Thursday, October 14, 2010

Most Beautifuls Of All

To become rich and famous, you need good looks, taste, fashion sense, style and/or talent...right?

Do your clothes need to fit?
Standards may have changed in the last half century.
Here is who we look up to today. Are they more interesting than your neighbors?
Alfred E. Neuman grew up.

I'm including crappy drawings to show that some people are so ugly that it's hard to make them weirder looking than God already made them.

This guy looks like a Segar character - except without the charm.

If you were rich, would you dress like the homeless Vietnam vet that waits on the freeway exits?
If this isn't the fault of the hippies, then what is your theory of how standards changed?


bill said...

Yes, Hippies did this to style, but there was a mysterious burst of radiation that fried everyone who had been listening to the first pressing of "Sunshine of Your Love" in 1967.
Yes that is the reason.

Rooniman said...

With those hacks, you don't need talent, style, taste, or fashion to be famous, you just go to TV exceutive, say you want to be a star and BAM!!!, your an instant celebritiy.

I would say the hippies had a part in the decline of America, with other causes being in on it too.

Also, I do not look up to those guys. If I did, I'd swear something was wrong with me.

Luis María Benítez said...

Who's that woman with the goiter?

Damiano D said...

It's the result of varying elements. I think society has just become dumber and thus associated with this crap faster. It's the fault of both the media conglomerates and audience. I think the best example of this the difference between movies then and movies now. The dazzlingly set-ups, fast dialogue,great delivery; all of this rolling into one another. Audiences loved it. For some reason people were more willing to take a chance. Now, mostly you have a half-baked idea that seems like a safe bet and studios gamble on that to make their buck back because they don't want to lose their money. The audiences rarely have control over these matters collectively so the poor saps will eat anything up! Which then leads everyone to saying "Well it wasn't as bad as etc". Which is a terrible way to go about life and forces nobody to do anything.

Even then, when studios have the guts to release something of worth and it becomes a success, instead of taking the confidence to trust their instincts and go on another project, they just produced countless sequel or rip-offs. So with so much repetition the audience doesn't know any better.

Everyone is at fault. The Media companies for not gaul for taking risk, the audiences for accepting whatever is thrown at them. Seems like laziness is inherit in everyone.

Kudos mankind.

Luis María Benítez said...

I can't help feeling I have to fix those slacks of some of the big shots from Hollywood. Also, I find interesting that the media and the fans of these freaks claim these fellas are excentric. When you're very rich and dress like a derelict clown you're excentric. But when you are poor and dress like that then you're ridiculous.

HemlockMan said...

The western world is in decline and China is waiting to pick up the pieces.

Hey. Maybe they'll hire American and Canadian animators to make cartoons for them.

Zoran Taylor said...

The real question is how standards were ever high in the first place. Worshipping one's fellow idiots for making one's own idiocy seem less shameful is as old as time, older than any concept of quality or respectability we still have. The age of genuine, class-act mega-celebrities was barely a blip on the radar screen of eternity. The good news is that we will always have SOME of these people (I hope). But gone are the days when that was the norm.
In fact, it may never have been the case. Almost everyone who was ever famous went to their grave with some blood on their hands, and all the cool, nicely lit photos in the world can't change that.

It may seem obvious, but I'm going to say it anyway - ARTISTS and celebrities are not the same. Rarely do the two groups intersect in particularly meaningful ways. The former tend to be more important.

Oh, and name a hippie that intentionally gave syphilis to a bunch of Guatemalan inmates. Okay, David Crosby may have done it/anything else, who the hell knows. Sorry, I'm just gonna back right out of that one if you don't mind......

Nazario said...

Someone was watching South Park last night.

Hayden Currie said...

Too much steroids in the gene pool?

ardy said...

I stood up and applauded at my computer screen.

eric said...

