I’v been a fan of Aziz since discovering Parks and Rec, one out of my five favorite shows of all time, with Aziz playing Tom Haverford, the foodie, the swaggerful, the flashy entrepreneur. I’ve watched some of his standup, his interviews with talk show hosts and I always laugh hysterically. This guy just keeps soaring, this book was a new york times bestseller, now together with Alan Yang (also part of the parks and rec team), he has come out with the critically acclaimed Netflix’s Master of None (season 1 & 2 available now), which is an absolutely fantastic tv show that gives a smart, funny and accurate portrayal of the times now, I would put it near the realm of HBO’s Girls but with characters that are more likable. DON’T GET ME WRONG. I really enjoy Girls but because of its realistic and harsh portrayal of the women, people tend to dislike it. ANYWAYS…
Modern Romance, a hilarious, thoughtful exploration of the rewards and perils of modern romance, from one of this generation’s sharpest comedic voices. In this book Aziz talks about the statistical differences between finding love now (the technology age) and then (the stone age)( no I’m just kidding, its the landline age. You were stupid to fall for that anyways, homo-sapiens didn’t have time to jot down data!? they were busy hunting and eating said hunt.) It covers everything from soulmates, online dating, the multitude of options, romance on an international scale, cheating and finally, settling down. All this in the context of modern times and how things have changed for the better or worst.
To my surprise, this was a research HEAVY book, there were a lot more statistics and facts than I anticipated. I thought it was going to be very personal, just Aziz talking mostly about his experiences with romance (which I would love and prefer to read) and how he weaves and relates it into the general consensus, bouncing opinions of of a few people, almost like the Hollywood round table chats but the topic would be about romance. But no, it was actually heavy research, holding focus groups, collecting data through subreddits, exploring the statistics internationally as to peoples’ approach to asking a guy/girl out, the reason birthrates and marriages are decreasing in numbers. Basically a study into all the factors that contribute and affect forming a romantic relationship in these modern times. Despite it being very research-y, I still had fun learning and laughing at the book written through the eyes of Aziz, goddamn I love his humor, he remains as objective as possible, and never leans heavily on a stand (etc. open or closed relationships). His perceptive and receptiveness to new concepts and ideas as he researches and writes the book is…surprising! Considering the fact that observational comedy is one of his shticks, but as a humble writer who doesn’t claim to know it all, he makes sure never to prejudice the readers in any way but rather does what he does best and that is to joke and poke fun at an interesting situation, culture or statistic.
You don’t have to be a fan of Aziz to read the book, as long as you’re curious about modern romance, this book will give you a serious insight into that. But for me, as a personal fan of his, I would have preferred something a little closer to his heart. Mainly because this is a talented, hilarious, successful, a work horse of a guy, and I’d love to pick at his brain!