Wednesday, June 25, 2014


Here is a full-page, full-color gag cartoon done for PLAYBOY magazine.  It was turned in sometime in 2013  -- but apparently never ran.  

Here's how it came about: I'd done a couple of dozen illustrations for Playboy in the past, but never a gag cartoon - which is a whole different department.  Then sometime in 2013 I was contacted by a young cartoonist/editor who I knew only slightly.  He had been hired by Playboy to edit the cartoon section for a new Playboy publication, to be called Playboy Quarterly.  

I submitted an idea and sketches.  There were several levels of approval all the gags had to go through.  One idea got accepted (this one).  I turned in the completed art, got paid about thirty days later -- and that was that.  

Apparently Playboy Quarterly Magazine never happened.  The cartoonist/editor had gone on to other things, but he gave me the name of a managing editor at Playboy if I wanted to ask about it.  So I wrote to her and was told the cartoon would now appear as part of the May 2014 issue.  When that date rolled around, the gag wasn't in there - although for some reason, they sent me a comp copy anyway.  The managing editor I wrote to has since moved on, too, so I don't know exactly what happened.  Maybe somebody hated it and nixed it, or maybe they had to bump it for space reasons and will still run it one day.  Or maybe it ended up in one of their many international editions... Who knows?  You don't want to be a pest, asking about stuff like this when they are working months ahead and this is ancient history to them.  But thanks to the internet, I can at least show the thing off.

PS - this version is lettered by me, but they would have used their standard typeface.  Also - I gave them two versions of the final art:  one with pubic hair and one without, just to give them a choice!

(Side note:  According to the editor, I was one of only a few of the cartoonists asked to submit ideas whose submissions were "sex positive".  That is, according to him, most of the submissions by younger cartoonists were more in line with the kind of scatological, angry, "gross-out," excretion-happy humor more typical of today, or focused on the adversarial relationship between men and women.  My somewhat sweet oral sex joke seems pretty quaint in comparison, I guess.)