes the flea to have a bad cold. The Sharpshooter than replies that the Flea’s wife is who he is aiming at. Many children may not get that the Sharpshooter is going to shoot the flea’s wife, although this joke is done very delicately and the Sharpshooter is never seen shooting the flea’s wife.

Blog 6 Overall

I think this story is going to be a favorite among both the adult audience and the younger audience for all time because of the story’s good humor and creative characters.

Blog 7 Awards 1991 The New York Festivals – Finalist American Library Association – Notable Children’s Recording


6 stars


Also reviewed at: Rabbit Ears Book Blog