Saturday, October 29, 2022


This is the weekly dispatch from Bizarro Studios North, where I have been writing and drawing the Monday through Saturday Bizarro comics since 2018. My partner and friend, Dan Piraro, who created Bizarro in the late twentieth century, continues to do the Sunday comic from Rancho Bizarro in Mexico.


Warm Samhain greetings, my friends. Here in Hollywood Gardens, PA, we're enjoying crisp autumn weather, and looking forward to distributing treats to the neighborhood ghouls on Monday.

Working with Nature, we no longer carve jack-o'-lanterns, and leave that job to the local squirrels.  

This is certainly more disturbing than anything I could've come up with.

Today's pipe pic is a spooky drawing by Gary Leib (1955-2021).

I scanned the image from a CD titled Duplex Halloween Planet.

Hello Recording Club, a CD of the month club run by John Flansburgh of They Might Be Giants, released this disc in 1993.

Gary Lieb was a talented and prolific cartoonist, video director, ceramicist, animator, musician and educator. With Doug Allen, he created Idiotland, a wildly surreal comic book series, which I highly recommend. Fantagraphics published seven issues of from March 1993 to December 1994.

Let's take a look at the fresh horrors we brought to the funny pages this week.

We kicked off with a spoof of the classic Oscar Wilde story. I was surprised by one reader's reaction to this straightforward gag:

That’s disgusting. You can’t even call this garbage as a cartoon.

I almost posted a response asking why it prompted such outrage, but decided I'd rather not know what they read into it.

He might have looked less conspicuous if he had been on his way to a toga party.

These villainous characters were inspired by early cinema, so I used a monochromatic palette. On film, the dialog would probably have appeared as a standalone title card, but that would be tricky in a printed cartoon panel.

For graphics nerds reading this, I'll mention that the line art and the text are the only parts to be printed in black ink. The gray tones are mixes of the other three process colors (cyan, magenta, and yellow).

The baron in this panel is loosely based on English actor Peter Cushing (1913-1994), who played Victor Frankenstein in six films made by Hammer Studios between 1957 and 1974.

My drawing is more of an impression than a caricature or portrait.

We indulge in imagined art history with this punny appearance by iconic Mexican painter Frida Kahlo. Her self-portraits were often set against leafy backdrops filled with wildlife, which worked well for placing a bunch of Bizarro's Secret Symbols.

The strip format called for a vertical layout.

Saturday's panel looks ahead a couple days to Halloween.

That's the latest from our Little Shop of Humor at Bizarro Studios North. For additional entertainment, please visit one or more of our related sites.

Dan Piraro's Bizarro Blog
Dan's latest Bizarro Sunday page, and enlightening musings from his hyperactive brain

Wayno's Bizarro Newsletter
News from the studio, a preview of an upcoming gag, and some old thing dug up from the archives

Diego (it's Dan) Piraro's award-winning surreal western graphic novel

See you next week. Thanks for ringing our virtual doorbell. We hope the treats were acceptable.


Bonus Track

Morgus and the Ghouls: "Morgus the Magnificent"
Vin Records, 1959

Morgus was a late-night horror movie host who appeared on New Orleans television from the 1950s through the 1980s.

The fictional band Morgus and the Ghouls featured NOLA musicians Frankie Ford and Mac Rebennack (Doctor John).

Copyright© 2022 by Wayno®



Saturday, October 22, 2022

Brown Paper Gag

This is the regular dispatch from Bizarro Studios North, where I have been writing and drawing the Monday through Saturday Bizarro comics since 2018. My partner and friend, Dan Piraro, who created Bizarro in the late twentieth century, continues to do the Sunday comic from Rancho Bizarro in Mexico.


Last Saturday our neighborhood threw a block party on what turned out to be a lovely, blue-sky autumn day. We closed the street to traffic (with a permit!), and about 75 of us hung out, chatted, and laughed over food and drink. We met quite a few friendly people from nearby streets, and had a truly pleasant day. It was a sweet reminder that a diverse assortment of humans can gather peacefully and enjoy each other's company.

Our special guest at the event was Jamal Etienne-Harrigan, better known as Uncle Jammy. Jamal runs The Smokey City's 412 BBQ, and is the creator of a line of tasty barbecue sauces and rubs.

In addition to sharing his sauces, Jammy gave a demo on making vegetarian "pulled pork" from dry rub, jackfruit, coconut oil, and tofu, with a side of smoky tofu cubes. He brought extra joy to the table, and made many new friends. We love Uncle Jammy and welcome him back any time.

Today's spectacular pipe pic features French Dadaist and conceptual artist Marcel Duchamp, from five different angles.

 Portrait multiple de Marcel Duchamp
(Five-Way Portrait of Marcel Duchamp)
Unidentified photographer, 1917

Images of this type were shot with the subject facing a hinged mirror, and were popular at amusement parks and photography studios. People would sit for a photographer, and get a set of three postcard prints of their quintuple portrait. Duchamp had his done at the Broadway Photo Studio in New York, and incorporated it into his own body of work.

Thanks to the National Portrait Gallery for historical information on this item.


This week I added six new Bizarro cartoons to my own artistic oeuvre, such as it is. Let's see how they turned out.

My hope was that it would take an extra moment for a reader to notice that the familiar logo on the bag has one letter changed. The gag also relies on the reader recognizing whose as a possessive pronoun. 

Call me an optimist.

This one's nothing more than a seasonally appropriate pun.

Caterpillar sex is impossible since these animals don't develop genitalia until they become butterflies, but they can still show affection, at least in a cartoon, where they can also speak English.

Consider this a pitch for (or prediction of) yet another edgy reboot of a beloved Saturday morning cartoon.

You don't want to know what happened to Fred and Shaggy.

Your cartoonist almost pulled a muscle while twisting and contorting in order to shoot hand selfies as photo reference for this gag. 

Note: That was the first time the phrase "hand selfies" has appeared in this blog. I'll try not to let it happen again.

Last month, I did a Sisyphus gag without showing Sisyphus himself. This time around, I didn't show the mountain or the rock. Perhaps one day I'll come up with a Sisyphus cartoon that doesn't show the character, the mountain, or the rock.

That does it for this week's pictorial foolishness. Thanks for dropping by. Although summer is over, barbecue can be enjoyed all year round. If you need flavorful sauces or rubs, you can't go wrong with anything from Uncle Jammy.

And, if you what to see more of what we do, why not swing by our other virtual homes?

Dan Piraro's Bizarro Blog
Even more words about cartoons, plus Dan's latest widescreen Bizarro Sunday page

Wayno's Bizarro Newsletter
News from the studio, with an exclusive sneak preview of an upcoming Bizarro gag, and an image from the archives

Dan's award-winning surreal western adventure comic

Thanks for stopping by. See you next week.

Bonus Track

Robert Gordon & Link Wray: "The Way I Walk"
from Fresh Fish Special
Private Stock Records, 1978


I first heard Robert Gordon's voice on the 1976 Atlantic Records compilation Live at CBGB's. At that time, Gordon was a member of the punk rock band Tuff Darts. For this listener, Mink DeVille and Tuff Darts were the standouts on the CBGB's album. 

Gordon left Tuff Darts before they recorded their debut LP, and in 1977 and '78, he released his first three albums of great neo-rockabilly. The legendary Link Wray played guitar on the first two, and Chris Spedding was in the band on the third. Gordon's discography eventually ran to a dozen studio albums and four live ones.

He introduced many music fans (myself included) to deep cuts from the early days of rockabilly, while also incorporating songs by contemporary writers such as Bruce Springsteen ("Fire") and Marshall Crenshaw ("Someday, Someway").

Robert Gordon died on Tuesday, October 18, 2022. 


Saturday, October 15, 2022

Hardly Davidson

This is the regular dispatch from Bizarro Studios North, where I have been writing and drawing the Monday through Saturday Bizarro comics since 2018. My partner and friend, Dan Piraro, who created Bizarro in the late twentieth century, continues to do the Sunday comic from Rancho Bizarro in Mexico.


Greetings from spooky Hollywood Gardens, PA. As Halloween nears, we look forward to celebrating with a household tradition: rewatching the 1983 film Something Wicked This Way Comes. It's a kid's movie that's a little too scary for kids, and boasts a fantastic cast, including Jason Robards, Jonathan Pryce, Diane Ladd, Pam Grier, and Royal Dano, a great character actor with an equally great name.

My spouse and I are horror fans, and Halloween season is as good a reason as any to indulge in some cinematic scares. If you have a favorite, you're welcome to leave a recommendation in the comments.

I rediscovered this week's pipe pic in a zine I published in 1985. I was showing some work in a local arts festival, and printed a small catalog to sell at the table.

I can't recall the title of this drawing, but I know I based the image on my compulsion to checking and recheck lights, appliances, etc. before going out of the house.

I'll still occasionally drive back to the house minutes after leaving to assure myself that the garage door is closed. As compulsions (or is it neuroses?) go, I'm grateful that mine don't unduly interfere with normal activities.

However, I haven't kicked the habit of revisiting my latest recent cartoons every Saturday, so let's get to it.

Unfortunately, some people's irrational fears cause them to behave in horrible ways, like the torch-bearing figure above.

The subject of René Magritte's painting The Son of Man makes another appearance in Tuesday's panel.

The artist himself was my model for the therapist.

Sadly, it seems that Mrs. Meyer chose a fictional character over Dr. Emanuel Bronner, a real character.

The Dr. Bronner's Magic Soap company shared this cartoon on their social media platforms, and a company representative exchanged several friendly messages with me. 

Thanks to the Dr. Bronner team for having a sense of humor and being good sports about our tweaking of their founder.

