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The Wobbit: A Parody Paperback – November 26, 2013

3.1 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Yes, the rumors are true. I am the Harvard Lampoon." (J.K. Rowling)

“This reminds me of The Hobbit.” (J.R.R. Tolkien)

“I forgive them.”
(Jesus Christ)

“I could see this being a great three-minute animated short.” (Peter Jackson)

“TL;DR." (T.S. Eliot)

“Thanks, Mom. This book has finally bridged the growing gap between us.” (your teenage son)

“I love the twist ending where it turns out that all along you were reading about sexy people.” (E.L. James)

“Needs more Jay-Z songs.” (F. Scott Fitzgerald)

About the Author

The Harvard Lampoon debuted in February 1876 and is the world’s longest continually published humor magazine. Lampoon alumni include comedians Conan O’Brien, Andy Borowitz, Greg Daniels, Jim Downey, Al Jean, and B.J. Novak. Other alums have written for Saturday Night Live, The Simpsons, Futurama, Late Night with David Letterman, Seinfeld, 30 Rock, and dozens of other shows. The Harvard Lampoon is also the author of Nightlight and The Hunger Pains. Visit HarvardLampoon.com.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Touchstone (November 26, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1476763674
  • ISBN-13: 978-1476763675
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.5 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #662,058 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Actually, I was expecting more. Bored of the Rings was one of the funniest parodies I've ever read and I had expectations of the same for the Wobbit, it truly let me down.
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Format: Paperback
The Wobbit: A Parody
Written by: The Harvard Lampoon
Publisher: Simon & Schuster, Inc.
Published: November 26, 2013
Price: $13.99 Paperback

Maybe it’s from growing up with the Naked Gun movies, maybe it’s from my lifelong enjoyment of “Weird” Al, maybe its the genius that is South Park, or maybe it’s all Mel Brooks’ fault, but I know, deep down in the cockles of my heart, that “parody” does not have to mean “stupid.” There can be plot, character development, themes, motifs, and all those other things that “real” stories have, along with the references and the funny. Sadly, The Harvard Lampoon’s newest book, The Wobbit: A Parody fails to live up to what I know a parody book can and should be.

From the solicitation:

When Aaron Sorkinshield and his band of Little People embark on a quest across Widdle Wearth to reclaim the hoard of Academy Awards stolen from them by the lonely Puff the Magic Dragon, senile wizard Dumbledalf suggests an unlikely and completely unqualified accomplice: Billy Bagboy, an unassuming wobbit dwelling in terrorist-riddled Wobbottabad.

<<Along the way, the company faces internet trolls, moblins, one really big spider that must be at least an inch and a half wide, and slightly worse. But as they journey from the wonders of Livinwell to the terrors of Jerkwood and beyond, Billy will find that there is more to him than anyone—Tolkien included—ever dreamed. Propelled to his destiny by a series of courageous adventures and indented paragraphs, Billy will set out on the greatest YOLO of all time…one that leads deep into the dark caverns hiding a mysterious man named Goldstein, who’s just trying to have a nice Seder.>>

I’ll admit, reading this description of the book put me in a good mood.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My first exposure to the lads at Harvard Lampoon was back in 1974 when I bought my first copy of "Bored of the Rings." That remains to this day the funniest book I have ever read. I purchased a copy of "The Wobbit" hoping it would at least compare. I was severely disappointed. Rather than being witty and biting satire and true parody it was just rampant with infantile potty humor that seemed to be mainly there for shock value and little else.

It seems that the ivied halls of academia are dropping further and further down the learning curve. I'm afraid Harvard has become little better than your average middle school.

Sad, really.
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Format: Paperback
I really wanted to like this book. My recollections of its predecessor Bored of the Rings are of an uneven, but chuckle-filled, delight that I wanted to share with my friends. Unfortunately, this book is only uneven, sprinkled with a few smirks, and I can't recommend it.

It's a shame, really. Tolkien's books seem like a prime target for parody. As are the overblown films that Peter Jackson makes out of them (and I enjoy the heck out of both). If parody is defined as a deliberate copy done for comic effect, this book only vaguely fits the definition. All that is borrowed from the original work is a rough outline of the plot (with little comic effect) that is used to string together a hodge podge of cultural reference one-liners that don't even come close to telling a story.

A few jokes are amusing. There are some good shots at Aaron Sorkin and the walk-and-talk. Dumbledalf's conflation of the worlds of The Hobbit and Harry Potter brought a couple of smiles. Also humorous were characters like L. Ron and his disciples, the Internet Trolls (actual trolls), and the idea of Elvisking.

What didn't work at all was the character of Billy Bagboy, the obvious stand-in for Bilbo Baggins. Rather than be the charming, confused, and frightened center of the story and thoughtful representative for the reader, he was presented as an obese, lazy oaf. Without a likable character for the reader to identify with, the book counted on its jokes to drag the reader through to the end. And since most of the jokes seemed to misfire, it was a real slog to push through the whole thing.

Read the cover. Skim the first chapter or two. If you're laughing out loud, or even giggling, you might enjoy this. If not, I'm afraid it doesn't get any better and you should give this book a pass.

[Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book for review.]
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Format: Kindle Edition
While, the protagonist of this parody was not the greatest, he was a great foil to the surrounding characters that included an estranged wizard, a band of ridiculous "little people", and even some native New Zealand birds. If you have read The Hobbit, Harry Potter, Game of Thrones or Lord of the Rings there will be some non-obvious jokes that you will surely enjoy.

There were a few shameless plugs to educate readers of the various forums for which the Lampoon operates, which were not just randomly placed, but actually kind of funny.

For a ridiculous read that had me laughing on the airplane as the person next to me coughed into her arm, I would recommend it to my friends and family for a fun, quick read.
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