Check out the September 22, 2011 edition of the Lio comic strip:
Now, we’re all for comic strips making social commentary, and there definitely is a “fair use” clause in copyright law, but we can’t figure out what the heck the point of this strip is, therefore it’s not fair use because it’s not fair that we have to sit around wondering what it means!
Seriously, Mr. Comic Strip Artist, if you’re going to make ambiguous works of social satire, at least stick to public domain subjects. This comic would have been just as funny with Little Nemo, the Yellow Kid, Obadiah Oldbuck, or Gertie the Dinosaur!
When we saw this image online, we couldn’t help but wonder what the artist thought s/he was getting away with.
Disney owns the rights to Marvel characters and their images, and these pieces of artwork clearly infringe on the intellectual property of the “Marvel Babies” line of toys, books, and organic educational manipulatives. It’s even possible — though we can think of no way to verify it — that the works of Dr. Seuss (if that’s even his real name) have some sort of copyright or trademark protection, but who knows?
By the way, why is the artist picking on Marvel characters and not on characters from rival company D.C.? Is it because they know that Marvel is an awesome juggernaut at the box office? Or that Marvel characters are so globally recognizable? Or perhaps it’s that they have a not-so-secret pro-D.C. bias or are on D.C.’s payroll? Or that the pictures of Superman and Batman aren’t there because we cropped them out to make our point? Again, who can say?
All we know is that Disney is again being slandered. Pardon while we shed yet another tear.
These are pairs of panels from two separate instances of the (normally quite entertaining) comic Ink Pen, both from last week. Notice anything? Yes! Flagrant “funny” toon abuse!
These instances of “hilarious” crushing of Disney characters are not only deeply disturbing — and potentially as child-scarring as seeing a costumed character with its head off (assuming, of course, that characters in Disney parks are just people in costumes, which they aren’t because they’re real) — but they’re also massive violations of Disney’s global copyrights.
Remember, you don’t have to actually draw, quote, represent, re-image, or depict a Disney character for it to be a violation — just implying that a character exists in the same space as the world you are depicting is more than enough to get you sued back to the dinosaur segment of Fantasia!
While browsing iTunes for television shows that I could legally and ethically purchase for my personal use, I discovered that the television show Rules of Engagement had an episode title so blasphemous and disturbing in its violation of a Disney/Pixar copyright that I dare not repeat it here. Parents, if your children are looking over your shoulder, I suggest that you ask them to avert their eyes before you read the text in the image above.
Reader Heather writes:
The game, missbimbo.com (a dress up doll site) is having a pirate theme and a competition to find the best dressed pirate themed bimbo. On the ‘judging panel’ appers disney’s very own ‘Cpt Jack Sparrow’ – I’m sure disney would love the interpitation of the main man!
Heather, you are so right and Miss Bimbo is so wrong! Indeed, Captain Jack might very well want to judge a contest of this sort, but even a piratical scalawag such as he has taken a solemn vow to respect for the very trademarks and copyrights on which his existence is based!
Late breaking news: here’s another possible violation of both Disney’s and The Lord’s intellectual property from TutzTutz.com (the image is apparently originally from a Worth 1000 contest, but I can’t locate it to assign the artist proper blame).
Cover of Air Pirates #1, from March 28, 2008 Suite101.com article
9 to 5, December 21, 2004
October 9, 2008 political cartoon by Barry Deutsch