Guide Look Whos Back

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Look Who’s Back (Er ist wieder da)

To this reader, the novel feels oddly cosy. No doubt it is much more thrillingly transgressive in Germany, where it remains a criminal offence to give a Nazi salute, as various characters do here with mounting enthusiasm. But Brits have been making fun of Hitler since the s.

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And here he seems a cutely domesticated Adolf, one who could easily do a slightly amusing talking-head turn on Grumpy Old Men , complaining as he does about how young people don't look where they're going in the street because they are entranced by their smartphones. Indeed, the joke on the novel's TV execs — who think Hitler is an actor being a clever satirist when in fact he is himself and deadly serious — seems at first also to be a joke on the novel itself, which rarely allows its antihero to be any more disturbing than an amiably provocative man of the people, a kind of Nigel Farage with added swastikas.

Much is made of the TV boss cautioning her new star that "The Jews are no laughing matter" meaning don't joke about them , and Hitler heartily agreeing meaning they're a serious problem , but the occasional outbursts of antisemitic ranting in the narrative are carefully corralled set-dressing: the necessary minimum to give an impression of authenticity.

And historical analogies with great moments in Nazi history, of which this Hitler is very fond, have become just a slightly naughty metaphorical currency. Even WH Auden no doubt intended some comic effect when he spoke disapprovingly of the number of devout anti-fascists he knew who conducted their erotic lives as though they were invading Poland.

But then it starts to look more likely that this very dilution of Hitler the virtuoso hater is meant deliberately, as another symptom of what the novel's fictional events diagnose — a widespread, wistful nostalgia for a strong leader who has clear ideas and bolsters national pride, a Hitler with the bad bits conveniently blurred by the passage of time. In one of the novel's rare and brief forays outside German politics, Hitler makes admiring mention of Vladimir Putin, though he can't condone the Russian's habit of going shirtless while parascending or wrestling crocodiles to death.

Bad policy, bad politics.

Spotlight: Berlin - "Look Who's Back," by Timur Vermes

But the fundamentals in Augar now look significantly less likely. He also got new Home Secretary Priti Patel on board. Sometimes projects are developed by civil servants that are merely fronted by a sponsor minister. He returns with that review complete and on his desk — and those keen to kill off the exercise at subject level, or hoping that metrics and medals would fade, may well be disappointed. His new bosses Boris and Gavin are worthy of a look too.

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He was not a man who thought that entry to university should be restricted, believing that vocational routes should be levelled up:. And there are clues on the role of the state. Stay on top of the latest breaking film and TV news!

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