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on January 28, 2003
What can I say about Captain Underpants? Well, I know he's faster than a speeding waistband, more powerful than boxer shorts, and, heck, he can even leap tall building without getting a wedgie! And you can see it all (isn't this an exciting review) in these 5 action packed books, full of Action, Thrills, Laffs, More Action, More Laffs, More Flip-O-Rama, Tons-O-Fun, Lots-O-Laffs, Flip-O-Rama, Romance (just kidding), and terror. Wanna hear more?
George and Harold, two elementary school boys, make comics. Naughty comics. Dog Man, Timmy the Talking Toilet, The Amazing Cow Lady, and everybodys favorite, the amazing Captain Underpants. They spend hours and hours writing Captain Underpants comics, and sell them at school. I'm not going to tell all the details because it'll ruin the book, but they eventually turn their evil principal-Mr. Krupp-into Captain Underpants! Well, at least he thinks he's Captain Underpants. He goes out to save the day and gets into a mess of trouble, but it all ends well, or so George and Harold think, for what they don't know is that every time someone snaps their fingers, Mr. Krupp turns into none other than Captain Underpants! They find this out in book two, when the boys place a picture of an army of evil talking toilets into a photo scanner that make anything you put in it real! Uh oh! But how did the invasion of the incredibly naughty cafeteria ladies from outer space (and the subsequent assault of the equally evil lunchroom zombie nerds come about? Well, duh! Space alien lunch ladies who replace the original lucnch ladies who quit due to the offense taken from an insulting comic book from Georg & Harold. But that's not all the problems they have. They've yet to face the perilous plot of Professor Poopypants (actually Professor Pippy Pee Poopypants), in a really cool story in which you can see what your alternate name would be (mine's Zippy Chucklefanny)-and then there's the wrath of the wicked wedgie woman!
Will you like these books? YES. Anyone will. I'm sure young kids will, and I do, and I'm 13, and my Dad likes them, and he's 55! He laughed more than I did! I hope to see more of the legendary CU in the future...it's a dangerous world out there without 'em! Now, do me a favor and click the "Helpful" button...
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on June 7, 2003
I first got these books for my son a couple years ago when I couldn't get him to read anything else. Well, he read these books and really enjoyed them. Now he will read other books, but these are still among his favorite. My daughter is much more interested in reading, but she loves Captain Underpants, too, and thinks it's great fun to read the books out loud to me. And they are pretty funny. Some of the humor is even aimed at adults! The Captain Underpants series even inspired my daughter to write a little book about Captain Cam the Mysterious Man for an assignment that, if I may brag, was much more advanced in terms of plot development and in the creation of a protagonist and an antagonist than what her other first grade peers came up with. True, these books encourage that potty humor that kids of this age seem to find so darned amusing, but they grow out of it. You can always offer other books in addition to these, and in the meantime, Captain Underpants gets them to read. 'Nuff said.
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on November 2, 2002
My son started reading these books in the second grade. Now in the third grade, he's already reading bigger books like Harry Potter, but his favorites are still Captain Underpants. We had to go to the library and get them all and then at birthday time and Christmas, different relatives each bought a book so he now owns the entire set.
He gets me laughing with the jokes. He came up to me and said "Knock Knock". I of course answered with "Who's There?"... "I'm a Pile Up" he says.... when I answered "I'm a pile up who" (which sounds just like "I'm a pile of poo") he roared with laughter and went back to his Captain Underpants books to find more things to "get me" with.
He evens reads them to his 5 year old brother. They are actually getting along with each other as they sit on the floor and read together. I never thought stories about boy humor would make me so happy. And the language in these books is fairly tame. If you can handle the word "poop", you shouldn't mind these books at all.
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on March 1, 2006
My daughter discovered the Captain Underpants series a couple of months ago and I have to say, at first I wasn't sure I wanted to encourage her reading nonsense material. When I read the titles of the books, I had such a laugh and it really hit me why some kids love these books--they are sooo funny and it's exactly the kind of thing that a attracts a child. Kids love potty talk and silly pictures and the seeing Harold and his friend get into constant trouble with the principle at their school. These jokesters are forever playing pranks and trying to get themselves out of trouble. Yes, it's complete nonsense, but, it got my daugther to read chapter books! she's hooked. She loves to read and it's her love for reading that I'm encouraging not the nonsense.
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on January 25, 2011
My 8 year old son recieved these books as a Christmas gift. At the time I didn't think anything of it. Shortly after reading these he started giving his brother wedgies (which he had never heard of before) and he told me his teacher was idiotic because she told him he shouldn't talk in class. When I asked him where he learned this behavior from he said it was in the Captain Underpants books. I decided to read them. Admittedly, I should have done this prior to allowing him to read them. The two main characters are constantly doing inappropriate things. They are rude to their teacher and principal. In the one I read they said their science teacher was idiotic and his class was boring. They were making noises in class and when the teacher asked what was going on they told him he needed to see a doctor. They made up a brownie recipe that made the cafeteria explode. They wrote a comic about all the lunch ladies dying and turning into zombies. The list goes on and on, and this is only one book. I couldn't make myself read anymore. And if these things aren't bad enough, in just the first few pages there are so many intentionally misspelled words I was in shock. I want my son to read. I'm so happy he loves reading and I hate to discourage him from reading anything. However, these books are just totally inappropriate and defeat the whole purpose of him reading. My suggestion is to read them BEFORE you allow your child to.
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on April 14, 2005
My 7 year old daughter stumbled across her older brother's copies of Captain Underpants... for some reason, the series never struck his fancy. But my 7 yo LOVES these books!! I understand another reviewer's concern about the spelling, but a parent can also encourage a child to point out all the places where George and Harold spelled something incorrectly. It's empowering when a kid sees a word misspelled and can point it out and say how it should have been spelled. You know how kids love to point out when someone is doing something *incorrectly*. ;-)

