Monday, November 30, 2009

Redemption of a Movie Star

I'm not a big fan of Nicholas Cage in the movies but after seeing this compilation of Japanese Pachinko commercials, he is maybe my favorite person in the world.

Choose Your Weapon

Bizarro is brought to you today by Kitchen Accessories.

I think knives are scary looking. Every time I pick up a giant kitchen knife, I shudder a bit at the thought of it cutting me or what it could potentially do to someone. If I had to defend myself against an intruder, I'd much rather use a gun than have to use a knife. Even if I was under attack and afraid for my life, I think it would disgust me to have to stab my assailant. Yuck.

A gun is so much cleaner, in the sense that you only have to point it and twitch one finger. Clearly, the cleanup afterward is not much different, but the act itself is less disgusting. Of course, having to kill anyone for any reason would be psychologically difficult and disgusting in its own way, but if you're fighting for your life, whatyagonnado?

Here's hoping that neither I, nor any of you readers ever have to defend ourselves against an attacker of any kind, and if we do, we are armed with a Taser so we can just point, click, and call the police.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Monsters Ink

(Click this image to make it big, clear and magically delicious)

Bizarro is brought to you today by Oh Migosh.

The thing I like most about this cartoon is the illustration of the monster. I think that frame makes the cartoon worthwhile – if I'd "phoned in" some crappy, average-looking monster behind a bush it would have fallen flat. Sometimes a gag stands on its own no matter how it is drawn, sometimes the drawing makes the gag.

I'm not big on monster movies, but when I do watch one, nothing takes me out of the moment faster than a bad monster. But sometimes the monster is so bad it becomes good again. You're no longer enjoying the movie for the reasons it was made, but you're still enjoying it.

The film for which the following trailer was made looks stellar.

And this film would be priceless even if the monster were not a mutant from Sesame Street.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanks for Giving

Bizarro is brought to you today by Super-Sized Heroes.
If you're reading this blog, you've made it through another American Thanksgiving. Since many of my readers are outside of the U.S., however, I thought I'd explain what yesterday was all about.

We call the holiday "Thanksgiving" because it is based on a myth about early European settlers in America wherein the punch line is that they "give thanks." The story goes that a boatload of religious freaks who were run out of their homeland for pestering people with their intense self-loathing and superstitious nonsense, landed on this continent and built some cabins or whatever. The local inhabitants were all like, "Whatever, it's cool, there's plenty of space and resources for everyone. Just don't be douches about it."

When winter came, they all nearly froze and starved and the local natives felt sorry for them and helped them out. Then, when spring came, they decided to celebrate their survival with a modest meal with their kind benefactors, but it took them all the way until the next autumn to get around to doing it for some reason.

But then later the religious freaks did, in fact, become douches, as religious freaks almost always most certainly will, and they killed off almost all of the natives on the continent so they could steal their land and get rich and celebrate their "good fortune" each and every year for centuries to come. And what better way to celebrate such a humble story of survival and compassion than with a gut-gorging, bacchanalian orgy of fat- and cholesterol-injecting, artery-clogging, cardiac-inducing, gluttony? Millions of innocent birds are genetically modified, incarcerated, and brutally butchered to celebrate a handful of oatmeal salesman's good fortune 400 years ago. Sure. Of course.

For my foreign readers, the typical American Thanksgiving Day goes something like this:
Kids awaken and watch a parade on TV with gigantic balloon characters (representing products you can buy) floating above an alarmingly overweight crowd of Americans. Females are in the kitchen preparing far more food than their family and guests can possibly eat safely, males are watching football on TV. Food is served, large table full of already overweight people eat enough food to embarrass Henry VIII, family members argue, men nap, women clean and wrap leftovers, America increases its lead as fattest nation in the world.

You would think this would be scheduled for a Friday, to give people two days to heave, medicate, and sober up before having to go back to work, but instead, it is on a Thursday, forcing many uncomfortably flatulent and hungover Americans to suffer through another day of work before the weekend. Historians believe this is a remnant of the "self-loathing" part of the original oatmeal salesmen who started all of this.

Those who do not have to work on Friday, go to stores to make the gluttony and conspicuous consumption of Thanksgiving look like child's play compared to the supernatural uber-consumerism that will take place for the next solid month in honor of the birth of a Jewish magician two millennia ago.

I hope you found this brief historical account both entertaining and enlightening. Please direct your complaints to the comments section below. Happy holidays. : )

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Holiday Travel Tips

Bizarro is brought to you today by Holiday Travel.

I stopped traveling during the holidays many years ago and it has improved my life immensely. If you're driving and you don't have far to go, you may have a little traffic to contend with and that's not such a big deal. But if you've got to fly, you may as well be playing Russian roulette.

Any time a person flies these days, they're taking a big risk of being annoyed to death, but statistics show that during the three main U.S. holidays – Thanksgiving, Christmas, and the Festival of Saint Pancreas – the risk increases 287%.

