Two weeks ago John Oliver released A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo, a children’s book timed to come out the same day as a book by the family of Vice President Mike Pence about his pet rabbit. Well, now it looks like a Marlon Bundo Indiana trip is in the works — Will and Grace‘s showrunner has just bought copies of Oliver’s book for every elementary school in Pence’s home state.
While Pence’s version of Marlon Bundo’s story is an innocuous book about being the Vice President, written by the Veep’s wife and daughter, Oliver’s is more political. The latter, written by Jill Twiss, tells the story of Marlon Bundo hopping around the White House with Wesley, his partner. In this version, Marlon and Wesley want to get married but a “very stinky stinkbug” (who looks uncannily like Mike Pence) says boy bunnies must marry girl bunnies.
The John Oliver tie-in was a literal overnight success. The Monday after Oliver’s show aired the book became an Amazon best-seller. Even Charlotte Pence bought a copy. The book sold out almost immediately but is being reprinted.
An extra 1,121 copies will definitely be printed. That’s how many elementary schools are in Indiana.
Thanks to Max Mutchnick, best known as the showrunner of Will and Grace, every grammar school library in the state of Indiana will get its own copy. In the letter each school is getting with the book, Mutchnick writes:
I was blown away by the new John Oliver children’s book, “A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo.” With Easter upon us, I wanted to not only support the brilliance of John Oliver, but also celebrate the Gayest Bunny of Them All: The Easter Bunny. So I decided to buy a copy of Oliver’s “Bundo” (written by Jill Twiss) for every public grammar school in Indiana. All 1,121 of them. Here’s why: Mike Pence has had an enormous platform in Indiana, and as it relates to gay people, he’s used it to spread a message of intolerance. By donating these books, I hope to counter those efforts and provide positive role models and a story of inclusion for children in Pence’s home state. If this book can help one boy or girl in Indiana love and accept who they are, I know both Marlon Bundos would be proud—even though one of them is on the downlow.
I would like to donate this copy of A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo to your library. After hearing about the book, I brought it home and read it to my twin daughters. It’s a poignant story about how love and community can rise above intolerance.
My grammar school library was something I always remembered as a safe haven. Books allow children to dream and hope, but you know that already.
Thanks to libraries and librarians like you, storytelling not only became my passion — it also became my profession. I hope your students enjoy this book as much as my family and I did.
We hope Mutchnick’s gift encourages some little Indiana kids to become storytellers, too.
What do you think about the Marlon Bundo Indiana school gift? Let us know in the comments!
Featured image courtesy of Chronicle Books