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XKCD Invited To New Yorker "Cartoon-Off" 231

Posted by kdawson
from the no-raptors dept.
UnknowingFool writes "Farley Katz, who draws for New Yorker magazine, ran into xkcd.com's Randall Munroe in a grocery store. He challenged Munroe to a cartoon-off — each cartoonist to produce drawings about the Internet as envisioned by the elderly, String Theory, 1999, and one's favorite animal eating one's favorite food. In the ensuing short interview, Munroe describes XKCD as 'a webcomic about stick figures who do math, play with staple guns, mess around on the Internet, and have lots of sex. It's about three-fourths autobiographical.'"
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XKCD Invited To New Yorker "Cartoon-Off"

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  • by Wonko the Sane (25252) * on Saturday October 18, 2008 @02:36PM (#25425343) Journal

    hyperbondage

  • Munroe Wins (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bshell (848277) on Saturday October 18, 2008 @02:43PM (#25425393)
    Munroe was the clear winner. 1999 *BC* was just dumb, as were most of Katz's others. The only lame one of Munroe's was the strange skateboard thing. Somewhat off topic, though it gets points for originality.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by orkybash (1013349)
      1999 BC? With *dinosaurs*? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/K%E2%80%93T_boundary [wikipedia.org]
    • nuh uhhhh.... Katz wins... Munroe's were stupid.
    • by Dun Malg (230075)

      The only lame one of Munroe's was the strange skateboard thing. Somewhat off topic, though it gets points for originality.

      I think it's excusable, as the topic was obviously a ringer. Katz "cheated" when he chose that because he clearly already had the cartoon in his head. When you look at the rest of the topics, it's pretty obvious. That's the only one with any shred of humor in it.

    • by kestasjk (933987) *
      Well I guess Munroe is a lot more used to a 1 frame cartoon format, whereas Katz usually does 3 frames. Also Katz' humor is about the topic, he doesn't just choose some stupid topic and make it funny.

      Conclusion: Katz couldn't do comics for a magazine, now lets see Munroe write a comic that'll only make a computer science student laugh.
  • Meh, neither one of them really made me laugh, though the hyperbondage one made me giggle a little.

    It's hard to spontaneously be funny about something specific at any given time. Well, unless you're Robin Williams, in which case it's easy. But you get my point. I don't think that improvisation is either one of their strong suit, but given some time to let something come to them, and the freedom to draw about whatever neurons happen to be firing in their brain at the time... That's when the funny happens

  • The one drawing showing the internet as envisioned by the elderly was hilarious.

  • O__O (Score:5, Funny)

    by TheSHAD0W (258774) on Saturday October 18, 2008 @03:02PM (#25425553) Homepage

    I don't know what's scarier, that Katz's cow drawing has too many nipples - or that I noticed the discrepancy...

    • Re:O__O (Score:5, Funny)

      by Ohio Calvinist (895750) on Saturday October 18, 2008 @03:05PM (#25425577)
      All cows have too many nipples, based on my assumption that two nipples is the ideal number. :)
    • Re:O__O (Score:4, Funny)

      by John Hasler (414242) on Saturday October 18, 2008 @03:23PM (#25425719) Homepage

      His cow is part sow (BTW they are teats).

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Javarrito (1272088)

      I don't know what's scarier, that Katz's cow drawing has too many nipples - or that I noticed the discrepancy...

      How about the fact that that mistake could ruin his political career (in Vermont, at least). [wikipedia.org]

      During the televised debate, Tuttle asked a series of humorous local knowledge questions rather than political questions. McMullen was unable to correctly pronounce the names of several Vermont towns, or correctly answer Fred's question "How many teats a Holstein got?," answering "Six", instead of the correct "Four". In the primary, Tuttle defeated McMullen by ten percentage points. Winning the primary with 55 percent of the vote, Tuttle promptly endorsed the incumbent Democrat, Patrick Leahy.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Skye16 (685048)

        In his defense, I have seen cows with 6 teats before. They were small and non functioning, but it had them.

        But that's what comes from working on a dairy farm. You're bound to end up seeing freak teats eventually.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by thegameiam (671961)

          "Freak Teats" is a phrase I think I can go a long time without encountering again...

  • by ahoehn (301327) <andrew@noSpAM.hoe.hn> on Saturday October 18, 2008 @03:08PM (#25425605) Homepage

    I sincerely hope the expression "Pulled a Palin" becomes part of the vernacular.

