Sunday, June 14, 2009

Earth vs Everybody

If you're quite familiar with The Simpsons, you already know that John Swartzwelder is the best and most prolific writer on the show. Otherwise, well, there you have it. That guy is really funny. His scripts remind me of Woody Allen's 70's movies and books, when he had that non-sensical, surrealistic humour.

Swartzwelder don't contribute scripts anymore, but he's published a series of short but great novels, most of them starring loser detective Frank Burly, which could be described as an Homer-ified Bogart . The last release is "Earth vs Everybody", which follows in the "film noir sci-fi gone crazy" vein of his 2006 masterpiece "How I Conquered you Planet".

It's published by Kennydale Books, and available on

As always with Swartzwelder's novels, there's hardly a "plot" to pitch, so here's an excerpt to give you a sense of the Swartzwelderian touch.

""Boing!" the cop said.

I turned around. It was Larry Laffman. As he slammed me up against a rock-face and told me to spread'em, and I laughed myself sick at the serious way he said it, we swapped stories. He told me how he'd ended up as an Intergalactic Policeman, and I told him how I had evolved into a space monster. Then he reminded me that anything I might say, including all of the things I had already said, could be used against me in a court of law. I said he might have told me that before I blabbed everything. He said he was sorry. He was new at this. Also, he pointed out that my hands weren't up nearly high enough.

I was surprised to run into Larry way out here in the middle of outer space. Last I heard he was in Vegas."

No comments: