Comics Censorship

I’m breaking out of my normal routine today to tell you about a blog post by one of my friends and syndicated cartoonist colleagues, Rina Piccolo. Rina draws a popular cartoon strip called “Tina’s Groove,” and, just like the rest of us whose main income comes from newspaper cartoons, is subject to the ludicrously (and I use that word literally) puritanical standards of newspaper comics. We’ve all had comics pulled from our lineup that wouldn’t even be called “edgy” in any other form of mainstream comedy because they could result in our features being cancelled in a given market. Rina describes the situation and reasons behind this phenomenon rather eloquently and it offers an interesting view into the behind-the-scenes workings of the syndicated comics world.
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Garbage and Crap

bz panel 10-14-13bz strip 10-14-13Bizarro is brought to you today by Wholesomeness.

As I’ve discussed on this blog before, no matter how long I’m in the syndicated cartoon business, I never cease to be amazed by the kinds of things that are and are not accepted for publication on newspaper funny pages. This cartoon is another example; the original version had “Crap” on the menu and the waiter was saying, “May I recommend the crap?” The childish crudeness of the term made this a funnier gag, in my opinion. But I was told that “crap” could not be used (because it is such a powerful, pernicious, society-corrupting word?) so I opted for the next best thing. The gag is the same, I guess, and America is still safe for women and children so it’s a happy ending. WHEW! (more…)