Ted’s back, bursting with enthusiasm, this time throwing himself into the role of painter.
As usual, Ted awakens in his bedroom. In Doctor Ted (2008), he had a sore knee, so, seeing no doctor in his immediate bedroom, he became one; in Firefighter Ted (2009), he smelled burnt toast and found no firefighter at hand and so became one. Here, bored by humdrum walls, “Ted looked everywhere”—fish tank, fridge—before gamely becoming an artist himself. Sporting a tiny green beret and smock-like coat, he creates a brush by tying a curtain tassel to a wooden cooking spoon. “Artist Ted didn’t have any paint, so he made some of that, too”: ketchup, mustard, chocolate syrup, toothpaste. Painting hijinks ensue at home and school. Some humor is of the classic-kid variety (a mural of “a monkey juggling stinky socks”), some more likely to be appreciated by adults (Ted titling a masterpiece Green despite an utter lack of it). Characters are various round-eyed animals, which Lemaitre outlines in casually uneven black strokes and fills in with bright colors. The visual style is loose and easygoing. Ted’s use of a new classmate’s white shirt (that the classmate’s wearing) as blank canvas makes the mischief feel a bit more malicious than when only adults are dismayed, and it feels textually forced, as well.
Oblivious but funny and full of gusto, Ted’s bound for detective work next. (Picture book. 3-7)