Isaac Baranoff is a American Underground Cartoonist, comedian, businessman, composer and filmmaker. He hosts the comedy series Fake News with Isaac Baranoff, which features stand-up style news headlines punctuated by jokes, in the vein of Norm Macdonald or Dennis Miller-era Weekend Update. His best known work, Horndog, was originally drawn by Baranoff but is now written by Baranoff and drawn by Robbie Allen, aka Pembroke W. Korgi due to Baranoff's physical health issues which keep him from drawing. Since he stopped drawing, he's been primary known for espousing Objectivist philosophy.
Born in Orient, New York, Baranoff is of Russian, Scots-Irish, Melungeon and African-American origin. His work often focuses on topics such as racism, individualism, and advocates the use and legalization of marijuana and free market capitalism, explaining that he feels that a classical liberal—or Goldwater-esque conservativism, some would say libertarian system, effectively eliminates poverty. He opposes "social justice" legislation, arguing that it increases poverty rather than helping the poor. His short stories, which are out of print due to Old Shame, focus on Alternate History, Black-and-Gray Morality, anti-war themes, philosophy and satires of various genres of Exploitation Film. Outside of his comics and film/video work, his art has been used to promote rap artists without his permission.
Baranoff wrote 5 novellas, starting with Soft Desire, a Pulp Fiction anthology, followed by Someone's Gonna Die, a Hardboiled Detective story about an African American female private detective named Hot Chocolate. It features Baranoff's usual combination of sex, violence and stoner humor. He's since written mostly in the Spaghetti Western genre, starting with A Boot Full Of Blood, a vampire revenge story set in the Old West about a woman who seeks revenge on the men who murdered her husband and daughter and left her for dead - but only after she's turned into a vampire. This was followed by A Fistful of Molotov, an Anti-Communist historical fantasy set in an intentionally historically inaccurate version of Soviet Russia, casting Joseph Stalin as a Spaghetti Western-style villain. It depicts real individuals in fictional settings, and was inspired by a negative review of A Boot Full of Blood alledging that it was historically inaccurate to the speech of the Old West, so Baranoff sought to make his Soviet Russia story even more historically inaccurate for dramatic purposes and a bit of humor. The last of his stories, A Claw Full Of Blood, Baranoff's describes as his most derivative. It's about a hardboiled detective who seeks revenge after he is left for dead gangsters and turned into a werewolf; this one is set in a stylized present time. Baranoff laments this plot taking much from Kill Bill. He has announced plans for his first full length novel.
Baranoff's Progressive Rock music is often a fusion of chamber music, Jazz, and Progressive Metal. There were also plans to release a Death Metal album which fell through. Much of his early demos are out of print.
Website can be found here.
- Life's an Obscure Hobo Bumming a Ride on the Omnibus of Art (as "Funny Aminals") (2013)
- Vengeance Is Mine! (as "Funny Aminals") (2013)
- Hell Is For Politicians! (as "Funny Aminals") (2013)
- The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari alternate score (2013)
- Nosferatu alternate score (2013)
- The Night That No One Came Home (as "Funny Aminals") (2014)
- Behind The Green Door (2014)
- None More Black (2014)
- The Wedding Album (2014)
- Orchestral Favorites (2014)
- Pragmatocracy (2017)
- Unholy Savior (2017)
- The Root of Money LP (2017)
Tropes exhibited by Isaac and/or his works include:
- Author Appeal: His female characters tend to have big butts and boobies.
- Genre Roulette: "Fear" is a avant-garde piece with a bunch of sound effects, and "Stampeding Cattle Through The Vatican" is basically distorted guitar feedback.
- Sampling: Funny Aminals' free releases contain a bunch of these:
- The Night That No One Came Home samples The Nine Lives of Fritz the Cat, Hot Summer In The City and The Adventures of Ford Fairlane
- Shout-Out: The song and album titles are mostly Shout Outs.
- His song title "I'm Way Too Baked To Drive To The Devil's House" is a line from Grandma's Boy (2006).
- A Bucket of Blood is where the Obscure Hobo album title comes from.
- Blue Velvet resulted in the song title "Here's To Your Fuck, Frank"
- "Stampeding Cattle Through The Vatican" is a quote from Blazing Saddles
- "The Van Was Last Seen Headed To Your Momma's Bedroom" is a line from a Up in Smoke deleted scene.
- On Vengeance, the song title "Blow Me Where The Pampers Is" is from PCU, and the album title, Vengeance Is Mine!, is the title of a Mike Hammer book.
- The album title Hell Is For Politicians is a parody of the Pat Benatar song "Hell Is For Children".
- Xtreme Kool Letterz: The "Funny Aminals" band name. Is actually the title of a comic book anthology which featured works by Robert Crumb, Terry Zwigoff, and the first appearance of Art Spiegelman's Maus.
- Author Tract: The politics in A Fistful Of Molotov
- Artistic License: Historical events and characters appearing in A Fistful Of Molotov intentionally mixed together regardless of when said events actually occurred, or if persons involved were alive at the time, or behave in disregard to their actual behavior.
- Black-and-Gray Morality: The uber-violent vampire in A Boot Full Of Blood and werewolf in A Claw Full Of Blood are the heroes.
- Black-and-White Morality: The Communist-killing hero of A Fistful Of Molotov has touches of Black-and-Gray Morality, but is more purposeful than Baranoff's supernatural heroes.
- Hardboiled Detective: He combines this with other genres.
- Our Vampires Are Different: In A Boot Full Of Blood, vampires can eat normal food if it is doused in blood.
- Our Werewolves Are Different: The method of turning a human into a werewolf in A Claw Full Of Blood involves feeding a human werewolf blood as he dies.