Saturday, January 18, 2020

Black & White in Color

It's been an odd week for Bizarro. There wasn't a single gag involving a cat, a dog, a clown, or a pirate. We'll try to remedy that situation  next week.

Here's a look back at this
uncharacteristic batch of drollery.

This gag ran on the day the 2020 Oscar nominations were announced, and is a riff on the Motion Picture Academy's conditional acceptance of films produced by streaming services. There was an unsuccessful movement among old-school members to disallow streamed features, but they can still qualify as long as they have a minimum seven-day run in a Los Angeles theater.

Content aside, I understand the appeal of streamed features: They're not preceded by a string of commercials, and they don't get interrupted by (other) people's phone conversations.

For those who follow the Oscars, and whose livelihoods are affected by them, the nominations and awards exhibit many of the exclusionary biases present in other societal structures, which are probably more important than quibbling over how and where audiences see any particular film.
The strip layout for this gag shows a deeper view of the Alley of Reluctant Acknowledgement.

We at Bizarro Studios can't get too worked up about the Oscars. Cartoonists have our own awards to fret over.

Tuesday's panel depicts the closing scene of an imagined Twilight Zone episode.

A peek into the near future, if not the present.

Parent-child conflicts are the same everywhere, including the afterlife.

Friday's comic brings us back to the cinema, and counts on the reader to be familiar with the term film noir, and to realize that its antipode might possibly be termed film blanc.

We recently watched a 1949 film noir titled The Window, which featured a strong and believable performance by a young actor named Bobby Driscoll. After watching the movie, we looked him up, and learned that his work in The Window won him a miniature statue, The Juvenile Oscar, which was occasionally awarded to child actors.
Unfortunately, as is sometimes the case with showbiz kids, Driscoll's post-adolescence career was erratic, and his life took a series tragic turns. 

If you have an opportunity to see The Window, we recommend checking it out.

We started and ended the week with gags about degrees of unfairness. Saturday's caption is a simple pun on the term "den of iniquity," referring to a place where people gather for naughty purposes.

For additional color and commentary on this week's gags, take a peek at Dan Piraro's blog, where you can also see his latest Sunday Bizarro page, and stock up on Bizarro swag. Now that he's mostly retired from cartooning, he's been creating an amazing body of fine art, which you can view (and buy) at the Diego Piraro site.

Bonus Track

"The Washington Affair"
Syd Dale

A noir-ish theme taken from the KPM Library Music LP Impact and Action (1967). This is a fine example of what's often referred to as Crime Jazz.


  1. I wish my former French professor were alive to see the Film Blanc cartoon! She would have found it hilarious (as do I).

  2. ♦ Oh, that ultrasound panel is all sorts of excellent.

    1. Thanks for that kind comment.

  3. The film blanc cartoon was great. And I assume the detective's name is Mel?