I generally avoid like the plague anything to do with sums or comics. However, my relentless quest for self improvement lead me to buy a comic book about the economy, The Adventures of Unemployed Man.

Rachel Cooke in The Observer reviews it:

The Adventures of Unemployed Man is a furious, fearless, Swiftian kind of a book that – to slip into comic-strip speak just for a moment – ASTOUNDS with its wit, and AMAZES with its perspicacity. It should be read by everyone: by the forgotten, hardworking heroes of our desperate economy, who must toil increasingly hard merely to keep the wolf from the door, but also by its villains, who caused all the trouble in the first place. This book is so good it might cause a rare outbreak of shame among the ruling classes…

It looks just like a Marvel or DC comic from the 1970s … and every frame includes some kind of in-joke for comic fans. But it’s more than just a parody: read it, and you’ll realise that what you have in your hands is a kind of economic primer, an A-Z of how the American economy – and by extension, the rest us – got into such a parlous state. Hell, there are even statistics (aka FANTASTIC FACTS: “Among the developed nations on earth, the USA has the highest percentage of citizens in prison. Suck it, totalitarian regimes, you lose!”).

I genuinely laughed aloud at some of the puns (visual and verbal) although I know I missed the vast majority of the allusions both to the comic book genre and to the economic shenanigans that the book portrays.

I commend it to you.

 

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