It’s Zombie Time in the Funnies

Posted by on September 22nd, 2010 at 8:42 AM

As we perch here on the cusp of yet another so-called election, it seems an a propos moment to ponder the imponderables of the undead and the rest of the political ilk. Roger Ebert put it best: “Zombies, as I have noted before (and before and before), make excellent movie creatures because they are smart enough to be dangerous, slow enough to kill and dead enough we need not feel grief.” The same may be said for the political ilk. (I so enjoy coupling those two words—”political” and “ilk”.; makes me think of a stomach ailment, which I invariably have every time the political ilk start bloviating over the airways.) And that brings us to the campaign poster I saw in the last issue of Previews.

The cannibal has almost nothing to do with today’s sermon. And neither do politicians generally (however comforting it is to think of them as the undead). Instead, we have Mark Tatulli’s Heart of the City as Heart and her buddy Dean making a nicely honed satirical point about television and why kids go to school.

Tatulli has hilariously transformed his characters into semblances of the undead, a neat trick and worthy of admiring. (And so I do.) Apparently Tatulli is the only syndicated cartooner who decided the fad currently raging across the country in all its media forms deserves mention. But last year about this time, everyone was in on the action.

Naturally (or unnaturally, to be tediously exact), Mark Buford’s Scary Gary was among the first to celebrate the new emerging demongraphic. But Scary Gary came and went without fanging anyone that I noticed.  Jerry Scott and Jim Borgman spent a whole week on the subject in Zits.

On Friday, we’ll look in on a few more cadaverous formations from last year. For now, though, be guided by this jingling aphorism: “As you wonder through life, brother, / Let this always be your goal: / Keep your eye upon the donut / And not upon the hole.”

And now, a Handy Update: In Wiley Miller’s Non Sequitur, the fiendishly grasping and insatiably greedy business entity known as Megaconglomecorp has started looking for way to destroy the Ekert, embodiment of all things good and good natured therefore a Monstrous Threat to Megaconglom’s vital interests in the world.

And in Greg Evans’ Luann, Dirk, the muscular bad boy former boyfriend of the beauteous Toni, who is now, we all happily assume, in love with Luann’s older nerdish brother Brad, has returned, having served his jail term. Brad, fearing his relationship with Toni will be sabotaged by the rugged good looks of the arrogant Dirk, urges Toni to marry him (so she’ll be safe). She, however, doesn’t want to rush into anything.

And, of course, neither do we. And so we’ll stop here for the nonce.

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