Sunday, January 22, 2012

Book Review: Lunatics

Hardcover: 320 pages
Publisher: Putnam Adult (January 10, 2012)

I have not laughed this hard since I watched Bridesmaids. Let me repeat. I have not laughed this hard at ANYTHING since watching Bridesmaids.

Abbott and Costello. Laurel and Hardy. Hope and Crosby. Martin and Lewis. Matthau and Lemmon. Belushi and Aykroyd. Farley and Spade. Now comes the buddy comedy team of Horkman and Peckerman.

What happens when humor writer Dave Barry writes a book with former Saturday Night Live writer Alan Zweibel? The answer: a shitload of hilarious fun that requires the presence of food to stay no more than 20 feet away. Do you want the book to be spit on? I didn't think so.

Lunatics is described as "an outrageous, laugh-your-butt off comic masterpiece of our time" and tackles issues that very well could have been inspired by 2011's Arab Spring as both Phillip Horkman and Jeffrey Peckerman find themselves being wanted for shooting a police officer on the George Washington Bridge, sneak onto a clothing-optional cruise ship, overthrow the Cuban government, bring food to Somolia, tackle the Middle East conflict, before bringing democracy to China, and urinating on Sarah Palin. It's not just that they do all those things but in the way that they just somehow happen to be there at the right time and still feuding with each other no matter the cost.

Steve Carell is already attached to star in the movie adaptation as Phillip Horkman. For some reason, I forgot that and was reading the Jeffrey Peckerman character in my head with Carell's voice. Oh, well. It does not make a difference who he plays because if the film is done right, and I expect that it will be, it will be one of Carell's finest films by far.

Zweibel writes the character of Horkman while co-author Dave Barry pens the chapters that come from Jeffrey Peckerman's point of view. Barry describes the character of Horkman as "a big, loveable, well-meaning dork" whereas Zweibel describes Peckerman as "a loud, offensively vile other words: Mel Gibson."

Phillip Horkman is a soccer referee and owner of The Wine Shop, which, to Peckerman's dismay, does not actually sell wine but instead, sells pets. Lots and lots of pets. A few days before, Peckerman, a forensic plumber, was upset with Horkman as his 10 year old daughter is called offsides. He feuds. The action begins.

The fight between Horkman and Peckerman escalate as they soon find themselves on the run and being hunted down by the NYPD and government for being terrorists. The rest is history for America's Most Wanted Terrorists.

Throughout the book, we get NBC News reports from Brian Williams. Williams, the funniest anchor in years, should have the comic chops to play himself in the film. More so, both Williams and Tom Brokaw cover this year's GOP convention which leads to more, promised hilarity as the GOP is at a stalemate over a presidential nominee. It gets worse. After Horkman recieves the GOP nomination, Peckerman is nominated by the Democratic Party.

Horkman and Peckerman have this ability, uncanny as it seems, to show up at the right place at the right time. In doing so, they become worldwide heroes.

Grade: A+

If you want to laugh your pants off, go read this book. Stop reading this blog right now and go read this book.

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