Archive for the ‘Pop culture’ Category

A free cartoonist in Paris

April 27, 2021

Today’s Zippy strip has Griffy (Bill Griffith’s counterpart in the strip) drawing up a cartoon storm in fin de siècle Paris, in competition with a disdainful local painter (call him PP, for peintre parisien):

(#1)

Their dispute is about cartoons, in terms familiar to Griffy:

… but is it art?

(here, asked about cartoons). PP emphatically says no, calling them “gaudy daubings … dégoûtant!” — while Griffy returns the insult by referring to PP’s work as “post-fauvist, pre-cubist, elitist scribbling”, while Griffy’s own work “recognizes th’ absurdity of life”.

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leprobates

March 12, 2021

Today’s Wayno/Piraro Bizarro (Wayno’s title: “Mythical Miscreants”):


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

leprobate, a portmanteau of leprechaun reprobate. Naughty, naughty boys.

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genealogy, genie-ology

March 10, 2021

The 2/10 One Big Happy, recently in my comics feed:


(#1) Bonus word play: the genie’s fabulous bottle and the idiom hit the bottle ‘drink heavily

Ruthie understands genealogy as genie-ology, or at least as a word with first element genie, the name of a mythological spirit that has come to play a significant role in American popular culture (and she recognizes both lamp genies and bottle genies). But genealogy is new to her.

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Smell the roses in a field

February 26, 2021

Two cartoons in my comics feed on 2/25 (otherwise known as Yay! Pfizer1 Day! at my house) on language play: a Wayno/Piraro Bizarro playing on formulaic language (the metaphorical idiom / cliché stop and smell the roses), and a Piccolo/Price Rhymes With Orange with a play on the ambiguity of field.

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The Connecticut mystery structure

August 27, 2020

A Zippy sequence that began back on 8/3 in this strip (reported on in a section of my 8/3 posting “The art of everyday objects”):


(#1) The premise is that this little house just appeared one day in Bill Griffith’s Connecticut neighborhood, provoking some bafflement as to its origin and function (note: in Bill Griffith’s neighborhood, not in the Dingburg area where the cartoon character Griffy is to be found)

That posting argued that the sliding door with a Z on it is just a standard Z-series barn door.

There followed three strips in which the door slowly opens, revealing someone inside — in fact, Zippy, presenting himself as a real person (like BG (Bill Griffith) rather than Griffy). Then a sequence of 8 increasingly surrealistic strips turning on issues of fiction and reality. Finally, two strips in which it turns out that Zippy is running a farm stand of the mind from that little shed.

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Hot wings on a paper plate

July 12, 2020

In my comics feed for the day, this One Big Happy from 6/15, featuring a Dad Tall Tale, DTT for short (here an elaborate poetic burlesque):

(#1)

The original: Joyce Kilmer’s famous (and famously sentimental) poem “Trees” — also famously parodied, most notably in Ogden Nash’s “Song of the Open Road”.

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I made some art

February 5, 2020

Passed on by John McIntyre, this poignant, or even mordant, eat the rich comic:


(#1) Artie (the artist) and Audie (his audience)

A possible continuation: in panel 5, Artie reluctantly says yes; and in panel 6, Audie goes, well, then, it’s not worth anything, so forget it.

Lessons in modern culture: one, the (only) reason to create things is to make money; and two, to survive, a creator has to sell themselves and their product.

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Three little digits

January 22, 2020

Today’s Wayno/Piraro collabo, another little exercise in cartoon understanding:


(#1) (If you’re puzzled by the odd symbols in the cartoon — Dan Piraro says there are 2 in this strip — see this Page.) Wayno’s title: “Number, Please”

No doubt you recognize the speaker as Satan / the Devil / Beelzebub, but the cartoon will still be incomprehensible unless you know that there’s a particular three-digit number that’s sometimes said to belong to Satan.

Pursuing this topic on my man Jacques’s birthday, today, will lead us, through a favorite verse of his, on a circuitous route passing through a mysterious British village, Chicago, and Santa Monica, on its way to the Big Gay Village, where men hug, spoon, and screw. (There will eventually be a content warning. I’ll warn you when the screwing is imminent.)

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Just one peanut

January 13, 2020

(Lots of off-color jokes, some of them gay-inflected, along with a number of peanut cartoons. So: crude, and perhaps not to everyone’s taste.)

Today’s Rhymes With Orange — entertaining if you get the crucial pop culture allusion, incomprehensible if you don’t:


(#1) An elephant at the doctor’s office, with an x-ray showing the contents of his stomach to be a top hat, a monocle, and a cane; in the face of this evidence, the doctor asks the patient if he’s sure that all he ate was one peanut (presupposing that the patient has claimed just that)

How does this even make sense, much less be funny? Even granting the poploric association between elephants and peanuts — which is actually pretty baffling (see below) — why do peanuts come up in #1 at all? We have a trio of men’s accessories and no visible peanuts.

There’s a hint in the bonus commentary on the left: elephant to elephant, “It’s a medical Mister-y”, where the clue is Mister. But the clue is useless if you don’t know your way around the symbolic figures of American commerce.

You have to be a friend of Mister Peanut.

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Boy oh Boyu!

January 9, 2020

David Bowie seems to have a considerable following in Russia, to judge from the Pinterest materials about him, for instance this album:


(#1) Дэвид Боуи: David Bowie in Cyrillic transiteration

Боуи gets the [wi] of Bowie just right, but to Latin-alphabet-oriented eyes that уи looks like YU [ju], so Боуи looks like Boyu: Boy oh Boyu!

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