Sunday, April 11, 2010

Cannonball Read Entry #21: Naked Pictures Of Famous People - Jon Stewart

Two things you should probably know right out of the gate: For those expecting a literary version of The Daily Show, this isn't it. And for those expecting the eponymous naked pictures of famous people...Well, consider yourself blue-balled.

Whenever anyone attempts to badmouth The Daily Show, they always tend to fallback on the classic excuse of "Jon Stewart has a team of writers! Therefore his show has no merit!" Because Sean Hannity apparently researches and writes his entire show entirely by himself. Dipshit. Well, this book is pretty much a prominent middle-finger anyone who's ever called Stewart's comic abilities into question.

Despite what the title might lead you to think, Naked Pictures is actually a collection of short stories by Stewart. While it doesn't really have any of the political strength of the show that made him famous, it does have to kind of satirical edge, sharp writing and cultural edge to it that makes the show as popular as it is.

If anything, it bears a striking similarity to the interview portion of the show, a feature that I've always found to be a tad underrated. The self-effacing candor, the non-judgmental exchange of ideas, the refusal to take bullshit...Despite being the one part of the show that most people end up Tivo-ing through, it's the moment of the show that cements Stewart's reputation as the last vestige for truly spin-free news.

Admittedly, some stories fall a bit flat. For example, Stewart's fake obtiuary for the Taco Bell Chihuahua would probably be funnier thirteen years ago if it were a bit longer. But honestly, the entire thing is like three pages anyway, and when you consider that the rest of the book is an absolute gold mine of satire, complaining about one teensy little three page story seems a tad petty.

Anyhoodle, if you're looking for something short, snappy, and witty, I'd give it a read.

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