What If We All Laughed a Little More Like PG Wodehouse Would’ve Wanted Us To?

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What If We All Laughed a Little More Like PG Wodehouse Would’ve Wanted Us To?

Illustration: Akshita Monga

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t’s a rare author who can remain relevant for over a century. And it’s an even rarer one whose work can not only be studied and picked over in classrooms and colleges, but who can, to this day, continue adding to his tribe of devotees. Somehow, the patently ridiculous, hopelessly outdated universe of PG Wodehouse and his iconic duo, the bumbling Bertie Wooster and long-suffering manservant Jeeves, continues to capture imaginations all around the world.

Generally, the soups in which Wodehouse’s characters land themselves seem far from relatable. Wodehouse’s perspective is small and specific, populated by the wealthy pre-war British and their hilariously niche problems. There is the fierce battle over ownership of a hideous cow-shaped cream jug that propels several books forward. There are Bertie’s numerous accidental engagements to girls whom, thanks to his gentlemanly Code of the Woosters, he can never turn down. There’s Roderick Spode, the wrathful house-guest who can only be subdued by the mention of his secret women’s lingerie brand, Eulalie.

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