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Literature / Hollow Chocolate Bunnies of the Apocalypse

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A fantasy novel written by Robert Rankin.

It is about Jack, a young boy who runs away from home to a nearby city to seek his fortune. This city turns out to be Toy City, a dystopia with Living Toys.

He befriends Eddie Bear, a teddy bear private detective, and investigates the serial murders of nursery rhyme characters. Followed by The Toyminator a few years later.

This novel provides examples of:

  • Awesome Moment of Crowning: Eddie becomes the mayor at the end. Jack becomes an "honorary prince"
  • Big Eater: Humpty Dumpty, when he was alive; Eddie describes him as "Fat and dead, in that order".
  • Bizarrchitecture: The houses are made of alphabet blocks.
  • Body Horror: The woman/spider/things give Jack a serious case of the heebie-jeebies.
  • Canon Character All Along: It is ultimately revealed that “Bill Winkie” is actually Wee Willie Winkie; he was cheated out of the rights to his nursery rhyme by a bad contract, but was a natural detective given how he spent all that time checking windows and locks.
  • Clock Punk: Everything from guns to cars run on clockwork mechanisms. As do, unsurprisingly, some of the toys. In The Toyminator, Jack ends up in our own world and discovers, among other things, that his clockwork gun no longer functions, implying that this trope was only in effect because his universe runs on different rules than ours.
  • Cooked to Death: Humpty Dumpty is found dead in his own pool. Jack and Eddy try to figure out how the murder was committed, only to discover, nearly too late, that one of the window panes sitting above the pool has been replaced with a powerful magnifying glass. When the sun hit the pane while Dumpty was swimming, the water was instantly heated up, flash boiling the poor man alive. Later in the story, Jack Spratt is fried to dead in a deep fat fryer in a fast food restaurant.
  • Evil Twin: Sredna Sredna is the evil twin of the Toymaker.
  • Fake Defector: At one point, Jack pretends to be working with the evil twin as he had an encounter with the real "John Kelly" (the man he is impersonating), allowing him to trick their enemy into giving him a weapon.
  • Fun with Acronyms: Discussed, as Sredna has the unfortunate acronym of PRIMROS, without the E. They would prefer SPLAT or ZARK. Eddie suggests TWAT, which PRIMROSE rather likes, apparently not knowing what it means.
  • Genre Savvy: Jack has read aaallll the Bill Winkie Thrillers, making him aware of details such as the importance of the MacGuffin and when they've reached the point where the important characters and places would have been introduced.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Little Boy Blue is killed when he is run through with his old crook in a particularly bizarre example; he had bent over to look at his shoes and the crook was rammed into his rear end and came out his mouth.
  • Inexplicably Identical Individuals: All humans look the same to toys.
  • Interspecies Romance: Subverted. Eddie is sickened by the idea of this. It is played straight with Garth and the dancing doll.
  • It Only Works Once: Wheatley Porterman, who helped write the nursery rhymes that made so many famous, made so much money from Humpty Dumpty- the first such character- that he decided to take it all from the next client, Wee Willie Winkie (who went on to become Bill Winkie, private detective), but said client went public about how he was tricked so Porterman couldn’t do that to anyone again even if it was too late to get his own money back.
  • Living Toys: Naturally, as all of Toy City is inhabited by such beings, ranging from the obvious such as tin toys, dolls, or teddy bears, but including experiments in "energetic engineering" such as the rhyming frog.
  • MacGuffin: The Key. Lampshaded, discussed (they even call it the "MaGuffin"), and played with.
  • Nice Character, Mean Actor: Miss Muffet, who is nice when the camera is running, but becomes violent and arrogant when not being filmed.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Officer Chortle looks, and probably is, extremely stupid, but at one point he cunningly tricks Jack to admit falsely he is a murderer.
  • Posthumous Character: Bill Winkie was the second victim of the killer, although Eddie initially believes he's just left for a holiday until Jack realises Bill's true identity.
  • Public Domain Character: Eddie reveals early on (to Jack's surprise) that characters from nursery rhymes are all real people, and nearly all of them live in Toy City where they're treated as celebrities. A few of them actually feature in the story in one way or another.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Eddie, Tinto, the nursery rhyme characters and probably many of the Toy City residents; when Jack asks Tinto how long Eddie's been coming to the bar, Tinto specualtes it's been a couple of hundred years.
  • Reset Button: Literally everything from the ending of this book is chucked away at the start of The Toyminator, right down to Eddie's ability to finish similes.
  • Rhymes on a Dime: Played with with the Rhymey Frog. He usually does this, unless he gets put out.
  • Running Gag
    • Jack is called a gormster by everyone.
    • The old "You're going to kill me anyway, so it doesn't matter if you tell me" bit is used half a dozen times—and it always works!
    • References to foolish boys keep popping up, as cuisine, fashion materials, or just falling into pits.
  • Shout-Out: The scene with the fake Tinto has one to Pulp Fiction. Jack says "what?" about six times. Tinto says, "Jack, if you say the word what one more time, I will be forced to kill you."
  • Snarky Non-Human Sidekick: Eddie to Bill Winkie, although Jack may be the sidekick in his own relationship with Eddie.
  • Talks Like a Simile: Subverted. Eddie tries to talk like a simile, but he can never finish. It's as unfair as—.