Do you understand," said the other, "that this is a tragedy?" "Perfectly" replied Syme; "always be a comic in a tragedy. What the deuce else can you do."
If any line holds the clue to understanding The Man Who Was Thursday. this is the one. Chesterton's analogy about anarchy vs. law, or even chaos vs order, is basically a farce but it has serious underlying themes and messages. It reads like a mixture of Samuel Beckett and Monty Python. Of course, Chesterton has a religiously disguised message somewhere in all these shenanigans. As another reviewer mentioned, he is sort of the adult version of C. S. Lewis and Narnia. Yet I always thought TMWWT had a bit of Zen in it too. You could also call this some kind of Keystone Cops existentialism. Is that enough comparisons for you? Are you confused yet? That's OK, because this novel is best read with as little information on the plot you can get so you can go with the absurd flow.