What was unique about Hitchens was, no matter WHO you were or what you believed in, he would infuriate you at least some of the time. Maybe even a LOT of the time. Then, just when you were ready to write him off, he’d write something genuinely witty, brilliant and insiughtful, and you’d think, “Whoa… he’s on my side after all”
Until the next time he infuriated you.
Now, are there writers as funny as Hitchens, or even much funnier? Sure. Guys I find much more persuasive? Sure. But I can’t think of anyone else who was as unpredictable as Hitchens, or as quick to flip the bird (sometimes literally) to people who thought of themselves as his friends.
I mean, think of that night on Bill Maher’s show where he irritated the liberal Maher crowd, who began to boo and hiss at him. He extended the middle finger to them, and went back to the point he was making.
Those folks probably went home loathing him… until the next time he wrote a salient anti-religion article, at which point they figured he’d come abck to his senses and rejoined the right side!
Who else is there like that? Nobody, really.