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Coyote V. Acme

3.50  ·  Rating Details  ·  323 Ratings  ·  56 Reviews
The title essay of Coyote v. Acme, Ian Frazier's second collection of humorous essays, imagines the opening statement of an attorney representing cartoon character Wile E. Coyote in a product liability suit against the Acme Company, supplier of unpredictable rocket sleds and faulty spring-powered shoes. Other essays are about Bob Hope's golfing career, a commencement addre ...more
Paperback, 128 pages
Published February 9th 2002 by Picador (first published June 1st 1996)
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TK421
Sep 30, 2012 TK421 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: essays-auto-bio
Fellow Goodreader, Brian DiMattia, describes COYOTE V. ACME as " brilliant and hilarious...but only for certain senses of humor. It's random, high-brow, and intellectual. It's ironic, but obtusely ironic. It's requires a knowledge of, or at least an appreciation for, both literature and pop-culture and often cross-breeds them to produce bastard children of comedic brilliance."

I cannot agree more with this assessment.

Ian Frazier has taken often overlooked, mundane, or talking points that have be
...more
Trevor Schmoldt
“Coyote v. Acme,” is a short story by Ian Frazier. It started in a courtroom with Wile E. Coyote pleading to the judge about the mishaps and injuries he encountered when using Acme products. He purchased these products from Acme to capture the roadrunner. The first thing he talked about malfunctioning was the Acme Rocket Sled. When he sat on it, it took off at high speed and stretched his whole body out as he tried to hold on. The second contraption that malfunctioned was the Rocket Skates. Afte ...more
Carl Koch
I read "Coyote v. Acme" by Ian Frazier. The story talks about various encounters Wile E. Coyote has had with Acme products and their failures. It goes in depth on the failures of the Acme Rocket Sled, a pair of Acme Rocket skates, a spherical Acme Bomb, and a pair of Acme Spring-Powered Shoes. Each fails for different reasons but they all cause harm to Wile E. Coyote. It also tells how Wile E. Coyote intends to proceed and what he expects of the Acme company if the decision is in his favor.

The m
...more
Trevor Wetzel
Mar 31, 2014 Trevor Wetzel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read the essay, “Coyote V. Acme” written by Ian Frazier. This essay is based as a court hearing for Mr. Wile E. Coyote. Mr. Coyote is suing the Acme Company for it’s faulty equipment and for the damage that it has caused him. Mr. Coyote names four different Acme products in his case that have faltered. Each product acted in a manner in which put Mr. Coyote in extreme pain and discomfort. Mr. Coyote suggests to the court that he receives over $38 million for the total damages that endured.

The
...more
Samuel
May 01, 2014 Samuel rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read the short story "Coyote v. Acme," by Ian Frazier. This was an interesting short story about Coyote using faulty products to try and catch his prey.

The plot was Coyote suing the Acme company because the products he bought were defective. He bought a rocket sled, rocket skates, spring powered shoes, and an Acme bomb, but they all failed. Coyote sued the Acme company for 38.75 million dollars, and the court awarded him the money.

Coyote is the main character, he is a predator that tries to ca
...more
John Jorgensen
Apr 02, 2014 John Jorgensen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Plot: In this story, Wile Coyote is at a decision of suing the ACME company. In the beginning, it tells of how this came to be and throughout the story, it tells of all the products that have failed to catch the prey.


Characterization: Wile Coyote is a self employed hard worker who can’t catch his prey. ACME company is a company who sells faulty products to Wile Coyote.


Setting: The story takes place in Tempe, Arizona in the present time. In order for there to be a mesa, it has to be in a locati
...more
Corey Schmidt
I read the book “Coyote V. Acme.” It was written by Ian Frazier. It’s all about how Wile E. Coyote is trying to sue the Acme company for selling him defective products that injure him and cause him not to be able to do his job. In the story he brings up four things that defected while he was trying to use them, and at the end he wants to get 38.75 million dollars for all of the damages they caused him. The court ends up awarding him all of the money.

The main character is Wile E. Coyote. He is a
...more
Chuck
Apr 14, 2014 Chuck rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Coyote v. Acme is a story written like a courtroom drama. It is about a coyote who continues to get hurt when he uses products from the Acme Company. It makes the coyote out to be a victim of bad products. He thinks the company needs to pay him a huge amount because of their bad products. If you ever watched the Roadrunner cartoons you will be familiar with this story.

