Retards on the internet.

This thread really pissed me off. For those of you lazy buggers who won’t click the link, its a forum thread dedicated to dissing Jeremy Nell’s work, even going as far as comparing him to (yuck!) Zapiro and accusing Jeremy of being a wannabe.

First off, I would have replied to that thread had the forum actually allowed me to, but after registering and then having to request a resend of the confirmation email, I was booted out each time I clicked the reply to thread button [yo, dudes, you should probably fix that- it sucks quite a bit] which obviously lead me to thinking ‘fuck it’ and then, ranting in my own blog.

Look, I get that Jeremy is my number one fan I’m Jeremy’s number one fan (well, I probably take turns of sharing it with his girlfriend Janel, but I’m the Chief Pom-pomerer , I’m sure she gets that) so this might sound a bit biased, but here’s my point of view:

Click to enlarge:

Obamarama: Zapiro's version

Obamarama: Zapiro's version.

Obamarama:  Jeremy's version.

Obamarama: Jeremy's version.

Right, so Jeremy apparently copied Zapiro since the latter cartoonist published on a Sunday and Jeremy on a Monday.  I have an issue with this for the following reasons:

  1. Those twits completely missed the point:  Zapiro portrays shoes being chucked at the podium while, to me, Jeremy is pointing out that Bush’s shoes aren’t really that big to fill in the first place.  Look at the size of Obama’s feet man!  And his look of incredulance at the size of Bush’s tiny, tiny shoes.  He doesn’t reference that shoe throwing incident at all.
  2. Obama is big news right now.  At this very moment I am watching (mostly with glazed-over eyes) his inauguration on TV.  The whole world is talking about him and of course with that, comes the topic of Bush and also, maybe, shoes.  So if Jeremy (shock, horror, gasp!) made a reference to shoes, because “oh dear, look, there was a shoe reference in The Sunday Times!” naturally this means he’s trying to be Zapiro?  Yawn.
  3. Never once have I ever heard, read or seen Jeremy Nell refer to himself as a political cartoonist.  If anything he’s an anti-cartoonist.  Controversial and in your face. He’s not trying to be anyone but himself which is what irks people, I think.
  4. Just for the record, Jeremy did do his own cartoon about the Bush shoe throwing incident, over a month ago.
  5. And also, I don’t know if you’d noticed, but big news items happen to be repeated, rewritten and in this case, redrawn over and over again with each different person’s perspective.  Especially in cartoonism – most cartoonists think alike from what I can see.
  6. “Oh but he’s just young”, they say.  And your point?  I think its fabulous that in less than three years this “young” cartoonist has made such a mark.  I think it is just AWESOME that Zapiro’s fans seem to think there’s someone out there of the same caliber, because he is.  Zapiro may not be my favourite but he’s certainly distinguished himself hasn’t he, and if Jeremy is right up there being nominated for the same awards, at the same functions and in the same interviews I can just cheer right along with the best of The Nell Fans and say to the ballie cartoonist, move over old man – your retirement is nigh!

Sadly, one of my readers is one of the main instigators.  I’ll have to catch him in private, tie him down and have my way with a word with him.  It’s absolutely fine to have a difference of opinion, in my opinion, as long as your opinion matches mine.  No seriously though, I think they went a bit overboard. But then again…


  1. Janel says:

    HaHa you look great with pom poms my friend 🙂

    Very well written argument!
    I agree with all your points

    The guys on that thread are making no sense.. its all just plain stupid if you ask me…
    Though one chick points out J’s easy on the eyes.
    now that statement I can agree with 😉

  2. Tyron says:

    They are a bunch of jealous retards! I don’t think Jeremy needs to prove himself to anyone, Zapiro is awesome, but I compare Jeremy more to Tom Toles or Mr Fish.

    Being compared to your peers is natural. When people compare Jeremy to Zapiro it just tells me that they obviously don’t know any other cartoonists, Zapiro’s old work was heavily influenced by Derek Bauer, who was influenced by Ralph Steadman etc… It’s also interesting to note that Zapiro was trained by the great Art Spiegelman in New York, that’s a heck of a formal education in the art, Jeremy is mostly self taught, I’d imagine, which is very impressive considering his growth in such a tough industry, he’s a natural. The concepts of the two cartoons are totally different, bunch of idiots!

  3. Craig says:

    Hey, I know Jeremy and he is just happy to get guys talking. The oke won’t be worrying about this little thing in the least… unless they start with the whole death threats thing again.

    Not cool.

    Zapiro: Awesome. An institution and probably the finest political cartoonist that we have ever produced.

    Jeremy: Going to reach that level pretty soon (especially now that he’s properly ditched the Urban Trash shadow that was following him around…)

  4. 6000 says:

    I see Nell’s work every day and I’m yet to find one of his cartoons insightful or amusing. That’s nothing personal against the guy – we crossed swords long ago, before I even knew he did cartoons, anyway. Just that I don’t find his work appealing, interesting, thoughtful etc. He panders to the masses, picking up the scraps from Zapiro’s feet.
    I think The Times could do better.

    And whereas Zapiro divides the nation with his work (although I’m not a huge fan of him either), all I see in The Times is Bob from Rondebosch on the letters page remarking about Nell missing the point AGAIN.

    His recent one on the Gaza conflict was a particularly good example of the standard of his work.

    Anyway Sheebs – you almost got it right: “It’s absolutely fine to have a difference of opinion, in my opinion, as long as your opinion matches mine.

    6k. x

  5. Demented Retard says:

    I don’t think its a entire forum dedicated to abusing Jerm its more like a thread… and erroneous thread that got sidetracked.

    Some people like his stuff… some don’t… its allowed 🙂

    IMHO not looking at criticism is a bit retarded.

    BTW… how did you find the thread ? Do you google Jeremy Nell all day ?

  6. Shebee says:

    6k there is nothing wrong with critism, i just feel that you guys got personal about him unnecessarily. So I officially disagree with you.

    Dementia dude – a reader of mine tipped me off about the thread via email, knowing I’m a big fan of Jeremy’s work.

  7. Shebee says:

    For the record, I wanted to comment on the thread, you guys have actually got a few interesting ones going on, but each time I log in I get told I don’t have permission to read the posts.

    After the seventh time (last one being two minutes ago) I gave up. I have a few more points you guys could consider.

  8. 6000 says:

    Hmm – getting personal is a problem? Slightly hypocritical after calling everyone on the forum “a retard”, Sheebs. 😮

    Meh – as I said – I just don’t like the guy’s work. I’m sure he gets a lot of that, not just from me. I’m equally sure he’ll get over it.
    It would be a very boring world if everyone just liked the same stuff. Unless they liked the same stuff as me, obviously. Then it would be a really cool world full of football, top class cellphones, blonde chicks and beer.

  9. Demented Retard says:

    We are going through a transitional period at the moment… forum changes etc. DONT GIVE UP ON US JUST YET !

    I’m sure it will get sorted out soon.

  10. Nash says:

    besides sharing common characters (which I must say are illustrated in much the same way – one for the retards) they are completely different.

    besides that, I would bet a hefty sum that somewhere else in the world a cartoonist has done exactly the same thing. I would imaging Obama taking over from an incompetent Bush is a largely used theme at the moment.

    We have two great talents here, top draw, internationally. just enjoy their shit and have a laugh.

  11. AntiThesis says:

    Hey Shebee,

    Sorry about the forum problems – we’re working on it now with some hope. Please hit me up via mail and I’ll see if I can figure out a way for you to actually log in.

    Nicely written bit by the way.

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