Friday, October 15, 2010

America - Jon Stewart (Audio)


Admission: I don't watch The Daily Show. In fact, I rarely watch television at all. But I do know Jon Stewart is a funny funny man. I'm not that out of touch.

But when Kathy (Bermudaonion) tells me I have to listen to an audio book so I can laugh my head off but warns me I might be offended, I don't have the will to resist. After all, the audio only takes a few hours to complete, so what do I have to lose? (Apparently just my dignity at almost wetting my pants.)

The book is structured as a mock textbook about US History. It has discussion questions at the end of each chapter. Classroom activities. Supplemental material. And with rude language and politically incorrect brattiness, it unleashes its wrath on everyone, from our esteemed forefathers to the Bush Administration. It is like the ultimate roast, and nobody can hide.

A few quotes:

The Enlightenment: Oppression and high mortality rates seemed ready to swallow what remained of mankind, when through the darkness emerged the light that would be its salvation: Reason. It began slowly. "Hey, what if we stop storing the corpses in the drinking water and see if that makes any difference to our health?"

If the presidency is the head of the American body politic, Congress is its gastrointestinal tract. Its vast and convoluted inner workings may be mysterious and unpleasant, but in the end they excrete a great deal of material whose successful passage is crucial to our nation's survival.



Hmmm...somehow, that just feels inadequate. Suffice it to say there are hundreds of quotable quotes, coming at you like rapid gunfire from all directions. At one point, through my tears I laughed and said out loud, "I can't take it anymore! My stomach hurts!!!". I even had a particularly blood-pressure-raising experience with Walgreens (as occurs almost on a weekly basis) and this audio eased me back into a state of healthful happiness.

The audio is narrated by the cast of The Daily Show, and all do a fine job as our "educators". There are a few audio effects that add to the overall experience...the ringing of a bell between discussion questions and buzzers to indicate our thinking time is up. It was all quite clever.

If you are looking for a little time-off from some of your more serious reads, allow yourself three hours of fun with this. Just remember to listen with your dander down, and without the kids in earshot!

4 out of 5 stars




19 comments:

Susan said...

I bought this book when it first came out, but now I'll have to listen to it. But first, I'm going to Walgreens and buy some Depends! Great review, Sandy!

bermudaonion said...

This book is so politically incorrect, but so hilarious all at the same time! I was kind of embarrassed at some of the stuff I found myself laughing at. I'm glad you enjoyed it too.

rhapsodyinbooks said...

I'm on the last disk. Some of the sound effects were so outrageously funny! I want to check the book and see how the book deals with the lack of them. But thus far it seems like a shame to be *reading* the book and missing out on the fun sound effects!

Beth F said...

I have to move this to the top of my play list. He was so funny at BEA and we do catch his show a few times a year.

Teacher/Learner said...

I was the first to check this out of my campus library (the benefits of working in processing!) and laughed out loud, so I can imagine how funny it is to listen to the Daily Show cast reading from it :oD

Alice Teh said...

I managed to control myself from peeing in my shorts while reading the passages you quoted here. Maybe I should be listening or reading this before my trip to the US end of December as my education. LOL!

ds said...

This sounds as though it might be better as a listen than a read. I don't watch The Daily Show either (why?), but I will try to get my paws on this. Thanks for the great review!

Zibilee said...

John Stewart is my boyfriend, and I try to catch the Daily Show whenever I can. I think this would make a really excellent choice for our next audio selection, especially after our last experience having been Mockingjay :(

Alyce said...

I had held off from getting the audio because I can't listen to it around the kids which seriously limits my listening time, but I may have to check it out from the library on a gloomy day. :) I love The Daily Show.

The Bumbles said...

I never watch Comedy Central myself - I never remember when Colbert or the Daily Show is on. But when I have come across episodes while visiting other people who watch them regularly I always have a good laugh. I'm glad to know that this audio was good for your health to boot!!!

heidenkind said...

Personally I'm more of a fan of Stephen Colbert, but The Daily Show is good, too.

Serena said...

I love Jon Stewart...he's hilarious...this sounds like a fun book.

Julie P. said...

I just finished listening to this one this week too! It's very, very funny!

caite said...

maybe it is just me, but I do not find Mr. Stewart all that funny. Not in this book, which I think I will skip but from what I have seen of him, limited though it be, on TV.

yep..I may be in a minority, but he sticks me as an angry, often mean spirited man.

oh well...lol

Coffee and a Book Chick said...

I really enjoy The Daily Show -- and this might be the audio book that gets me into liking audio books? I might have to pick this one in this format to see...! I always need a good laugh! :)

Jenners said...

I love The Daily Show ... and I love their point of view. I keep looking at this in the bookstore and think I might break down and buy it (or get Santa to buy it.)

I think I want the book version though ... it is stuffed with photos and captions that look so funny. I'm afraid I would miss too much of the book if I just listened to the audio.

Amy said...

This sounds like a wonderful audiobook! It reminds me a little bit of the stand-up comedy acts I used to listen to in college & law school for a break.

I used to watch The Daily Show almost every night - it was my news hour. John Stewart is great & the show was very smart & hilarious!

Thanks for this review. I'm definitely going to pick up this audibook!

~ Amy

Iliana said...

I love Stewart! He's so funny. You know I'm not into audio books but as he and the cast are reading this then I think it would be a blast! Great review Sandy. I'll have to see if I can find it at my library.

S. Krishna said...

I totally agree - I really enjoyed this one on audio. Sadly, I didn't love EARTH as much!