Why This Cartoon Works (I Think) #3

OK, I’ve been blabbing on and on about non-cartoon stuff for a while again, so back to cartoon blogging with another cartoon that works, and why.

Let’s look at this cartoon:


OK. first the art:

Again, a very very simple scene. A sidewalk and a brick wall hinted at. The character, however, really took some attention to detail for the joke to work.

I hunted down every deck of cards in the house to get sort of a consensus king. Well, for the head, anyway; the body isn’t really important.

Often when I do characters like this I’ll do more of a wiggly line in the clothing and sign for a dirtier, more unkempt look, but for some reason I didn’t here.

Although I do have the font of my handwriting, I did hand letter the sign to get a more realistic look.

The joke:

To be honest, I’m not even really sure what the joke is here. Was the king himself lost during a shuffle? Did he lose his status during a shuffle? You could go even a little further afield, but those are probably the best options.

This thing is, it’s a pretty funny cartoon right off the bat. When you think about it any deeper, it’s a little odd, and then sort of confusing. Or maybe that’s just me having overanalyzed it.

Anyway, a good joke, even if I can’t really explain why.

The sale:

Sold and colored for Reader’s Digest:

4530 Rd Color-1

I spent some time in Photoshop getting some texture and color effects, and I like how it turned out.

Often publications will remove my signature in the lower right, so I moved it up a tad and made sure it was placed within the color.

Well that’s it. Anyone have any other theories on the gag?

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5 thoughts on “Why This Cartoon Works (I Think) #3”

  1. Oh, you asked for a theory on the cartoon. I think it works because it makes sense for precisely three seconds, which is how long I spent looking at it. If there's more logic behind the joke, it's not necessary.

  2. Yeah, I like the gag. Sometimes a cartoon creates its own little reality. So, with that in mind, there is another cartoon here as well; a counter to this one.

    I felt that the future of the rest of the pack of cards, what with a missing card, is to be tossed in the trash as a now useless deck. Maybe a cartoon of all of the remaining cards, walking down the street, passing out HAVE YOU SEEN THE KING OF SPADES? flyers to other "card people" (Old Maid cards, Community Chest cards, etc.) who are walking by ….

    This cartoon bidness is one wacky bidness ….

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