A couple of gooduns from the New Yorker

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James Farrell
James Farrell
13 years ago

I like the bottom one, but I wonder if it really needs the caption. I think the greatest cartoons are those that succeed without captions. My all-time favourite (tell me to shut up if I’ve mentioned this before), which I saw twenty-five years ago somewhere, but never found again, depicts an orchestra on stage, with all of the violinists — except those in the outermost row — wearing eye patches on the right side. We were shown this in the middle of a lecture, and I couldn’t stop guffawing for the rest of the hour, to the bemusement of my neighbours.

James Farrell
James Farrell
13 years ago

While were on the subject of cartoons, I thought Tom Tomorrow’s latest was one of his best for a while. The two panels of speechlessness are priceless.

TimT
13 years ago

I disagree, I think often a good cartoon is one where the art and the caption are both necessary and mutually dependent on one another.

Some of the best cartoons work without captions, and some of the best captions work without the cartoon, so it seems to me that it’s not so easy to say which is the more important part of the cartoonist’s art.

Sometimes a large part of the art is in fact in the lettering and comic-book captioning found in the comic itself. A good deal of Roz Chast’s work is like this. (I think she’s the best cartoonist the NY has at the moment, IMO.)

Even non-cartoon art often relies upon the interplay of text and image, caption and composition.

Richard Green
Richard Green
13 years ago

But…these make sense!

Surely not New Yorker cartoons.

The Worst of Perth
13 years ago

Mafia one is great. The other, meh. Am I missing something with Tom Tomorrow’s stuff James? Seems to be a little obvious without much apparent humour.

Alphonse
Alphonse
13 years ago

I once had occasion to call on an elderly Hungarian emigre solicitor. Beautifully drawn and coloured, framed on his office wall, was a cartoon of a cow with one peasant yanking it by the halter, another, in the opposite direction, by the tail, and a robed figure in between, milking. No caption necessary.

‘Lovely cartoon’ I said.

His reply: ‘I would say, instructive’

Gummo Trotsky
13 years ago

This is definitely better captionless. My favourite from last week’s New Yorker.

Patrick
Patrick
13 years ago

The Tom Tommorrow was terrible – the funny part is the juxtaposition of the incredibly otiose final frame with James’ first comment about comments!

Without the final frame it would have been quite funny in a somewhat sterile and obvious way, but the lead balloon at the end was a real downer.

James Farrell
James Farrell
13 years ago

You are are a raving fascist, Patrick, and you are not being fair minded. What makes the last frame funny is not the Penguin’s question, but the deadpan ‘Why, yes! How did you guess?’ and the expression accompanying it. But I agree it would have stil been funny without it. What makes TT funny in general is that his depictions of Republicans are not exaggerated.