January 2, 2020

Anti-Trump sketches from the artist Barry Blitt that The New Yorker rejected.

Video here.

Click my "Barry Blitt" tag if you can't remember Blitt's finished work that The New Yorker has published. I love seeing the work at the sketch phase — raw and closer to a mere idea — and it's interesting to know what falls below the anti-Trumpism that permeates The New Yorker and seems to torment Blitt.

I see that The New Yorker is now running a series called "Barry Blitt's Sketchbook"... I mean: "Blitt's Kvetchbook." Here, under the headline "The Latest on J. D. Salinger Unearthed," is a drawing captioned "J.D. Salinger, moments before he became disgusted with something." You either already have a New Yorker subscription or you just became disgusted with something.

ADDED: After publishing this post, I clicked my own "Barry Blitt" tag, and I was amazed to see that I had not written a post with that tag since May 2017! To me, that says a lot about what anti-Trumpism has done to humorists who are not Donald Trump. That's the only Blitt cover about Trump that I've seen fit to blog during the Trump administration.

It shows James Comey being dragged off an airplane. And I commented back then about "the loss of a sense of humor in Trump's America":
I think Trump thinks he's funny, and I think he's funny. But when the funnyman holds vast power, he's like the classic bully whose taunt is "What's the matter, can't you take a joke?"

And yet, if political discourse loses its humor dimension, and it becomes nothing but outrage and That's not funny, many people — I feel it happening to me — will turn away. We need the leavening, most of us.
The next newest one is a cover that bears the date January 23, 2017, but it was out before the inauguration, and I blogged it on January 13th.

43 comments:

Achilles said...

The people that write The New Yorker are not very smart.

The people that read it even less so.

tim maguire said...

Youtube is getting more aggressive and obnoxious about its commercials. Every time I did something to the screen while the video was playing, the commercial restarted. After the third subjection, I gave up.

But thanks for trying.

Ann Althouse said...

The ad on the New Yorker video is an ad for The New Yorker, but I'd be more likely to keep my subscription to The New Yorker and to recommend it to others if their in-house videos didn't have ads.

Wilbur said...

I irretrievably lost interest in continuing to watch that video at the 1:30 mark. I kept expecting it to begin being interesting or worthwhile ... but it simply wasn't.

The New Yorker does not speak to me. I'm OK with that.

Wilbur said...

I went ahead and began watching the second video with the male couples attempting to make up funny captions.

The New Yorker does not speak to me. I'm OK with that.

Ann Althouse said...

Hmm. The thing I thought was an ad was another in-house video of a humorous sort.

I think that meant that my embed was the wrong one, so I've replaced the embedded video with a link to the page. You have to scroll down to get to it. There's also a cartoon, a New Year's cartoon with the classic old man and baby representing the old year and the new year. The baby is saying "OK, boomer" to the old man. Somebody needs to tell that baby that "OK, boomer" itself got born and grew old and died within a single year.

Hey, does that baby realize he's got only one year to live?

Mr. Forward said...

OK, doomer.

David Begley said...

Trump as a Klansman. Why was that rejected? Hilarious.

chuck said...

Excellent drawings, but his Trump cartoons suck for impact. Reminds me of one of Herblock's books where he discusses what makes a bad political cartoon. Bad cartoons were pictures of someone ugly with a sign hanging on them. The sign in Blitt's cartoons is Trump's hair.

rhhardin said...

I've never seen a youtube ad, but the videos stop at multiples of 23 minutes in and need to be restarted by clicking the progress button. uBlock Origin is probably responsible, or it might be my old XP system or browser.

rhhardin said...

I think Trump thinks he's funny, and I think he's funny. But when the funnyman holds vast power, he's like the classic bully whose taunt is "What's the matter, can't you take a joke?"

That's an extrordinarly bad reading of Trump. It's a contest in language, namely the quip that gets to the truth, his opponents' posturing. Trump likes it because he's good at it.

It's available to everybody but the opponents always pick the wrong thing to try. They're not quip poets.

JAORE said...

The "humor" against Trump is infantile and, to me, largely unconnected to what he is actually doing.

Fat shaming? Really? Small hands? You have to be kidding me. His hair is funny? Wow, no wonder he's being (is?) impeached.

It's like the ranting, panting dogs yapping about his tweets while ignoring the economy, trade deals, troop draw downs, employment numbers and more.

Temujin said...

I'm not sure if I made it to the drawing or video you were directing us to. But I looked at the other links. Blitt is very good. I may not agree with his politics, but that doesn't matter. His work is good and reminds me of some others I've liked.

Another cartoonist that I think I was introduced to by this blog is Tim Kreider. ?? Again, I don't agree with his predictable political or social stands, but he's very funny. His books are hilarious (though they can get wordy). His cartoons/illustrations are pretty good. (I think his writing is better).

