When Political Cartoon Ideas Seem to All Look Alike
It's the risk you run often as a political cartoonist: Your craft relies on invoking and exploiting common symbols. Images laced with inherent power, poignancy or relevance.
Yet when so many cartoonists are playing the same symbols, how do you make sure your work is fresh?
Case in point involves the recent heroic landing of the US Airways plane on the Hudson. Instantly, the incident -- the very image -- is iconic. So when three of the biggest stories within days are (a) the plane landing; (b) Bush's departure after eight years; and (c) Obama's historic inauguration, the editorial cartoonist naturally wants to mix together those elements in some creative concoction.
The pitfall here is that it's all SO obvious. The challenge is how to push the imagery to a unique place. It's what separates the greats from the trite hacks.
How did the world's cartoonists fare? Some are inspired, some are tired. 'Riffs offers a sampling from recent days:
| January 22, 2009; 9:00 AM ET
Categories: The Political Cartoon
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