(1967- ) German journalist, ghostwriter and author who is of sf interest for his first two novels. In the Alternate-History Er is wieder da (2012; trans Jamie Bulloch as Look Who's Back 2014), Adolf Hitler, at the brink of defeat, is conveyed via Timeslip to the Berlin of 2011, where he becomes a talk-show television celebrity. His obscenities about Jews, Eugenics, Lebensraum and other material are taken as hilarious spoofs of positions he has never abandoned; Satirical points are made ad libitum, without drawing blood. The novel was filmed as Er is wieder da ["Look Who's Back"] (2015), directed by David Wnendt.
Vermes's second novel, Die Hungrigen und die Satten (2018; trans Jamie Bulloch as The Hungry and the Fat 2020), is conspicuously less humorous in its depiction of a Near Future Europe which, after walling itself in from migrants, is faced with a kind of tv reality show, in which 150,000 genuine migrants converge upon the walled imperium. In both novels, one joke-filled and one not, the contemporary Media Landscape is seen as poisoning the world. [JC]
born Nuremberg, Bavaria, West Germany: 1967
Previous versions of this entry