Friday, May 29, 2009

For Whom the Bell Tolls

Bizarro is brought to you today by Poolside Parking.

Before I contracted Howard Hughes Syndrome and became a hermit, I used to go to a lot of comedy shows and small theater events in NYC. I saw some amazingly strange stage acts, some good, most terrible, but a few tremendously memorable.

One favorite along these lines is the Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players, a married couple and their young daughter who show slides they've collected from garage and estate sales while playing songs they've written about them. The kid plays the drums and sings while the dad sings, plays guitar or piano, and the mom operates the slide projector. They are not to be missed if you ever have the chance.

Another highlight is Corn Mo, a guy who plays accordian and other various keyboards and sings odd songs. His demeanor is outrageously sincere for a guy in an old tux with an accordian, like Jimi Hendrix with a squeeze box. Don't miss a chance to see him, either, he really rocks.

CHNW and I used to regularly go to various variety shows and comedy showcases with these kinds of acts and we also got to see a few of the SNL stars as they were coming up. We saw Fred Armisen do a hilarious sketch about self-defense back in '02 or '03 and chatted him up after. We sort of became friends (that is to say that we still chat when we run into each other and he knows my cartoon), before we knew he would be a famous comedy genius on TV. I love that about NYC. (We also saw an early stand-up routine by Tracy Morgan but it was standard stand-up, nothing in the category of the bell-ringer above.)

There are plenty of strange musical and comedy acts like this around NYC and that's why this cartoon appealed to me. The idea was sent by my friend, Derek Malo, and is, in my opinion, one of his better efforts. Because I use ideas by other people on occasion, one commentator on this blog accused Bizarro of becoming like Pluggers, which is a syndicated feature that uses suggestions from readers every day and prints their name and location in a box in the cartoon. The difference between what I do and Pluggers, I think, is that the jokes I choose by other people are actually good. I imagine that readers want a good cartoon, regardless of who wrote it, as opposed to a cartoon by me, whether it is any good or not. Maybe my ego just isn't lopsided enough.


Nowax said...

Like "Pluggers"? Oh pullllleeeeze! What a crank!

Unknown said...

regardless of the way you get your material, Bizarro is absolutely nothing like Pluggers. I suggest you have that commentator...turned into a Plugger.

Anonymous said...

You should have called this "No child left bheind" hahaha Bush is an idiot!

derekamalo said...

hahaha come on dude ...pluggers ..its obvious the poster attempted to do homework and then twist the facts..

pluggers is like a freaken ask shagg and its weak
bizarros nothing to do with pluggers

id like to do my own pluggers comic right now

to be a pluggers fan means to be a chump ..plug it up and cancel it

derekamalo said...

dude i have to continue laughing and ill say it to the end...

you have stated youve been at it for like 24 years without a break remeber larson went 14 years and he retired becuase he thought his last 3-4 years were medicore which brings this up

i noticed in larsons last book collection he used much more words in his comics than he did in his previous ten years ,,,which is a problem in itself

i do it often its trying to get a point to far across...and if it cant be done with less words then it shouldnt work

i dont know thats my opinion..

whos comoplaing you cvan have bizarros with occasional guest star or you can retire and no bizarro at ll..

its like me picking up a bus at 416pm in providence to get to other side of state...the bus shows up two minutes late and people bitch its like would you rather walk the 20 miles..

its crazy

my perosnal favorite i wear shorts in the inwter being big im comforatbel that way i like keeping my side of home about 64 degress all i hear is how people cant wait for summer

summer comes around our first 90 degree day that are complaining

i think he best comment you ever made was when you referred to a reader as psychosomatic...that hit it right on the nose

the difference is you giving credit here and there as oppose to not ..

great point that day and great answer ...i have to admit i looked up psychosomatic to see what it really really meant and you were correct

Matt Henderson said...

Dan, you are a unique talent. To remain recognisable in style, while being unpredictable in content EVERY DAY is unfathomable to the regular human.

I am convinced that part of the comedic gift is not only to be able to write funny, but also to be able to recognise funny. By allowing others to offer suggestion, but still having you as the final creator, it opens up so many more concepts and twists for you to entertain the world with.

You are the comic alchemist.