Funny sort of real
The funny man is accused of shooting an unarmed robber six times. “Not guilty by reason of celebrity” is his defense. The jury’s consensus is that the funny man is “untalented, successful, and a bad husband and father.” John Warner’s novel, The Funny Man, takes the reader into the mind of a budding but untalented comic who acquires “the thing,” a schtick that brings him overnight success and a role as a leading man in a plotless film that grosses millions. The funny man’s story is his commentary on his own life and the absurdities of celebrity culture. Chapters weave back and forth between his trial in the shooting, his start in the comedy circuit, his climb to notoriety and stardom, and the affair with a starlet that never happened yet led to the disintegration of his marriage. The Funny Man is a distillation of the formulaic Hollywood star trip.