The guy still baffles me. Here we have him commenting on the queen and Mrs. Obama. It’s a fun strip, but it’s based on the idea that the queen herself was affronted by Mrs. O’s friendly hand on the shoulder. Whereas, in real life, the queen had no complaint and actually touched Mrs. O first; Buckingham Palace even issued a statement to let everyone know things were okay.

Yet the Oliphant cartoon is quite neat, not a commentary on reality but a fun sitcom spinoff from it.

UPDATE: In Comments, Matthew points me to a couple of other recent weirdies by the man, and I’ll throw in another here. Coincidentally, I just saw a post by the liberal blogger Hilzoy that gets at the Oliphant experience. Her topic was battered wives, so I’m hijacking her words to make a much more lighthearted point:

There are things that are comprehensible parts of the world, even if they’re rare, like having your car stolen; and then there are things that are unexpected in a completely different sense, like having your car turn into an elephant before your eyes: things that make you wonder whether you’re completely crazy.

Reading Oliphant, this experience is actually quite salutary. Frustrating as it is to see his brain twitch, you are left in a slightly different world than you inhabited before looking at the cartoon. Of course, the effect is overwhelmed when he does something borderline racist or anti-semitic, such as showing Israel doing the goosestep. (Yet the way he draws the shark/Star of David is brilliant.)

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