By coincidence, Jen was asking me to explain the whole subprime mess to her yesterday. It was a few minutes of me rambling on the drive from wherever we were to her apartment. Today, Megan McArdle had the same explanation...told in stick figures!
You can click on that above embedded link, but I found it unusably small to read the text. Instead, it's much easier if you follow this link to view the Google Docs presentation at full size: The Subprime Primer
Apparently, Norwegian stick figures have hats that make them look like Canadian Mounties.