I personally think its partly to do with our school systems, as crazy as that seems. At least with music, a lack of music education and little exposure to good examples of music has had a horrible effect on Americans' musical knowledge. I'm 25 and I know a lot of people who like that awful show, and they are far from hippies. Hippies may be in control of some networks, but its my stupid peers that watch it and allow it to become popular. Maybe they like it because they're on the same mental level? I didn't live through what you did, so I could be wrong. I was just born into this crap. Many times when I'm hanging out with my friends and they're all talking about stupid modern entertainment, I just feel like I'm from another planet or something. How can they not see the awfulness?

jeffreyJack said...

I believe the answer is obvious. Extrapolating on JohnK's own research into the Lummox theory of evolution, everything is right on schedule.

And don't be so quick to blame the Hippies... They themselves evolved from smelly beatniks, on whom we can blame Starbucks.

JohnK said...

Beatnicks were sort of practice hippies but were a fringe. They still has a bit of style and appeal though.

It was the hippies that popularized the idea of being completely slovenly and without discipline.

They ushered in the idea that everyone is creative too.

Dan said...

Haha, I'm glad I have no idea who these people are!

Please go back to drawing fun things again soon.

thomas said...

speaking of beats; looks like you're doing drawings of Mugwumps

jeffreyJack said...

Agreed they had style. And today's hipster hats owe them a solid.

And here's a cool hippie fact... Scott McKenzie, the guy who wrote "If You're Going to San Francisco Be Sure to Wear Some Flowers in Your Hair"... his real name was Philip Blondheim.

Mykal said...

John: I think Fame now is the endgame. That's more important that (obviously) talent or even money. Recently at the library where I work, there was a program for young adults. Our young adult librarian asked one girl what she was planning to do for a career. "A superstar!" she said, sticking her jaw out in a smile. I'd say she has a decent chance, looking at these poor fools.

Anonymous said...

Americanized fashions were popularized with the creation of the middle class... before that, you had standard 'uniforms' for working class people, but at least the clothes were durably made with hemp.

During the heyday of the middle class, American businesses slowly snuck out of the country and into the slave labor market in order to become more competitive.

Now that the middle class is disappearing in America, we're seeing high-end labels impersonate impoverished people's clothes. Many artists have a guilt complex about their success, which may explain the subconscious tribute.

Anonymous said...

In a nutshell, yes, hippies. We have reached a point in our cultural development where the MOST IMPORTANT thing is to be CREATIVE. Above all else. If you're not creative, you are of no cultural consequence.

We are taught, along with creativity, that our OPINION matters. That simply having an opinion is reason to express it through our CREATIVITY.

Joseph Beuys' statement that 'everyone is an artist' has been magnificently exploited to the extent that our collective cultural output is represented by our uninformed, pedestrian & stagnant, middle class existence.

Apparently Michaelangelo said of Titian that he would be a great artist if only he could draw. Think standards will ever be that high again? :P

Esun said...

The drawing with the woman with the bag is hilarious!
Why cant you have your own cartoon show...

Martin Juneau said...

Canada in the french territory is a much scary example of de-evolution of society overall. I grow up in the worst generation ever and i see some who will never be adults in society one day. Totally uniformed, most of retards douchebags, with ugly faces that no womens wants to date with them, have always their BS clothing style and talk french like crap.

The school system of our time and today have killed the taste of the next generation to performed in school and we have know more uniformed peoples without diplomas, having cars accidents in a month and who have money problems. BTW, BS where i live, it's means Bien-etre social.

Anonymous said...

I don't blame the hippies, I blame the capitalists. Popular culture, wether movies, tv, cartoons, etc, is a commercial medium. It gets produced because someone with money thinks it's worth his investment because the product has enough appeal to get enough people to sit there for the commercials. That's it. Now, every capitalist wants to get the most return for the least investment, right? In the old days, everyone assumed you needed fantastically talented people to get people to pay to see your movie, watch your tv show, or whatever...BUT...since that time they've been steadily whittling away at the amount they want to invest in the quality of the product. Someone had the revelation that you don't have to pay for the handful of people on the planet who can act and look good on screen! You can just put a camera on any old slob and people will still watch it! Oftentimes, you don't even have to PAY the slobs! They'll do it just to be on tv! And, you don't have to pay talented artists to create beautiful, entertaining animation! Kids will watch any brightly colored, slightly moving objects on the screen, and be mesmerized enough to sit there for the commercials. Honestly, I think this is the situation.It's just a matter of constantly pushing the boundaries of "how little can we invest in the quality of the product and still make a profit."

