Motherless Broklyn humour blog

Hey bloggers this book Motherless Brooklyn is absolutely hilarious. There are many examples of humour presented to us by the author and I will present three of my favorites between the pages of 145 to 203.

The first example of humour that I enjoyed was on page 147 when Lionel was kidnapped by the 4 men who wanted to try scaring him off the case. The men in the car discuss with each other whether to “ruff up” Lionel or not, one of the men Lionel names Chunky asks “what you want to pull over and rough him up in Park Avenue?”(147) and Lionel replies “maybe just a scare without the roughing-up will do” (147). This is funny because as the men are trying to be scary Lionel is not scared at all and in fact is sort of poking fun at them with comments like this. The humour method that Lethem is using here can be irony because Lionel is supposed to be scared of the men but in reality describes them as “clowns” which is why it is truly funny in my opinion (151).

The second example of humor is also as Lionel is with the four men but the interaction takes place with another character called Loomis the garbage officer. Minna’s beeper which Lionel has on him beeps displaying a number on the face. The four men ask Lionel to call it and it is Loomis on the other line. Right away Loomis tells a joke to Lionel which was “what’s the difference between three hundred sixty-five blow jobs and a radial tire?”(148). Lionel not caring for the joke and just trying to get along with the conversation says “don’tcare” (148) however Loomis goes on to complete his joke with the punch line “one’s a good year, the other’s a great year”(148). The humour method that the author is using is straight man/funny man because as Lionel is in a serious situation and wants to hurry along with the conversation Loomis is saying a joke and not cooperating as well as Lionel would like. I find this funny because of the situation that Lionel is in and Loomis is unaware and funny because I find the joke very silly and entertaining.

The third example of humour I enjoyed was during the conversation between Lionel, tony and the homicide detective. The homicide detective was trying to get information out of the two Minna men but was doing this unsuccessfully and when Lionel and tony realized this they would “cut him apart with her tongue for the mistake” (190). The cop asked them about Matricardi and Rockaforte and in reply tony said “they went through a tunnel in the basement, they had to get back to their hideout since they’ve got James bond—or batman, can’t remember which—roasting over a slow fire. Don’t worry, though batman always gets away. These supervillains never learn” (191). This humour method that Lethem uses can be absurdity because as one character is trying to be serious the other two are responding with absurd and funny responses. In my opinion this is funny because it is as if they are laughing in front of a cop’s face who is investigating them for murder, something you should not do!


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