Archive: April 2009

Swine Flu: Too Soon to Joke? Tell It to the 'Toonists

Can cartoons prevent swine flu? Why sure -- simply print out this page, tie a string to it and wear it as a mask. What's that? Too soon to joke about swine flu? Well that's my point exactly. As the...

By Michael Cavna | April 30, 2009; 11:30 AM ET | Comments (3)

Do Most Young People Still READ Print Comics?

Morning, Cartoon Nation... If you care about the state and fate of newspaper comics, then today, make sure to read "Candorville." And if you read The Post's print funnies and recently endured the loss of a page of comics, then...

By Michael Cavna | April 30, 2009; 7:00 AM ET | Comments (14)

Toonists Got Talent: Who Drew Susan Boyle Best?

When an insta-celeb has the "most trafficked" face on the planet over the past week, the cartoonist's job is both much easier and immeasurably harder. By now, everyone and their never-kissed second cousin knows what the video-viral singer Susan Boyle...

By Michael Cavna | April 29, 2009; 11:30 AM ET | Comments (1)

Deliciously Good Dialogue? Sure, We'll Eat It Up

Morning, Cartoon Nation... I don't know what exactly is in the air -- well, besides panic and worry and trans-border contagion -- but thus far, this is a particularly fertile week for funnypage dialogue. Enlarge Comic From "Cul de Sac"...

By Michael Cavna | April 29, 2009; 7:00 AM ET | Comments (5)

Check Out: New Animations From 'Cul de Sac' & 'Pooch'

As the syndicates continues to unveil new animation shorts of their strips, I find myself fascinated with seeing what elements from static comics make a successsful transition -- and what is lost is translation. In the latest "Pooch Cafe" animation,...

By Michael Cavna | April 28, 2009; 11:30 AM ET | Comments (3)

Barrel of Laughs: Why Dennis Is Buck-Nekkid In TWO Strips Today

Enlarge Comic Enlarge Comic Yesterday, "Pearls Before Swine" and "Candorville" gave us the kind of lively comic cross-pollination that enriches both strips. Today, it gets even better. Dennis the Menace, that OH-so-irresistibly-mischievous cowlicked rapscallion of an overalled imp (aka:...

By Michael Cavna | April 28, 2009; 7:00 AM ET | Comments (8)

Vote Now: Judging the World of Caricature

By Wednesday, political cartoonists will have had their "first 100 days" to build their best Obama caricatures. The president's ears and smile have taken front-and-center in many caricatures so far, but some more critical cartoons have also aimed to depict...

By Michael Cavna | April 27, 2009; 11:30 AM ET | Comments (2)

The Latest "Post Power Rankings" Are In...

Comic Riffs put out the call last week, and the passion of the reponse was strong. Today we launch the Official Comic Riffs Power Rankings, an occasional gauge of which Post print strips you love -- and loathe. 'Riffs sought...

By Michael Cavna | April 27, 2009; 8:30 AM ET | Comments (10)

When Obama Apparently Doesn't Lean Left...

If it's Friday, it's time for Comic Riffs's latest reading list. Enlarge Comic First off, we're compelled to soak up NATE BEELER's striking Washington Examiner cartoon of Obama as reliever for the Nats. Namely, we are struck by the...

By Michael Cavna | April 24, 2009; 11:30 AM ET | Comments (4)

The Comics's Greatest Love Affairs? Now Taking Your Requests

Morning, Cartoon Nation... It's a simple question, and yet the opinions can quickly become so wide-ranging that consensus is rendered impossible. Well, at least around MY poker table of friends. The question: What is the best comic-strip love affair ever?...

By Michael Cavna | April 24, 2009; 8:30 AM ET | Comments (16)

The Interview: Jeff Corriveau, "Deflocked" Creator & TV Comedy Writer

"DEFLOCKED" Enlarge Comic You've written for "Saturday Night Live." You've provided punch lines for Leno. And your comedy credits include head writer for E!'s then-titled "Talk Soup." With such a resume, what propels a professional joke-writer to devote his...

By Michael Cavna | April 23, 2009; 12:00 PM ET | Comments (2)

Open Mike: Which Post Comics Would YOU Keep--or Cut?

"JUDGE PARKER": Heated development. Enlarge Comic If you read The Post's print comics, then you lost "Zippy" and "Pooch Cafe" and "Judge Parker" nearly perished thanks to 3,000 or so people you've never met. The Post, as has been...

