Sunday, 16 March 2008

This is a cartoon by R F Outcault (1863-1928) that Bill Blackbeard showed in his big book on The Yellow Kid that Kitchen Sink press published. The reproduction measured a mere two inches by three there, so I've blown it up here so you can see it properly (click to enlarge). It's surreal in its violence and I felt that BB gave it short shrift by not showing it properly (though that's a minor quibble about a magnificent book, now alas out of print).

That single image, when compared with a random sampling of more or less contemporary cartoons from Punch, says so much about the shift from the staid Victorian era to the explosive twentieth century.



Blogger Jonathan Bogart said...

Mightn't it say more about middle-class English sensibilities vs. the sensibilities of immigrant America?

Or is that roughly the same thing as Victorian vs. 20th century?

16 March 2008 at 5:13:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger HemlockMan said...

The kid on the fence in the Outcalt cartoon looks like Alfred E. Newman.
(third kid left from the cop's head.)

16 March 2008 at 6:13:00 PM GMT-5  

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