Mike Capozzola is a San Francisco stand-up comedian and published cartoonist. He’s very funny and thoughtful and a great guy to chat with about pop culture. He’ll be in my hometown, Seattle, to perform at the Comedy Underground on Sunday, June 14th. This is a perfect time to check out one of the most distinctive and cool comedy venues in the country.
Capozzola will perform his multimedia comedy show about sci-fi films, secret agents, werewolves, and superheroes. It’s called “Emperor Ming’s Mercilessly Spicy Wings and Other Tales.” You can find more details right here.
Corporations that have jumped on the geek bandwagon are not your friends. Heck, corporations aren’t even actually people. And the people who run these corporations don’t care, or begin to understand, what the term “geek” means. But folks like Mike Capozzola do get it. His show revolves around a natural love for geeky stuff.
Amid his wide spectrum of work, what shines through is a relentless pursuit of offbeat humor. We chat here about what exactly the title of his show is all about and end up discussing pop culture in a significant way. We weren’t afraid to pull back the curtain and comment upon the brazen highjacking of the idea of being authentic, or “geek,” by commercial interests.
Byway of discussing the title for his show in this interview, Capozzola shared his love for the webcomic, “The Perry Bible Fellowship” by Nicholas Gurewitch. In relation to Capozzola’s obscure reference to Emperor Ming, he cites Gurewitch’s story, “The Trial of Colonel Sweeto and Other Stories,” where the good colonel appears in only a couple of panels. Now that’s some good geek street cred!
You can listen to the interview right below:
So, if you’re in Seattle, be sure to see Mike Capozzola at the Comedy Underground on Sunday, June 14. And visit Mike at his site right here.
Frank and Cora in 1946’s THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGS TWICE
Bill Plympton Animation Available on iTunes as of April 2015
CHEATIN’ is Bill Plimpton’s seventh full-length animated feature. It is for adults who like an All-American gritty noir story and fans of great storytelling from such greats at Terry Gilliam and Federico Fellini. Read my review here. On April 3, CHEATIN’ opens in New York and then to selected cities throughout the month. It is also available online! You can see it on Vimeo. And you can see other Plympton features on iTunes starting in April. Yes, if you’re a loyal fan or are new to his work, Bill Plympton is here! For details, and to see the movie, just go to the CHEATIN’ THE MOVIE website right here.
A Gritty Tale and a Sexual Odyssey
CHEATIN’ is visually stunning and immersive. It features the journey one woman must take in order to find what she wants. In the tradition of noir, characters must go through the yin and yang to find their true selves. Light into dark. And then dark into light. Truly, a perpetual swirl of desire and searching. And you throw into the bargain a magical soul-transfer machine, and you’ve got yourself a Bill Plympton animated feature.
Disney Can Give Bill Plympton A Call
It is always a pleasure to chat with Bill Plympton. For this interview, we cover a lot of ground on the storytelling process. We chat about how CHEATIN’ and THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGS TWICE would make for a perfect double bill. And I asked Bill, the king of independent animation, if he’d ever consider working with Disney if the right project came along. Yes. Bill would take the call.
What if Hitler Opened a Theme Park Called, “Naziland”?
And we discuss some upcoming projects. You’ll want to listen to that.
Below is the podcast interview. Enjoy:
Be sure to visit the CHEATIN’ website right here. And, if you’re in the New York metro area, be sure to go to Village East Cinema on Friday, April 3, and you’ll see Bill Plympton in person! He will create a drawing for anyone who asks for one.
“How About Never–Is Never Good for You?: My Life in Cartoons” is a very long title but it does two important things. It’s funny and it’s memorable. Just what you would expect from Bob Mankoff, the cartoon editor of The New Yorker.
Paradoxically, we all know a New Yorker cartoon when we see one but there really isn’t a typical New Yorker cartoon. It takes someone like, Bob Mankoff, the cartoon editor of The New Yorker, to explain that one. And why settle for someone like Bob Mankoff when you can have the real thing in his latest book.
“We’re going all the way!” says filmmaker Steven-Charles Jaffe about his fundraising campaign in support of his documentary on master cartoonist Gahan Wilson, “Gahan Wilson: Born Dead, Still Weird.”
Beginning on Sunday, August 18, 2013, at noon PST, fundraising for the documentary resumes after the Kickstarter effort.
Many of the original pledgers are now renewing their pledges on the official “Born Dead, Still Weird” website which you can visit here.
From the “Born Dead, Still Weird” site:
We have launched this new funding website for our ACADEMY AWARD® campaign to enable all of you awesome supporters to renew your pledges and receive your rewards.
Please browse through our rewards and choose one or more. Note: some previously listed rewards have changed, so take a look and choose one or more. There is also the option to make a pledge without a reward. You can purchase using Paypal or credit card.
The reasons we need your help remain the same. We’re in a tough race to get the documentary submitted to the Academy® so we must reach our goal of $26,000 by Monday September 16.
Thanks again for your continued enthusiasm and support. We will do this!
The world of the one panel comics gag shares a lot in common with the world of stand-up comedy. Either the joke works or it doesn’t. There isn’t much room for debate. Well, maybe. But, in general, you know what I mean. It needs to make an impact pretty quickly. Welcome to Wrong Hands, the world of John Atkinson, where jokes make impacts.
Life and art are a process. You learn by doing. And you often get your best ideas when you least expect them, when you don’t seem to be doing anything more than preparing to fall asleep. That’s when John relies on his pad and pencil near his nightstand. He’ll come up with an idea and jot it down. The next morning, he’ll either gasp in disgust or be pleased by a promising new joke.
But will his audience be as receptive to this new joke as he is? Sometimes, in those solidarity moments of word play and free assocaiton, a connection will be made that is so strong that it is emboldens the cartoonist to take a stand. He’ll deliver the joke, no matter the consequences.
It becomes a matter of honor. A person will stick their neck out, all for the sake of a joke. It’s the principle of the thing: a joke for the sake of a joke. The fight is on, if needed, against all who can’t take a joke, who would rather analyze and dissect it. Everyone is entitled to their opinon but the cartoonist is there to believe in his, or her, work.
And so it goes with Mr. Atkinson’s hand in the game. In his case, it’s the “wrong hands.”