By Michael Cavna | April 23, 2009; 8:30 AM ET | Comments (31)

Do My Comics Look, Well, Green?

Enlarge Comic Earl and Mooch appreciating a little tree-side R&R? "Mother Goose and Grimm" changing an "idea" light bulb? Notice a trend in much of today's funnies? Yep, that's because the syndicate King Features is staging its second annual...

By Michael Cavna | April 22, 2009; 11:30 AM ET | Comments (2)

Steve Breen Dedicates Pulitzer to Out-of-Work Colleagues

STEVE BREEN is thankful for the second Pulitzer of his career. He is humbly grateful that the jurors deemed his winning portfolio the best. But had he been doing the choosing, he wouldn't have necessarily selected himself for the prize....

By Michael Cavna | April 22, 2009; 8:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

Morning Line: When 'Cul de Sac' Meets 'Office Space'

Looking at today's "Cul de Sac" and the bespangled backpack of Viola, we have only one pervading observation: Enlarge Comic You know "Office Space," in which the chain-restaurant workers are required to wear pieces of "flair"? (Even if you haven't...

By Michael Cavna | April 21, 2009; 11:38 AM ET | Comments (0)

U-T's Steve Breen Wins Cartooning's Pulitzer

Congratulations to STEVE BREEN, who has just won his second Pulitzer Prize for editorial cartooning. The San Diego Union-Tribune cartoonist won his first Pulitzer in 1998, while at the Asbury Park Press. In an interesting twist (and confluence of talent),...

By Michael Cavna | April 20, 2009; 3:15 PM ET | Comments (0)

Hollywood Gets It Right: "State of Play's" Absent Cartoonist

Indulge me for a moment if you will, o fellow Riffians -- time now for a meta-post: Enlarge Comic So I've just seen "State of Play," Hollywood's new politico-journo thriller starring an engaging Russell Crowe, and I've got one cheeky...

By Michael Cavna | April 20, 2009; 11:30 AM ET | Comments (0)

Morning Quickie: Fear & Abject Terror Before Breakfast

I had the opportunity to read today's "Pearls Before Swine" and "Dilbert" in advance, 'round midnight, and let's just say: I slept nary a wink. Enlarge Comic Enlarge Comic In this economy, the job security for ink-stained wretches (journos) and...

By Michael Cavna | April 20, 2009; 8:30 AM ET | Comments (9)

Morning Quickie: Doonesbury Twitters, Ted Forth Teeters

Garry Trudeau may be skeptical of Twitter, but his "Doonesbury" character Roland Hedley most certainly is not. Enlarge Comic Several weeks back, Trudeau told Comic Riffs that Twitter, the social networking/micro-blogging service, is "indisputably a time suck." But Twitter, the...

By Michael Cavna | April 17, 2009; 8:30 AM ET | Comments (4)

Here Comes the 'Judge'! Strip to Return to Post's Pages

It's official: After an impassioned response from readers -- not to mention thousands of respondents to two poll votes on Comic Riffs -- The Washington Post has decided to bring back "Judge Parker." The serial strip -- which has enjoyed...

By Michael Cavna | April 16, 2009; 5:26 PM ET | Comments (23)

Morning Line: On the Trail of the 'Judge Parker' Artist...

Are you missing your fix of artist Eduardo Barreto -- aka the Man Who Revivified "Judge Parker"? Well, Mike Rhode -- keeper of the excellent blog comicsDC -- alerts us that Barreto is also busy these days with an adaptation...

By Michael Cavna | April 16, 2009; 10:30 AM ET | Comments (3)

Morning Quickie: The Taxing Dearth of IRS Gags...

Morning, Cartoon Nation... Time was, Tax Day brought a bevy of IRS-themed comics, as every other cartoonist seemed to fire up the TurboTax and then immediately channel their emotion into gags about tax brackets and write-offs and H&R Blockheads. This...

By Michael Cavna | April 15, 2009; 8:30 AM ET | Comments (3)

A Landscape Lacking in Political Cartoonists...

Greetings, Cartoon Nation... So the San Francisco Chronicle's Tom Meyer -- for decades a Bay Area morning must-read -- is the latest political cartoonist to lose his journalistic perch. This change comes while the losses are still fresh in...

By Michael Cavna | April 14, 2009; 12:00 PM ET | Comments (1)

Morning Quickies: What We're Reading Now...

