Archive for the ‘Linguistics in the comics’ Category

August 21st: two cartoons

August 17, 2017

… in the New Yorker. By Tom Toro (cartoon meme and self-referential as well) and Sara Lautman (pun!):

(#1)

(#2)

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Two cartoonists take on Charlottesville

August 17, 2017

Yes, vast numbers of cartoonists have taken up the subject, from many angles, some more than once. Here are two slashing images of POTUS and his response(s) to the event: Jon Berkeley’s cover for the August 19th issue of the Economist, and Peter Kuper’s New Yorker daily cartoon on the 15th.

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In camera

August 17, 2017

Today’s Zippy takes us to photographic LA:

(#1)

While namechecking the famous American photographers Diane Arbus, Edward Weston, Berenice Abbott, and Weegee, Zippy peers in the window of the Darkroom at 5370 Wilshire Blvd. in LA, now a bar and restaurant, originally a camera shop in the shape of a camera.

Looking for buidings in the shape of a camera will then take us around the world, thanks to a construction company in Karawang, West Java, Indonesia.

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More Zippy-O-Rama

August 15, 2017

Today’s Zippy takes us through three commercial establishments with (variants) of –orama names, while fretting ambivalently about American patriotism:

(#1)

Wein-O-Rama (Cranston RI), Billy’s Burg-O-Rama (Oxford MA), and Liquorama (stores with that name in many locations), plus Zippy’s own coining, Shrink-O-Rama. As it happens, Bill Griffith has used the imagery in #1 for at least one other strip, which I posted on Language Log on 1/20/07:

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Combos

August 14, 2017

Today’s Bizarro, in which Mr. Peanut (a registered brand) and Ms. GrapeJella (my invented name), a jar of grape jelly, face off:

(#1)

(If you’re puzzled by the odd symbols in the cartoon — Dan Piraro says there are 2 in this strip — see this Page.)

So many ways to combine the grape and the peanut, directly or via their metonymic associates (Ms. GrapeJella and Mr. Peanut) and their metonymic associates (grape jelly and peanut butter); and by combining things or by combining words (more carefully: linguistic expressions denoting those things).

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Hold me

August 13, 2017

Today’s Dilbert:

(#1) Wally gets Asok to wear a ThunderShirt® for anxiety

Wally achieves his end by trickery — by mendaciously telling Asok that he himself had used the device to achieve calm at work.

And it seems to have worked for Asok, quite possibly by the placebo effect.

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Metalinguistic tasks

August 12, 2017

In a recent One Big Happy, Ruthie’s father tries to get her to play with tongue twisters, but she treats the texts as stories about events in a real world:

Playing with tongue-twister texts is metalinguistic behavior, an activity in which bits of language are treated as objects in themselves, rather than being used to report, inquire, exclaim, instruct, etc. Small children (as above) and people in nonliterate societies are known for sometimes resisting metalinguistic talk of various kinds, instead confining themselves to concrete talk — what I’ll call planolinguistic talk (suggesting ‘flatly linguistic’, rather than ‘beyond and above’ language).

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Further adventures in cartoon understanding

August 9, 2017

Today’s WaynoVision cartoon and a New Yorker cartoon by Seth Fleishman from 7/3/16 (brought to my attention by Juan Gomez):

(#1)

(#2)

Then more about Fleishman, who’s relatively new to the New Yorker.

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Who was that masked Pinhead?

August 8, 2017

Today’s Zippy takes us to the land of softserve and rootbeer floats, where Z-Man’s tags abound:

(#1)

Not with a whip, but with a spray can.

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The taunt

August 8, 2017

Today’s One Big Happy has James reciting a piece of American childlore, the taunt “X is a friend of mine” (where X is a name, preferably a trochaic one, like Ruthie, to fit the trochaic tetrameter pattern of the verse):

  (#1)

A cornucopia of pop culture references.

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