The End is here. No, really. I’m talking about the book, The End — the final installment in Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events, released last Friday (the 13th). I’m not sure what happens, but judging from the previous twelve books, I’m pretty sure it’s dreadful, miserable, and just altogether unpleasant.
But there’s even more unfortunate news: earlier in the week, the Gothic Archies released The Tragic Treasury, an album of songs devoted to each of the 13 books in the series. The Gothic Archies are really just singer/songwriter Stephin Merritt of the Magnetic Fields, with help from Lemony Snicket’s “spokesperson”, Daniel Handler, on accordion.
Handler has played as an “adjunct accordionist” for the Magnetic Fields on a number of occasions, including in concert and on their epic 69 Love Songs. So when Handler did his first book tour, he immediately thought of his accordion, and Merritt:
“I needed to come up with a presentation to keep as many as 100 children quiet for 45 minutes — and the accordion is very loud. I thought I could play the accordion and sing, so I asked Stephin to write something. In fact, I have the distinct memory of going to the ATM and withdrawing enough cash and paying him directly upon commission of the song.”
You can hear the Gothic Archies play that song (“Scream and Run Away”) live during their current tour with Lemony Snicket. Though if you go, be warned: Mr. Snicket doesn’t always turn up at these events…