We Have Met the Enemy, and he is Fox

We Have Met the Enemy, and he is Fox

A lot of people probably won’t recognize the reference to Walt Kelly’s Pogo, possibly the greatest political comic strip of all time–certainly the best illustrated. For those unfamiliar, here’s wikipedia’s article about it.

I intended this cartoon as merely an homage, but I may have crossed the line beyond that. It’s still only a poor imitation of Kelly, of course–my lettering is nowhere near as clean, stylish, or consistent as his, and my drawings of Seminole Sam are quite off-model. Except for Churchy La’Femme in the second panel, none of the drawings were copied directly from a reference, and even in that case I went a little ways off the reference so as to make the figure look a little more dynamic.

I realize Deacon Mushrat probably would’ve been a better character to spout the dialogue I put in the mouth of Seminole Sam, but I didn’t want to have to draw that much gothic script, plus I wouldn’t get the obvious Fox News pun with him. I kind of envisioned this as being in the middle of an imaginary storyline where Sam hatches a scheme to take advantage of the naive swampdwellers by pretending to be a newsman, just like Fox News regularly takes advantage of its viewers by pretending to be a news station, though of course the real Kelly wouldn’t directly reference the President, and would instead make up an analogue to represent him.

I don’t have the luxury of multiple strips spread out over a period of months or years with which to do that, though, which was why this was probably an ill-conceived concept, though it was a very fun challenge which will hopefully result in an improvement in my drawing.

Regardless, I hope Mr. Kelly’s estate doesn’t have a problem with this cartoon, so to make things perfectly clear, in case the note on the cartoon itself isn’t enough: I didn’t create Pogo, nor do I have anything to do with whoever owns it now, but you should go read all you can about it, because it was great, and more people should be aware of it today.

This entry was posted on Monday, October 12th, 2009 at 1:46 am and is filed under Cartoons & Commentary. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

9 Responses to “We Have Met the Enemy, and he is Fox”

Wow, Terry, as “an ever-lovin’ blue eyed” devotee to Pogo et. al., I’d like to say you did a good job in channeling the voice of my favorite all time cartoonist! Walt Kelly would approve and I bet he wishes he were here to add his incisive panels to today’s political craziness. You nailed it!

Nicely done.

By » LagomorphMan (October 16th, 2009 at 4:58 pm)

I can’t say I’m too familiar with Pogo, but I found the strip amusing and well-drawn. Just the little details (holding the Bible upside down, the 9/12 on the fox’s hat) make it.

I grew up reading Pogo collections, and based on my childhood memories I’d say you’ve captured the essence of the thing quite nicely.

I also grew up reading Pogo (in old anthologies at the library–the strips were long gone by then), and have always loved it–you hit it on the head with this one! I think Walt Kelly would have approved.

By » Don Kordecki (March 2nd, 2010 at 2:11 pm)

Perfectly drawn — and now, quartered in my collection of Walt Kelly’s Pogo-isms.

By » David B Teague (February 2nd, 2015 at 9:04 pm)

Your deference and respect for Walt Kelly’s Pogo is well placed and noted. But you should give yourself more credit! This really is good work, and I think it respects Mr Kelly’s work. Thanks!
With Mr Don Kordecki, I have added this to my collection of “Pogo-isms”.

By » jeff chambers (August 17th, 2015 at 10:46 pm)

Very good! I internalised the sense of Walt Kelly’s work through years of being completely in thrall to his work as a child, later starting to appreciate the political irony therein. There was also a lovely humanity to the tableaux as well. I can tell you that, in the same way that back in the day, waiting for a photographic film to develop and the prints produced was a thrilling anticipation, so was waiting for a Pogo book to arrive from across the Atlantic courtesy of Simon and Schuster. Love the ‘O-fficial’ and the apostrophes in the last frame! Can I ask why do you know Walt Kelly when as you say, many will not? Are you old enough (!) or does he figure highly in the hive-mind of cartoonists? All the best, Jeff.

By » David B Teague (August 30th, 2015 at 7:53 am)

Hey GREAT job.
I’m looking for the Pogo sequence where Pogo and Seminole Sam are interacting over a rabbit’s foot that Seminole Sam says is for luck. Pogo says it wasn’t lucky for the rabbit. I don’t recall Sam’s response, but Pogo’s was classic: “That’s consistent with his [Sam’s] shaggy nature.”
I want that strip so much that I’m buying the complete Pogo books as they are published.
If you have that strip, I’d be grateful if you would make it available either here, or by email, or even the date it was published so I can find it when it comes in the Complete Pogo.

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