Thursday, April 4, 2013

VeggieTales: The Little House that Stood (The Parable of the Wise and Foolish Builders) DVD




What can compete with a trio of well-dressed pigs and a narrator that sounds like a famous actor?

VeggieTales: The Little House that Stood (The Parable of the Wise and Foolish Builders) DVD
Length: Approximately 49 minutes

Something similar to Once Upon a Time, the hit TV show, takes place on the latest VeggieTales DVD. Fairy tale characters are creatively imagined in new ways and settings. Larry the cucumber (dressed in ginger bread) meets Mother Goose. Bob the tomato becomes Humpty Dumpty. The cast of VeggieTales take on the role of storybook characters.

They do so to illustrate two parables: one from Matthew 7:24-27 (the wise and foolish builders) and Luke 10:27-37 (the Good Samaritan). Hopefully, this alleviates any concern that in a mad dash to bring fairy tales to life, VeggieTales has lost their Sunday morning values. Grace and truth win! Plus you get a healthy dose of humor. Unusual characters and stories are just the means to get the attention of little ones (and the young in heart).   

In the main feature, the Three Little Pigs, looking and sounding like high-rolling hipsters, come to Cabbageville looking to build houses. Even the narrator, who sounds like actor Billy Crystal, has suave sophistication. It all leads to the question: will the pigs be taken in by appearances, or will each of them make a wise choice when it comes to selecting a builder? There are three builders, but only one who knows the importance of a strong foundation. This is an excellent adaptation of the story told by Jesus.

The Good Egg of Gooseville, also included, is full of witty rhymes, lots of fairy tale characters and takes aim at being selfish and uncaring. The importance of sharing and being helpful are clear, making this more of an application than a retelling of the parable of the Good Samaritan.

It made me think more of Proverbs 18:1, “Whoever isolates himself seeks his own desire, he breaks out against all sound judgment” (ESV). The mayor of Gooseville, Humpty, played by Bob, just wants to be left alone. He doesn’t want to be bothered with the problems of Little Bo Peep, Old Mother Hubbard and Jack Be Nimble (a role made for Larry). You could say he is headed for a fall. As a better known proverb puts it: “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall” (Proverbs 16:18 ESV). When Humpty finally escapes to his dream vacation, it turns out to be as hollow as the life he has lived. This has its moments, even if does not quite live up to the main attraction. What can compete with a trio of well-dressed pigs and a narrator that sounds like a famous actor?

In between the two episodes is a new silly song, “Happy Tooth Day!”

This is worth having for The Little House that Stood, which is classic VeggieTales. The many storybook characters that inhabit The Good Egg of Gooseville, make it an appropriate fit with the former. Together they help viewers discover that vegetables can make you smile, even laugh. I’m glad someone imagined  waltzing with potatoes.
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