Rutu Modan’s Tunnels

A thrilling adventure story, Rutu Modan’s new graphic novel, Tunnels, is also very funny. The story has a buoyant, almost farcical energy, and there’s a satirical aspect too, an empathetic satire which is fond rather than acrimonious. As with her previous work, Modan’s subject is Israeli life, and the story’s archaeological focus shows the preoccupation… Continue reading Rutu Modan’s Tunnels

Milkman: humour in a traumatised society

Critics have frequently commended the humour of Anna Burns’s Milkman (2018), but beyond descriptions of the novel as ‘charmingly wry’ (New Yorker) or ‘darkly comic’ (The Telegraph), there has been little real insight into the part humour plays. This critical disinterest in humour - particularly in literature-  is widespread, partly because comedy has long been seen as a mere add-on or… Continue reading Milkman: humour in a traumatised society

Lucy McCormick: added trauma

Lucy McCormick’s recent Fringe show, Post Popular, reprises the comically narcissistic persona used in her 2016 show, Triple Threat, but this time with added trauma. ‘Lucy’ was more broadly comic in the first show, but now there are hints of a darker backstory: she mentions the death of her father and there are oblique references to an… Continue reading Lucy McCormick: added trauma