This is not an April Fool’s Day post

…but it is rather silly, in its own way. Consider:

First there was the Facebook Hamlet, at McSweeney's.

Then there was the Facebook Aeneid ("Dido changed her relationship status to Married. Aeneas changed his relationship status to It's Complicated.") and the Facebook Pride and Prejudice.* And the college class that reenacted Romeo and Juliet on Facebook and used the Friend Wheel to graph the connections between characters in the play.

And now there's the Facebook Haggadah. No, really. If you're among the five people who haven't seen it yet, go read it. It's fantastic.

Is this the beginning of a whole new subgenre of humor? And, specifically: why Facebook? Parodic retellings of the canon are nothing new, but what is it about Facebook that invites them? Is it the way it foregrounds relationships (especially their beginnings and endings)? Or is it the contrast between Facebook's telegraphic style and the text being parodied? Or something else?

I find Facebook kind of annoying a lot of the time, but this trend toward using its format to retell the classics almost makes up for the deluge of applications and invitations that greet me every time I log in.

* I want to do a Facebook Emma, myself. "Emma Woodhouse posted an album: Pictures of my family and my new best friend Harriet Smith." "10 of your friends are attending the event Exploring Party at Box Hill." And that game of anagrams could very easily turn into a game of Lexulous or the like, don't you think?

2 Responses to “This is not an April Fool’s Day post”

  1. Amanda,
    The Atlantic’s latest parody, of course, made me think of your roundup:

  2. Amanda says:

    I hadn’t seen that! Hee!