Saturday, February 4, 2012

The American Political Process

This minimal comic definitely has a satirical element to it. In both the script, as well as the text. Handwritten, it automatically brings a sense of familiarity to the piece and character, where it feels as though your friend passed it to you during class. The title reads, the “American Political Process” showing an odd looking fellow, clearly in a voting booth setting, voting on what looks like, an iPad. (which reads, touch here to vote.) It is, the next presidential election this year. At the end of the checklist of seemingly boring things that happen during the presidential election the last numeral reads, “The American public elects the cuter one.” What is ironic about this comic, is the odd man himself, is not particularly attractive he is cross eyed with glasses and a little patch of hair. His appearance could be categorized as having a “nerdish” quality, making it seem as though he is informed of the truly qualified candidate, whereas the rest of the American public is only concerned with looks. We can find the humor in this “joke” because for the most part, a majority of society is self aware of the push on appearances, and aesthetics in the United States. The darkness this infatuation is that it may be affecting other sectors of our lives, like our political system.

I got this comic from the site, Toothpaste for Dinner where I am a frequenter. It is here, everyday, that a new comic is posted. Oftentimes it involves the artist himself, Drew taking a humorous approach to the trials and tribulations of today’s modern society. His works range from a variety of topics from the social to the political. Meskin, in his article about Defining Comics? Discusses comics as “very often serialized: most comics we encounter are extended narratives that are designed to be encountered in the same publication in daily, weekly or monthly installments.” It is true, that the popularity of the site, and the anticipation that there will be a new one up every single day, leads me to the Toothpaste for Dinner site. Even though most of the comics are imbued with a cute and dark satirical humor, there is a slight moral reflection that takes place when viewing these pieces. Much like what Kunzle suggests in that within the narrative condition, comic strips must not only tell stories, they must tell moral and topical ones. Is it necessary for us to be so superficial as a society that it is impacting our political and governmental process? Is a moral narrative necessary with the emergence of comic books being studied in the educational system? Like what Tabachnick suggests that the attention span of a book is becoming proceeding more difficult to grab the attention of readers, so teachers are now using graphic novels. Shouldn’t we take morals into consideration in this case?

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