Review of (Mock) Reviews
The Walrus‘ “The Obstecritic”, like McSweeny’s Internet Tendency‘s Reviews of New Food, is a delightful example of Internet periodical sarcasm at its most entertaining, if not its most artful. Sadly, neither quite reach the level of satire–at least not beyond the first entry or so–because the mimickry ceases to use parody to rebuke the overblown world of elitist criticism, but instead as a vehicle for increasingly outlandish and hyperbolic claims designed to simply get a rise out of the audience. Well, at least they tend to do so.
From “The Obstecritic”:
“Baby That Cried for the Entire Flight to India”
(by incompetent parents)
It is perhaps cruel to think of a baby as an asshole, but there’s something undeniably vindictive about seventeen hours of constant screaming (excluding the stopover in Helsinki). At some point, the perpetrator becomes a manifestation of pure evil. I realize that air pressure and colic and parents who ignore you — I mean, really, would it kill someone to pick up the little guy or put a boob in his mouth? — can be tough, but it is quite a feat to inspire loathing from an entire airplane full of people. Also, the inflight movie was The Notebook, dubbed in Finnish. Truly the voyage from hell.
And from Reviews of New Food:
Submitted by Emily Garber
It recently came to my attention that the Vietnamese noodle-and-broth dish spelled “pho” is not pronounced “foe,” as I had always assumed, but “fuh.” This was a heartbreaking revelation, because it shattered my dreams of opening hit restaurants called Pho Fo’ Sho’ (free Cristal with every bowl!) and Faux Pho (Pho Sho’s vegan spin-off).
And they are well-written. At least mock-journalism isn’t dying.