There are probably a lot of great cartoonists out there, but I don't see them any longer. They have to ring the leftist bell to get published in a larger magazine, and I don't subscribe to those any longer. If they lean to the right, they are not seen at all. It's a bad time for a full spectrum of art in all genres. You're either from the left or you don't get seen or heard.

Ralph L said...

Wow! How'd they get motion in the print cover? That could revitalize the magazine industry.

Harsh Pencil said...

I think, person by person, humor is objective . You either involuntarily laugh or you don't. It's subjective only to the
extent that what makes one person involuntarily laugh may or may not make another person involuntarily laugh.

So for me, the playing scrabble with death and having covfefe was objectively funny. One or two of the others (naked Trump at the
debate) at least made me smile. The others just weren't funny.

michaele said...

A couple of small smiles were elicited but, for the most part, the humor just seemed knee jerk obvious for Blitt's tribe. I can get hearty laughs at the wit of some of the commenters on this board and they do it for free.

daskol said...

"What's the matter, can't you take a joke?"

That's seeing Trump as Joe Pesci in Goodfellas, which was not self-deprecating humor. I would love to see Trump tell Acosta to get his shinebox, though.

Chuck said...

Althouse what makes you think that anti-Trump sentiment "torments" Barry Blitt? Do you know Blitt? Has he indicated any "torment" in an interview or an op-ed?

Why not presume that Blitt "delights" in his anti-Trump sentiment? Trump has given Blitt an entirely vast, bizarre, fantastic world to satirize. It's a great thing for a New Yorker cover artist, at least arguably. And you don't know any differently.

You always do this. You presume that everyone who loathes Trump and who sets themselves apart from Trump and Trumpism is somehow living in misery. Why? My own anti-Trumpism is stoked with idealism; devoting myself to attractive idealism in the face of the gut-wrenching compromises that Trump fans must contort themselves into. Being a Never Trumper puts me in occasional agreement with others across a partisan divide with whom I might never otherwise find common cause. And it is based on education and information and acculturation and morality. I never have to say to anyone, "Well, I don't always like the things that Trump says on Twitter, but..." I'm clean. I'm free. I never have to check my laughter at the endless string of Trump stupidities. I can laugh and enjoy myself at Trump's expense.

Not "tormented."

chickelit said...

And yet you are tormented, Chuck - in the literal sense of the word. Each day shows us how you must twist facts to fit your ant-Trump worldview.

Michael K said...

Being a Never Trumper puts me in occasional agreement with others across a partisan divide with whom I might never otherwise find common cause. And it is based on education and information and acculturation and morality.

Perfect illustration of the self describe "elite" trying to be dismissive of his betters.

JML said...

"...And it is based on education and information and acculturation and morality."

Reminds me of this anti-Trump grammar Nazi we used to have at work. She never understood why no one liked her. I told her it was because she was always finding fault with other people's point of view, regardless of if it was I before E or the fear that if they voiced support of something, anything, Trump did she would label them as some sort of "...ist" Racist, misogynist, etc. She said, "Well, when I'm right I'm right, it shouldn't matter what they think, they should just accept it..."

She (and her husband) ended up unfriending me from FB. And I'm OK with that.

Wince said...

I got an ad for "HS" medicine with a woman complaining of an abscesses between her legs.

Hidradenitis suppurativa (hi-drad-uh-NIE-tis sup-yoo-ruh-TIE-vuh) is a skin condition that causes small, painful lumps to form under the skin. The lumps can break open, or tunnels can form under the skin. The condition mostly affects areas where the skin rubs together, such as the armpits, groin, buttocks and breasts.

Hidradenitis suppurativa tends to start after puberty. It can persist for many years and worsen over time, with serious effects on your daily life and emotional well-being. Medications and surgery can help manage symptoms and prevent complications.

frenchy said...

Not "tormented."

Lack of self-awareness is also strong in this cohort.

Molly said...

(eaglebeak)

The hell of it is, The New Yorker was once funny, smart, etc. It had writers like James Thurber, Robert Benchley, E.B. White, Dorothy Parker, Woody Allen, and incredible cartoonists, like Charles Addams, George Price, Peter Arno, Helen Hokinson... If you read The Years with Ross by James Thurber, you can get some idea of what it once was like.

Now it's 100% utter garbage. Utter and total. Garbage.

It dropped sophistication in favor of leftish low-browedness in a high-brow kimono.

By the way, when The New Yorker was sophisticated, it had readers among those Americans on whom it spits now--the vast unwashed. Guess whose father bought him a book of cartoons by New Yorker cartoonist George Price for his 14th birthday? Elvis Presley, that's who--the sharecropper's son from Tupelo, Mississippi. The country boy when he was still a child living in one room with an outhouse (in Memphis, by then).

