Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Did a GEICO Commercial Borrow from a New Yorker Cartoon?

Four months ago, cartoonist Rich Sparks made an auspicious debut in the New Yorker. The idea for this gag is unusually strong because you have to work backwards a bit to figure out what precedes the straightforward caption of "Yes?" This extra step makes the joke all the more rewarding when you get it. You do get it, right?


Can it be mere coincidence that the new GEICO television commercial bears a striking resemblance to the setting of this brilliant cartoon? I leave that question to the discerning reader.

"It's Not Surprising"
GEICO TV Commercial
Published on YouTube July 27, 2016

Here, have another look:
Rich Sparks, "Yes?"
The New Yorker, April 11, 2016, page 58


Note:  If, after all this, you really, really, really don't get this cartoon, you can read the explanation I offered to someone on Twitter here.

This is the first appearance of Rich Sparks on this blog. I eagerly await the appearance of more of his work in the pages of the New Yorker, while I'm sure he eagerly awaits his royalty check from GEICO.

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