Sunday, 24 January 2010

366: Bobby London - Merton meets Yiddie Yippie

“Merton meets Yiddie Yippie” by Bobby London
in "Left Field Funnies" 1972

“Merton of the Movement” was London’s comic parody of hippy commune life and radical politics. These are the first few pages from a much longer story. For a change, and unlike most cartoons of this type by others, London recognises that there is a “Gay Lib”. However, his Gay Libber is a bearded man in a dress with a flower in his hair and elegant eyelashes who calls himself “Tiger Lily”. Now a few people did go to early Gay Lib marches in drag, but I don’t think London is drawing upon those instances. It’s just funny to draw a homosexual as somebody who wears women’s clothes, and so unfortunately it’s not much of a strain or particularly enlightened on London’s part. Then again, how many cartoons have you seen with a bisexual orgy? The musical notes thing when gay men speak gets old very fast, as far as I’m concerned. The near-blowjob with the venal Fidel is comically achieved without descending into homophobic abuse.

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