Last year alone, 23,507 passengers were annoyed to death in the United States during the holidays, compared with 18,761 in the previous year. This year, only one day into the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, officials report that over 2900 fatalities by annoyance have already occurred. With weather delays common this time of year and Sarah Palin's face in regular rotation on news channels typically shown in airports, thousands more are expected.

Mental health officials are recommending this year that if you don't have to travel for the holidays (i.e. sick relatives, on the lam, being written out of a substantial will) stay home and celebrate with local friends. And if you must travel by air, stay inebriated.

No Contest Today

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Pumped up Pigeon

Bizarro is brought to your attention here today by Major League Baseball.

I am not proud of this, but in my late teens and early adulthood, I found the idea of becoming a bodybuilder appealing. It was part and parcel of the inherent masculine insecurity of my youth and I suppose I figured if I was built like Arnold Schwarzenheimer, people would know I was tough.

Now when I look at those big bumpy people, I am both repulsed by the malformation of their bodies and impressed by how much time they've spent lifting heavy things instead of doing something intellectually or creatively stimulating. Some get so big I begin to wonder if they can still wipe their own butts or reach a computer keyboard with both hands.

Of course, there is a difference between people who build their bodies for competition and people who go crazy and turn into balloon animals. I think guys (and gals) like that have a similar body image distortion problem as anorexics and plastic surgery addicts.

I enjoy exercise and sports, always have, so I've spent a fair amount of time in gyms over the years, but the thought of doing so 6 or 8 hours a day for years sounds like a prison sentence. In fact, that's pretty much a lot of prisoners actually do all day, but at least they're getting free room and board.

I don't mean to be overly judgmental, body building isn't for me but that doesn't make it wrong or worthless. I have a couple of friends who are vegan bodybuilders and they're both great guys. They enjoy bodybuilding and they're animal rights types, so they use their sport to show that one does not need animal protein or steroids to become strong and bumpy. Cheers to them.

They also still look human, which is a big plus in my book.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Bigger Better Beastly

Bizarro is brought to you today by The Magic of Sculpture.

Again, for some reason that is probably no more exciting than coincidence, here is a cartoon about fighting.

But it's not really about fighting. I got this idea from watching a basketball game on TV. As baggy pants became a fashion trend among ghetto thugs and then suburban mall rats, the NBA went to increasingly bigger shorts, and other levels of basketball followed. The small shorts of the 70s look ridiculous to us now, but they were that size because they didn't restrict the player's movement. I doubt the same can be said for the shorts of today, it looks like guys playing basketball in dresses. Once they start sweating, they're playing in wet dresses. Charming.

I would think that if one player suddenly decided to wear a uniform that fit, he'd be able to outmaneuver the other guys in their 1920s ladies swimsuits, win games, and the trend would reverse. If it were all about function, as most sports clothing is, their uniforms would resemble that of a cyclist. But would the egos of the NBA be caught dead in bike shorts? I wonder.

So here is a cartoon featuring boxers with huge, over-sized equipment and shorts, and don't they look cool? Can't wait to see them wield those gloves.



I got a number of comments about these two subjects which I wanted to address, so rather than hide them in the comments section where the people they are aimed at may never see them, I'm putting them in this EDICION ESPECIAL posting.

Yes, I learned about Elvis's fascination with Holy Grail from the recent Python documentary. Great show, by the way, catch it if you can.

Some say dogs and dolphins fight for fun. I actually don't know anything about that behavior in dolphins and I'm too lazy to look it up, but when dogs rough-house, it isn't really fighting. When I say "fighting" I'm talking about inflicting pain, injury and occasional death for fun. Dogs don't do that, as far as I'm aware.

Someone mentioned that chimps do this and I don't doubt it. Chimps are among our closest relatives (I think only gorillas are closer DNA-wise?) and exhibit some of the same abhorrent behavior as we do. Someday there may be two species of dangerous, mutant apes on the planet. If we don't kill them all first. (which, of course, we would)

I didn't mean to criticize the existence of Mixed Martial Arts or demean the abilities of the participants. I have no doubt that it takes an incredible amount of training and discipline to reach the highest levels. I can appreciate it and could even potentially become a fan, but while violence within a sport is something I can stomach, I'm a little too squeamish when violence is the point of the sport. Just a personal preference thing, not a judgmental thing.

Regarding the existence of these sports, I think they perform an invaluable service to society. Given that humans are by nature violent, mutant apes, if we didn't employ vicarious ways to express our violent urges I suspect it would lead to even more war and violent crime. Perhaps this is one reason that sports have existed as long as human societies have. When given the choice of leaving home to shoot real people or sitting in your beanbag chair with a sixpack of Bud watching people fight in a cage, most people will choose the beanbag. Without that choice, men will go out and break things.

Which reminds me, most of this problem with human violence resides in males, not females. Although some women are in touch with their violent side. (Sarah Palin)

Someone questioned my comment that humans have no natural weapons like fangs, claws, etc., by saying "what about our minds?" I understand your point but it I don't think it is really the same thing. Until we developed our current brain powers, humans weren't particularly good at "out-thinking" stronger, faster animals. That happened after we developed language and thus, the ability to plan and cooperate, which occurred relatively recently in our history. Just my opinion based on something I probably heard on Jeopardy, I'm not an anthropologist.

