Friday, September 26, 2008
Tickle My Elmo
This assignment asked us to imagine what the characters from Sesame Street would be doing if the show got cancelled after it's first season. I immediately set to work thinking up all of the humorous situations that washed up actors might get involved in, like Grover selling products in Japanese TV commercials, or Bert and Ernie starring in Quentin Tarantino films. This final piece actually started from a sketch I drew for fun, with no intention of actually using it. Porn and drugs were such obvious comic gold mines, that I first thought I should come up with something a little more clever. When the teacher laughed and said he liked the concept, however, I knew which one I had to go with. Elmo as a porn star was simply too much fun to draw.
Does the clever still come through? Or did crude win out? I like to think it accomplishes both. A fellow classmate suggested I show a bulge in Elmo's leather pants, and in my disagreement, I realized precisely why I liked the concept so much. The humor doesn't just come from the shock value, but from the absurd juxtaposition of a non-sexual icon against a sexual situation. Of course, it is also a tale of broken dreams and the loss of innocence, both of which make for great comedy. Maybe it's all just about the funny faces. Everyone likes a funny face.
High art or not, "Sodomy Street" makes me giggle like a schoolgirl every time.