"The Far Side" once caused a bit of a stir with a now-classic Jane Goodall cartoon; another well-received gag was its Thagomizer cartoon. Gary Larson's single-panel cartoon is generally known for its surreal humor displayed using humans, animals and supernatural beings.Continue Reading
The Jane Goodall cartoon showed a female ape grooming a male ape and noticing a foreign hair on the male ape's back. The female ape's response appears in the comic's caption, where she accuses the male ape of spending too much time with "that Jane Goodall tramp," alluding to the researcher's fame for living among chimpanzees. Jane Goodall went on record to say she enjoyed the cartoon's humor.
The Thagomizer cartoon shows a caveman teaching a class of fellow cavemen. The teacher is pointing to a dinosaur's spiky tail and refers to it as a "thagomizer," explaining that it is named after "the late Thag Simmons." In popular culture, a Stegosaurus' tail is often informally referred to as a "thagomizer."
Other "Far Side" comics use supernatural settings to make a joke. One strip contrasted the commonly depicted scenario of harps in heaven with accordions in hell. Another strip showed God at a computer watching a piano dangling over an unsuspecting person, with God's finger hovering over the "Smite" key on his keyboard.Learn more about Art & Literature