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Bartholomew and the Oobleck

Bartholomew and the Oobleck


by Dr. Seuss

Bartholomew and the Oobleck Paragraphs 7-12 Summary

King Derwin, the Dufus 

  • In these paragraphs, King Derwin throws a hissy fit because he wants more exciting weather. He even has a John Locke moment when he shouts "'Boy, don't you dare tell me what I can or cannot have!'" (11)
  • Okay, we're just going to put this out there: do any of you think the thing that's really bothering the king is the fact that his name is Derwin? Think about it. Of all the regal sounding names out there, this is what he gets stuck with? We'd be mad, too.
  • Whatever the reason, good ol' Derwin isn't actually the star of this section; it's Bartholomew. If it wasn't already clear that he's meant to be our main squeeze, it should be now as he reacts in just the same way we'd expect your child to react.
  • While the King is off in the stratosphere plotting away, Bartholomew's feet are planted firmly on earth, and he's not afraid to tell the King what he sees. He tells it like it is: the King can't control the weather.
  • Still, we can see there's a clear power structure in place, with the King bellowing over Bartholomew's protestations. Your child is sure to love the King's childlike temper tantrum, too. Just another example of adult hypocrisy, the scourge of childhood!
  • Most importantly of all, we get the crux of our problem with the King: he wants to control the sky. That's worse than Dr. Evil. All he wanted was one million dollars.
  • This is the ultimate in despotic rulers, which should remind you of someone you know. Someone possibly sitting next to you right now. Someone who may carry your genetic material or legal name.
  • That's right, we're talking about your kid—the one with the case of the Gimme Gimmes. The King is essentially a preschooler who wants what he wants when he wants it. And he wants it now. See why this book is relevant? Your kid will see in the King a frustrating adult, and you'll see your kid.
  • Did we just blow your mind?
  • But don't get us wrong. Bartholomew is still the kid character. There are just others who have some very childlike features.

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