The Cover: Without heading to the Table Of Contents and reading the title for this cover I’m going to guess it’s a comment on city noise. I’ve always felt New Yorker covers should work stand alone, without explanation, or description. This was the practice until Tina Brown’s revamp of the magazine, beginning with the issue of October 5, 1992.
Okay, now to the Table of Contents and the cover’s title: “Noise New York.”
There’s a hint of Steinberg on the cover; the police car beams of flashing lights for instance. Below left, a detail from Steinberg’s March 13, 1978 New Yorker cover, and to the right, a detail from this week’s cover (by Richard McGuire).
If you want to read more about Mr. McGuire’s cover, go here.
Some random thoughts on some of the Cartoons & Cartoonists:
So yay! A lot of cartoonists. If we count the two teams (Sofia Warren & J.A.K., and Pia Guerra & Ian Boothby) as one cartoonist per drawing, there are twenty-one contributors.
There’s a newbie: Luke Kruger-Howard, who is the twenty-fourth new member of the magazine’s stable of cartoonists this year and the fiftieth newbie under Emma Allen’s editorship, begun in the Spring of 2017.
There are four bedroom cartoons in the issue: one by Victoria Roberts (page 46), one by the aforementioned Mr. Kruger-Howard (p. 23), one by Will McPhail (p. 36), and one by the aforementioned team of Guerra & Boothby (p. 70). Victoria Roberts’ three little pigs in bed drawing is both funny and touching. It’s become an instant favorite Roberts cartoon.
Paul Noth has a fine colorful cartoon on page 50. As mentioned here a number of times, it’s the cartoons that surprise that catch my attention (and often my affection). This is an out-of-left-field drawing that surprises. What more could one ask for.
P.C. Vey specializes in out-of-left-field drawings. His hikers (p. 54) don’t disappoint. I love everything about this drawing, especially the unseen co-hikers’ name (“the Jensons”). Someone ought to frame the original and hang it on a wall.
One can’t see Karl Stevens “Casablanca” drawing (p.39) without recalling others. A quick search on the magazine’s Cartoon Bank turned up five (it’s possible there are more):
Bob Eckstein’s from November 30, 2015
This classic from Sam Gross, published February 11, 2008
A duo effort by Emily Flake & Rob Kutner, published October 16, 2017
One by the late great Al Ross, published February 2, 1987.
And this fun one by Julia Suits, published October 30, 2017.
High on my favorite things to draw are dogs and clouds. It’s only natural then that I’d be partial to a drawing that combines both, such as Amy Hwang’s cartoon on page 31 (her poodles are ever-so-slightly Gahan Wilsonesque).
I can’t see a cloud-based New Yorker drawing — heck, I can’t see clouds — without thinking of Charles Addams’ classic cover of May 19, 1975.
Lastly, I appreciate the challenge presented by aerial view drawings such as Sofia Warren & J.A.K’s joint effort on page 28. The last one I recall seeing was this one by David Borchart, published February 22, 2016. Then there is this spectacular dizzying cover from Adolph Kronengold, published September 22, 1928.
The Rea Irvin Talk Masthead Watch
Sadly, Mr. Irvin’s iconic Talk masthead drawing (below) remains mothballed. It was replaced by a redraw in 2017 after appearing 92 years. Read about it here.