Dr. Seuss (1973)

Dr. Seuss on the Loose is an American animated musical television special, first airing on CBS on October 15, 1973. The special is hosted by The Cat in the Hat, who introduces animated adaptations of the Dr. Seuss stories The Sneetches, The Zax, and Green Eggs and Ham.

The Sneetches was intended by Seuss as a satire of discrimination between races and cultures, and was specifically inspired by his opposition to antisemitism.

Steve Cutts (2017)

A satirical story of a rodent’s unrelenting quest for happiness and fulfillment.

Music: Habanera by Bizet // Morning Mood by Edvard Grieg

www.stevecutts.com

Steve Cutts is an illustrator and animator based in London, England. His artwork satirizes the excesses of modern society. His style is inspired by 1930s and 40s cartoons, as well as modern comic books and graphic novels.

Robert Smigel & J. J. Sedelmaier (2011)

Happy Pride Month!

Ace and Gary team up to fight crime in their usual, awkward fashion.

Bighead and his henchmen blast Ace and Gary with a flesh ray, transforming them from animated characters to live-action ones, in which they are portrayed by Jon Hamm and Jimmy Fallon, respectively. The gun malfunctions and “unanimates” everyone, with Ed Helms playing Half-Scary, Fred Armisen as Lizardo, Stephen Colbert as Dr. Brainio, and Steve Carell as Bighead.

The Ambiguously Gay Duo is an American animated comedy sketch that debuted on The Dana Carvey Show before moving to its permanent home on Saturday Night Live.

The Ambiguously Gay Duo follows the adventures of Ace and Gary, voiced by Stephen Colbert and Steve Carell, two superheroes whose sexual orientation is a matter of dispute, and a cavalcade of characters preoccupied with the question.

The Ambiguously Gay Duo is a parody of the stereotypical comic book superhero duo done in the style of Saturday morning cartoons like Super Friends. The characters are clad in matching pastel turquoise tights, dark blue domino masks, and bright yellow coordinated gauntlets, boots and shorts. The shorts were intended to satirize suggestions that early Batman comics implied a homosexual relationship between the eponymous title character and his field partner and protégé Robin, a charge most infamously leveled by Fredric Wertham in his 1954 book, Seduction of the Innocent, the research methodology for which was later discredited.

The typical episode usually begins with the duo’s arch-nemesis Bighead, a criminal mastermind with an abnormally large cranium. Bighead is usually briefing his henchmen on a plot for some grandiose plan for world domination, interrupted by a debate as to whether or not Ace and Gary are gay. Once the crime is in process, the police commissioner calls on the superheroes to save the day, often engaging in similar debates with the chief of police.

Ace and Gary set out to foil the evil plan, but not before calling attention to themselves with outrageous antics and innuendo, and behaving in ways perceived by other characters to be stereotypically homosexual.

John Halas & Joy Batchelor (1954)

Britain’s second animated feature, which, despite the title and Disney-esque animal animation, is in fact a no-holds-barred adaptation of George Orwell’s classic satire on Stalinism, with the animals taking over their farm by means of a revolutionary coup, but then discovering that although all animals are supposed to be equal, some are more equal than others.

Animal Farm was written by George Orwell in 1945. It is an allegorical novella, first published in England. The book tells the story of a group of farm animals who rebel against their human farmer, hoping to create a society where the animals can be equal, free, and happy.

Nick Anderson (2020)

*Just a reminder to please vote today!

The Pulitzer-winning cartoonist Nick Anderson has described Donald Trump as an “adolescent wannabe authoritarian”, after the US president’s re-election campaign failed to pull one of Anderson’s cartoons mocking Trump’s inaccurate suggestion that injecting disinfectant could protect against Covid-19.

Anderson put his cartoon The Trump Cult up for sale. The illustration shows Trump with supporters in Maga hats, serving them a drink that has been labeled “Kool-Aid”, then “Chloroquine” and finally “Clorox”, a US bleach brand. The cartoon is a reference to the 1978 Jonestown massacre, where more than 900 people died after drinking cyanide-laced punch at the order of cult leader Jim Jones, and to Trump’s widely denounced idea of injecting bleach to protect against coronavirus. Trump has also been taking the anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine as a protection against Covid-19, despite a study showing it has been linked to increased deaths in patients.

But Anderson’s illustration was pulled from sale following a trademark infringement claim made by Trump’s campaign organisation, Donald J Trump for President Inc. Writing on the Daily Kos, Anderson said that he believed the claim was made due to his depiction of Maga hats, and described the situation as “absurd”.

“We live in a strange time when the POTUS can falsely accuse someone of murder with impunity, while at the same time bully a private business into removing content it doesn’t like,” Anderson added.

The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund (CBLDF) and other free speech organisations subsequently got involved, sending a group letter that accused Trump’s campaign of having “misused reporting mechanisms to suppress protected political expression in the form of parody, critique, and satire”, and arguing that the work and those who publish it are protected by the first amendment.

Anderson’s cartoon was reinstated on social media, saying that it strives “to respect IP rights and freedom of speech, but we sometimes make mistakes, as we did here … We’re sorry for any inconvenience this has caused.”

In a statement, Anderson praised social media for recognizing the error, but said there were some “troubling issues” raised by the affair, including that the cartoon was removed less than 24 hours after he posted it, before he had received a single order.

“I doubt anyone had even seen it yet on the site,” he said. “This reveals that the Trump campaign has a system in place, trawling for material they find objectionable. If it happened to me so quickly, it likely has happened to others. How much other content has been removed this way on sites?”

He added: “It must be pointed out: the president of the United States is a hypocrite who complains about the ‘violation’ of his free speech, then tries to actively suppress the free speech of others. These are actions of an adolescent wannabe-authoritarian.”

Trump criticized social media for “completely stifling FREE SPEECH”, after the social media platform put a warning label on two of his posts spreading lies about mail-in voting.

CBLDF executive director Charles Brownstein said the organisation was “sensitive to the issues companies face in balancing competing rights owner issues, and were alarmed to see the president’s re-election campaign exploiting those issues to suppress protected speech”.

“We’re pleased that social media has done the right thing in this case,” he said. “We hope that they will continue to assert the First Amendment rights they and their sellers are guaranteed by rejecting any similar censorship attempts.”