Monday, November 23, 2009


Bizarro is brought to you today by Bunnies.

I've never watched an entire cage match, only a minute or so. I find it fascinating like a car wreck: can't not look but then wish I hadn't. I'm not talking about the phony-baloney wrestling cage events, I'm talking about these Ultimate Fighter competitions, in which two guys literally beat the crap out of each other until somebody gives up or dies.

Humans are such a contradictory species. Without any natural fighting weapons – fangs, claws, stinger, venom, strength – we are still the single-most violent animal on the planet. We're the only one that fights for entertainment, for things we want but don't need, over control of the TV channel changer.

But even though I have an elitist/pacifist attitude toward violence, I admit I'm still attracted to it. My favorite sport is hockey and I enjoy reading or watching shoot'em-up stories about good guys blowing away bad guys. But I think a part of controlling our violent nature is to realize it is part of our nature. I've always found it easier to behave ethically if I recognize my ability to behave unethically. I wouldn't take a job as a college professor, for instance, because I prefer to remain faithful to my wife.

When I see these "cage fighters," I often wonder what kinds of horrifying places they must have come from to have honed these kinds of skills to such a high level. (Same with Dick Cheney.) It's probably good to toss them in a cage and let them duke it out where they can't hurt anyone else. In fact, I'm thinking of bringing a cage home for the holidays.

Sunday, November 22, 2009


Thanks for your patience, I've been locked out of my blog since Wednesday night because of a password glitch but now have solved it.

Barring further weirdness, I should be posting more-or-less daily again.

Friday, November 20, 2009

A King is Born

Bizarro is brought to you today by Menage a Trois.

I've always been fascinated by the Elvis phenomenon, not because I am a "fan" per se, but because he epitomizes the mythical American dream.

A poor, relatively uneducated backwater goon with nothing more than good looks, a voice, and a talent for musical interpretation (as opposed to songwriting or musicianship) becomes one of the richest and most influential celebrities of modern times. (Sinatra would fall into this same category, of course.)

As reported by those who knew him personally, he was also more than a shade on the lunatic side. And although the prosecution of the "hippie drug culture" was one of his passions (he asked Nixon to make him a "Federal Agent at Large" with the intent of infiltrating "hippie groups" and busting them) he died of a drug overdose. Conversely, The Beatles, whom he derided for their drug use and anti-American sentiment (huh?) have not.

In spite of what some people (me) would consider to be a veritable treasury of unappealing traits and a relatively small window of actual talent (though his talent for singing was truly great, that's pretty much all the guy could do) he is perhaps the most widely impersonated person in the world. Hordes of people have even elevated him to deity status.

I'm a fan of some of his work, many of his early hits are amazing, but not a fan of the man. Still, I once had a small breakfast room in my house dedicated to Elvis, with statues, murals, photos, and various bright colors on the walls and ceiling. All for camp value, of course, but I eventually got tired of explaining to visitors that I was not "one of those Elvis nuts." Well, I was (and am) but for different reasons.

I'm still a little obsessed with the weirdness of Elvis, as evidenced by the photo at left. CHNW and I were married by an Elvis impersonator in Las Vegas and it was the most entertaining wedding I've ever been to, by far. And not at all because it was ours. Personally, I think marriage ceremonies are just about as campy as Elvis, so why not vamp it up? Thankfully, it was the 1950s Elvis, not the fat, BeDazzled Elvis of the 70s.

One thing I learned recently that is firmly in Elvis's favor is that he was a huge fan of Monty Python and watched "Monty Python and the Holy Grail" repeatedly. This surprises me, I always imagined Elvis would have had a George-Bush-style sense of humor: corny, simple, slapstick, crude. I guess I misunderestimated him.

So here is my cartoon parody of the famous "Elvis has left the building" story. Hope you got a chuckle.

Thursday, November 19, 2009


Thanks to everyone for playing my goofy little game. Hope you had fun.

This week's winners are:

1. Dan Pierson (5 packs of Bizarro Trading Cards!)
2. Brain Gac (2 packs)
3. Luis (2 packs)

I'll be sending each of you an email to tell you how to collect your dandy prizes. Below is a list of correct answers, if you're the sort to compare. Click it to magnify.

A quick shout out to Britt S., who was the first entry but had ONE answer wrong. DANG! Sorry, Britt, you're a winner in my heart and mind.

Contest #12 is NOW!

Click on the cartoon contest image below to enlarge and play!

As usual, the upper image is the original cartoon, the warped image beneath it has been changed. Your mission, if you are a groovy dude, chick, both or undecided is to find those differences.