The New Yorker used to be something. Now it's less than nothing.

Meade said...

"Being a Never Trumper"...

Claims to have voted for Trump yet still self identifies as a "Never Trumper."

Based on education and information and acculturation and morality, I would expect to find a tortured, tormented and humorless soul.

minnesota farm guy said...

I am one of those pissed-on people who used to read the New Yorker regularly, mostly for the cartoons , but there were occasionally timely articles that were educational or about interesting facets of life. Never the fiction. I just couldn't get upper west side enough for that. I used to get a big boot from the About Town intro to the mag until Henrik(?) somebody- or-other (Ann will know who I mean)took over and turned it into a left wing rant every week. That was the end for me.

Chuck said...

Meade said...
"Being a Never Trumper"...

Claims to have voted for Trump yet still self identifies as a "Never Trumper."

Based on education and information and acculturation and morality, I would expect to find a tortured, tormented and humorless soul.


Meade you think mine is a humorless soul?

Only a humorless soul could not find joy and laughter in this insanely hilarious word salad:

https://twitter.com/joshtpm/status/1212247459205914624

Meade said...

I'm vaguely, mildly curious as to who "Never Trumpers" (like Chuck) will vote for in November if the Democrats nominate Hillary Clinton again.

And this time by "never" I mean never ever ever never never. Ever

Seeing Red said...

Trump doesn’t think he’s funny, he knows he’s funny.

Chuck said...

Meade said...
I'm vaguely, mildly curious as to who "Never Trumpers" (like Chuck) will vote for in November if the Democrats nominate Hillary Clinton again.


President Pence, I expect.

But, uh, I've learned of a 2016 Hillary voter who lives very, very, very near you, Meade. You could ask her.

Mattman26 said...

I almost feel sorry for these tormented "schmerzed" souls.

Almost.

TML said...

HE SPELLED COVFEFE INCORRECTLY!!!!


Bill Peschel said...

Coincidentally, Barry Blitt did caricatures of five famous writers for my Penguin book "Writers Gone Wild."

I hate his politics, but I'd love for him to do the cover for the sequel.

Robert Cook said...

There were some really good cartoon ideas in there, along with several less good (or lame) ones.

Meade said...

"You could ask her."

Except she has never self-identified as a "Never Trumper."

Robert Cook said...

"She said, 'Well, when I'm right I'm right, it shouldn't matter what they think, they should just accept it...'"

Sounds like an asshole, a stupid one.

Robert Cook said...

"I'm vaguely, mildly curious as to who "Never Trumpers" (like Chuck) will vote for in November if the Democrats nominate Hillary Clinton again."


I have voted third party since 1996. I don't think my vote will usher my choice into office, but I refuse to give my vote to the persistently irredeemable candidates put forth by the two major parties every four years. The "lesser of two evils" is still shitty.

(I would be shocked to see Hillary nominated; the Dems can't be stupid enough to think she can do better against Trump the second time around, can they? Wait....)

Jack Klompus said...

And it is based on education and information and acculturation and morality.

You fart sniffing pompous fucking ass!

Ann Althouse said...

I don’t purport to know how Blitt really feels. That’s why I used the word “seems.” I’m careful about things like that. You should notice before criticizing.

Howard said...

I hear you the New Yorker sucks compared to where it used to be. still they have one or two excellent articles that are fairly long reads so it usually takes me about a week to get through them so it's a feature not a bug I suppose I'd say about 25% of the cartoons are actually funny shouts & murmurs never is and the movie reviews are worthless

FullMoon said...

Many complain about Chuck. What I like about him is he can post something like his original, with a smile on his face and a little chuckle. Then, some blah blah by us regulars will get a fake complaint, while still smiling, to AA about how he is being attacked by rule breakers.
But, the fun part comes when he begins to lose control a bit and occasionally drifts into rather vociferous counter attacks ending in out of control middle school name calling and self defense.

Noticeably, Chuck has un fortunately become more adept at abandoning the comments when he begins to slip. Was way more fun when he threatened to twist a titty, or when he wanted official White House explanation of the Pecan Pie subterfuge.

Personally, I tend to lay off him since his acknowledgement of being"on the spectrum", although in the same comment ,he did agree that being "on the spectrum" was no excuse for bad behavior.

Howard said...

Thanks full moon I didn't realize Chuck was a tard.

Lazarus said...

Barry Blitt did the Barack-Michelle fist bump cover and the Obamacare reboot cover. Of course, he's a liberal and most of his cartoons are against Trump and the Republicans, but he actually may be the only New Yorker contributor who dared to tiptoe off the reservation, however briefly.