1. I don’t get the caption under American Gothic.Maybe I’m singing it to the wrong tune. “We are farmers pa rum pum pum pum.” Or “Thump-thump. Thump-thump. We Are We Are Farmers!”

  2. I didn’t get the first one before googling… if I knew about the “you live in a zoo” version I have so long forgotten it that even with this reminder I don’t even remember ever knowing it (lots of things I don’t know or remember I recall after a reminder)(Something is now stirring in my brain, but is that a real memory or a false one generated now?).

    Also, what I now take to be the “outside world” of freedom I first thought was an inside pale blue institutional wall, and a badly drawn cage which indicated whoever had been in there had only about 6 inches of space.

  3. I only noticed this time for the first tine that the shape of the pitchfork in American Gothic was replicated on the man’s bib and even shirt as a sort of pale shadow. (Tine for time in the previous line was a genuine typo which I corrected at first but then reversed as it was an appropriate one).

  4. Yes, the zoo background is misleading (though I was okay with it from knowing that vaerion of the song). The bottom panel also has a problem of background colorization. If the foreground is a sidewalk, why does the light greenish background look nothing like a street? Or if the sea green background is meant to be the sea, why is the foreground more like a pedestrian pavement than a pier?

  5. >>>Or if the sea green background is meant to be the sea, why is the foreground more like a pedestrian pavement than a pier?

    I think it’s supposed to be sky…. which would make the sidewalk straddling a steep cliff.

    You know, if we didn’t color our damned comics it wouldn’t be an issue.


    I hadn’t noticed how badly it was drawn but then I recognized the “you live in a zoo, you look like a monkey, and you smell like one too” version immediately.

    But, man, it *IS* badly drawn.

  6. What I particularly liked about this was the nonchalance of the zookeeper. “Huh,” he thinks, “guess I’d better put some MISSING posters on some telephone poles.”

    No panic; no evacuating the area . . . just a sign or two.

  7. With regard to the undifferentiated space behind the poster left by the zookeeper, I took it to be a case of minimalist design. The street and its potential contents are not relevant, so no background is drawn at all. This is on the premise that the sidewalk and the pole provide sufficient context.

    Come to think of it, the same is true in the first panel: it the escape of the gorilla (not a monkey BTW) that is relevant, not the physical appearance of the world into which it escaped. Unfortunately, the undifferentiated space looks like either a pointless wall only inches from the bars or the back of a cell only a few inches deep. An additional unwanted side effect of the latter interpretation is the apparent introduction to the scene of a large anteroom!

    I agree with woozy that in this case (these cases, counting the panels separately) we’d be better off without coloring. All this visual misinterpretation — on top of all of the other problems that alert readers have identified in the cartoon.

    All that said, I feel for the person who has to decide what color to make the undifferentiated areas.

    The comic “F Minus” does minimalism better.

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