  • Katz vs Munroe? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by fishinatree (1368937) on Saturday October 18, 2008 @03:16PM (#25425659) Journal
    While XKCD is my favorite webcomic that I've been following for quite a long time, I have to admit that Munroe's humor lies more in his ability to crack inside jokes with the nerd in all of us. Katz tries to appeal to the more general public (it's his job at the New Yorker). I think Munroe is funnier, especially here, but his esoteric humor might lose some votes.
    • Re:Katz vs Munroe? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by gad_zuki! (70830) on Saturday October 18, 2008 @03:51PM (#25425909)

      Humor needs to be esoteric. There needs to be a pause between seeing the joke and getting the joke.

      Katz's work is painfully obvious and looks like something out of a "cartooning 101" workshop. A drunk scientist? A cow biting itself? Those are hackneyed jokes!

      My understanding is that the new yorker has this reputation for cartoons so bad that the audience has learned to love their badness. Well, theyre still terrible to me.

      • by Jesus_666 (702802)
        Actually, the one single best joke Katz has made was the internet one - and that one happened to be a Venn diagram, a kind of joke I'd rather expect from Munroe.

        xkcd appeals to geeks because it's geeky. For the same reason hardcore gamers will probably find Penny Arcade more interesting than Dilbert - they have never worked in cubicle space but they do know that Megaman 9 is immensely nostalgic or that some Diablo fans are apparently color-allergic. It's all about the target demographics - and if your int
    • Re:Katz vs Munroe? (Score:4, Interesting)

      by physicsphairy (720718) on Saturday October 18, 2008 @03:57PM (#25425953) Homepage

      Inside jokes are still funnier, IMHO. The best jokes are those that have the most surprising punchlines, or engage the maximum of brain activity (while still being decipherable). Personally, I think an unfamiliar academic context goes a long way toward supporting both of those concepts. Actually, a lot of my esoteric science knowledge originally came from researching jokes at the infamous http://www.xs4all.nl/~jcdverha/scijokes/index.html [xs4all.nl] and I remember a lot of those being hilarious well before I had proper context for wholly understanding them. And nowadays I find Dinosaur Comics brilliant, seemingly component to my utter unfamiliarity with the field of linguistics, which Ryan North frequently refers to.

      Admittedly, maybe that isn't true for everyone. But for me, anyway, the least funny humorists are always those that condescend or use humorous tropes that have already been done to death. I'd always rather have someone joking way over my head than at the level where I can figure out the punchline before I even hear it.

    • by skeeto (1138903)

      Katz tries to appeal to the more general public

      Unfortunately, appealing to the general public is a lowest common denominator thing, and, in the end, it tends to create boring, worthless garbage like Garfield and Family Circus.

  • by RyoShin (610051) <[tukaro] [at] [gmail.com]> on Saturday October 18, 2008 @03:19PM (#25425689) Homepage Journal

    do math, play with staple guns, mess around on the Internet, and have lots of sex. It's about three-fourths autobiographical.

    I take it Monroe doesn't like staple guns.

    • Now it makes sense (Score:3, Interesting)

      by causality (777677)
      This is actually redundant [slashdot.org] but it was rewarded with "Funny" because it implies that Monroe has lots of sex. You guys like Monroe and heaven forbid if you could separate the moderation guidelines from your personal feelings. Therefore, this is complimentary of Monroe and gets modded up. I made a very similar post that, while intended to be humorous, could have been taken as derogatory of Monroe since it suggested that the three-fourths part did not include sex, so I get modded down into oblivion. That's
      • by RyoShin (610051)

        I contend that either they are both funny or they are both redundant.

        I will agree with you on people using moderation for "I like this person". I can't say for sure why it was modded such, but I might say that it's because your punchline is the exact same as the one Monroe made. Thus, you restated the original joke in a slightly different and more drawn-out manner, hence "redundant". You may be correct, and it may well be because of the /. Love Complex, but it could also be that first thing.

        I would say t

      • by Zarel (900479) on Saturday October 18, 2008 @11:01PM (#25428443)

        This is actually redundant [slashdot.org] but it was rewarded with "Funny" because it implies that Monroe has lots of sex. You guys like Monroe and heaven forbid if you could separate the moderation guidelines from your personal feelings. Therefore, this is complimentary of Monroe and gets modded up. I made a very similar post that, while intended to be humorous, could have been taken as derogatory of Monroe since it suggested that the three-fourths part did not include sex, so I get modded down into oblivion. That's alright; to be honest, in hindsight, I don't think my own post [slashdot.org] was any good and it probably deserves the moderation it received. However, this post is a carbon copy of mine and was modded up. I contend that either they are both funny or they are both redundant.

        No, the difference is that Munroe's original intention in saying "do math, play with staple guns, mess around on the Internet, and have lots of sex. It's about three-fourths autobiographical" was to imply that he does not "have lots of sex". Thus, pointing this out is redundant (because Munroe is already attempting to point it out), while misinterpreting it to mean he doesn't play with staple guns is humorous. Understand the difference?

