Growing up in the bogan reservation that was Rockingham in the 1980s, there was always one thing that made life seem liveable– the knowledge that the neighbouring town (I say town. I mean field of burning Holden Torana corpses as far as the eye could see) Kwinana was infinitely rougher, uglier, and stupider. It’s a bottom-of-the-barrel snobbishness that has never left me. Kwinana remains the punchline for any joke involving criminal behaviour, alcoholism, reverse evolution, or knuckle-dragging bogan behaviour in general. Which explains the title of this post….. The cartoon, well, hey: if, as Christopher Eccleston’s Doctor proudly proclaimed, every planet has a North, then it’s likely that every planet has a Kwinana analogue as well. And, sooner, or later, we’ll encounter them.
And then they’ll go to Bali, but that’s another cartoon for another time…
“If there’s no life on other planets, then you tell me what’s happened to our tyres.”
Anthropomorphism is a gift to cartoonists. From Bill Watterson to Stephan Pastis to Charles Shulz to Walt Kelly, cartoonists have known one thing for sure: turn your everyday hooman into a beastie that walks, talks, obsesses, and generally acts like a hooman, and you’ve tapped into comedy gold. (Okay, nobody told Jim Davis about the comedy bit. You can’t win them all).
Find a way to match your animal character with exactly the things that make its humanity a giant, cosmic, banana skin, and you’ve got something that might actually work. So: mayflies, lifespan of a day. Job interview, standard stupidest question ever. And for once in my misbegotten cartooning lackocareer, I think I nailed something pretty well.
“Where do I see myself in 5 years? What is this, some kind of sick joke?”
And back again to the aliens, the invasions, the raspingly fierce social commentary……
One day, computers will take over our lives, and everything will be in the cold, metallic hands of machines that can be persuaded to elect George W Bush and Donnie Drumpf.
And then nobody is getting laid.
“I’m sorry, but the computer seems to consider you a ‘fatal error’.”
A rare four-panel attempt, here. This definitely fits into the category of ‘I can see what you were attempting…’
I’ve also gone for something wordless, which was a departure from my usual humour– more often than not, my captions were long, probably too long, so this was clearly an attempt to go in a different direction. Which isn’t to say it worked. In fact, let’s not say that at all.
So, it appears that even in the early days of Facebook, it was a senseless narcotic that took over everybody’s lives……
Actually, I quite like this one. It has that Punch magazine combination of ordinary people fervently doing the exactly wrong thing for the best reasons. Plus, spiritualism is just funny to me.
“Gerald… Gerald… If you can hear me, update your Facebook profile…”
Alien invasion, check. Cannibalism, check. Bait-and-switch scenario, check. It’s like a wet dream for second rate cartoonists, this one.
Of course, I could lie awake at night, dreaming of being a second-rate cartoonist……
“Come in, Ambassador. We’ve been expecting you.”