The main character in the story is the lawyer for the coyote. He is very good at describing all the injuries to the coyote. The c
...more
Ryan Werner
Oct 05, 2015 Ryan Werner rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Though praised as one of the forerunners in American humor writing, Ian Frazier fails to deliver any laughs outside of pity or nostalgia for shoddy, safe witticisms.

In concept, Ian Frazier’s 1997 book Coyote V. Acme (Picador, ISBN: 0312420587) should turn out great: twenty-two essay/short-story hybrids, each satirizing a different topic in American culture from a different point-of-view. However, in execution, Frazier falls between otiose wit and contrived, trying-too-hard absurdity.

The First Es
...more
James Swenson
Frazier's essays are generally delightful. In this collection, the writing is good, but the main pleasure is in the concept of each article. For example, the title piece, "Coyote v. Acme," is a great idea. Now that you get the joke, though, you don't really need to read through the legalese of the plaintiff's opening statement. Likewise "Boswell's Life of Don Johnson," etc.

The best of the bunch is "Line 46a," the new instructions for tax form 1040 inspired by the tagline for the movie "Point of
...more
Emily Togstad
Apr 04, 2014 Emily Togstad rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Emily Togstad
English 11-6
Goodreads


“Coyote V. Acme”


“Coyote V. Acme” was written by Ian Frazier. It is an essay written about a court case. The court case is about a Coyote that is suing the Acme Company of $38,750,000. The essay talks about all the products that the Coyote used to capture a certain prey, and why they did not work.


The main character is the coyote. He seems really dumb. If the products don't work the first time, then why would he keep using them? The person speaking is Mr. Harold
...more
William Young
May 01, 2014 William Young rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Coyote v. Acme is about Wile E. Coyote suing the Acme company for selling him defective products that always hurt him. It was funny to read how the products would never work when he tried to capture the road runner.Wile E. Coyote would take time to set up the traps perfectly but they are always defective products. Wile E. Coyote is looking for a lot of money by suing Acme.


Wile E. Coyote is really the only character in this writing. He is the one who would use the products that never work so he
...more
Blake

“Coyote v. Acme,” is a short story by Ian Frazier. It started in a courtroom with Wile E. Coyote pleading to the judge about the mishaps and injuries he encountered when using Acme products. He purchased these products from Acme to capture the roadrunner. The first thing he talked about malfunctioning was the Acme Rocket Sled. When he sat on it, it took off at high speed and stretched his whole body out as he tried to hold on. The second contraption that malfunctioned was the Rocket Skates. Afte
...more
Marilyn
Aug 16, 2011 Marilyn rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Actually, this should be three or four stars for the title essay. Coyote is bringing a lawsuit against the Acme Company for injuries suffered because of the malfunction of several of Acme's products. Funny. The other pieces were much less clever and funny. One star for them.
Brian DiMattia
May 10, 2011 Brian DiMattia rated it it was amazing
Brilliant and hilarious...but only for certain senses of humor. It's random, high-brow, and intellectual. It's ironic, but obtusely ironic. It's requires a knowledge of, or at least an appreciation for, both literature and pop-culture and often cross-breeds them to produce bastard children of comedic brilliance.

