Wednesday, January 14, 2009

The Great Wednesday Compare #3- Oscar Wilde VERSUS Salman Rushdie

The winner of last week's Great Wednesday Compare (Hans Christian Anderson Vs. Oscar Wilde) with a final score of 7-5 was Oscar Wilde.

While the Wilde fans were quick out of the gate last week, I thought for a second the Andersen fans would catch up. It was a much closer race than I'd first anticipated. As Nicola, an Andersen supporter, pointed out, his tales certainly stick with me as an adult. In particular, I remember "the Ugly Duckling" and "The Little Mermaid" (and to a lesser extent "The Little Matchgirl" and "Thumbelina.") However, I don't know for certain that I've ever read the originals. In the case of "The Little Mermaid", it's the film versions that I'm most familiar with. An earlier, non-Disney version I saw as a kid made an impression on me (for all the wrong reasons... well, for two of the wrong reasons anyway.) An animated topless Ariel climbs upon a rock at the end and the scene morphs into the real-life statue that still rests (albeit unpeacefully) in Copenhagen today. I'm not sure what version this was, but looking through IMDB, I'd venture to say it was the 1974 version narrated by Richard Chamberlain. My grandmother also had a cookie tin with a picture of that statue on the lid, though I don't think anyone she'd ever known had been to Denmark.

Another Great Wednesday Compare, another walk down memory lane.

Remember, vote simply by adding your comment below, base it on whatever merit you choose, voting does not end until Tuesday at 11:59 p.m. (Jan. 20, 2009), and if you want your author to get more votes, feel free to promote them here or on your blog!

Who's better?


Teddy Rose said...

You've got us comparing apples and oranges now John. My vote is for Oscar Wilde.

Bybee said...

Oscar Wilde.

Chrisbookarama said...

My Mom and Grandmother have versions of that statue all over the house. My Grandmother is Danish and went back to Denmark to visit a few years ago. So I know it well ;)

I'm sticking with Wilde.

Nikki in Niagara said...

I'm going to have to abstain this month. I don't think Wilde deserves to win twice in a row and I have never read Rushdie, though I hope to one day.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

I did not see this compare coming.

I have not read Rushdie, so am sticking with Wilde.

Anonymous said...

Comparing Rushdie and Wilde is brilliant.

Each suffered persecution for their words.

Both are also very quick wits and very clever speakers.

I recall a CBC lecture in which Rushdie mused about receiving a novelty death certificate from the actor who played the coroner munchkin in the 1939 Wizard of Oz shortly after receiving his death sentence from the ayatolah -- it was a gag gift that Rushdie surmised the actor bestowed on folks ever since his 15 mins of fame in 1939 -- it was a funny random story when Rushdie told it.

Oscar gets my vote. Nice try, though, John!!! Clever choice.

Anonymous said...

The above post is from


Bookfool said...

Oh, that's just unfair. I choose Oscar for his glorious hair and wit, but don't count my vote. I've only read quotes from both, no major writings.

FleurFisher said...

I can't get on with Rushdie, so it has to be Oscar Wilde.

Unknown said...

This is a fun idea, glad I've stumbled on it.

I love Oscar Wilde, but I have to admit that Midnight's Children is probably better than anything Oscar wrote.

On the other hand, Oscar has written single lines that are so memorable you hear people quote them all the time without realizing who they are quoting. Take "The only thing worse than being talked about, is not being talked about."

Salmon has some very funny stuff, but Oscar gets one of the biggest laughs you'll ever here with just two words...."A HANDBAG!!!"... in The Importance of Being Earnest.

Soooo, I'm going with Wilde.

Unknown said...

Wild about Wilde. I snort with every reread.


Anonymous said...

I'm sticking with Wilde, although this compare reminds me that I really need to read something by Salman Rushdie one of these days.

Kate said...

My vote is for Rushdie - for all of you planning to read some of his books, DO!!!! They are beautifully written - he should be a poet rather than a novelist. I just borrowed his latest (The Enchantress of Florence) from the library and can't wait to dive in!

Anonymous said...

Well, no one does an aphorism like Oscar Wilde, and he's written brilliant books and plays, but Midnight's Children is #2 on my Favourite Books of all time list, so I have to side with the minority and back Rushdie.

Anonymous said...

I've been recruited as another Oscar vote. But I'd have voted for him anyway!