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This is one of the few cartoons that I just straight-up swiped from somebody else.
Well, sort of.
I love when women are having the I Won’t Take My Husband’s Name Because I Already Have My Own Name conversation & a dude pops in with “but you’ve already taken a MAN’S last name from your dad” and like how clever of you to notice that, yes, the patriarchy is literally everywhere.
I laughed at the tweet and, on an impulse, wrote her asking if I could swipe that for a cartoon. She kindly wrote back “yes,” and I sat down to lay it out and… Couldn’t figure out how it worked as a cartoon. So much of what makes it funny in Anne’s tweet is her sweetly snarky narration, and how does that translate into one of my cartoons, nearly all of which are dialog-based and have no narration?
So into the “I don’t know how to make this cartoon work” folder it went. And nearly two years later I thought of doing it with the characters in earnest; the feminist character earnestly having a realization (or at least, pretending to be earnest), and the anti-feminist character earnestly regretting pushing her into that realization?
That’s very different from Anne’s original tweet, but (at least for my tastes) it makes the cartoon funny. So here we are. I hope Anne likes it when she sees it!
This was fun to draw. I had fun with the characters, and the tiny screens, and figuring out how few colors I could use and still get the look I wanted.
The most fun part, though, was completely gratuitous.
I decided early on to give the feminist character an unnatural hair color, because it would enhance character recognition between the tiny character on the phone screen in panel one, and the character in panel 3, drawn much larger and at a different angle. (The striped orange sleeves on the male character serve the same purpose.)
Somewhere along the line, I thought “well, if she has pink hair, she’d probably have tattoos as well.” And then when I actually sat down to draw it, I had so much fun drawing tattoos that I took way longer than I should have and ended up covering her entire left arm. Her tattoo shows some made-up characters, Jack from Nightmare Before Christmas (Jacks’ partner Sally is on the other arm), and NoFace from Spirited Away (which is one of my favorite movies).
TRANSCRIPT OF CARTOON
This cartoon has three panels.
A hand is holding out a smartphone; on the smartphone, we can see a split-screen showing two people, apparently having a Zoom or Skype call. One of the people is a slightly chubby woman with dyed pink hair; the other is a man wearing a striped shirt and glasses; he has a beard and mustache, and is either naturally bald or (more likely, since he’s doesn’t look very old) has shaved his head.
On the screen, we can see the man is reaching one arm out, towards the camera; presumably, he’s the person holding up the smartphone.
WOMAN: I mean, why would I take my husband’s name? I’ve already got my own name!
MAN: Ha! Feminists are so stupid!
A shot of the man inside a nice-looking home – there’s an arched doorway behind him, and through the doorway we can see part of a tidy kitchen – as he talk/laughs at the phone he’s holding up. The woman’s voice is coming from the phone.
WOMAN: Excuse me?
MAN: Newsflash, sweetie: “Your” name came from your father, and he’s a man!
A shot of the woman, inside her home. Behind her is a window, and through the window we can see a hillside with a couple of trees. On a table next to her is an open laptop, with the man on the screen, and a coffee mug. She has slapped a palm to the side of her forehead, as if having a revelation, and is looking up instead of looking at the screen. On the screen, we can see his face looking a little bit panicked as he tries to walk it back.
WOMAN: I see your point! The patriarchy is literally everywhere! You’re right! I have to get more radical!
MAN: Er… No, that’s not what I…