Comic anatomy

When I say it's a recent find, I mean that I spotted this Jan. 1983 issue of Mad Magazine in a nearby antique shop two months ago...and just got around to buying it two days ago. E.T. is great and all, but it was something inside—oooh, here's some cheesy foreshadowing for you—that really got under my skin. I regretted not having nabbed it the first time around. Thankfully there were no other goofballs wanting this thing worse than I did; two months and $8 later, and it's mine to enjoy and share with you.

Okay, so let me introduce the bit I was drawn to. Note: one man got credit for the idea. HELL YEAH, IDEA CREDIT! (The idea is what I love enough to archive.)

Mad_Mag_Comic_Anatomy_1983.jpg

The image above is worth clicking to enlarge. While the worded execution isn't consistently clever, I do think it's fun as hell. 

Mad_Mag_Orphan_Annie_1983_Detail.jpg

My personal favorite subject of the bunch is Little Orphan Annie. There's just something about those blank eyes, and those tubes going straight to the brain that I'm obsessed with—both visually, and conceptually.

After I shared the Mad spread with a buddy of mine, he sent me a screen shot of a Bart Simpson skull print that coincidentally popped up in his Instagram feed the following morning. It got me to poking around for other artists who have explored the same silly idea. What are these cartoons made of? Are they human, part-human, super-human—do they actually have hair, or is it just the shape of their skull? We can only keep imagining, and reimagining.

Brian Ewing

Brian Ewing Bart Simpson [Halloween], via brianewing.com

Brian Ewing Bart Simpson [Halloween], via brianewing.com

It's Goofy! Ridicularis by Hyungkoo Lee, 2008, image via hyungkoolee.kr

It's Goofy! Ridicularis by Hyungkoo Lee, 2008, image via hyungkoolee.kr

My Little Pony dissection by Jason Freeny, image via plumsauceproductuins.com

My Little Pony dissection by Jason Freeny, image via plumsauceproductuins.com

Character Studies by Michael Paulus, via michaelpaulus.com

Character Studies by Michael Paulus, via michaelpaulus.com

Got any more examples of artists who have, or are currently working with this concept? I've barely scratched the surface, so please share!