Follow TV Tropes


Comic Strip / Bizarro

Go To
Bizarro is 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 a different style and approach, including conventional jokes and 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.

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

Has no relation to Bizarro, Superman's reverse-logically-thinking counterpart, from the Superman multimedia franchise.

This comic provides examples of:

  • Big Electric Switch: In the strip for August 27th 2015, a guard is about to pull a switch that will electrocute a prisoner using a hand puppet on his hand. A person nearby says "If that's what it takes to relieve your conscience, maybe you're in the wrong business".
  • Brick Joke: The March 13, 2011 comic features a wide plain, strange objects, and a sign that 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.
  • 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 managed to convince the judge to "decrease" his sentence to life.
  • Magic Skirt: Piraro muses in a blog post that if Atlas held the 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.
  • Mantis Mating Meal: One strip features two praying mantises having tea. One comments that her husband is disagreeing with her; the other suggests an antacid.
  • Metafictional Device: A common theme in strips is interaction with comic elements—for instance, a "Red-breasted Thieving Sap Spitter stealing the vowels from a speech bubble.
  • Mistook the Dominant Lifeform: The aliens of the February 8, 2015 strip bring a cat back to their leader, as "they make hilarious videos".
  • Monkeys on a Typewriter: The May 7th, 2010 comic has monkeys typing away, eventually creating The Great Gatsby. Unfortunately, their supervisor wanted Shakespeare.
  • Mouse Hole: The strip for September 19, 2018, features a snake with a large bulge in its midsection wedged into a classic cartoon mouse hole, thinking "Note to self: Wait until they exit the hole, THEN swallow them."
  • 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.
  • Politicians Kiss Babies: The comic for April 24th, 2012. A Funny Animal cat politician is shown licking a kitten held by a female supporter.
  • 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."
  • Punctuation Changes the Meaning: A 2019 comic has the purveyor of a hot dog stand with the sign, "Sloppy Joe's Hot Dogs", explaining to someone pointing at the sign that his name is Sloppy Joe and that the apostrophe is correct.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: The January 28, 2010 comic features a pirate with a bunny instead of a Pirate Parrot, yet being no less badass to those who might mock him.
  • Recurring Extra: A pink bunny, a 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", a crown, an arrow and (as of May 2017) Olive Oyl or the abbreviation "O2" 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.