Thank god for Rick Perry- Part 1
The first was done for THE NEW REPUBLIC, art directed by the very amiable Joe Heroun, and it focused on the three ring circus that Roger Ailes has been creating with FOX-TV while 'reporting' on the candidates race for Republican nominee. Rick Perry, a total blowhard and mean spirited fake from Texas, had just recently entered the race, the new Great White Hope. Considering the immediate swoon by the GOP Perry became the central focus in the sketching process and once establishing his grounding position amongst the other circus acts everything fell into place. It was a fun illustration to do. It was great to reconnect again with Newt Gingrich, who is also a wonderful subject to caricature. Having stood next to him at the Philly GOP Convention in 2000 I can attest that not only is he a larger than life person but his head is enormous.
Perry also played a role in another illustration for MOTHER JONES. Working with Carolyn Perot, art director, the story centered on the secret gathering of Republican muckety mucks in Colorado at the behest of the odious Koch Brothers, wealthier than God hisself, and wanting more. Jersey governor Chris Christie was there laying down his bonafides as well as other conservative insiders including, you guessed it, Governor Rick Perry. Somehow a reporter was able to sneak in and tape the forum. Now it's a sad thing that Christie is not running as well because, even excluding the weight factor, his mug is worth its weight in gold for caricatures. I've never seen Perry in a cowboy hat, though I found photos of him holding a six shooter high. He projects an attitude, when he's involved with what he's doing, as someone from Texas who should be wearing a cowboy hat all the time. He's not Ronald Reagan or George W. Bush. He's Stuart Whitman from the TV series, Cimarron Strip. And when he's on he's got that great swagger, that shoot first, don't even ask questions later style.
It seemed a no brainer to portray this get together/reciprocal back scratching event for the Koch Brothers as a scene from THE GODFATHER, only this time Don Corleone is a two headed power broker getting his hand kissed by the up and coming supplicants. I'm certain not many people know what the Koch brothers look like so in situations like this it seems important, even with the challenge of morphing them into a two-headed Marlon Brando, to make them somewhat recognizable.
The original sketch. The gods were with me this week because the first thoughts turned out to be the best and I just followed my intuition. I want to thank Joe and Christine Car for having the sense of humor to go with a Looney Tunes dismembering of a jackass as performed by Perry.
I think it's easy now to forget that Perry, when he first appeared on the campaign scene, seemed like the great white hope the Republicans were praying for. A real Democrat/Obama killer for 2012. Best hair and physique of the bunch. Left to right: Roger Ailes- chief propaganda overseer at FOX, Ron Paul as Houdini, Neil Cavuto, the Pillsbury Doughboy cheerleader for FOX, Bachmann hanging on the wire, Perry, afterthoughts Rick Santorum and Sarah Palin, Newt, and Mitt as a cowardly lion.
Jersey Guv Christie kissing the hands that will eventually feed him.
Adding cotton stuffed jowls to individuals most people haven't even seen and still keep the basic identity is not easy.
Real circus acts. Palin was smart enough to know that the money is made keeping oneself, relentlessly, in the public eye. It requires no real commitment to follow through on anything, but it helps with book sales, public speaking engagements and being a TV pundit. Gingrich has the same game plan. There's no real seriousness, just a marketing plan. Now Santorum on the other hand is so deluded and screwy that he is the true freak thinking he is a serious contender.
The diabolical but brilliant Roger Ailes mastermind behind the FOX News spin machine.