Isaak said...

Mr. Kricfalusi

If you want to enter a field in which information learned is not forgotten today, enter the exciting field of science. Unlike animation, the mainstream keeps the accepted wisdom unless experiments show it to be incorrect. Do you have any scientist friends?

Craig said...

Let's face it, John. You're just upset because you missed out on the free-love :-)

kurtwil said...

It's fun to see varied and unusual characters - I don't know any of them as I don't watch TV any more.

Hippies may have started "sloppy dress", but seems like the rappers are keeping that trend alive. They must work hard, though, to keep that "sloppy look".

The FX, animation and computer industries don't emphasize dress much....t-shirts and worn jeans are the norm (I'm casual business dress there). Then again, we're more focused on our work rather than on dress-up.

Still, one old world employer years ago forced me to wear suit and tie to my mechanical drafting board job - no fun as office was poorly air conditioned. Reminds me of the MMTNA employee who also wore suit and tie to work - do any animators do this any more?

talkingtj said...

narcissism-the great american narcissism-its everywhere in american culture.our politics, our art, our sense of entitlement is killing us off and causing a great divide.yeah, it started with the hipies, the baby boomers, but now its just a monster out of control.we are a nation of narcissist.

The Butcher said...

@ Isak

I like your comment. As bad as entertainment has gotten, our quality of life is better than it's ever been thanks to science and the advancement of technology.

J C Roberts said...

This spiral was started off in the original hippie era or "do what you feel" that kicked in while popular culture shifted to more youth-based (while being an adult was supposed to be out of touch and corny). MTV abandoning music and spending all their time on these reality shows based around groups of young dopes trying to set themselves apart with "the latest style" Same cycle over and over, but we've used up all the reasonable looks so now it's always goofy haircuts, giant pants and combinations of rags and bling.

Unless we come full circle and teens start wearing bowler hats or powdered wigs because they've used up even the wildest "new" ideas. The culture isn't giving them much to aspire to grow into, just what to slack around in while they're still young and dopey.

When Fred Flintstone impersonated some teel idol and played their "bug music", the jokes were still from the adult perspective of "these kids today". But somewhere between that and the Scooby Doo/Josie and the Pussycats era the focus shifted to celebrating the youth movement instead of spoofing it.

We would have gotten away with it if it weren't for those meddling kids...

Marcelo Sena said...

Thumbs up for you Beebo

Anonymous said...

It makes me sick seeing the great Cary Grant with any of these hacks. I didn't even know you were a big fan of him as well. He's one of my all-time favorite actors, especially for his versatility and manly appeal.

"It was the hippies that popularized the idea of being completely slovenly and without discipline.

They ushered in the idea that everyone is creative too."

I hope you write an in-depth post on how the hippies introduced any of these crackpot ideas. There must have been other factors on why standards have changed so much.

coolhand said...

rap music did it. or at least thats why the clothes dont fit right anymore

Jeffrey said...

I agree with the fingers pointed at the hippies, but also the fingers pointed at the "capitalists". A perfect example is when I was listening to Marc Maron's podcast (where he interviews comedians), and his guest Paul Provenza told two stories about working for network sitcoms.

First, he was an actor tired of the hackneyed TV dialog, so he finally asked if he could insert just one joke in to the show. He was told, "We're not here to be funny." Another time when actresses were auditioning for a show he was involved with, he saw a producer write a note saying regarding one candidate saying "I wouldn't f*** her." These are the people delivering art to America. Not the artists, but the producers and money people. They don't care about the content. They just want to distract people to make them hang around long enough to watch the commercials.

