Today's Bizarro comic is set in ancient Rome, probably around the time that Don Kirshner was getting started in the music business.
Bizarro CEO Dan Piraro revised the staging from that of my submission sketch (below), giving the singer a more classical pose, as if he's sitting for a portrait to be painted onto the side of a decorative urn.
My favorite aspect of this one is the fact that the gag requires "assembly" inside the reader's head, and can't actually be read aloud. I think it works well because the caption both reveals and reinforces the joke.
It was satisfying to discover a humorous twist on the old practice of substituting the letter V for U in an attempt to appear classically Roman. This was popular throughout the twentieth century among building designers, comic book artists, and engravers of coins.
My gag was partly inspired by a scene in the Mel Brooks film History of the World: Part 1.Although I didn't recall the U-V substitution on the movie poster (the text at the top of the column reads IN MEL WE TRVST). However, I did remember a character played by comic actor Ron Carey who says "You are nuts. N-V-T-S, nuts!"
Maintain your sanity by reading all of our previous Bizarro collaborations here.