1. There are 15 differences between the two cartoons.
2. NONE of the differences have to do with the warped nature of the second image.
3. ALL of the differences are something missing, added, or moved, not just "bent" from the distortion. The differences will not be too subtle, so once you spot one you should be relatively certain you've found it. (As opposed to something like, "I think that guy has one extra whisker. Hmmm.")
4. FIRST PERSON to correctly list the 15 differences in the comments section of the contest post wins 5 packs of Bizarro Trading Cards, mailed by me personally from Bizarro International Headquarters in Brooklyn. I'll even lick the stamp, unless it's self adhesive. SECOND AND THIRD persons with correct answers will each get 2 packs of Bizarro Trading Cards!
5. Put your email address on your comment so I can contact you if you win. I won't post it or keep it or file it or sell it or mount a Broadway musical about it.

Enjoy, good luck, and may dog bless! Click on the image to enlarge...

Contest #12 LATER TODAY!

Yes, my groovy homies, contest #12 is later today! Go tell it on the mountain.

Here are the rules, which I'll post again with the actual contest. This just gives you a leg up on the competition.

Click the image below to make it huger enough to read.

Hope to see you then.

Hatred Holidays

Bizarro is brought to you today by Here Come The Holidays.

I'm not one of those people who complain about seeing Santa and hearing Xmas songs before Thanksgiving. I tend to complain that I have to endure these things at all, any time of year, because I truly despise the ugly, crass, festival of insincerity that Xmas has become. This is a holiday that should be celebrated quietly at home, if at all, and those of us who do not celebrate it should not even notice its passing. Like Yom Kippur.

That's the way it was before Washington Irving decided to make up a lot of holiday traditions and promote the idea that Xmas should be a big, noisy, tacky whoop-de-doo. Stores caught onto the idea and helped it along and before you know it, most Americans were celebrating Xmas with gifts and songs and decorations as if it were an ancient tradition.

I'm sure things were more-or-less within reason in those early days, but like everything else modern-day America touches, it is now a ghastly commercial orgy that assaults the eyes and ears of everyone within 500 miles of its borders. I even saw giant Xmas decorations at a department store in a Buddhist country in Asia back in 2000. Apparently you have to go to Iran to escape elves and flying reindeer.

So I say, "Pull that trigger, Mr. Pilgrim, and bury the evidence before it gets out of hand. You have no idea what you're in for."

Yes, I know I'm a huge pain-in-the-ass Grinch/Scrooge about this. All my friends and family gleefully celebrate Xmas while I sit quietly at home without decorations and with the TV mute on, lest I accidentally subject myself to the sound of jingling bells during a Best Buy commercial. (Just typing that made my skin crawl.)

How did I get this way? I have no idea. I enjoyed it as a kid – Santa, toys, the food, the tree, the TV specials, the songs, mom bringing home sailors on holiday leave and making me wait in a box in the basement, the lights and decorations. But as an adult, year by year, I became increasingly uncomfortable with it until I finally snapped like a dry holly branch under the hoof of a plummeting reindeer and declared myself the archenemy of all things Xmas. Self indulgent hypocrisy has always turned my stomach and modern American Xmas is the blaring, screeching, glittering, multi-billion-dollar embodiment of it. To my mind, anyway.

Here's hoping you all have a nice holiday season, please keep the noise down.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

A Resounding Yes

Bizarro is brought to you today by Affordable Toupees.

People often ask me if I draw cartoons based on my own experiences. The answer is a resounding, "YES!"

If I had a nickel for every time a woodland creature had warned me about another woodland creature, I'd have $953.72. (Three-fifths of one of the woodland creatures was missing, so I didn't take a full nickel.)

But seriously, folks, illegal drugs are no laughing matter. Many are potentially harmful to your physical and/or mental health, some are even as bad as prescription drugs. So do what the talking squirrel does when he is offered illicit substances of recreational repute: Squeak, bite, and run!

This has been a public service announcement from the United States Department of Career Guidance.

NOTE: Want to look as suave as the dude in this cartoon? Click here for the official Bizarro Icon Line of high-quality schwag!*

*A large percentage of all profits goes to debt collectors. Makes excellent gifts.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Huck It

Bizarro is brought to you today by The N Word.

The first time I read "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" and "Adventures of Huckleberry Finn," it was at the behest of a cranky and unforgiving woman named Amanda Benchwhite, my tenth grade English teacher. There was some controversy at the time about this book being used in public schools because of the recurrence of a little thing we now call the "N-word."

But as much as I disliked this particular teacher, she did manage to use this book as a terrific discussion tool about the history of racism in the U.S. This was particularly challenging because our class was roughly half black and half white, so there was no shortage of disparate opinions and potential for conflict. And yet, we came through with a better understanding of each other as a result of discussing the "elephant in the room," instead of pretending it didn't exist.

No, seriously, we had a kid as big as an elephant in that class. I'm not talking about a guy who was six-feet-tall and overweight, I'm talking about a guy who was 12-feet-tall on all fours and weighed several tons. The janitor had to follow him around with a big shovel and a bag of sawdust just to deal with his waste. As if this wasn't distracting enough, he had an incredibly long nose through which he would occasionally let out a deafening trumpeting sound. Oh yes, and it was prehensile. He could pick things up with his nose! No sh*t.

