Tooning around in Strongsville, Ohio, is another of our favorite cartoonists—Ken Benner.
“What did Dr. Phil say I did this time?”
“I have drawn for as long as I can remember,” says Ken, “equally as long I’ve been interested in cartoons.” The husband/wife dynamic is a recurring theme in Ken’s work, as in this cartoon and the gem below.
“Hey, I said I’d take the dog for a walk. I didn’t say where.”
Ken’s first experience with cartoons will resonate with baby boomers: He began by watching cartoon classics “such as Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, and all the Warner Brothers cartoons. I loved Bugs Bunny’s irreverent humor.” Much like the irreverent humor of our golfer here. I don’t think this was a Warner Brothers inspiration, though. Ken has a miniature schnauzer named Louie. “Louie frequently finds his way into many of my gag cartoons. He’s that kind of dog.”
“You’ve been watching too many of those CSI shows.”
Whoa—chalk games have changed since I was a kid. Here’s that irreverent humor again. Ken’s cartoon hero is Charles Schultz, who he has studied extensively. “Even to this day it’s not a holiday for me until I watch the various Peanuts holiday specials on television.” Oh, thanks, Ken. Now I can’t get that piano tune out of my head….
“You should start weight lifting for your health. You can start by lifting your weight off the couch.”
Well, that’s blunt. And funny. Since the Post is big on medical information, we are also big on medical cartoons. Ken sold his first cartoon to a tennis magazine. “To show how long ago that was, the cartoon involved Mr. T. being a line judge.” I tried picturing that, but got a headache.
“My dad says that I’m so good, I don’t need to practice anymore.”
Heartwarming parental encouragement. Besides the schnauzer, Louie, Ken, and his wife Judy also have a son, Kenny, whom I suspect has “sort of” shown up in a few Post cartoons.
“I’d like a table near an exit. I’m meeting a blind date.”
A good cartoonist knows what you’re thinking even if you wouldn’t say it. Or maybe you would.
“Mr. Fixit, meet Mr. Broke it.”
“I have always considered being published in certain magazines as career milestones. The Saturday Evening Post is high on my list.” I can safely state that The Post is delighted to have some of the best cartoonists in the business—like Ken.
Look for Ken Benner and other great cartoonists in the pages of The Saturday Evening Post.