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Comic Riffs: October 17, 2010 - October 23, 2010

The Riff: From 'SOUTH PARK' to 'POOCH CAFE': When a sense of plagiarism plagues comedy

"Cheating on a quiz show. It's like plagiarizing a comic strip." -- Paul Scofield, portraying Mark Van Doren in the 1994 film "Quiz Show" One of the most challenging things to accomplish as a creator is coming up with...

By Michael Cavna  | October 23, 2010; 2:30 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
Categories:  General, The Animation, The Comic Strip  | Tags:  College Humor, Dogs of C-Kennel, Matt Stone and Trey Parker, Mick and Mason Mastroianni, Paul Gilligan, Pooch Cafe, South Park  
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Casting 'PEARLS BEFORE SWINE': Stephan Pastis & RingTales take aim at screens big and small

A talking Larry the Croc has just come to computer screens -- and hopes are heightened that the grammatically challenged carnivore might also hit the big screen. "Pearls Before Swine" has just "soft-launched" 29 short animations on Babelgum.com --...

By Michael Cavna  | October 22, 2010; 9:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  The Animation, The Comic Strip  | Tags:  Babelgum, Michael Fry, Over the Hedge, Pearls Before Swine, RingTales, Stephan Pastis  
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VIDEO OF THE DAY: Matt Groening allows Tom Gammill into his creative lair

For the 25th edition of Tom Gammill's ongoing video series "Learn to Draw," the "Doozies" cartoonist is invited into the creative inner sanctum of the mighty Matt Groening. Comic Riffs always enjoys peering voyeuristically into cartoonists' studios, as a...

By Michael Cavna  | October 21, 2010; 10:30 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  The Animation, The Comic Strip  | Tags:  Bill Griffith, Brendan Burford, Jay Kennedy, King Features, Matt Groening, Patrick McDonnell, Tom Gammill  
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The 'Riffs Interview: 'CYANIDE & HAPPINESS's' Dave McElfatrick tackles visas, viscera & American humor

DAVE McELFATRICK might be a new author, but nothing about his career has been by the book. Already in his professional life, McElfatrick has managed to abandon his computer-science education for that ever-secure field that is online cartooning. He...

By Michael Cavna  | October 20, 2010; 2:30 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Interviews With Cartoonists, The Webcomic  | Tags:  Cyanide and Happiness, Dave McElfatrick, Kris Wilson, Matt Melvin, Randall Munroe, Rob Denbleyker, xkcd  
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MOVIE POSTER OF THE DAY: Berkeley Breathed talks 'Mars Needs Moms'

The new poster for the Disney film "Mars Needs Moms" has that certain Berkeley Breathed charm. The "Opus" cartoonist, however, tells Comic Riffs that the movie art is entirely the handiwork of Disney -- complete with spaceship designed by...

By Michael Cavna  | October 19, 2010; 12:01 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  The Animation, The Holly Word  | Tags:  Berkeley Breathed, Mars Needs Moms, Robert Zemeckis, Simon Wells  
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IS THE DOPE CATHOLIC? The Vatican blesses Homer Simpson (despite what the show says)

Homer Simpson, who never met a religious belief he couldn't tune out, scoff at or sleep through, has been declared a true Catholic by none other than the Vatican, according to its official newspaper. In an article Sunday headlined...

By Michael Cavna  | October 18, 2010; 5:45 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  The Animation  | Tags:  The Simpsons  
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BOX OFFICE: 'RED' bucks Pilgrim's fate with $22M debut; 'JACKASS' wins weekend

Splinter-limbed Scott Pilgrim would have killed for an opening like "Red's." But then, in 2010, a wiry Michael Cera can't mobilize Operation: Box Office the way a wily veteran like Bruce Willis does. It's the Year of the Dependable...

By Michael Cavna  | October 17, 2010; 1:45 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  The Holly Word  | Tags:  Bruce Willis, Cully Hamner, DC Comics, Warren Ellis, WildStorm  
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