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'How About Never': New Yorker cartoon editor on his life in comics

Bob Mankoff

Bob Mankoff

Bob Mankoff

Bob Mankoff


More than 1 million people read The New Yorker magazine for the insightful articles, cultural listings, film reviews and ... the cartoons. Those magnificent, funny, sometimes bawdy, often confounding cartoons. 

The New Yorker has published 78,000 of them since its inception, and more than 14,000 of those were published under current cartoon editor, Bob Mankoff.

He's written a new memoir, "How About Never—Is Never Good For You?: My Life in Cartoons," and he joined Take Two's Alex Cohen about his  new book and his career with The New Yorker.

One secret he shared is that if you don't understand a cartoon, it may be because it's designed that way.

"Sometimes people don't get it because there's actually nothing to get," says Mankoff. "All cartoons don't have closure. Some cartoons are just being silly, and the house of humor has many rooms and we try to fill as many in the New Yorker as possible."

Mankoff also sifts through anywhere between 500 to 1,000 submissions every week for each issue of the magazine. And to get your own cartoon published, you don't necessarily have to be a great illustrator, just have a sense of wit, and luck.

"Anybody who's a professional understands that that's what the deal is," he says. "I'm part mentor, I'm part psychologist, but overall I'm the cartoon editor."

Mankoff talks more with artist Shepard Fairey on Tuesday, April 29th at 7:30p at the LA Theatre Center. Tickets are available HERE.


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