You show up late to the party and everyone is already wasted. They cut up, flirt inappropriately, and tell awful stories, thinking they’re freaking hysterical. Meanwhile, all you see is a bunch of drunk stupid assholes.
Then someone hands you a beer. As you drink it, you stoop closer to their level. Sure, they’re stupid assholes, but…they’re kind of amusing stupid assholes. You no longer want to punch them; you’re happy to wait for someone else to do it.
Congratulations. You now know how it feels to read Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates (and 1000 Cocktails) by Mike and Dave Stangle.
The first few chapters include introductions, the titular Craigslist/Wedding Dates story, and Mike’s dating advice for women, and it’s all bad. I guess you can only have so many “we got really drunk and/or high and did this stupid thing” stories before they all sound alike, so you have to fill the book somehow.
Because the stories aren’t good, neither is the writing. In the beginning, they overcompensate for their lack of funny with an extra drunk, frat boy tone and manage to prove just how little they know about women. (Seriously, it’s no wonder they had to resort to Craigslist to find dates, which…is actually the least interesting story in the book. Why did they base the movie on it?) To keep reading, I had to keep remind myself how much I love Anna Kendrick and that I couldn’t watch the movie if I didn’t finish.
Overtime though, the stories did become interesting and even genuinely funny…mostly thanks to Dave, if we’re honest. Mike may not get why he’s their mother’s favorite, but I do.
As the stories improve, so does the prose. Instead of overpowering the content, it goes back to doing its job of just telling the story. They still say stupid things (like women don’t have a sex drive and gay guys are more likely to cheat), but you can more or less roll your eyes and repeat “You’re such an idiot” between chuckles. They’re horrible people, but they don’t really hurt anyone, making it at least 50% better than the last memoir I read specifically because I wanted to see the movie. Mike and Dave even get their comeuppance once or twice.
By the end, I was ready to be finished but didn’t feel like I’d wasted my time in reading it. In fact, I’m looking forward to rolling my eyes at the shenanigans their movie versions get into.