Blurring, as he so often does, the lines between earnest advice, comedy, and semi-criminal fraud, Comedy Central’s Nathan Fielder has helped propel a new fitness book up the ranks of Amazon.com’s sales charts. Currently sitting at #248 in Books, The Movement tells the story of fitness guru Jack Garborino, a childhood friend of Steve Jobs who spent years working with “jungle children” before stumbling onto the weight-loss secrets found in moving other people’s boxes and chairs.
None of that’s true, of course; as anyone who watched this week’s episode of Nathan For You could tell you, Garborino’s a Los Angeles body-builder who thinks Steve Jobs worked at Microsoft, the book was ghost-written by someone (Craigslist scribe Austin Bowers) who’s never met him or a jungle child, and the whole enterprise was a cog in Fielder’s latest business scheme, convincing fitness nuts to work at a moving company for free as part of a bullshit exercise regimen.
The book is real enough, though, and apparently it’s doing pretty well. Currently at the top of Amazon’s “Movers And Shakers” list, which tracks rapid changes in popularity, The Movement has jumped 350,000 places on the company’s charts in the last 24 hours. (We can’t wait to hear Fielder pitch some hapless author on his ability to increase a book’s profitability by a staggering 148,827 percent.) The glossy paperback—the cover of which feature images of both Garborino, and the “tub of lard” model Fielder hired to portray the spokesperson in a “Before” picture—is selling for 12 bucks, along with a Kindle version for $9.99. (The very reasonable price point might explain why the book is outselling The Secret right now on Amazon’s “Motivational” listing.)
Most of the reviewers on The Movement’s Amazon page are clearly in on the joke; it’s currently filled with testimonials from people claiming to have lost weight on “the program,” and those who say they’ve used it to con their friends into free moves. (The few reviewers attempting to point out the book’s actual origins have, of course, been labeled “0 percent helpful.”) It’s not entirely clear where the money from the sales is going to, whether that’s Garborino, Fielder, Bowers, or into the Comedy Central coffers, but the comedian consultant is apparently delighted by its success; he tweeted earlier today to highlight the way it’s rocketing up the charts: