Thursday, 15 November 2007

2 - Willie Rushton

by Willie Rushton in 'Private Eye", 24 June 1966

This is possibly the most reprinted cartoon in 'Private Eye'. Or at least in all of the 'Private Eye' reprints, anthologies, retrospectives and godonlyknows. Editor Richard Ingrams was rightly impressed by the cadences of the caption.

Its only competitor for ubiquity and frequency is Gerald Scarfe's caricature of the Prime Minister Harold Macmillan as Christine Keeler which makes it into many of the textbooks and anthologies of 20th century caricature and also 60s icons.

I quite like this one. Its two saggy flabby walruses in bed make for a change from twinkle-eyed bitchy effeminate theatricals, and seems a fairly good reminder of what we will all come to in the end. And isn’t that what we all look for in a cartoon – that irrefutable confirmation of time’s despoliation of the flesh’s fleeting charms.

It's not mocking, and it's an interesting twist on what was then a catchphrase of the times.

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