Rugrats: C is for Chanukah

Written: Daniel Kibblesmith & Cullen Crawford

Illustrated: Kate Sherron

Lettered: Jim Campbell

This is the first of the Rugrats comics, and as the title states is based on the Jewish holiday Harmonica – The Festible of Lights!  I’ve always liked Rugrats.  It was one of the best shows my kids could watch back in the day.  It is also one of the few kids cartoons that has aged really well over the years.  As i read this comic, I couldn’t help but hear all of the dialogue in everyone’s unique voices and accents.  This comic did an excellent job of catching the feel of all of the kids and adults from the television show.  It introduces the reader to all of the characters, including the adults.  The comic gives winks and nods that help tell about each character’s personalities even if its brief.

The kids travel through their eight days of camping with their parents while representing, or more appropriately, MIS-representing the Jewish holiday.  Their adventures revolve around their toddler interpretations of what grandpa has told them about the holiday.

For those that are either Jewish or have an appreciation for the Jewish celebration of Hanukkah, this issue does a semi good job of attempting to tell the actual story.  All of the pieces of the story are present.  The downside is that the actual story is broken up by baby-isms, golems and of course – REPTAR!  It remains a good starting point to anyone wanting to teach their kids about Hanukkah.

This is a very well told and pretty tight story overall.  The one downside I see is that the panels, while drawn perfectly according to the cartoon, are rather wordy.  A young child will have issues with the vocabulary on their own.  Even an adult will find themselves reading an awful lot for a children’s comic.  Now if the same adult is good with voicing the kids and parents as they go, it can make for a more lively reading.

If you or your kids are fans of Rugrats, and/or Hanukkah stories, this comic is a fun little story that informs what the holiday is about while putting a toddler spin on it.