The thing I like the best about this series is that the humor is INTERESTING!! Yes, definitely off color, but not inappropriate for the age group these books are written for. Until this series came along, I was very disappointed in the bland, boring plots of books that are supposed to captivate kids' imaginations and make them eager to read. The humor in Pilkey's books is easily accessible, fun, and totally tickles some kids' fancy. What better way to stimulate interest in reading!! Silly stories about kids, underpants, potties, boogers, and wedgies... very silly and fun stuff. I highly recommend this series.
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on December 20, 2006
"NO POTTY TALK AT THE TABLE!" I yell at dinner almost every night. Why would I want to encourage my kids with books like Captain Underpants? Just read one! Dav Pilkey is a genius. The plots are silly but the brio and incredible energy are contagious and anything but retrobate. These books crackle with humor, action, and fun. Honestly, if you aren't at least moderately amused yourself (never mind your kids) check your pulse. How do my kids feel? My six year old son reads these by himself in a single sitting and periodically laughs out loud. Sometimes he laughs so hard he ends up on the floor rolling around. Am I really going to stand in the way of this kind of fun?

George and Harold riff off the age old issues of the powerlessness of kids and the fantasy of possessing cosmic power in a readily accessible comic book form. Invariably some kind of threat to the world (monsters from space, mad scientists, etc...) are defeated by our class clowns Harold and George with the help of their school principle (hypnotized and possessed of magic powers) Captain Underpants. There's some very light comic book style violence, but mostly there's clever tech and lots of slapstick hoodwinks and hijinks. It's not going to win the Nobel Prize for Literature or anything - but it's aimed right at kid's entertainment monkey bone. There's plenty of lightly scatalogical humor (boogers and potty stuff). When I mean light, I mean light. For example our dynamic duo pranks a stick in the mud classmate by rearranging the sign that originally read "Please wash your hands after using the toilet" to read "Please wash your hands in the toilet" - and then he does. This had my little son in stitches. Kid's know it's joking - and it's exactly the kind of joking they do with each other.

As a parent I'd rather he were reading science or literature than this drivel - but it's a smart move. As a jumping off point for reading - for emphasizing the important message that reading is fun - there is no equal to this series. It's fun, silly, easy to read, and loaded with street cred. Kids will find it irresistible and will actively choose to read. My little son really fell in love with reading devouring Captain Underpants. Then we kept him well stocked with books and encouraged him to read and now he's moved on to more serious stuff.
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on May 15, 2008
After two or three of these books, the plot becomes dull and loses its humor. Also, I would not recommend these for children learning to read and write as they are filled with misspellings (picher for picture and shurely for surely). I don't quite get why this is supposed to be funny, but it's confusing and ultimately detrimental for my 8 year old.

Finally, parents take note: Pilkey has created a lucrative business based on potty humor and his inability to draw above a 3rd grade level. This is the junk food of the children's book industry. Many young children will find these books funny, but just as we don't allow our kids to eat candy and chips all day, these books should be limited.
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on February 11, 2003
The title gives it away folks. These silly stories are geared towards little boys and mine certainly can't get enough. My son is not real interested in reading but he LOVES these books. He reads them over and over agian, apparently finding humor in the toilet refrences. While not at all educational, who really cares if you can get them to read? As an added bonus to reading, there are also step by step drawing instructions so they can learn to draw their favorite "Underpants" character.
Some may see the title and think that these books are inappropriate. I have read through them and they seem fine to me but I suppose "fine" is subjective. I will say that my son's Catholic school library has them so they can't be that bad. My advice is to buy them, especially if it's for a boy who is less than enthusiastic about reading.
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on September 15, 2002
My son had all the elements of a good reader. I'd read to him EVERY night from infancy and up. We read nonfiction, fiction, letters, magazines. I'm an avid reader and writer. . .but still, by third grade it was work to make him pick up a book and read to himself. The nightly struggles ended when we discovered the TRUE SUPERHERO to Moms. . Dav Pilkey. He couldn't put them down. . and scans the bookshelves at bookstores for the next CAPTAIN UNDERPANTS. He's in 7th grade now, and always gets above average on his reading state standardized tests. I think I owe it to Captain Underpants teaching him that reading can be fun. Dav, your sense of humour is sick. . .just perfect for boys! I have no idea how you tap into that energy, but keep it up.
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