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Comic Strip: Bizarro
A one-panel gag Newspaper Comic drawn by Dan Piraro since 1986.

It is a little like The Far Side in its scope, but with more conventional jokes and less absurdity. That being said, the occasional Non Sequitur is not unheard of. The comic has no recurring characters or ongoing plot, though Piraro sometimes draws characters looking like himself or his wife. There are however a set of recurring symbols that are inserted into strips Just for Fun. Their origins are explained (or not) here.

Dan Piraro runs a blog that is more or less regularly updated with new strips. There is also a website.


This comic provides examples of:

  • Brick Joke: The March 13, 2011 comic features a wide plain, strange objects, and a sign says "Build Your Own Surrealist Landscape". The flaming giraffe is referenced with another batch of surreal objects in the January 15, 2012 comic.
  • Creepy Doll: Used with a sidealong reference. A lady notes that there is a point where ventriloquism becomes unsettling while a man with a dummy in a baby carriage walks by.
  • Droste Image: The last panel of the July 15, 2013 strip shows the comic as an example of "unframed framed framers of the Constitution" with the final panel of that inset comic with the comic.
  • "Far Side" Island: According to the July 2, 1995 strip, it's more populated than one might expect.
  • Follow the Leader: Of The Far Side. Literally following that is. It was the replacement for The Far Side for Chronicle features when The Far Side moved to Universal Press Syndicate. Then when Larson retired from The Far Side Bizarro moved... to the Universal Press Syndicate.
  • Frankenstein's Monster: He's wearing a Hawaiian shirt and shorts in the October 27, 2012 strip.
  • "King Kong" Climb: In the comic for August 4th, 2013, a man watches out a window as Slothra (a humongous sloth) and Panda Kong (a gigantic panda) climb the Empire State Building.
  • Longer-Than-Life Sentence: In one strip, an extremely old suspect is told by his lawyer that he was scheduled to receive 80 years in jail, but the lawyer manage to convince the judge to "decrease" his sentence to life.
  • Magic Skirt: Piraro muses in a blog post that if Atlas held world up, and people in Antarctica saw him, he would appear as if his skirt was fixed in place even though he was upside-down to them.
  • Monkey Morality Pose: Parodied in the June, 26, 2011 strip.
  • Monkeys on a Typewriter: The May 7th, 2010 comic has monkeys typing away, eventually creating The Great Gatsby. Unfortunately, their supervisor wanted Shakespeare.
  • Once an Episode: Most strips contain at least one or two of the recurring symbols. The larger Sunday strips are filled with them.
  • Painting the Medium: Thought and speech bubbles get mistaken for smoke and a balloon, respectively, in the June 3, 2012 comic.
  • Pun: Piraro encourages readers to submit puns for his comic strips. As an example:
    • "I'm afraid you have an enlarged vowel in your hEart."
    • "Did any of your 10 puns you submitted to Bizarro get in?"/"No pun in ten did."
  • Recurring Extra: A pink bunny, slice of pie, a green-iris eyeball, a small alien in a hovercraft, an upside-down bird in a top hat, a fish's tail, a stick of dynamite, "K2", and a crown with "R" on it appear in the backgrounds of many comics. Some of the time, they're part of the joke. The number above Piraro's signature indicates how many of these extras appear in a strip.
  • Timmy in a Well: Parodied with Timmy in a whale in the December 9th, 2012 strip.
  • Torches and Pitchforks: A mob of people has them while pursuing Frankenstein's Monster in the October 27, 2012 strip.


Big NateNewspaper ComicsBlondie
Big Ball of ViolenceImageSource/Newspaper ComicsArtistic License - History
Bloom CountyThe EightiesCalvin and Hobbes

alternative title(s): Bizarro
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