I’ve noticed that some of the annotations are just some obvious things that Martin Gardner may have noticed. These “analyses” are things any person could have seen. I’m starting to not really see some of the annotations as good analysis just obvious explanations for some of the happenings in wonderland. After all, it’s already been noted that the Wonderland is an “opposite world” so it’s not that hard to see how some things in this world are playoffs of things in the real world. There are many examples of this.
One is the mock turtle scene in Chapter 9. Martin Gardner takes note in the margin that PERHAPS this could be a playoff of green turtle soup. No duh it’s a spinoff of that! Anyone who knew what green turtle soup was would know that this was the “opposite” of it. (I put “opposite” in quotes because I’m sure there are many different assumptions of what the opposite of green turtle soup could be.) It just seems that some commentary in the margin’s could be avoided somehow.
Another one that I noted as OBVIOUS would be the fact that the Lobster Quadrille dance is a play on Lancers Quadrille. However I do not know how the Lancer’s Quadrille is performed, I still think that if I did know what it was I would laugh and think it funny that there was a dance in the story called the Lobster Quadrille. No need to tell me that again in the margin.
It also seems extraneous to put the original poem that Carroll is making fun at in the margin. I’m pretty sure that everyone as a child has heard the first stanza of The Star by Jane Taylor. By reading the Mad Hatter’s poem that he sang about the bat, it’s obvious (to me) that it’s making fun at “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star”. I don’t think I need to go to the margin and read that same thing again.
It may not bother anyone else, but every time I go to read the annotations I’m hoping to read something I didn’t know, or learn something new. Seeing obvious notes taken by another reader of the story doesn’t really make me want to go and read the annotations again.