Isaak said...

Thank you

We have had our share of "conservatism" but I don't think anytime in the 20th century we have reverted to an inferior model unless under a dictatorship like Nazi Germany.

Let us take molecular biology as an example. No one who wants to be taken seriously would say that examining the origin of life is so subjective factors like "Watson-Crick Base Pairing" doesn't need to be considered. Also, in the lab, one has to consider what one's predecessors have done previously so the "wheel isn't reinvented" or that patently useless work is done.

Maybe, John K, you need to approach some artistic scientists. They would appreciate the reality you have to consider what was previously done and not abandon them without reason.

wade said...

All these "Beautiful" drawings need to be published in a book. I love them and want a nice book version to hold in my hands! :)

Sven Hoek said...

This is what happens when hippies grow up to be capitalists. They get money and power but bring along all their stupid ideas and make them seem legitimate.

the hippies grew up, took the wheel of the country and steered right into a ditch.

Good job idiots. Thats what drugs and free love will get you. These people are like cockroaches, you cant get rid of them.

Now that you hippies have ruined everything for everyone, would you all be so kind as to die already. Thanks.

Ebbe said...

Hippies have nothing to do with this, jesus christ. If hippies did this at least the music would be good. This is just the result of short term result focused capitalism.

Dubious Duck said...

I wouldn't think that hippies would be the cause of the newer celebrities being so ugly. That seems to be genetics. What I may believe is that hippies lowered standards to the point that any of these people could make it far in life.

On the other hand there is certain qualities to drawing ugly people, think Basil Wolverton.

Elana Pritchard said...

Hippies may have started it, but corporations figured out how to make money off of it, and that is when we were all truly f*cked.

pappy d said...

You're really right on this one, John!

Looking "street" started with the hippies but it didn't end there. Disco was a reaction to this look. Started by narcissistic gays to shift attention from the bandstand to the dance floor, it was even cheaper than the live bands of the hippie era. The beautiful people who danced there were now the headliners. They adopted Thoreau's "Everybody is a star" from collegiate hippies. Blacks soon followed. They never found bohemianism all that different from regular poverty (& rightly or wrongly) were perceived to be marvelous dancers. Secure in the knowledge that there are no black, gay men, Italian heterosexuals flooded in. Perched on their new stacked-heeled pimp shoes, traditional gold chains & flamboyant colorful fashions, they far outshone the females.

At last, douchebags were liberated, too!

Suddenly, everyone was wearing their clothing labels on the outside of their clothes. I laughed out loud when the pizza boy came to my door with a Pierre Cardin logo on his shirt.

Blacks began wearing immaculate designer athletic wear & shoes. It allowed them to run in the street without being pulled over & were much more comfortable. The logos got bigger & bigger.

As common people came to realise that true narcissism comes from within & deserving attention doesn't require dancing or singing, rap was born & the homosexual practice of hanging out at the gym & showing off your chest outside the gym became acceptable in popular culture. Advertisers hungered for this new cultural legitimacy & soon, above Times Square, Marky "Mark" Wahlberg lent the prestige of his chiseled form to designer underwear.

Today one's identity isn't narrowly defined by designer labels on one's clothes. You can drop other prestige brand names like "Cristal" or "Bentley" into a rap & if it gets enough play, they'll even pay you.

Martin Juneau said...

"Joseph Beuys' statement that 'everyone is an artist' has been magnificently exploited to the extent that our collective cultural output is represented by our uninformed, pedestrian & stagnant, middle class existence. "

It also give a solid headache to the taxpayers when a artistic stuff is financed by our hardly win money. Canada have now a poor state in art thanks to our Governments who make more matters to the culture than for the real society files like health and environment. And then, we may have a Fox News North Network in our cable in january 11 thanks to Stephen Harper and the group Quebecor.