Honestly, one of those books you will either love or hate. You will probably either think it's full of conceptually brilliant ideas or will write them off as being dumb, elitist, or "tryi
...more
Bruce
Jun 01, 2013 Bruce rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: lawyers, auditors, and actuaries
(More like 3.5 stars.) Going to the library to find Mark Twain's travel books, I was directed to the humor section. There I came across the three thin volumes that form the basis of this triple review. Generally speaking, it's probably not fair to the authors to compare their respective works, but I'll exercise the prerogative anyway because these are all so similar (and who's gonna stop me). Each of these books weighs in at a squidge over 100 pages, with about 20 short essays that achieve absur ...more
Lydia
Jul 03, 2014 Lydia rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's hard to rate this book because it's humor and I'm dumb at humor. A few of the stories I didn't get at all, a few stories I felt like I was missing some good parts, one I skipped, and a couple were really good. The story with same title as the book is great. It's good enough to induce tears of laughter. Also the one that rewrites a bit of "Wuthering Heights" is good.
Phyllis
Apr 07, 2013 Phyllis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a wild and crazy book! Odd ball humor is an understatement. I especially liked "Line 46a" and "Issues and Non-issues." If cartoonist Edward Gorey were to write an essay on a "contemporary" topic, the essay would be just like the ones in this book. I read the book slowly as I reorganized my linen closet. I wanted to fix the linen closet for the last time so it would be useful and I wouldn't need to come up with a new way of organizing it in three months. This crazy book kept me sane while I ...more
Two Readers in Love
Feb 02, 2016 Two Readers in Love rated it really liked it
I heard Johnathan Franzen read the title story on the "New Yorker: Fiction" podcast and sought out this book; I'm glad I did. Clever riffs on a series of humorous conceits (Boswell's life of Don Johnson is priceless), but best read over several sittings to keep it fresh.
Kelly Ferguson
Jan 17, 2013 Kelly Ferguson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humor, essays, comps
The essay Boswell's Life of Don Johnson about sums up the intended audience here: the reader has to have the literary reference point of Boswell's Life of Johnson, and be old enough to remember the Miami Vice hoopla phase of America. (Raise your hand if your high school boyfriend ever showed up in a white jacket over a pastel top, no tie.) Which is to say, the audience for Coyote v. Acme is me. I love Ian Frazier. The four stars comes the limitations of publishing a book written for a particular ...more
Sue T
Sep 12, 2014 Sue T rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
On a New Yorker podcast,I heard Jonathan Franzen read the story "Coyote v. Acme" and thought it was great - very smart and funny. It is a mock legal document describing a suit brought by Wile E. Coyote against the Acme company. Franzen's discussion of Frazier made me interested in trying the collection.
Nuthouse Magazine
Apr 30, 2010 Nuthouse Magazine rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
We have been anxious to read this story collection for some time because of all the raves it has received. So, perhaps our expectations were just too high. Yet other than the title piece, "Coyote v. Acme" - a legal brief in which Wile E. Coyote of Warner Bros. cartoon fame sues the Acme company for his being burned and maimed by one faulty mail-order product after another - most of this book fell flat for us; and certainly not pratfall flat either. Our recommendation is to borrow this book, if y ...more
John Wood
Sep 10, 2014 John Wood rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Don't miss the lawyer's opening statement in Wile E. Coyote lawsuit against the Acme company for its faulty rocket sleds.
KennyO
May 25, 2014 KennyO rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Certainly not for everyone but recommended for inquisitive minds with odd senses of humor. Quite distinct from his other work.
Marcie
May 15, 2012 Marcie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Marcie by: Stories on Stage
I decided to read this after hearing Allison Watrous read (perform) the title short story at Stories on Stage in April. I decided I needed some short, funny stories and I sure got what I wished for. The first story, "The Last Segment" is both humorous and poignant. I realize this may be dated for some people, but I think it's a stitch.

"From the Bank with Your Money on their Mind" is even more relevant now. And there is an end that is for mature readers only. Love it!

OK, not all the stories are m
...more
MisterFweem
I'll save you a little trouble here. If you're thinking of reading this book, skip to the titular essay, then go on to "In the Plain Air," and "The Novel's Main Character," and you'll have read what's worth reading in "Coyote V. Acme."

I really wanted to like this book. At first, he kind of reminded me of Steve Martin writing in "Cruel Shoes." But as I went on reading, I realized that it was "Cruel Shoes" without the humor.

I'll have to read more of his stuff, and maybe this is a book that would g
...more
Bob Fish
Dec 06, 2014 Bob Fish rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Very bizzare, not worth reading
Shonna Froebel
May 20, 2013 Shonna Froebel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This collection of humorous essays made me immediately think of my brother as he has the same quirky sense of humour. The book jacket has praise describing the author as "a genius at the tough representation of idiocy, which is everywhere, and flourishing as, perhaps, never before." and I would agree.
From Saturday morning cartoons, to classic television to classic novels, Frazier pulls his material from many sources, remaking it in ways I would never have thought of. An interesting quirky take o
...more
Maggie
Jan 10, 2012 Maggie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humor
humor writing is always a relaxing read ... ian frazier can be quite funny esp. (for example) in his "lamentations of the father" ... in coyote v. acme his chapters are uneven -- "coyote v. acme", "in the plain air", "issues and non-issues", and "stalin's chuckle" were my favorites while the rest were "eh. not that funny" ... still it's worth checking out mr. frazier's writing and i'm glad he keeps at it (writing humor) b/c when he is good, he is very very good.

unevenness can easily, then, be fo
...more
Bob Bellamy
Sep 14, 2014 Bob Bellamy rated it really liked it
Funny as always!
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Ian Frazier (b.1951) is an American writer and humorist. He is the author of Travels in Siberia, Great Plains, On the Rez, Lamentations of the Father and Coyote V. Acme, among other works, all published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. He graduated from Harvard University. A frequent contributor to The New Yorker, he lives in Montclair, New Jersey.

http://us.macmillan.com/author/ianfra...
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