Tom Richmond is considered the Cartoonists’s Cartoonist. You don’t become President of the National Cartoonist Society and win the Reuben for “Outstanding Cartoonist of the Year” without a lot of respect from your peers. (And those who don’t pee on you, too.) He’s not as well known among the general public because he doesn’t have a ‘signature property’ of his own; he does freelance illustration, most notably for MAD Magazine. (Ah, that got your attention!) Since late 2000, he has illustrated over 100 pieces for the iconic rag (one of his first was as one of several contributors for “The Untold History of Mad” for its 400th issue). Following in the footsteps of Mad artists like Don Davis and Mort Druckerfoot1, Richmond is a caricaturist whose work usually appears in the movie and TV parodies.

from Richmond's portfolio of "Mad Art"

harry_plodder from Richmond’s portfolio of “MAD Art”

Now, I’m a longtime MAD fan; when forced to choose between Marvel Comics and MAD for spending my childhood allowance, I kicked the Fantastic Four to the curb – I remember the first Star Trek parody they did in 1967 (obviously titled “Star Blecch”), felt guilty pleasures over reading parodies of R-rated movies my parents wouldn’t let me see, and could easily tell the difference between a Davis and a Drucker.

But that’s the problem with caricature – it’s such a distinct style, most people can’t tell the work of one from another, which is a good thing if you’re working at a county fair, not so good if you’re trying to get work at MAD. Lar DeSouza is one of my personal favorite artists, partly for regularly streaming an art session on those lonely Friday evenings, but also for his versatility, from the character designs of “Least I Could Do”, the Sunday “Childhood Rayne” comics and “Looking for Group” (which as an “Adventure Game Satire”, has the most caricature-ish style), to his random works in varying styles, caricature, parody and randomly cartoony.

But now Richmond has done something that raises him to Lar-level-versatility in my eyes: A parody of the awful “Honey Boo Boo” TV show family in the style of The Family Circus.
(more at the link)
I have seen many a take on Family Circus (some unnecessarily cruel), but here is one I can totally endorse because it’s using the FC style to be necessarily cruel to someone else.

tom-by-mortfooty1Tom considers one of his highest honors (and the greatest gift his wife ever got for him) the caricature Mort Drucker drew of him, even before he joined Mad’s “Cast of Idiots”. And understandably so.