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  1. You’re both so much better in every other thing you do than this strip. It’s just mean spirited wide low blows. Almost any strip would work just as well if you took out Obama and put in Bush. With this one it would be Bush saying America shouldn’t nation build and then he does just that. With the Obama on vacation one just have Bush clearing brush. For the one where you have Michelle saying Obama has a small penis… well that one shouldn’t have made the cut at all.
    If the strips are this generic they’re pointless. Yes people who already agree will like them but artistically and politically there’s no reason for them.
    But if you want to publish them as a book and double your money, seriously just do a little redraw (you won’t even have to change the ears), change a few of the names and call it Bushed.

      • Hi James. It’s not the topic, it’s the tone and generic jokes. I see this a lot in stand up comedy where a joke about the right could just as easily be about the left.
        Dennis Miller talked about this years ago saying there’s a Will Rogers style of political joke where they’re all crooks and you can just pop whoever’s in office into the punchlines. But this lets the real corrupt ones off the hook. I don’t agree with Miller’s political stance but his Obama jokes aren’t like his old Bush Sr. ones. And even though I don’t agree some are very funny.
        When you get generic you need to get meaner to give it some tooth and so you end up with Michelle doing small dick jokes.
        You and Batton are both better than this material in everything else you do. The other stuff has heart and creativity. This is community college editorial cartooning 101.

        Michelle or Laura and Obama or Bush are in bed together with Obama/Bush looking lustfully at Michelle/Laura. Michelle/Laura is reading a book and rolling her eyes.

        Michelle/Laura: Do I even have to ask what you want to do tonight?

        Obama/Bush: I want to do to you what I’m doing to the country.

        • Now that was generic! Woody Allen used that joke about Eisenhower in Annie Hall.

          I’ve never done cartoons before so I am learning as I go. I am trying different things. The goal is to make a point, not to be funny. I am not into mean humor. Not my style, Though some have accused me of that on occasion. You can’t please ’em all.

          If a political cartoon doesn’t offend someone, it didn’t worked. So when people over react, I know I hit home. It happens on occasion. People do talk about it, so I know it’s making some waves,

          • A fat kid jumping in a pool also makes waves. This is a mistake comedians make when they start (and sometimes never stop making). The idea that offense on its own is a good thing. It’s like a child that doesn’t care if they get good attention or bad attention.
            The comedian comes out and says something like “Obama is an asshole.” They get mild booing from some members of the crowd (applause from others) and then go after the people that booed as being too sensitive. But if you could just as easily say, “Bush is an asshole” and get the same response then the joke is pointless.
            There’s no skill in offending. Your drunk uncle at Thanksgiving pulls that off every year. You can’t put that in the “win” column as a professional writer.
            If you’re not trying to be funny then you need to speak to Batton about the way he draws Obama because you’re at cross purposes. In the cartoon above he’s in a full Jerry Lewis pose. Obama in Rio is also drawn in a very funny way. Batton may not be drawing the cartoon you’re writing.
            If you’re not trying to be mean then you’ve got to lose the small dick jokes and calling a politician Bitchwoman. Look at the cartoon you did about the memorial speech. What was the point of calling Obama a teleprompter jockey? He’s used a teleprompter. Everyone does. Yes come down on the people who cheered if you feel you’ve got to (still seems a cheap shot given the occasion) but turning that to make it Obama’s character flaw? That’s cheap and misplaced. Again since everyone uses teleprompters, it’s generic.
            If your goal really is to make a point then look at what’s being said and if you can replace current events and names with past events and names it’s a hack joke. That was one of the first things I learned doing comedy as a way of finding your voice and it’s advice I try to pass it along when I can.
            It seldom gets taken well. When it does, things get better.

          • Thanks for the lecture but I’ve been reading political cartoons since the 70s so I have a pretty good grasp of them. Looking over Cagle,com. 95% of the cartoons aren’t funny. Most are obvious. And those are people who have been doing it for years. We’ve been doing it a year and a half. And already got international media attention for one of our strips. I’d say that’s a success because the response was so overblown that would not have happened without pissing off the other side of the debate.

            I try to do something different. Do I succeed all the time? No. But your standards aren’t mind and I would say you tipped your hand in your first email. I get them all the time from well meaning people who are really saying “you shouldn’t be talking about him that way.”

            Guess what, yes I can! And yes, I will!

            PS: been doing comics for 26 years. I know what I am doing.

          • like I said, I try to pass it along the good advice I got when it can. It seldom gets taken well.

            If you’re happy someone mistakenly thought your strip was racist then you’re going to take every negative thing said as a positive and you’ve got your universal translator set to the channel you want it. Nothing I say will change that. You’ll filter anything I say as coloured by a political point of view you put on me. I didn’t say, “you’re shouldn’t be talking about…” anything. I’m saying how you’re doing it isn’t working. You’re making me a generic enemy of your work. See any irony there?

            You can either be “learning as you go” like you said or “I know what I am doing”. The first attitude leaves room for growth and advice, the latter doesn’t and pushes people away. It’s great you’re trying something new but right now it’s cheap shots and hack jokes.

            PS: I’ve been doing comics for 20 years. I’ve been doing stand up, improv and sketch for 25. I’ve been doing comedy professionally since I was 14. The day I start to feel like I know what I’m doing is the day I’m in a lot of trouble artistically.

            I’m pretty sure you’ll just filter all this into, “Yay I like Obama don’t be mean to the nice man.” Hope you don’t though.

          • I’m listening. I just don’t agree with some of your points. You can’t be a decent writer if you don’t learn to listen to people. But listening isn’t all there is to it. It’s hearing people that’s important. I hear you. I just don’t agree with what you’re really saying. Perhaps you don’t realize your own subtext. A common human trait. 🙂

            I don’t take offense. I know you’re sincere. But for the record, O’Donnell didn’t mistake my cartoon as racist. He knew if he called it that he would stir up people’s emotions. He’s a carny act who demonizes those he disagrees with. If you want to talk about hacks, there you go.

            If you think you can do political cartoons better, no one is stopping you from trying.

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