A memic triple

Version I. A J.C. Duffy cartoon published in the New Yorker on 4/19/10:

(#1) The strip takes two cartoon memes, Desert Island (with a tiny single-castaway island) and Grim Reaper (with Death at the prow of a sleek modern boat); and packages them together as a memic title, the name of a formulaic joke routine: Good News / Bad News

Version II. A Rhymes With Orange cartoon in my 6/27/19 posting “The Desert Island Reaper”:

(#2) With two castaways, one can tell the other the good news, that there’s a boat, and leave unspoken the bad news, that the boat is being rowed by Death

From the posting:

As an extra, the boat that the Grim Reaper is steering towards the little island looks a lot like a gondola, so evoking Death in Venice and Charon the boatman of death, and possibly more indirectly, a Viking funeral boat with an animal-head prow.

Duffy got there first with the memic triple, but Piccolo & Price’s version is richer, I think.

GN/BN. An extended series of postings on this blog, beginning with “GN/BN” on 7/7/19: a discussion of the joke routine, in the comics and elsewhere — the short-form version, with a single good news / bad news pair. But then on 7/22/19, in “Oh that’s good”, the long-form version, with multiple linked pairings, as performed by Archie Campbell and Roy Clark on stage and in tv shows: X1, oh that’s good — no that’s bad, because X2 — but that’s good, because X3 — no that’s bad, because X4, etc.

Later postings expanded on these two, with (among other things) additional occurrences of the long-form joke routine. And then, in e-mail from Larry Horn (a significant contributor to the earlier discussion) on 5/1, an enjoyable musical version of the Campbell & Clark routine: “Good Luck John”, vocal and guitar by Joe Crookston in the Folk Alley Sessions (tiny url here, full YouTube url here).

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