Try reading Twain and grappling with racial tension with that kind of thing going on in the middle of the room. Nigga, please!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Smoke 'em if you got 'em

Bizarro is brought to you today by Impatience.

Here is a cartoon about a really big cigarette.

In other news, the weather in NYC was not hideously cold and wet yesterday, so I went for a ride on my motorcycle. My biggest complaint about where I live is that the winters are too cold, too long, and take all of the fun out of this, one of my three favorite activities. (The other two being playing my guitar and making the sexy time with the womens.)

Besides the three mentioned above, another fun thing to do is to open an envelope and find you have somehow received a huge sum of money, tax-free and no strings attached. This has never happened to me, but I can easily imagine the fun that would be associated with it.

Something much less fun – in fact, the opposite of fun – would be to open an envelope and find that you owe a large sum of money and there is no way out of it. That has happened to me on a few occasions and it sucks. In fact, the sucking can be heard for miles around.

I must get back to my inking now. Today I am drawing cartoons for the week of December 7, one of which includes a platypus.

Until my next entry, please enjoy this picture of Jason Trachtenburg, of the Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players, one of my favorite strange stage acts. I took this photo with my phone in NYC on Thursday night. Even though Jason looks like he's walking, he was actually posing. He is a very quirky cat and a new friend of mine.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Moon Water

(For a clear and big look at this cartoon, click the bear's invisible spaceship.)

Bizarro is brought to you today by the NRA.

It may seem an odd coincidence that this cartoon about a bear not finding salmon on the moon appeared in papers just days before NASA announced they had found water on the moon. But in truth, I knew about the water on the moon ahead of time because I put it there. CHNW and I get water delivered to our place in Brooklyn and they brought too much one month, cluttering up the hallway just outside our door. So I stored a bunch of them on the moon to get them out of the way. I probably shouldn't have done it, but I figured no one ever uses the moon anyway, who's going to know?

I wonder how long it will be before they discover a mountain bike and some old record albums on the moon?

Friday, November 13, 2009

Raising or Selling Your Offspring

Bizarro is brought to you today by DO NOT CLICK THIS!

I'm no expert on child rearing, but I raised two daughters to adulthood without a single unwanted pregnancy or brush with the law. Both are well-adjusted adults in long-term relationships and claim to be happy, so I must have done a decent job.

But no matter how well you do with your kids, at some point they will end up needing therapy. This cartoon is a simple, albeit surreal acknowledgment of that fact.

But the inevitable screwing-up of your kids despite your best efforts does not mean you shouldn't at least try to do your best, or raise them the way the Dahmers raised Jeffrey.

If you want kids like mine (because those are the only ones I know how to produce), follow these simple guidelines:

1. Make sure they know you love them, even when they screw up.

2. Make sure they know their life is their own not yours– if they succeed, the trophy has their name on it, not yours. If they mess up, the mugshot is of them, not you.

3. Don't lie to them. If you tell them that marijuana is as dangerous as crystal meth, they'll eventually figure out that isn't true and discard everything you ever told them. If you act all high and mighty about sex and they find out you lost your virginity at 17, you're sunk.

4. Give them knowledge, then trust them to use it to make their own decisions. Knowledge never hurt anyone who wasn't already going to find a way to get into trouble anyway. Tell them the truth about sex, drugs, politics, religion, history, and then tell them those are just your opinions and you're as fallible as the next guy. In the end, they'll have to weigh that info against their own experiences and make up their own minds.

5. Don't be a hypocritical simple-minded nitwit. Your kids are more likely to be like you than anyone else on the planet. Be the person you want your kids to be.

6. Treat your kid with respect, the way you would want their spouse to treat them one day. If you treat them well, they'll expect that from their friends and lovers. If a guy tries to treat your daughter poorly and she's not used to that at home, she'll kick him to the curb.

7. If all of the above doesn't work and your kid is still a complete jackass, always in trouble, torturing small animals in the basement and stealing from your neighbors, sell him or her to the black market organ trade and get some of your money back. Someone who might contribute positively to society could benefit from a new liver or kidney.

That's all I know, keep in mind I'm not an expert, only a cartoonist. Your results may vary.

Contest #11 WINNNERRRR!!!

Wow, what an exciting 24 hours it has been! Yesterday, inexplicably, my blog started going all screwy on me and people were having trouble viewing it. I managed to post the contest at 4pm NYC time, but could not actually view the page myself. I sent a note to Blogger Help about it, but you know how that can be sometimes. This morning, they sent me an answer and I fixed it. Whew!

