Sunday, May 1, 2016

Sunday morning toons: Better to lose in a landslide in Hell than to win in . . . wait, how does that go again?

John Boehner's announcement this week that Ted Cruz is Lucifer was eminently click-worthy, but it was such a fat pitch that it didn't really bring out the most imaginative in a lot of political cartoonists this week. If you simply restated the Other Orange One's point, you probably didn't make the cut this week. If you took it in a different direction, you may very well have slipped in under the wire. And if you captured the Evil One's outrage at the comparison, you might well have ended up with a p3 Certificate of Harmonic Toon Convergence. And if you found a completely different direction to take it, you most likely received the p3 Legion of Merit Award.

And almost every cartoonist has already shot their bolt on the trans-restroom issue, so you won't see much of that today.

One of my sisters (who lives in Indiana and had the two-fold horror last week of Ted Cruz mangling Hoosier basketball history alongside Bobby Knight stumping with the Short-Fingered Vulgarian) said to me on the phone last week, and you could hear the mix of exasperation and astonishment in her voice, that the upcoming primary there "has turned me into a liberal." I could only express my sympathy, as somone who was born with that affliction and has only watched it get worse over the years.

My vote-by-mail ballot arrived yesterday, and although I haven't had the chance to sit down with it and my voter's guide (and a cup of tea) yet, there's one thing I know I'll be voting for: Washington County Emergency Communications System Bond Measure 34-243. Fortunately, Washington County is trying to get ahead of the problem, which distinguishes it from San Diego, where they're already way behind the curve, as Steve Breen notes.

Today's toons were selected by a panel of unemployed former NCAA basketball coaches from the week's offerings at McClatchy DC, Cartoon Movement, Go Comics, Politico's Cartoon Gallery, Daryl Cagle's Political Cartoons,, and other fine sources of toony goodness.

p3 Best of Show: Joel Pett.

p3 Legion of Merit: Steve Sack.

p3 Award for Best Adaptation from Another Medium: Chan Lowe.

p3 Certificate of Harmonic Toon Convergence: Jeff Danziger and Jerry Holbert.

Ann Telnaes notes another Last Time for Obama experience. (And there's an interesting rumor circulating that Obama, despite his claim that the Republican party, not Obama himself, is to blame for Trump's presence in the 2016 race, may have had some non-trivial part to play in the Slo-Mo Exploding Citrus's decision to enter the contest this time.) And while we're at it, here's a story about yet another Last Time moment this week.

Mark Fiore walks us through the math. (Although, as Booman points out, primaries have little to do with democracy and nothing to do with anyone's constitutional rights.)

Come for Tom Tomorrow's ongoing take on the Marvel Comics presidential nominee presumptive, but stay for the fiendishly clever Democratic National Committee plan to rein him in.

Reuben Bolling shows that the difference between "skeptic" and "septic" is more than just a missing letter.

Red Meat's Wally learns the limits of self-improvement.

The Comic Curmudgeon is too kind – seriously – to a genuinely creepy Archie strip.

Comic Strip of the Day meditates on the traps and triumphs of nuance.

It was on the east side of New York, where my parents resided amid humble surroundings. In belated celebration of Arbor Day, which was two days ago (the last Friday in April), p3 proudly presents Bugs Bunny in "A Hare Grows in Manhattan," another short in which he describes his formative years for an interviewer. Directed in 1947 by Friz Freleng from a story by Michael Maltese and Tedd Pierce, it features Portland's Own Mel Blanc voicing the titular hare, with Bea "Betty Rubble" Benaderet doing an uncredited turn as Lola Beverly, along with writers Maltese and Pierce as the two tough-guy dogs. I have no idea why musical director Carl Stalling, of the p3 pantheon of gods, kicked off the music for the title with a bar of "Mary Had a Little Lamb," but the segue into "The Daughter of Rosie O'Grady" previews the grown Bugs' theme as he tap-dances down the street.

The Adequately Sized Oregon Toon Block:

Ex-Oregonian Jack Ohman pays grudging respect to the Short-Fingered Vulgarian's resume.

Documented Ex-Oregonian Jen Sorensen imagines a future that's not so far away, and in its own vaguely dystopian way is not the worst thing that could happen.

Matt Bors bestows the Blind Squirrel Finding An Acorn award on the Short-Fingerred Vulgarian.

Jesse Springer trains his glasses on the Oregon primary, which is only a little over two weeks away. I imagine that it will be all over but the shouting by then, for both parties. Of course, the whole Hillary and superdelegates thing isn't that "rare," really – we went through it in 2008, the most recent contested Democratic primary and first time the Oregon primary even theoretically mattered since 1988 (when the Beaver State Democrats went for Hart).

Test your toon-captioning mojo at The New Yorker's weekly caption-the-cartoon contest. (Rules here.) And you can browse The New Yorker's cartoon gallery here.

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