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 12:05 PM ET, 07/ 7/2009

The Al Franken Clustertoon: Because Doggone It, People Like Them!

By Michael Cavna

At first it seemed as if a couple of Al Franken cartoons were popping up with natural overlap. Then sharp-eyed comicsdc blogger Mike Rhode alerted me to a couple more and suddenly, Stuart Smalley spoof cartoons seemed to be as conspicuously frequent as bailouts, buyouts and "Saturday Night Live" "best-of" DVDs.

Here are three of the uber-similar examples -- a trend that suggests the most obvious Franken gag also proved to be the most seductive to cartoonists, too alluringly spot-on to refuse.

The Big Question here becomes: Do readers even care when so many cartoonists arrive at the same idea? (And of course, many readers only see the cartoons in their paper of choice.) When there's a stampede to a single idea, though, does it matter to you?

If you've got other FrankenToons you'd like to draw our collective attention to, then by all means: Share them links.

JEFF KOTERBA (Omaha World Herald /

NATE BEELER (Washington Examiner /

'SCOTT STANTIS' (Birmingham News /


And speaking of Nate Beeler: This Riffster would be remiss if the blog didn't share this cartoon by him, precisely because it's generated some chatter. Here 'tis, and I'll leave the commentary to you:

NATE BEELER (Washington Examiner /

By Michael Cavna  | July 7, 2009; 12:05 PM ET
Categories:  The Political Cartoon  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: From the Good Folks Who Put the 'Meta' in Metamucil
Next: Would You Censor This Cartoon?


Since political cartoonists are all shooting at the same topical dartboard, it is hardly surprising that punchlines sometimes overlap. For most readers (who read only one newspaper), these coincidences are irrelevant, since they will see only the local version of the joke. In the case of the Post's "Drawing Board", it is the Editor's responsibility to make sure that only one of the "repeats" gets selected for reprinting.

Posted by: kilby | July 7, 2009 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Nate Beeler scores a two-fer herein. The desperation in the GOP's self-affirmation, and the overall sordidness of the WaPo's planned "salons", are beautifully illustrated. Mr. Beeler deserves his own "Post Points" today!

Posted by: seismic-2 | July 7, 2009 1:22 PM | Report abuse

There's overlapping comic ideas, and then there's just laziness. Any Stuart Smalley cartoon is lazy now, and I can't think of a single one that would be either funny or original. Though I'd love to be proven wrong.

Posted by: marybindc | July 7, 2009 4:06 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2011 The Washington Post Company