Archive for the ‘Comic conventions’ Category

One more time: Magritte and Schrödinger

May 13, 2021

Two Bizarro cartoons on variations on themes, from art (Magritte’s Son of Man) and science (Schrödinger’s cat):

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A memic triple

May 9, 2021

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

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Houdini’s cat

April 26, 2021

Today’s Rhymes With Orange cartoon is a takeoff on Schrödinger’s cat:

Looking ahead a bit, a Schrödinger’s cat joke (SCJ) involves the pairing of a concrete object (in this case, a cat) and a pair of opposed states (in this case, present vs. absent (in a carrier)) and maintains, preposterously, that the object is simultaneously in both states (in this case, that the cat is simultaneously present and absent in the carrier). In the SCJ above we don’t have evidence that the cat is or was both present and absent at the same time, but instead some simultaneity of the two states is inferred from other facts: like Houdini in one of his escape tricks, the cat was in the carrier when its owner left the house and there was no way it could escape from it — see the chains and lock — but it’s now, at the vet’s, visibly no longer there.

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Size cartoons

April 23, 2021

From the latest issue of the New Yorker (for 4/26 & 5/3 2021), two cartoons (by Benjamin Schwartz and Zach Kanin) that qualify the magazine to be, not only the Technology Issue, but also the Size Issue: body size in the Schwartz, penis size in the Kanin.

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The whale and the smartphone

February 10, 2021

The Dale Coverly Speed Bump cartoon of 4/25/18, yet another instance of the cartoon meme of Ahab and the whale, this time showing only the whale —  but the whale in communication with  Ahab via their smartphones:

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(See the Page on this blog on comic conventions, including the cartoon meme of Ahab and the whale.)

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Two remarkable cartoon books

February 5, 2021

… edited by Bob Eckstein and published by Princeton Architectural Press:

The Ultimate Cartoon Book of Book Cartoons (by the World’s Greatest Cartoonists), 2019. (33 contributors)


(#1) Bob and the Book Cartoons cover

Everyone’s a Critic: The Ultimate Cartoon Book (by the World’s Greatest Cartoonists), 2020. (37 contributors)


(#2) The Critic cover

The books are physically beautiful; they are also affectionate tributes to independent bookstores and to cartoonists as a group. (The very American boast world’s greatest points to the strongly American focus of the books — a very heavy concentration of New Yorker cartoonists, in fact, though others are included.)

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Two parrots and a pear tree

February 1, 2021

On Pinterest recently, a board devoted to Bizarro cartoons, including a fair number relevant to this blog but not previously posted here — from which, the three below (all the work of Dan Piraro alone, without Wayno’s collaboration). Two are about parrots and crackers (the first is also an instance of the Psychiatrist cartoon meme); the third offers a groaner pun on a sexual idiom previously discussed on this blog. (I’ll start with a digression on the most common way parrots figure in cartoons, as adjuncts to pirates.)

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Flat on his back at the solstice

January 15, 2021

Today’s Wayno/Piraro Bizarro, framed as an instance of the Psychiatrist cartoon meme:


(#1) (If you’re puzzled by the odd symbols in the cartoon — Dan Piraro says there are 6 in this strip — see this Page.)

The patient is lying on the therapeutic couch, but he’s also flat on hs back suffering the affective disorder that comes to many with the winter solstice (Wayno’s title for the cartoon: “Bummer Solstice” — playing on summer solstice).

Then the title “Tropical Depression”, ordinarily referring to a meterological phenomenon, involving lowered atmospheric pressure (depression) arising in the tropics  (the geographical band surrounding the equator)[*see note after this paragraph]; but here referring to a mental condition (depression, characterized by lowered energy and affect), in this case, specifically, seasonal affective disorder (aka seasonal melancholy) triggered by the short, dark, cold days around the winter solstice — which the patient seems to be counteracting with cultural symbols  associated with the bright, hot, and humid tropics (Hawaii, to be specific): beachcomber hat, lei, coconut drink, ukulele, and Hawaiian beach shorts.

[*Note added 1/17: this account of the tropical in tropical depression is grossly oversimplified. For a more accurate statement — from an actual meteorologist — see Sim Aberson’s comment on this posting.]

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Wrong turn at Catalina

December 31, 2020

In the most recent (1/4&11/21) New Yorker, this E.S. Glenn cartoon with still another variant of the Desert Island meme:

(#1)

Somehow they started out paddling a lovers’ swan boat — note the heart — in the pond of a park but ended up beached on a desert island in the Pacific (or whatever tropical spot cartoon desert islands are located in). Yes, he should have let her ask for directions.

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Santa Psychiatrist captions

December 25, 2020

In place of the usual last page with a simple captioning contest, the 12/28/20 New Yorker — the Cartoon Issue — has a cartoon by E. S. Glenn (a Santa Psychiatrist cartoon, for the season), with no fewer that 19 captions proposed by professional comedians: