John Oliver’s Parody of Mike Pence’s Children’s Book Outsells the Original

Marlon Bundo, the Pence family's pet rabbit
Marlon Bundo, the Pence family's pet rabbit | © Hannah MacInnis / WikiCommons
Photo of JW McCormack
23 March 2018

In one of the greatest trolls of recent memory, late-night host John Oliver’s A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo was released a day before Vice President Mike Pence’s own children’s book, Marlon Bundo’s A Day in the Life of the Vice President, and quickly outsold it.

Oliver’s book details the adventures of a cartoon rabbit who finds love with another male rabbit by the name of Wesley. Pence’s book, by contrast, is merely a bunny-eye’s view of the politician, who has supported “pray the gay away” therapy practices and who condemned homosexuality as a “deterioration of the family” in 2006.

It took less than a week for Oliver’s book (also available at to outsell Pence’s, netting the top spot on Amazon by March 22, 2018, just two days after its release. Noting on a Sunday episode of his HBO show Last Week Tonight that “Marlon Bundo” (truly an epic name for a pet rabbit) is his favorite thing about the Vice President, Oliver billed A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo as a story “of tolerance and advocacy … [exploring] issues of same-sex marriage and democracy.” A war of Amazon reviews commenced, with one reader of Oliver’s book rating it as “A wonderful way to discuss that [it is] ok to love who you love. Be it a boy bunny, a girl bunny, or a stinkbug.” The stinkbug, in this case, is a caricature of the Vice President, who tries to come in the way of Bundo and Wesley’s union.

A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo | © Chronicle Books

Meanwhile, Pence’s book, which was written by his daughter Charlotte and illustrated by wife Karen, drew reviews like the one-starred one that states “I got this book to try and ‘de-gay’ my child. I’ve heard that the Pences are the leaders in converting these heathen kids. I’ve read it to him THREE times. I’ve also tried beating him with it which works temporarily, but he just will not stop ‘Gay-ing’ everywhere we go.” One of the buyers of A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo? Charlotte Pence herself, who said, “It doesn’t have to be divisive.” All sales of Oliver’s book, whose fans include RuPaul and which is dedicated to “every bunny who has ever felt different,” go to AIDS United and LGBTQ charity the Trevor Project.

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