Who Killed John F. Kennedy?

Despair, Inc.'s 'Lose Your Own Adventure' series gets conspiratorial

Look upon this work, ye mighty, and … ?
Look upon this work, ye mighty, and … ?

Who masterminded that heinous, nation-wracking deed?

Who had it in, extreme-prejudicewise, for the handsome Catholic POTUS who was responsible for, among other things, creating the Peace Corps?

Was it the Mafia? Was it the Cubans? The Teamsters? The U.S. military-industrial complex? A thoroughly depilated Sasquatch controlled by space aliens who held some odd grudge over that unfortunate Roswell incident?

Somebody, ultimately, was behind the assassination of the 35th American President in Dallas on November 22, 1963, and it wasn't necessarily lone gunman Lee Harvey Oswald – regardless of what the Warren Commission and the FBI might prefer that you believe.

But, ah! If only some young (really young) detective had been on the case, we might know the answer by now!

If only Nancy Drew or the Hardy Boys or the Three Investigators or Brains Benton or, or, or, ah, maybe even Trixie Belden had looked into the mysterious doings along the grassy knoll and in full sight of the Texas School Book Depository … if only one or more of them had been there, and weren't fictional characters, then the true culprit – if not already executed for the atrocity – would still be muttering "If it hadn't been for Those Meddling Kids …" in a horrid little prison cell somewhere in East Wackenhutsville.

But, look! Now there's a chance that such a scenario could come to pass!

Well, more or less.

Despair, Inc. – those sardonic motherfuckers who already bring the world so many wonderful, life-denying Demotivational products – has released its first 'Lose Your Own Adventure' book. The compact paperback – yes, it's also a parody of those classic second-person, solve-it-yourself mysteries by Edward Packard – we mean, duh – the compact paperback trumpets this teaser across its very familiar-looking cover:


Suggestion: Utterly unsolvable or not, you'll want to check this shit out, citizen. If history, as James Joyce's Stephen Dedalus put it in Ulysses, is a nightmare from which we're trying to awake … and if laughter really is the best medicine … then this multivalent parody, with its many terrific Paul Stranger illustrations, is just the sort of cartoonish literary methamphetamine to roust you from whatever unpleasant dreams might accompany the upcoming 50th anniversary of our beloved Jack Kennedy's death.

We find this twisted little book guilty of humor in the first degree, and we're looking forward to the rest of the planned series.

More by Wayne Alan Brenner
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Despair, Inc., Who Killed JFK?, Lose Your Own Adventure, parody, conspiracy humor, Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, Three Investigators, Brains Benton, Trixie Belden, Warren Commission, Edward Packard, Paul Stranger, back and to the left

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