Because of this evil act of malice perpetrated by unseen forces of darkness, many contestants had trouble viewing the contest. Please accept my apologies. But I guess some did not, because there were still enough entries to find winners. Here they be:

International Grand Prize Winner!!!!....Philip Crow (dude, I need your email address)
Second Prize Winner!!!...Ron Rounds
Third Prize Winner!!..Spyra

A few contestants got their answers in early enough to win, but did not list the "taller cactus" as one of the differences. Many contestants listed that one last, which tells me it was the hardest to spot. Fascinating. (I am touching my chin and nodding thoughtfully)

Many thanks and congrats to all who played, won, lost, loved, lived. You are what keeps me getting out of bed in the morning! (Or afternoon, depending)

Winning Answers:
1. kemosabe into kemosake
2. cowboy hat turned upside
3. conan o'brien
4. toucan on witch
5. floor pie switched
6. lone to love
7. monkey head into weird head
8. horse has pipe
9. dynamite moved positions
10. different amount of brown on right horse
11. arrow in Indian
12. buck teeth on right horse
13. different date on bottom right
14. dorothy has different colored ribbons
15. cactus is taller

Thursday, November 12, 2009

CONTEST #11!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Click on the cartoon contest image below to enlarge and play!

As usual, the upper image is the original cartoon, the warped image beneath it has been changed. Your mission, if you are a groovy dude, chick, both or undecided is to find those differences.

1. There are 15 differences between the two cartoons.
2. NONE of the differences have to do with the warped nature of the second image.
3. ALL of the differences are something missing, added, or moved, not just "bent" from the distortion. The differences will not be too subtle, so once you spot one you should be relatively certain you've found it. (As opposed to something like, "I think that guy has one extra whisker. Hmmm.")
4. FIRST PERSON to correctly list the 15 differences in the comments section of the contest post wins 5 packs of Bizarro Trading Cards, mailed by me personally from Bizarro International Headquarters in Brooklyn. I'll even lick the stamp, unless it's self adhesive. SECOND AND THIRD persons with correct answers will each get 2 packs of Bizarro Trading Cards!
5. Put your email address on your comment so I can contact you if you win. I won't post it or keep it or file it or sell it or mount a Broadway musical about it.

Enjoy, good luck, and eat sensibly! Click on the image to enlarge...

'Tater Tension

Bizarro to you is brought today by Human Ingenuity.

If you are looking for something cool and gnarly to do, put a potato in the closet and wait for a few months. Then look at it again and be amazed by the cool and gnarly tentacles growing off of it. You'll be all like, "Whoa. What's going on here?"

So Mr. & Ms. Potato Head are dealing with that same topic, except her parents are coming over! Time for a shave, Mr. Potato Head. It's the least you can do for the in-laws!

All kidding aside, the Potato Heads are good friends and great sports. Special thanks to them both for helping me out with today's gag. : )



Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Stuffed Lion

Bizarro is brought to you today by Working Class Heroes.

Today is my birthday, happy birthday to me.

It isn't actually the same day of the calendar that I was born, but my "actual" birthday was nothing more than an arbitrary day out of 365, so what difference does it really make? Let's just say it was November 11th and celebrate like it's 1999.

Please send monetary gifts to me via PayPal ( or post:
Dan Piraro
c/o King Features
300 W 57th St
15th floor
New York, NY 10019-5238

Thanks in advance to every one of you who sends a gift. My goal is to raise enough by the end of this year to pay off my credit card debt and discover a cure for shopping.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Prison Fun for the Whole Family

Today's Bizarro is brought to you by Charming Garden Statuary.

I used to love zoos, but now I despise them. I know that the human brain is a unique product of evolution (or creation, if you're of that camp) and other animals are not as complex as we, but in emotional ways, other species are far more similar to us than they are dissimilar. It's easy to miss, but if you get to know a non-human animal it becomes apparent quickly. Anyone who has made friends with a dog knows in their gut that there are emotions behind that slobbering muzzle. Other species are no different.

I no longer think that imprisoning any animal for purposes of entertainment is morally defensible. If I were dictator of the world, I would ban zoos, SeaWorld, circuses with animals, etc. There are always ways to entertain oneself without victimizing someone else.

Some argue that zoos give the public face-to-face appreciation for animals that help them to protect them in the wild. Personally, I think that is a cop-out. I don't need to visit an Indonesian orphan behind bars in a zoo to know I shouldn't buy products made by ones being enslaved in Jakarta. If a person has a conscience, they don't need the personal experience to understand an injustice, if they do not, the visit to the zoo doesn't help anyway.

Modern, "nice" zoos are not much better than archaic ones. No matter how nice your house is, if you're not allowed to leave it for the rest of your life, you go nuts.

All this is just my radical opinion, take it for what it is worth. I like to think that other animals are here with us, not for us. Accordingly, I won't do (or subsidize being done) anything to a non-human animal that I wouldn't do to a human child. Surprisingly, I don't find that I'm missing a lot. Here's a page I wrote in 2003 about my relatively late-in-life conversion to this way of thinking, if you're interested.

Sorry for the lack of humor in today's posting. Here's something funny to make up for it.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Don't Fear the Squeaker

Bizarro is brought to you today by Sexy Eternal Bozo.

Over the course of my career, I've done a lot of clown gags. I also fear and loathe clowns. Since my cartoons don't criticize clowns this may seem like a contradiction, but I see it more as a subconscious way of conquering my fears. Perhaps if I draw clowns often enough I will no longer fear them.