Greetings, Cartoon Nation... With so much good cartoon news in the air, it seems the ideas are just as fertile as the tequila-doused college kids come Spring Break week. To help wend your way through the crush, here's Comic...

By Michael Cavna | April 13, 2009; 11:30 AM ET | Comments (2)

When the Comics Are Cut Down to Size

Morning, Cartoon Nation... Scott Adams and the "Dilbert"-inspired Stephan Pastis may have outwitted even the most Draconian of comic-shrinking editors across the land. Seems that nearly no matter how much you reduce "Dilbert" and "Pearls Before Swine," the clean, relatively...

By Michael Cavna | April 10, 2009; 8:30 AM ET | Comments (20)

The Interview: DC Comics's Dan DiDio

For DC Comics, 2009 is chock full of big storylines. There's the action in "New Krypton" (which puts Superman in the unfamiliar position of not being the most super person in the Milky Way). There's "Battle for the Cowl" (which...

By Michael Cavna | April 9, 2009; 9:30 AM ET | Comments (1)

Garfield Plus Garfield (Plus His Agenda)

Morning, Cartoon Nation... Ohh, Jim Davis, You think we're not on to you. You and your teeming millions -- er, minions -- produce The Franchise That Is Garfield, same as it ever was (or seemingly that way since at least,...

By Michael Cavna | April 8, 2009; 8:30 AM ET | Comments (9)

The Interview: 'Monsters' Animator Phil 'Captain 3D' McNally

The leap from studying furniture design in London to becoming an animator on a multimillion-dollar 3-D film in Hollywood can sound like a doozy. But PHIL McNALLY, a Northern Ireland native who legally adopted the middle name "Captain 3D" even...

By Michael Cavna | April 7, 2009; 8:30 AM ET | Comments (0)

Morning Quickie: Curse This Strip!

THE MONDAY RUNDOWN: Morning, Cartoon Nation... The Further Adventures of Serial Strips Not Named "Judge Parker": 'Riffs doesn't mean to curse the darkness in today's "Spider-Man," but there's definitely something funky about that left-arm anatomy in the final panel. The...

By Michael Cavna | April 6, 2009; 8:30 AM ET | Comments (7)

The Twitter Interview: Political Cartoonist Mike Thompson

Detroit Free Press political cartoonist MIKE THOMPSON has deep roots in old media. He's worked as a print cartoonist in multiple newsrooms; his current newspaper has just curbed some home delivery; and he's now with a new syndicate (Creators) after...

By Michael Cavna | April 3, 2009; 11:30 AM ET | Comments (0)

Morning Quickie: Ten Things We're Reading Now

Morning, Cartoon Nation... So much good cartoon news, so little time to write about each in more than a Twitter-sanctioned 140 characters. So for your perusing pleasure, here's 'Riffs quickie reading list of recent items: TEN THINGS WE'RE READING NOW:...

By Michael Cavna | April 3, 2009; 8:30 AM ET | Comments (9)

The Twitter Interview: Cartoonist Daryl Cagle

DARYL CAGLE is a political cartoonist. Daryl Cagle is a syndicator. And not least of all, Daryl Cagle is a "magazine Web site" (via MSNBC.com) that publishes roughly 200 other editorial cartoonists. His site draws eyes, and his tweets draw...

By Michael Cavna | April 2, 2009; 11:30 AM ET | Comments (1)

Where Else Do You Go to Fill Your Comics Needs?

It's a fact that stares us in the face even more closely than a foregrounded Bucky Katt in a fit of crazy-eyed piqué: If you're a fairly serious comics reader in this time of cuts, no one newspaper is going...

By Michael Cavna | April 2, 2009; 8:30 AM ET | Comments (8)

Who Keeps 'Garfield' Alive? Look to America's Youth

As some readers of the Post print comics cast about for what strips they would drop, the question crops up often: WHO wants to keep "Garfield," let alone "Peanuts" reruns? Well, judging by a recent Nickelodeon poll , you can...

By Michael Cavna | April 1, 2009; 12:30 PM ET | Comments (7)

The Twitter Interview: 'PvP' Creator Scott Kurtz

Today, Comic Riffs continues its four-day look at cartoonists who use Twitter. Yesterday, we spoke with "Candorville" cartoonist Darrin Bell, and in today's print edition of The Washington Post, we discuss Twitter at length with a range of cartoonists. So...

By Michael Cavna | April 1, 2009; 8:30 AM ET | Comments (1)

 
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