Sunday, November 29, 2009

A Guide to Internet Snowboard Cartoons

Skiing has brought the world a number of dubious trends over the years. In the 80s and 90s one of those trends was the appearance of a plague of ski-related cartoons. Things got so bad that, for a time, anyone vaguely aware of the sport was exposed to an array of them, through unwanted Christmas presents, Fat Face/White Stuff t-shirts worn by posh ski punters and seeing them decorating the walls of almost every resort toilet.
Like this one for example, usually seen accompanied by some sort of 'on the piste' joke
Over time snowboarding has taken on some of the trends of skiing but fortunately the pandemic of the snowboarding cartoon has not reached us. Wanting to understand how we avoided this danger I have run a test of the snowboard cartoons available in the internet to understand why it hasn’t caught on.

Wikipedia has this description of the types of cartoons you can find... 
A gag cartoon (aka panel cartoon or gag panel) is most often a single-panel cartoon, usually including a hand-lettered or typeset caption beneath the drawing. As the name implies - "gag" being a show business term for a comedic idea - these cartoons are most often intended to provoke laughter.

So they are intended to provoke laughter. Using a scientific scale of yes or no, we will find out if they do that.

Let's start with some classics
A incite into the pricing of snowboards, but like all accountancy jokes it doesn't really result in hilarity.
Scientific Funny Rating: NO
You can buy this from Cartoon Stock if you like, for about $20 a pop. According to their site, 'Cartoon Stock is a searchable database of over 150,000 gag cartoons, political cartoons, cartoon pictures, illustrations and animations by over 400 of the world's best cartoonists.' Here are some more cartoons from the 400 best cartoonists in the world:
An old guy with an outrigger, comedy gold. Can someone who clearly hasn't ever seen a snowboard draw a funny snowboarding cartoon?
Scientific Funny Rating: NO

Even the guy in the cartoon doesn't find this funny.
Scientific Funny Rating: NO

Are we being asked to laugh at a potentially life threatening imminent crash?
Scientific Funny Rating: NO

Same picture but with added colour and a different punch line. Is it any better?
Scientific Funny Rating: NO

Let's move on from those guys and see if the rest of the internet fares any better.

It's an encouraging start with the picture but they appear to have completely run out of inspiration for the punch line and instead have tried to make up for this by throwing in a complimentary paraplegic joke.
Scientific Funny Rating: NO

It's back to financial jokes. Maybe it's just not the correct economic climate for these. I imagine I would have laughed my ass off about a year ago.
Scientific Funny Rating: NO

Snowboarder catches an edge on the flattest expert trail I have ever heard of. Probably the best of a bad bunch so far, but is it funny enough?
Scientific Funny Rating: NO

Yet another snowboard crash with no visible punch line.
Scientific Funny Rating: NO

Same sexist bloke again with a slightly more amusing sequence however it is tempered due to his second use of the same 'if she can do it, so can I' joke.  
Scientific Funny Rating: NO

This one that has an important message for us all, and yet also a message that is not really what most people would call humorous.
Scientific Funny Rating: NO

Then the Germans get involved. Before we even start I can confidently guess these are not going to buck the trend we're seeing so far.
Translation: "snowboard?" "nah, walking cast!"
Scientific Funny Rating: NEIN
Translation: Richie must have only patience sometime became the winter to probably still come (or something along those lines)
Is this some sort of global warming joke? At least it is nicely coloured in.
Scientific Funny Rating: NO 
And lastly the one that gets closest to the mark.
However Justin's inappropriate erection really spoils it.
Scientific Funny Rating: KINDA

So after all that we find that only 1 of the 14 examples or 7.14% of snowboarding cartoons are even remotely mirth inducing. I think we are quite safe that this type of japery isn't going to kick off any time soon.

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