Nah. I'll always loathe clowns.

If you are a clown, please do not be offended. This is my problem, not yours. As I explained to my therapist a few years ago, it started when I was a child of perhaps three or four years. One of my earliest memories is of a visit to the circus, where I saw a clown that I particularly liked. My parents bought me a doll that looked like the clown, I suppose from a souvenir vendor at the circus, and I took it home. It was a constant companion until a few weeks later when it came to life and murdered my entire family. I escaped by hiding in a potted plant where I was discovered by authorities days later, paralyzed with fear.

I spent the rest of my childhood in a Catholic orphanage where I also learned to hate nuns.

So here's a clown cartoon. I love Smart Cars and enjoy drawing them. And although I hate clowns, I really enjoy drawing them, too.

Saturday, November 7, 2009


Bizarro is brought to you today by Irrefutable Evidence.

(To see more detail, click on each image to enlarge)

Instead of posting one of my published cartoons today, I thought it might be fun to post a few random pages of sketch book stuff. Perhaps I am wrong.

These images are drawn without any plan or goal, just taking a pen to paper and drawing whatever comes to mind. There is no pencil sketch first or reference to draw from, just whatever comes out of the end of the pen. These are all about 5"x7".

These are my favorite kinds of drawings to do, but unfortunately there's no money in it.

One might be inclined to say, "Dan, wouldn't it be cool to put all of these in a book?" to which I would say, "Yes, cool, but I'd be lucky to sell enough to fill the glove box of a Smart Car."

Wouldn't it be great if we could all make a living just doing whatever what we want? I vote for that option.

P.S. I should also mention that these drawings have nothing to do with drugs or alcohol. I can only do this sort of thing when straight and sober.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Halloween Redux

Bizarro is brought to you today by Belated Holidays.

Since I post my cartoons about a week after they appear, these cartoons from Halloween weekend seem conspicuously tardy. So just pretend you're reading them a week ago and you're putting the finishing touches on your Shrek costume in today's blog.

I love love love the Sleepy Hollow gag and wish I'd written it. But, alas, it came from my good friend Richard Cabeza (funniest spanglish name ever). He can be a real genius sometimes, and at this very moment his wife is expecting a baby or some reasonable facsimile. Thanks for the gag, Dick, and good luck to all involved with that baby business.

The Frankenstein gag is okay, I guess. I'm not crazy about it, but it's a good picture and has a monster theme. I've done some better Frankenstein gags in the past, which if I had any kind of reasonable filing system I'd be able to show you a few now. I hate myself sometimes.

In case you didn't know, Sleepy Hollow is a real town beside the Hudson River just north of New York City. Washington Irving wrote a lot about New York City and the surrounding areas, he popularized usage of the term "Knickerbocker" for New Yorkers and is also responsible for the myths about Manhattan being bought from the Indians for twenty-something dollars and a handful of trinkets, as well as the one about Christopher Columbus trying to prove the world was round. Both appeared in Washington's works of fiction but eventually were incorporated into elementary school history classes.


Thursday, November 5, 2009


The winner of contest #10 is Chris Bulock, whose email did not appear in his/her entry. (So leave it in the comments section of this posting, Chris, and I won't publish it.)

Second place goes to Spyra.

Third place goes to Aftersox.

Debbie P, you were damn close, with the second entry in the comments section and all of your answers were correct but YOU ONLY HAD 14! I hate it when that happens. I should send you a consolation prize.

Thanks to all who played our idiotic little game, your trading cards will be zooming toward you soon, with my DNA all over them!

Correct answers this week:
1. “heAded” vs. “heEded”
2. eyeball on leader’s hat looking other way
3. real hand vs. hook hand
4. front child’s beard
5. troop vs. poop
6. second child wearing lady’s shoe
7. fifth child has banana on hat
8. snake around third child’s stick
9. second boy with arrow in butt
10. fourth boy with xxx jug
11. fourth boy with glasses
12. fifth boy with watch
13. sixth boy with lizard tongue
14. seventh boy with pipe
15. final boy’s bird beak

CONTEST #10!!!!!

Click on the cartoon contest image below to enlarge and play!

As usual, the upper image is the original cartoon, the warped image beneath it has been changed. Your mission, if you are a groovy dude, chick, both or undecided is to find those differences.

1. There are 15 differences between the two cartoons.
2. NONE of the differences have to do with the warped nature of the second image.
3. ALL of the differences are something missing, added, or moved, not just "bent" from the distortion. The differences will not be too subtle, so once you spot one you should be relatively certain you've found it. (As opposed to something like, "I think that guy has one extra whisker. Hmmm.")
4. FIRST PERSON to correctly list the 15 differences in the comments section of the contest post wins 5 packs of Bizarro Trading Cards, mailed by me personally from Bizarro International Headquarters in Brooklyn. I'll even lick the stamp, unless it's self adhesive. SECOND AND THIRD persons with correct answers will each get 2 packs of Bizarro Trading Cards!
5. Put your email address on your comment so I can contact you if you win. I won't post it or keep it or file it or sell it or mount a Broadway musical about it.