At some point, all electric vehicles will probably be required to intentionally make some type of sound as a safety feature to alert pedestrians who might not hear them coming, but these dudes are missing that subtlety.

In my youth, I had a toy that attached to a bike or tricycle and simulated to sound of a noisy motor. I won it as a prize in a contest on the back of a cereal box. I'd forgotten about the TV ad, which is pretty hilarious.

Also, I must offer thanks and a tip of the porkpie to faithful Bizarro reader and accomplished punster Timothy P for the title of this week's blog.

If you're reading aloud, the "Meh" balloons should be drawn out to sound like cattle.

My message to teens whose parents embarrass them: It could be worse.

That's this week's cartoon dump from Bizarro Studios North. If you like what we're doing here, please consider visiting these affiliated sites:

Dan Piraro's Bizarro Blog

Wayno's Bizarro Newsletter

Thanks for stopping by. See you next week.

Bonus Track

Michael Hurley: "Werewolf Song"
from First Songs (folkways Records, 1964)

Saturday, October 08, 2022

Loose Cannon

This is the regular dispatch from Bizarro Studios North, where I have been writing and drawing the Monday through Saturday Bizarro comics since 2018. My partner and friend, Dan Piraro, who created Bizarro in the late twentieth century, continues to do the Sunday comic from Rancho Bizarro in Mexico.


Don't be too eager to be recognised by fools.
Yoko Ono

I've decided to stop opening blog posts by saying how busy I've been. With a regular deadline to write, draw, and format six gags every week, things are always relatively busy here, but I don't want to sound like a complainer. I'm grateful to have this gig, which I prefer to anything I've done in the past, like loading trucks at a steel barrel manufacturer, or recycling gas meters by sending them through a gigantic furnace (both real jobs from my past). The only dangers a cartoonist faces are paper cuts, spilling ink on the carpet, or occasional overcaffeination.

The quote at the head of this post is taken from one of my favorite Twitter accounts. Yoko Ono is still an artistic force at age 89, and her observations are always optimistic and often wise.

Our pipe pic for today is a spray paint masterpiece on the wall of Rick Bach's art studio.

Rick is a prolific creator with an immediately recognizable style. For almost thirty years, he's been making fantastical paintings and sculptures for Pittsburgh's Mad Mex restaurants. Surrounded by Rick's art, one can imagine having been dropped into a hallucinatory underworld full of imposing (but friendly) creatures of all shapes and sizes. Rick was kind enough to allow us to share this studio photo on the blog.

He lent his unique style to a Pittsburgh Steelers gameday poster for the 2021-22 season, which sold out before the kickoff.

Rick now lives in Washington, D.C., but maintains a studio in Pittsburgh, and frequently exhibits here. If you have the chance to see his art in person, don't miss it.

Now, let's look at what came out of my studio since our last post.

Monday's panel was inspired by my practice of watching calming nature documentaries to wind down at bedtime. PBS hit a peak with Night Deposits: The World of Tooth Fairies.

In addition to the usual outlets, most of us cartoonists spend a few minutes each day sharing our work on social media platforms. I post Bizarro comics on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram Mondays through Saturdays.

The Instagram feed gets the most comments by far. A significant percentage are from self-styled experts on everything, while others turn into long argument threads that eventually have nothing to do with the gag in question.

I generally read them, but almost never respond to random strangers. However, my impulse control was at a low point when I saw this one:

"Fun fact" seems to be the new "with all due respect." It usually prefaces an insult, a complaint, or an unnecessary explanation, often poorly-worded and riddled with misspellings. At least they didn't open with "This would have been funnier if..." 

A rare moment of honesty from a used vehicle salesperson.

Inking the cannon, particularly the shading of the barrel was a strangely relaxing activity.

On Wednesday we had some fun with a silly bilingual pun, and received no Gallic hate mail. My favorite detail in this one is the Flying Croissant of Possibility secret symbol variant.

Everyone deserves to be pampered from time to time. 


Friday's panel indulges my habit of using inanimate objects as characters, without giving them physical human features. I find realistic objects to be funnier than if they'd been drawn with faces or limbs, but can't explain why. 

This approach would be tougher in a New Yorker style cartoon, which is usually a drawing with a caption set beneath it. A word balloon clearly shows which object/character is speaking.

This defense makes as much sense as others we've read about.

That's the latest from Bizarro Studios North. Thanks for joining us here, and for reading the comic. If you enjoy the blog, you might like to check out these related virtual locations:

Dan Piraro's Bizarro Blog

Wayno's Bizarro Newsletter

Diego Piraro's Peyote Cowboy Graphic Novel

See you next week.

Bonus Track

France Gall "Laisse Tomber les Filles"
(1964 Tele Melody film)

To make up for that "Jacques" pun, here's a delightful song by France Gall. It's a prime example of what was called Yé-yé music.