(CLICK HERE TO SEE LARGER IMAGE) Matt Bors imagines the afterlife of Christopher Hitchens. (MATT BORS / 2011 Universal Uclick/.)

WHEN MEMORIALIZING the recently deceased, many cartoonists take the warm-and-fuzzy approach, making sure they draw well of the dead. What makes Matt Bors particularly intriguing after a famous figure’s death, however, is that he doesn’t set aside the word “editorial” from his job title as editorial cartoonist. Pen and opinion at hand, Bors renders judgment.

The Portland-based artist notably did this when Steve Jobs died in October, acknowledging Jobs’s achievement (and satirizing cartoonists who would draw the self-described Buddhist at St. Peter’s pearly gates), while also skewering the Apple co-founder’s overseas employment practices.

Today, Christopher Hitchens — the longtime Vanity Fair writer and raconteur extraordinaire — receives a treatment so provocative and opionionated (not unlike Hitchens’s own stock in trade), the pronounced atheist himself would perhaps raise a highball to the cartoon, even while clearing his throat to lowball the image’s editorial merits.

Bors offers art we can debate, to remember a sharp intellect who relished the art of debate.

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