Sunday Morning: The Joys Of Finding Waldo

Where’s Waldo? came out in 1987 and it was an immediate hit. A great big book full of great big pictures filled with *TONS* of itty-bitty details and, of course, one of the details in each picture was the eponymous Waldo. Then you’d get to the end of the book and find out that Waldo started the book with stuff like a cane, a backpack, so on, and he dropped an item on each page. Oh, and there’s a handful of little other things to look for… did you find the guy falling off of a ladder? Did you find the man who dropped his ice cream? Did you find the angry swimmer? And you could go back and find each tiny detail. It wasn’t the first book to do this sort of thing (I remember Highlights did something similar) but it did it in a way that immediately connected with millions of people, young and old.

So much so that there were sequels and additional characters (Woof, Wenda, Wizard Whitebeard, Odlaw) and there were new chaotic scenes with frenetic action as you asked Where’s Waldo Now?, or went on a Fantastic Journey, or went to Hollywood and each one was a great way to lose an hour (or several) as you looked for each little detail.

Well, the general idea was so awesome that there were a host of pretenders. Where’s Granny, Hide and Seek books, computer generated ones, ones that use actual pictures, there’s even a Star Wars version.

Well, Maribou brought home another version that came out and said “well, let’s make these educational!”

Pirates Magnified takes the tried and true “search and find” gimmick and gives you a 3X magnifying glass to use on its pictures. Each page has a fun scene to search and a handful of things to look for. Look for the smiling shark. Look for the firing cannon. Look for the captain swinging his sword. And there is a, sigh, educational portion where they talk about the particular pirate from a particular era, or they talk about the particular region of the Caribbean, and you can feel like you learned something.

But, when you get to the end of the book, you’ll be delighted to find that there are still a bunch of little things to go back and look for.

So… what are you reading and/or watching?

(Featured image is “Ah yes, I can definitely see some oxygen there” by Tim Green. Used under a Creative Commons License.)

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Jaybird is Birdmojo on Xbox Live and Jaybirdmojo on Playstation's network. He's been playing consoles since the Atari 2600 and it was Zork that taught him how to touch-type. If you've got a song for Wednesday, a commercial for Saturday, a recommendation for Tuesday, an essay for Monday, or, heck, just a handful a questions, fire off an email to

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