Mattieshoe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mattieshoe said...

I could be wrong, but I thought Beatniks were a sort of logical antidote to the conservatism of the 50s, rather then an all-out rebellion against logical Western values like the hippies were.

Hell, I think the 60s started out quite promisingly. Music was evolving while staying purposeful, People were becoming less conservative, It was comparable to the 30s and 40s in terms of liberal progress.

Then it was all sabotaged by Yogi and George Harrison.

HopscotchWillie said...

John needs to make a show satirizing stuff like this.

bergsten said...

Glad you asked. It's all rather simple. And sadly, irreparable.

Basically, once we became a culture that demanded "growth" in all areas on a regular basis we were doomed -- because there is no such thing as infinite growth.

But we tried. More profit, less expense, cheaper, crappier.

More noise, less content. More divisive politics just to be heard.

Flashier ads (with less product-related content), more and more White, then grey, then outright lies. Shortcuts (are you keeping up with the great foreclosure fiasco?).

Everything outsourced. Not even a pretense of customer support.

Cheesier, prison-gang-style. Prison-style music.

Celebrity by outrageousness. Fame by DUI, then racial slur, then misdemeanor, then felony.

Don't think it was the hippies -- they were too busy screwing up our education system, which at this point only teaches diversity, teamwork, environmentalism, and marketing via kindergarten-level arts and crafts.

Any questions?

pappy d said...

The steady shittying of culture is the product of an steadily improving business plan. I'm sure bersten means well, but this idea of "economic cycles" & recession as a product of growth is pure Marxist theory. A thriving capitalist society requires constant & perpetual GROWTH!

We have conquered the fallacy that progress of culture means it goes higher & higher until there is no more room for growth. It's like the idealistic idiot boy shouting, "Excelsior!" as he climbs upward to his certain doom. We all know excellence is difficult at best, but the prospects for cultural expansion DOWNWARDS are unlimited! I predict Jackass 3D will be the most profitable movie of the year!

Archie said...

Frank Zappa has ideas about music i think that could be relevant to this debate

Sven Hoek said...


Find his interviews and pay attention, you might LEARN something.

Raff said...

It's not hippies, they at least wanted their art to be brave and meaningful.

Pop culture today has two purposes: First to present such an absurd, unhealthy ideal that it HAS to garner notoriety - and then to sell a piece of that notoriety to you so YOU TOO can attract attention to yourself.

Its second purpose is to eliminate the guilt you're normally supposed to have for being as stupid as you are. For a price, a piece of pop culture rewards your ignorance. It's a drug.

By consuming the products, you get to feed and indulge the worst aspects of yourself: your narcissism, your short temper and attention span, rebelliousness without purpose, etc.

A different package is prepared for guys and for girls. For guys, it's aggression - swear, hate people and break stuff. For girls, it's constant attention - I,I,me,me want-some-sex?-can't-have-it.

The problem is that artistic and intellectual standards have nothing to DO with this business model. They just get in the way.

Juxtaminute said...

Hippies? No sorry. Reality show formula comes from the suites uptop tryin to make a buck. It's not about art, talent or visual appeal. It's about divisive controversy. The theory here is that bad PR is good PR. If it makes old people cringe and young people "LOL" it sells like hotcakes.

This is the same thing that Fox News is doing with conservative politics. Liberals cringe, Conservatives cheer and Fox News gets all the ratings.

Juxtaminute said...

The internet also plays a big role in what has made the jersey shore kids popular. The younger generation spends hours not watching tv but watching Youtube videos. They willingly turn off their tv's to be entertained by ordinary people in messed up situations. Finding the funniest videos and sharing them with their friends is what the youth has grown accustom to. They like unkempt, ordinary, voyeuristic material that they can talk about with their friends and relate to(or disdain). They like the Hollywood stuff too but when everyone gets online laughing or complaining about the jersey shore they're generating tons of free advertising for it. The buzz gets people interested and they tune in.