        Believe me, your post would have been funny if you weren't just pointing out what Munroe was trying to say.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by mollymoo (202721)

        Undoubtedly there is abuse of moderation, but this is not an example of it. I'll be charitable and assume you thought you were highlighting an amusing and unintended interpretation, but I'm pretty sure the original was intended to be interpreted that way - it was a deliberate joke, but perhaps subtle enough that you thought you were making the joke. Perhaps you though you were posting an amusing interpretation, but to those who got the joke you were just posting an explanation. Explanations of jokes aren't

      • I hate your fucking guts and can't stand any of your opinions, but you are absolutely correct about moderation reflecting content, so I modded your post insightful before writing this reply.

        =)

  • by 93 Escort Wagon (326346) on Saturday October 18, 2008 @03:49PM (#25425895)

    What's the deal with the pig at the complaint department saying "I wish I were taller"?

  • Not news. We already know xkcd is funny and the New Yorker isn't. Dinosaurs in 1999 B.C.? Is this guy some kind of unfunny creationist?
  • XKCD (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Enderandrew (866215) <enderandrew@noSPam.gmail.com> on Saturday October 18, 2008 @04:09PM (#25426045) Homepage Journal

    I'm a huge XKCD fan, but out of these 8 strips, it might be a reach to call 2 funny. I think they both failed.

    What I'd have preferred instead of arbitrary subjects that intrinsically aren't funny, is for them to play off each other. One writes a comic of their choosing that fits within their comic idiom. The next plays directly off that comic trying to top if, within their idiom.

    The back and forth would likely be much better.

  • The Internet, as envisioned by the elderly. KATZ
    String Theory. MUNROE
    1999. MUNROE
    Your favorite animal eating your favorite food. KATZ

    Katz cheated on 1999 and Munroe cheated on animal eating.

    Munroe's elderly comic makes no sense. Katz actually pulls an XKCD-like description with the Venn Diagrams.

    Finally, both string theory entries were funny (Katz more understandably so) but Munroe's entry was more original.

    Thus, a tie.

    Anyone who thinks different can suck my cock.

    • Re:It's a tie. (Score:4, Insightful)

      by m.ducharme (1082683) on Saturday October 18, 2008 @04:32PM (#25426177)

      Munroe's elderly comic makes GREAT sense, but you have to get the in-joke. Have you seen the comic captioned "on the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog"? And if so, what magazine do you think it first appeared in? I thought it was the best one of all of them, with so many delicious levels of irony and meta-references.

      • by gozu (541069)

        Ok, you're right about this one. I guess Munroe wins after all.

        Suck it Katz!

    • by Dun Malg (230075)

      Katz cheated on 1999 and Munroe cheated on animal eating.

      Are you kidding? Katz cheated on both of them. He clearly chose the "animal eating" topic to fit fit a cartoon he already had in his head. Really, the topic only lends itself to one marginally funny joke, and it's the one Katz had in mind.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by gozu (541069)

        Nonsense. Why would anyone's favorite animal be a cow?

        In any case, how do you know who proposed each topic and where do you get off calling Katz a cheat? Where is your proof?

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by Jesus_666 (702802)
          Katz used a GameShark to change which comics to draw. The fourth comic originally was supposed to be on animals and the early years of Bauhaus. Matz waited until Munroe had drawn his thing and than manipulated the address so the topic now was favourite foods. Clearly cheating.
        • by Dun Malg (230075)

          Nonsense. Why would anyone's favorite animal be a cow?

          Exactly. He chose the topic to fit a joke he already had in his head. That's kinda like cheating.

          and where do you get off calling Katz a cheat? Where is your proof?

          "He [Katz] challenged Munroe to a cartoon-off â" each cartoonist to produce drawings about the Internet as envisioned by the elderly, String Theory, 1999, and one's favorite animal eating one's favorite food."

          This indicates that Katz issued the challenge and named the categories. Do you have evidence otherwise?

          "Cheating" is perhaps an exaggeration. I just don't think he chose such a bizarre topic as tha

    • by Kijori (897770)

      Anyone who thinks different can suck my cock.

      Big mistake. This is Slashdot - everyone will disagree with you, but it'll be a lot worse for you than for them...

  • Alt-text (Score:3, Interesting)

    by brucmack (572780) on Saturday October 18, 2008 @07:16PM (#25427237)

    One of the things that makes xkcd funny is the alt-text... I missed having that here.

(1) Never draw what you can copy. (2) Never copy what you can trace. (3) Never trace what you can cut out and paste down.

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