Gargamel the Great is a juvenile fiction story written by Tina Gallo. The story is based on the movie the Smurfs 2. It is a story that is appealing to children but it is more suitable for older children as it is a bit scary. The main character in the book is Gargamel. He is the antagonist who plots and kidnaps the smurfette so as to get the formula on how he can create many smurfs and use them to get essence for his magic. Most children will enjoy the book as it contains comic and scary scenes. Gargamel the Great book impacts the children both in a negative and positive way depending on the age and the parental guidance they receive before and after reading the book. The negative impacts are many compared to the positive ones.
The Gargamel the Great book will make many young children excited and happy to read the book because of the magic Gargamel performs. Young children love things to do with magic and that is why this book is perfect for them. An example is when Gargamel waves his hand and a huge cloud fills the stage replacing the light mist that was on the stage initially (Gallo 7). This is a lot of fun for the children. Changing Victor into a duck is also fun to the children but also scary to them.
Gargamel the Great book has negative and positive effects on the readers. Positively, it teaches young children that it is important to have a family and take care of their family and how to live together with them. When smurfette is kidnapped by Gargamel, Patrick and Victor comes all the way from New York to Paris to come and save smurfette from Gargamel. It teaches them to be their friend’s keeper and try to save them when they are in trouble. Victor had been turned into a duck by Gargamel but he was able to come save Patrick despite his state by flying in front of Gargamel when the giant cat was about to swallow him (Gallo 14). He was ready to save him despite the fact that he was in a person form but a duck. The children can also learn to be courageous and daring through Patrick and Victor. They were able to come and face Gargamel despite the fact that he is scary and performs magic as long as they save their friend smurfette. Additionally, the story teaches the children to forgive each other and that they should accept each other the way they are no matter what. Moreover, the story teaches children about magic and that magicians do not use their own power but they get it from somewhere else.
The story can be a bad influence on the children especially those at the age of five. This is because the story is scary and violent at some point. Some lines in the story are scary and can affect young children and in turn affect their sleep and their daily lives as a whole. The smurfs are constantly kicking, shoving and hitting each other. This could teach a bad lesson to young children as they can learn that kicking each other in not bad at all. After reading the book, young children might end up hitting each other aimlessly as they have read in the book like the smurfs do thinking that it is fun.
There is intensive violence in the book. The naughties are often fighting and pushing each other all the time and this can instill bad behaviors in young children. They will find fun in kicking each other and it can further lead to fighting. Additionally, as one reads the story, one of the smurfs is seen switching off the electricity which shocks him. This is a bad example to the young children because at the end of the day, the smurf was not hurt in any way and this sends a bad signal to children on playing with electricity. Many children are aware that electricity is dangerous but after reading that the smurf was not hurt in any way, they might end up playing with electricity. When this happens, it can lead to serious accidents in the house as most of them will think that they are only practicing what they read.
The changing of Azrael into a cat and victor into a duck depicts a form of violence against human beings in the story and this can be very disturbing for children. Furthermore, when Gargamel makes Patrick fly through the auditorium during his shows and almost falls into Azrael’s mouth who has been turned into a cat, it is so scaring. When a child reads this part, it can make him/her scream because they will always imagine that it is happening in real life or even to them.
As much as magic brings fun to children, Gargamel’s magic can be very scary to the kids. An example is when he turns a man into a giant toad (Gallo 10). He even turns human beings into a duck and a cat and this is terrifying magic. Many children will be very scared at this sight because they might think that they are next and this will affect their daily lives. In addition, Gargamel’s appearance is also scary to them because he is described as scary looking and nasty.
The kidnapping of smurfette is also another scaring incident for the children. Most children fear being kidnapped because they listen to news on the radio and television about kidnapping and how children get lost. Moreover, most parents advice their children not to follow strangers or they risk being kidnapped. Gargamel kidnapped smurfette so that he might find the formula of making more smurfs for essence for his magic. When smurfette refused to give him the formula, he is seen tying her up and hypnotizing her which is very scary for young children. This is disturbing and frightening and can make them fear even reading more books because they do not want to get scared by the information in the books.
Gargamel the Great story is an interesting story for children however; parental guidance is needed for younger children. The story is interesting all together scary and disturbing depending on the age of the child and parental advisory. It has a number of good values that can be instilled in children at the same time it impacts them negatively. Parents should take the initiative of discussing with their children reading the book their attributes and behaviors and that the negative behaviors copied from the book have consequences. Moreover, they should teach their children not to follow the negative characters in the book since they have consequences in life. Therefore, in essence, the book is a good one for children but parental guidance is needed.
Gallo, Tina. Gargamel the Great. New York: Simon and Schuster, 2013. Print.