Glop: Nontoxic, Expensive Ideas That Will Make You Look Ridiculous and Feel Pretentious

The tough thing about parodying actress Gwyneth Paltrow’s much-derided Goop “lifestyle” website is that it already feels like a parody of itself, what with its advice on steam-cleaning the vagina and all. Still, that hasn’t stopped Gabrielle Moss from trying, in the hardcover humor title GLOP.

Mimicking the sterile, ice-queen look of Paltrow’s internet venture, GLOP delivers deliciously barbed contents in support of Moss’ subtitle of NONTOXIC, EXPENSIVE IDEAS THAT WILL MAKE YOU LOOK RIDICULOUS AND FEEL PRETENTIOUS. These articles address how to determine which shaman to bring along on your family vacation, how to decorate your home’s closed-off wings and how to throw a party “That Screams, ‘I Have Two Black Friends!’” (Just so you know, the latter includes such tips as offering a gift bag with “bowel-detoxing tea samples” and quoting the hip-hop lyric “face fucked you in your kitchenette.”)

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Die Hard: The Authorized Coloring and Activity Book

diehardcolorMethinks this coloring-book craze for adults has gotten way out of hand, and it was questionable to begin with. Now we have Die Hard: The Authorized Coloring and Activity Book welcoming itself to the party, pal, and it is at once a coattails-riding cash grab for 20th Century Fox and a knowing parody of the fad by stand-up comedian Doogie Horner, who wrote and illustrated and clearly has more talent than should be allowed for one human.

Here, in 80 oversized pages, Horner (author of 2010’s amusing Everything Explained Through Flowcharts) retells the tinsel-and-terrorists tale of Bruce Willis’ smash hit of the summer of 1988, through ready-to-color iconic scenes of the Christmas Eve siege on Nakatomi Plaza.

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Bad Little Children’s Books: KidLit Parodies, Shameless Spoofs, and Offensively Tweaked Covers

badlittlechildrenImmediately recognizable by their distinctive gold spines, the Little Golden Books made up many an American child’s bookshelf, mine included. Read and read until their pages fell apart in exhaustion were such classics as THE POKY LITTLE PUPPY, SCRUFFY THE TUGBOAT and various Disney tie-ins. All are skewed mercilessly — just the way I like it — in Arthur C. Gackley’s BAD LITTLE CHILDREN’S BOOKS. Unless you’re an asshole who simply refuses to read the Abrams Image release, it’s the funniest book you’ll read all year.

And yet, it’s a tough tome to review, because to see it kind of says it all. Its 120-ish faux covers are dead-on parodies visually, boasting un-PC titles like COUSIN MILKY IS LACTOSE INTOLERANT (which adorns this collection’s own cover), DON’T LICK THE STRIPPER POLE, EVEN GIRLS FART, THE 3 LITTLE FUTURE BACON STRIPS and THE ANTI-VACCINE KID AND THE GIFT OF A NAVAJO BLANKET RIDDLED WITH SMALLPOX.

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Great Showdowns: The Return

greatshowdowns2A sequel to last year’s THE GREAT SHOWDOWNS, Scott C.’s GREAT SHOWDOWNS: THE RETURN features dozens upon dozens more of drawings of depicting some of pop culture’s greatest adversaries.

That’s it: They just stand there facing one another, whether “they” are the characters of KRAMER VS. KRAMER, ENTER THE DRAGON, WEST SIDE STORY — heck, even THE RED BALLOON!

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Pu Pu Hot Pot: The World’s Best Restaurant Names

pupuHere in Oklahoma City, there was an Asian restaurant called Long Wang. Or maybe it was Long Dik or Long Wong. I don’t recall exactly, but the point is, it had a name that was juvenile-level funny, completely inadvertent and totally phallic.

Whatever it was called, it would have found a fine home in PU PU HOT POT: THE WORLD’S BEST RESTAURANT NAMES. Ben Brusey’s humor title presents full-color photos of 100 such places and then throws in a caption that isn’t always needed.

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T-Rex Trying … / Why Unicorn Drinks

trextryingWoe be to the reader who dare heads for the humor shelves these days. They’re full of titles spawned from (often perplexingly) popular Internet sites and blogs.

T-REX TRYING … comes from Hugh Murphy’s Tumblr of, well, the title says it all: a big ol’ dinosaur attempting to do various things — not exactly a setup for comedy gold.

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The Swinger

swingerWhat a strange book. It’s not a question of liking or disliking it because it’s extremely well-written with strong, believable characters and a fascinating storyline. It’s just that it seems so odd to treat the story with a fictional approach. I’m talking about Michael Bamberger and Alan Shipnuck’s THE SWINGER, a not-at-all thinly disguised alternative history of the Tiger Woods affair.

The parallels between Woods and the book’s main character, Herbert X. “Tree” Tremont, are meant to be obvious. There’ll be no reader saying to himself, “Could they be referring to this?” Yes, they are referring to that.

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Fifty Sheds of Grey

Already, to one one’s surprise, many parodies exist of E.L. James’ mommy-porn smash FIFTY SHADES OF GREY, but C.T. Grey’s FIFTY SHEDS OF GREY is the first I’ve dared crack open, and I only did because it can be read in its entirety within the span of a troublesome bowel movement.

I didn’t, but you get the picture. And I apologize for it.

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The Christwire Handbook: Staying Saved in a Wicked World  

Christwire.org is to the fanatical right wing Christian conservatives what The Onion is to Middle America: a satire of everything that makes them firm in their convictions, and makes them look like nutjobs to the rest of the world.

Starting as a website/blog, ChristWire is now expanding its dry sense of humor into the world of print with THE CHRISTWIRE HANDBOOK, a collection of essays with titles like:
• “Is My Husband Gay?”
• “Sweat, Sodomy, and Radical Socialism: A Shocking Look Inside America’s Most Dangerous Gay Bars”
• “Gays Invent New Wii Sex Toy, So Blacks Can Have Virtual Sex with White Women”
• “How to Know If Your Child Is a Chinese Hacker”
• “Why Can’t I Own a Canadian?”

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That Is All

Fact raconteur John Hodgman is back with his third and presumably final faux almanac, THAT IS ALL. It’s such a straight continuation of 2005’s THE AREAS OF MY EXPERTISE and 2008’s MORE INFORMATION THAN YOU REQUIRE that ALL begins on page 607.

That’s merely the first of many jokes that make ALL one peculiar, bizarre, unique and consistently hilarious read. Another is a day-by-day, page-per-page countdown of the events leading up to the forthcoming end of the world on Dec. 21, 2012, as predicted by those infernal Mayans. If you haven’t started reading the book already, DON’T DELAY! Precious little time remains. WERE YOU AWARE OF IT?

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