Being politically correct is not always one’s prerogative and sometimes that leads to some very risky actions, in most cases jokes. This is not a new form of humor but one that I believe is being more and more exploited. I think the perfect catalyst for politically incorrect jokes is comics. Vocalized jokes of this nature are usually met with laughs, silence or the ever prevalent gasp. This occurs with live action use of these jokes. However somehow, maybe due to the disconnect with reality, animated skits and comics seem to avoid the some of the gasps for laughs. It appears to be the perfect medium as any situation can be created without the need for specific people or objects. Something as simple as having the setting in a airplane isn’t so simple when real people are involved. Drawing a plan as a background has no hassle this way, the artist just needs to draw it. There’s no scheduling a plane or insuring the plane that is scheduled fits in with what the artist wants. Another scenario that proves that comics have an edge is the use of dead people and things of fantasy. When was the last time you saw a giant in a live comedy skit? More specifically that didn’t look fake? In a comic the media is all the same there is no evident change between characters, one part doesn’t look computer generated next to something real. A number of comic series have taken up political incorrectness as their staple material.
One of the more recognizable of these is Cyanide and Happiness. This web comic has taken political correctness and in almost every case, thrown it out of the window faster than a box full of grenades without their pins. They tackle religion, death and any subject they can think of. The art is not super extravagant, or even close with all the characters being semi-stick figures. It shows that subject matter plays a huge role. Now one of the easiest ways to say comic format works better for their jokes is this, imagine any of their strips being done in live action, and even better picture it at a play. Not as funny are they? Here are a couple examples.
There are scenarios where, with enough money and the proper audience these could be done. But is all that worth it when a daily web comic is just pumping them out?
Sometimes political incorrectness comes in the form of fan art, such as memes. Memes have taken over in a lot of ways, from popularizing catchphrases to expressions. And with those the possibilities for intentional misuse are astounding. Even some of these expressions themselves make a harmless comic or picture incorrect. One of these is the Mr. Bean face.
As for fan art some of the subjects used directly come from comic book stories and fit together to make a devilish joke. I personally find these to be some of the best examples of how this proves how expansive this medium is for taking on political correctness.
In the beginning I mentioned how this is not a new thing. But sometimes it takes a retrospective look at comics that at the time were not incorrect have since become to see this. A link below has a list of 20 such panels.
In conclusion I believe with this and other evidence comics have become the perfect way to express politically incorrect ideas. Sometimes it takes a joke or two for a subject to become noticed, or before people start to care. A few people realizing that the joke really isn’t funny but the joke format keeps it memorable are a positive effect these comics have. At the same time just because a few people gasp or think its awful doesn’t mean everyone of the internet agrees with them, the internet lets only successful things flourish, or at least flourish for a long time. The disconnect with reality is the comics’ trump card; it allows us to only see these ridiculous jokes as fiction. The over the top antics don’t hit as close to home, and aren’t seen as realistic. I’m not promoting in any way that these actions are done in reality, but as drawn jokes all the power to the creators for making us chuckle.
Some honorable mentions to this trend, comic or close to are; Family Guy, South Park, Archer, Frisky Dingo, Garfield Minus Garfield, a number of Deadpool comics, Happy Tree Friends and in some ways the alternate comic genre.