Book – The Problem With Men

Author – Richard Herring

Pages – 160

Year – 2020

Genre – Non-Fiction

Borrowed from Dartford Library

I really like Richard Herring. He has a certain chaos about him that is really interesting. You always have the impression that he is saying things slightly faster than he can think things through, and therefore there is a certain worry that he could come out with something he probably shouldn’t at any moment. He did great work with Stuart Lee many years ago, and since then has gone on to make some great things, such as the Richard Herring’s Leicester Square Theatre Podcast (or Rhlstp as the cool kids are calling it) and the podcast where he plays pool against himself to see who is better. But the thing he is probably most recently known for is his annual tradition of calling out men on Twitter who ask “When is International Men’s Day?” on International Women’s Day (November 19th for those genuinely wondering). With the success that this has had, along with the countless amount of money made for women’s charities, has given him the opportunity to put together this book explaining why this is a stupid and fundamentally sexist question to be asking.

It is very funny. Full credit to Herring, whose brand of incredibly intensely needy comedy I have always been a fan of. He really goes for the full throttle on his running gags here – such as answering the International Men’s Day question in the footnotes every time it is raised – and can be relied upon for some smiles throughout.

But in terms of making an astute political point, it is somewhat labored. Maybe this is because I am (hopefully) enough of a feminist that this is not a book aimed at me, but his approach to too many of the questions raised in the book is too lightweight. There are some great moments, carefully researched, but for my tastes a little too few and far between.

Ultimately, maybe just not a book for me, but as this is my blog I get to rate it how I want. Don’t be dissuaded from reading it if you have the opportunity though – it is certainly the right book for someone.