Freddie Highmore as Jared, peering through a circle, next to a Hogoblin

Hazel and Katniss and Harry and Starr Podcast: The Spiderwick Chronicles

The logo for Hazel & Katniss & Harry & Starr podcast: an orange box with the words written in white fontHazel & Katniss & Harry & Starr is a weekly Canadian podcast about young adult literature, their film and television adaptations, and everything in between. Now in its sixth season, the podcast—hosted by film critic Joe Lipsett and English professor Brenna Clarke-Gray—aims to highlight the cultural worth of young adult and middle-grade texts, with a focus on Canadian, Indigenous and minority creatives and stories.

Join us weekly for deep dives, as well as a round of YA BINGO.

Book 6, Chapter 32: The Spiderwick Chronicles

Brenna and Joe are back in fantasy territory with the first five books in Tony DiTerlizzi and Holly Black’s The Spiderwick Chronicles, as well the 2008 adaptation from Daniel Waters.

We’re mixed on lead Freddie Highmore’s success playing twins, though we both like Sarah Bolger’s Mallory, the use of fencing and Brenna even likes the CGI!


Plus: innocuous voice casting, the film’s horrifying end, and a mini tangent about Hollywood nepotism and privilege.

Read on for more about this week’s episode from co-host Joe Lipsett:

After checking out S01 of Percy Jackson and the Olympians last week, Brenna and I elected to stay with fantasy in anticipation of the new Roku series, The Spiderwick Chronicles.

The 2008 film is actually much better than we thought! While 1/2 of the twins don’t get much to do, the action is pretty solid. As for the books, they’re definitely middle grade, but DiTerlizzi’s illustrations are really captivating and the various fae creatures are exciting (albeit familiar). -JL

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