NAPALM AND SILLY PUTTY
Release date: 04/01/2001
Politically incorrect comic and Grammy winner Carlin has shown no signs of burnout during a four-decade career arc—as solo stand-up, TV writer and sitcom actor (That Girl; The George Carlin Show), with 18 hit recordings and 10 solo HBO specials, plus film roles (Dogma; The Prince of Tides). Living in L.A. and Vegas, he continues to take his act to stages across the country. Four years ago, Carlin's huge fan following kept his Brain Droppings on the New York Times bestseller list for 40 weeks, so it's no surprise he's back for another round of acrid and oblique observations on modern mores. He covers a wide range of issues from rape and religion to the homeless: "There's no war on homelessness... it's because there's no money in it." And any topic is fair game: abortion, airport security, cars, funerals, language, organ donors, sports, technology, TV and war. On the latter, he says, "Men, insecure about the size of their penises, choose to kill one another." Over 100 scintillating short pieces are interrupted by loony lists and hundreds of clever one-liners. The fragmented format and colloquial style of writing suggest that much of this laugh-out-loud book is drawn directly from Carlin's stage act. Several satires here ("A day in the life of Henry VIII," a nine-page interview with Jesus, an avant-garde play program) indicate a different direction Carlin might consider for future books. (May 1)
Forecast:HighBridge's abridged audiocassette and CD might lead some to peruse the book, which splashes in the wake of a massive Carlin retrospective ("From Class Clown to Social Critic") two months ago at the Museum of Television & Radio (N.Y./L.A.). With a 10-city author tour and national publicity, sales could equal those of
Brain Droppings (700,000 copies).