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Posted at 8:30 AM ET, 03/18/2009

AIG Bonus Brouhaha: Who Draws the Most Interest?

By Michael Cavna

Controversy over the AIG bailout -- and bonuses -- has spawned its share of names for what AIG "really" stands for, such as:

Absolutely Into Greed.

Ain't Immorality Grand?

And my personal fave, which jokingly imagines secret Swiss bank accounts:
Already in Geneva.

Perhaps nothing fuels a superior political cartoon like extreme emotion, be it exultation, tragedy or -- in this case for many -- white-hot rage.

With that sound and fury in mind, 'Riffs spotlights four recent editorial cartoons that -- like Jon Stewart verbally pile-driving Jim Cramer -- provide a moment of psychological catharsis. Do you have a fave -- one that reflects your feeling and seconds your emotion. Then, please, by all means: Vote for it below.


BRUCE BEATTIE (Courtesy of Cagle.com) Enlarge Comic


MIKE KEEFE (Courtesy of Cagle.com) Enlarge Comic


MIKE LUCKOVICH (Courtesy of Cagle.com) Enlarge Comic


GARY VARVEL (Courtesy of Cagle.com) Enlarge Comic



ELSEWHERE IN POLITICAL CARTOONING...

Days of rumors ultimately proved true: Robert Ariail, editorial cartoonist for the State in South Carolina and a two-time Pulitzer finalist -- has resigned from the newspaper rather than be reduced to working part time.

Alas, political cartoonists seem to be falling from their perches at an almost weekly rate now.


TIME FOR "TRAIL WATCH":

Today's "Mark Trail" apparently attempts to answer the age-old Stereotypical Casting question: Which entertainment cliche is meant to be more "sinister" -- baldness or hirsuteness?

No-Goodnik No. 1 -- aka the Jeffrey Tambor stand-in -- initially looked menacing, but today looks more pensive. "Sensitive" fella that he is, he wants to go the greed route -- swift and clean.

Meanwhile, No-Goodnik No. 2 , with sideburns and heavy brow, looks like a fugitive from a '70s cop show -- we half-expect to see Mannix or Dan-O hot on his tail. He's quieter -- but apparently more dangerous if they can corner poor little Rusty by the back-alley Dumpster.

So for today, at least, the verdict is in: "Mark Trail" deems Hairy Man more sinister. But tune back in tomorrow -- over a long plot line, the answer could change daily.

ELSEWHERE...


The morning-after: To catch up to yesterday's slew of St. Patrick's Day-themed strips, my fave had to be "Frazz," with a type of twist I hadn't seen before. Cheers.

AND FI-NAL-LY: AN IMPORTANT PROGRAMMING NOTE...

Comic Riffs is now on Twitter. Well actually, Comic Riffs has been on Twitter since we launched last summer, but now we're especially on Twitter -- as in, we'll more often send cartoon-news updates. (Yes, actual news--nothing about our [yawwn] dreadful-dull personal routine.) In fact, I plan to have a bit o' interesting news later today.

So to sign up for our updates, just go to Twitter.com/comicriffs and click-up as a 'Riffs "follower." Heaven knows, most journalists not named David Gregory or Brian Williams can use a few more "friends" about now.

By Michael Cavna  | March 18, 2009; 8:30 AM ET
Categories:  The Morning Line  
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Comments

While I appreciate the sentiment of that Frazz comic, it's not true.

Harp Lager is brewed in Ireland, and it's "thin enough to dye green."

Also, Guiness is too dark to dye green, but it's not necessarily too "thick" to do so.

Posted by: VTDuffman | March 18, 2009 9:05 AM | Report abuse

Belated comment on YESTERDAY's Dilbert.... "threw up in my mouth" was a GREAT line - the first time it was used in the movie "Dodge Ball" (probably why the producers included it in EVERY preview of the movie.) Lots of people have reused (quoted?) the line, but I still think "Dodgeball" every time I hear/read it. Adam's can be so bleeding clever, funny, and original. So why oh WHY did he have to cheat us out of what could have been a great strip by using someone else's punchline?! OK, rant over.

Posted by: ishkabibbleA | March 18, 2009 9:55 AM | Report abuse

>> ishkabibbleA:

indeed & agreed: it IS a great line -- one that Parker Posey and Jay Mohr were tossing around years before "Dodgeball." But Christine Taylor (Stiller) gets all the credit because, really, her delivery of that line is so hilariously spot-on.

Methinks Adams cribbed it precisely because it is so oft-quoted -- so iconic. Quote popular laugh-lines too often and it's a crutch; do it sparingly and you're simply name-checking a fave pop culture reference.

--M.C.

Posted by: cavnam | March 18, 2009 10:53 AM | Report abuse

I voted for Beattie because the Little Shop of Horrors reference proved irresistible.

Posted by: oceanchild | March 18, 2009 11:16 AM | Report abuse

I didn't find any of the AIG comics particularly inspired. Same with the print reporting on AIG, the TV stories on AIG, the blog posts on AIG, any congressional comment on AIG or any of the web comments on AIG.

The next clever and enlightening tidbit on AIG will no doubt be the first.

On to more critical matters, why is it more threatening for the 2 'bad guys' to appear in the background of a picture showing them in a diner, than to just BE in the diner IN THE FIRST PLACE?

On days like this, I just want Sophie to go back and smack some more cheerleaders in Judge Parker.

Posted by: JkR- | March 18, 2009 2:30 PM | Report abuse

A joke! Yeah that's why I mentioned the Geneva bank accounts... yeah, that's the ticket! It was a joke!

Posted by: Jumper1 | March 18, 2009 9:45 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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