Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
E-mail Michael  |  On Facebook: Comic Riffs  |  On Twitter: Comic Riffs  |  RSS Feeds RSS Feed
Posted at 9:00 AM ET, 01/22/2009

When Political Cartoon Ideas Seem to All Look Alike

By Michael Cavna

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:

STEVE BENSON (Courtesy of Enlarge Comic

CHIP BOK ((Courtesy of Enlarge Comic

GARY MARKSTEIN (Courtesy of Enlarge Comic

JEFF STAHLER (Courtesy of Enlarge Comic

ZANETTI (Courtesy of Enlarge Comic

By Michael Cavna  | January 22, 2009; 9:00 AM ET
Categories:  The Political Cartoon  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Will Batman Capture His Oscar Nod?
Next: What Is the Single Funniest Comic Today? (*No Retirees)

No comments have been posted to this entry.

The comments to this entry are closed.

RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2011 The Washington Post Company