Enjoy, good luck, and always wear protective goggles! Click on the image to enlarge...

Cartoons and CONTEST!

Bizarro is brought to you today by Super-Fun-Pack Comics!

I'm still backlogged with cartoons not posted while I was in Florida with the insects, so here's another super-fun-pack, to borrow a phrase from the inimitable Ruben Bolling.

The origami cartoon is my favorite because it's dry, funny, and SUPER easy to draw. Makes my job so much easier when I come up with one of these. Because I am obsessed with details and background, however, it is rare.

Here is a fun take on the cartoon cliche of the guy in the bar telling a hotty that his wife doesn't understand him. If you think about it, it's a ridiculous premise no matter how you draw it. NO man's wife or mother understands him. It's a given!

Speaking of marital problems, here is a cartoon about them now. When I do cartoons like this, people who know me often assume that CHNW and I are having problems. Of course we are not, we are huge celebrities and do not suffer from the day-to-day maladies of the average joe and jolene.

I like this gag because I hate it when people talk on their cell phones while driving. (An ex-girlfriend of mine used to always say, "'hate' is a strong word" everytime I would say "hate." She didn't understand me.)

A reader wrote in to tell me that it is not "ironic" that he hit the guy he was talking to, but rather "coincidental." He's probably right, but like the vast majority if Americans, I have no idea what the word "ironic" actually means.

I sincerely hope you have enjoyed this short tour of last week's postings. I'll be putting up a contest tonight, this time at 7pm NYC time. Hope you'll dig it like a dog's bone.

Photo: Self portrait by CHNW

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Florida Vacation Pics

Here, today, for what it's worth (probably very little) is my vacation blog. Whatever.

I took last week off and went to the Gulf coast of Florida with CHNW to hang out with her dad, a terrific guy and also a professional cartoonist. Getting out of town for a 365-day-a-year deadline person like me is very hard. I usually work 6 to 8 hours a day, seven days a week, so to get ahead by a week I have to double that. It's bad.

The first night in Florida I let loose and relaxed with way too much scotch. The pic above was taken at sunset, holding my camera as still and level as I could. It got worse as the evening wore on. I haven't been that drunk in over ten years, I'm happy to report.

The next morning, bleary-eyed and swollen-headed, we drove down to an old beach resort on Captiva Island. Along the way, CHNW discovered that if she held her mouth open in the wind, it would blow her cheeks out and vibrate them. We all laughed and I wished my headache would go away.

CHNW and her dad, Ralph, have been going to Captiva yearly since she was 5 years old. This was their 30th year. One of the things they always do is have dinner at an indescribably weird place called The Bubble Room. Out in the various parking areas, The Bubble Room leaves nothing to chance with plenty of parking signs. From top to bottom: "Any car parking on roadway will be ticketed and towed," "Bubble Room parking," "You must find legal parking," and "Additional parking across the street." If a person visiting The Bubble Room gets towed or ticketed, they should not be let out of the house without a guidance counselor.

Here is a nice shot of Ashley breaking out of the gorilla cage outside The Bubble Room. We feel confident that no one has ever taken a shot like this before.

Inside, one finds an insanely decorated world of hallucination and chaos. The diner is never left wanting for wacky and kooky things to look at. You can see how much fun I'm having in these candid shots.

One good thing to do at a beach resort is to visit the beach, which we did daily.

To answer a question that I get a lot, yes, I do swim with a cigar.

The dapper gentlemen shown here was screaming at me for "swimming topless again." After some clarification, we discovered he had mistaken me for his wife. He said it was the cigar.

In spite of the fact that I am a huge celebrity, I like to look for shells just like a normal person. When I do this, I call myself Captain Beachcomber. The cape is particularly effective if there is a stiff breeze.

Because we were there the week before Halloween, the resort was decorating for a party. We found the bottom of a mummy in the parking lot and used it for these quaint shots, which make us look extremely thin.

This next sequence shows my willingness to share with the dead. (click it to big it)

And what family vacation destination is complete without a naked, bald, beaten and dismembered woman?

Florida is known for its large bugs, which we discovered first hand when attacked outside our cabin by this spider.

We also happened across some Xmas decorations stored in a carport. Here are two Santas, one with significant saltwater decay and the other completely out of the closet.

Something we came across in town was this interesting graffiti technique of scratching your message into a leaf. These samples were all found on the same tree. Be sure to click the image for a larger view so you can read them. Locals told us that Ryan left town and is fine.

I have more pictures but they are even more boring than the ones featured here, so I'll end now. I hope you enjoyed my vacation blog as much as I enjoyed bringing it to you.

I will leave you with this picture of me and CHNW's dad, Ralph, as I attempt to prove to him that his daughter did not, in fact, marry an effeminate wimp. I think I nearly had him convinced until moments later, when I attempted to jump the marsh on my rented bicycle. This episode ended with me running from a startled egret, screaming like a little girl.