The Haircut Who Would Be King

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In Robert Trebor’s book The Haircut Who Would Be King, he parodies the peculiar and absurd relationship of the current US and Russian political leaders, Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin. One of the most recurring topics in today’s political news is this relationship, as it seems to go against everything professional and democratic that western politics claim to represent. And in fact, it would appear the only reasonable recounting of such a scandalous political relationship is an equally ridiculous farce.

In this parody, “Donald Rump” is a petulant, over-privileged child with a lack of self-awareness and intelligence to match. As a child, “Donnie’s parents would lure him with $100 bills into a soundproofed rubber room where he would literally bounce off the walls in order to placate his outrageous temper tantrums. These rubber walls would later be replaced by bouncing bimbos, his own reality TV show in which he sings ‘Don’t Cry for Me Argentina,’ and some very pliable politics.”

“Vladimir Poutine,” on the other hand, is a lonely, underprivileged child who buys into macho muscle culture in later years to detract from his slight stature. His entrenched KGB background, his childhood during the Khruschev regime, and his academic application are the perfect set up for his future of crafty Russian politics and underhanded involvement in the US’s Orange-Hamster-Haircut excuse for a leader. Add Poutine’s clandestine drag queen alter-ego and a brothel–a place Rump and Poutine can develop their “relationship”–and we’ve got a real story on our hands.

The profound irony of The Haircut Who Would Be King is that it satirizes elements of a political relationship that has become so ludicrous that the public could actually imagine there being truth in these farcical stories. It is the deep irony of attempting to comically criticize something that has already become joke, and that is where the real humor lies.

Regardless of a somewhat ambiguous opening chapter, The Haircut Who Would Be King beautifully caricatures these two contrasting, but equally ridiculous, politicians and their peculiar relationship. Trebor draws a perceptive emphasis on the alarming state of modern day politics through crude characterizations and preposterous scene-setting. His parody sheds light and humor in the midst of all the dark elements of today’s world of politics, and it’s hard not to appreciate this literature all the more for it.

Finally, when we are not sure where this story can go beyond the present day, his parody continues with the deliberately absurd all the way until the very end, where Rump and Poutine’s story ends with fireworks the reader can’t even dream of.

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Star Count 4/5
Format Trade
Page Count 184 pages
Publisher Palindrome Press
Publish Date TBA
ISBN 9780578475684 Buy this Book
Issue July 2018
Category Humor/Fiction


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