When Worlds Collide: The Edward G. Robinson/Dick Van Dyke Show SNAFU

Oh yeah, the Gold Key DICK VAN DYKE comic book. And there’s Millie and Jerry and Mel and Buddy and Sally and Mary and Edward G. Robinson! Say wha —? Above Mr. Robinson’s head is a real cover of the real comic book. The one and only Mark Evanier has written a great story about how Edward G. Robinson wound up in the world of Dick Van Dyke here. Please read for lots of large laughs!

And join me next week when Pickles will be played by Judy Holliday!

The Explaining Hand — A Cartoonists’ Obsession

I was chatting with some cartoonists and we were talking about the over-reliance on this gesture. Once you start looking for it, you see it a lot. A character is talking, usually some kinda expository dialogue, and the cartoonist draws him/her with this hand out, palm out “explaining hand” gesture.

Above, kind and sweet syndicated cartoonist Stephanie Piro and slob magazine cartoonist Mike Lynch demonstrate the technique used.

There are some other choices, more interesting choices that the cartoonist could have made, but the explaining hand is old reliable. Here are examples from 6 syndicated features dated March 29:

I see it a lot and it’s getting cliched. Or maybe I’m the only one seeing it. Maybe I’m the only one obsessing over it. Maybe I need to get out of my Brooklyn apartment and live life. Oh, who the hell am I kidding? It’s gorgeous out there today, but blogging about all things cartoony must continue! I apologize for mentioning the outside world. Let’s get another cup of coffee and continue to ruin our posture hunched over the computer. Onward!

The king of the gesture’s gotta be the new strip GIRLS AND SPORTS, using the EH a dozen times in the 5 strips below.

And I’m guilty of it too …

Glad that’s outta my system. Maybe you’ll all start obsessing about it now. Yeah, that’s it! If I passed my obsession on to you, then this has all been worth it!

From the Guy Who Gave You BATMAN: TIRED AND CHEESED OFF in the 1980s …

Frank Miller’s graphic novel series SIN CITY opens April 1st. Everyone knows about it since it’s being promoted up the wahzoo, or, depending on your location, the ying-yang. I don’t know that much about the movie, but I’m an American and that means that that won’t stop me from giving some my ill-formed opinions:

Robert Rodriguez insisted comic book auteur Frank Miller direct. This is against the Director’s Guild rules. So, Rodriguez resigned. The last guy I know who did that was George Lucas. For a big-time director guy insist that the visionary comic book guy direct is reason enough to see this one.

And look what they did to that sweet Gilmore Girl (above). They turned that nice fast-talking pastel-wearing cutie all gothy!

And, more importantly — Chicks in S&M gear: much more interesting than a guy in a bat suit!

Yesterday, I saw a bus on Adams Street, in downtown Brooklyn. It had this big “John Travolta in THE PUNISHER” advertisement. The poster was worn and peeling, but it was still hanging on to the side of the bus. Bad comic book movies can be so bad … I hope that SIN CITY is “Internet buzz”-worthy.