Admittedly, I much prefer “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” to “The Colbert Report” because the arrogance and harshness — even if it is satire — starts to get to me after a while. However, my friend disagrees and was nice enough to pass along her copy of Colbert’s book to me once she was done reading it. Simply put, I Am American (And So Can You!) is Colbert’s manifesto; his thoughts about everything from race to sports to religion to The American Family (capitalization his).
Overall, I was disappointed. Colbert’s humor is his facial delivery and mannerisms, and therefore his humor does not translate well into book format. It was incredibly tedious to read all of the comments written in the margins, which were some kind of bastardized version of “The Word” segment from Colbert’s television show. And, even more so than the television, the arrogance and harshness started to get to me so much that by the end of the book, all the humor was gone from it. My theory is that the book was rushed together (Colbert claims he recorded all of it over a three-day weekend in a hand-held recorder) in order to capitalize on the “success” of his White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner speech, which is reprinted at the back of the book.
When I told my friend my reaction she said the book would have been much better in audiobook format, but I have to disagree. This book is just so long winded that I think it still would have lost its humor after a while. From now on, I’m going to stick to the books released by “The Daily Show”.
- Colbert, Stephen. I Am America: (And So Can You!). New York, N.Y: Grand Central, 2007. Print. 277 pgs. ISBN: 9780446580502. Source: Borrowed from a friend.