For any pop culture obsessed dad, the work of James Hance is a breath of fresh air. His paintings are wonderfully executed, brilliant in their subject’s juxtapositions and perfectly fun. The pairing of Johnny Cash and Batman is a typical forehead-slapping zinger as well as his Sergeant Pepper attired Fraggles. Again, brilliant.
But in the grand tradition of and that’s not all, folks – James is also a gifted illustrator and writer. Those talents are combined with his passion for nostalgia in the book Wookiee The Chew – The House at Chew Corner. A clever mash-up of Winnie the Pooh and Star Wars, this comic-sized adventure is written in the unmistakable style of A.A. Milne’s original stories. The twist, you see, is in the details. A teddy bear-sized Chewbacca takes the place of Milne’s titular hero and the young Mr. Robin is replaced with a familiar pistol-wielding (albeit pint-sized) rogue.
There are fun, thinly veiled references to the Star Wars franchise throughout the book which makes it fun not only for junior; but interesting for dad to read as well. When you’re done with the story, the adventure can live on in the form of beautiful 11 x 17 reproduction prints or even t-shirts. Then, read the story again. Books are good like that.
Before you assume this is just for boys, know that my little girl LOVES the book and images. Chewbacca and R2-D2 (under the guise of Piglet) are her favorite Star Wars characters and she proudly displays one of James’ prints in her room.
Looking for icing on the cake? Mr. Hance is genuinely a nice guy. We bought a painting and a few prints in person several months ago and he was incredibly kind and personable.
Wookie the Chew is only $5 and available directly from the artist.