How I Escaped My Certain Fate Paperback – Oct 26 2010
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About the Author
Stewart Lee began stand-up in 1988 at the age of 20, and won the Hackney Empire new act of the year award in 1990. In 2001 he co-wrote the libretto for Richard Thomas's Jerry Springer: The Opera, which went on to win four Olivier awards. His most recent stand-up shows have been Vegetable Stew (2010) and Carpet Remnant World (2011). In December 2011 he won Best Male TV Comic and Best Comedy Entertainment Performance at the British Comedy Awards and his BBC show Comedy Vehicle won a BAFTA in 2012.
Top Customer Reviews
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
The wit that Stewart Lee brings to things is a joy, his extensive foot notes let you see inside jokes you've probably heard him perform on TV. The back story stuff is great, as is Stewart moaning on that everything post the 80s was derivative of him or one of his select uber-comic's-comic friends.
Ultimately you shouldn't buy this book, that would just make Stewart popular, which he'd hate.
Entertaining and insightful, Stewart Lee is a comedian's comedian. As if his standup wasn't self-annotating and metatextual itself, the book offers consistently interesting anecdotes about the formation, mutation, and performance of his material, and bits of ethos about standup as an artform. A pleasant surprise was his reflections on past and current management, a topic rarely discussed openly by professionals. His recollection of seeing Gervais perform should resonate with anyone who has experienced professional jealousy.
Reading this book alongside Simon Pegg's laborious Nerd Do Well, made it clear just how much I appreciate Stewart's candor but also self-censorship to keep this book on track with relevant and intriguing information about his career and life as a standup. It's not about his parents, life as a teenage runaway train-hopping junkie tuba player, or whatever his past may have held. "The personal is absent from my work," as he says.
You won't end up like Ted Chippington, stew, not if your fans have anything to say about it. Can't wait for series 2 of comedy vehicle.
The above two categories are quite narrow, but if you fall into them then this book is a must have.
I would also recommend it to anyone who is a fan of Stewart Lee, however this book concentrates less on the man himself and more on his art and experiences related to his art.
If you are looking to find out "Who is the real Stewart Lee" perhaps you may be disappointed. You see into the man's mind but not into his heart.
That said, for anyone seriously into comedy, this book is one of, if not THE most important book ever written about comedy.