The Washington Post

THE FOLLOW-UP: Roger Ebert wins the New Yorker Caption Contest

Two weeks ago, Comic Riffs wrote that Pulitzer-winning film critic Roger Ebert was — after years of entering to no avail — a debut finalist in the New Yorker Caption Contest.

Today comes the verdict: Ebert has now won his first New Yorker Caption Contest.

Writes Cartoon Editor Bob Mankoff on his blog:

“To the delight of film fans, film criticism fans, caption contest fans, and Roger Ebert fans—and count me among all of the above—Mr. Ebert has finally fulfilled his quest to win. ...”

“I am gobsmacked,” Ebert told Comic Riffs.when cracked the Final Three after having entered more than 100 of the magazine’s weekly contests.

The cartoon in question — by Tom Cheney — depicts a man and a woman clutching shopping bags, apparently lost in an “F” aisle in the middle of a stock desert scene.

Ebert’s submitted caption deftly played off the “F” sign to read: “I’m not going to say the word I’m thinking of.”

More than the frequency of Ebert’s entries, Mankoff writes: “I’m more impressed with the quality of Roger’s submissions” — including some of his very funny favorites.

Writer/artist/visual storyteller Michael Cavna is creator of the "Comic Riffs" column and graphic-novel reviewer for The Post's Book World. He relishes sharp-eyed satire in most any form.

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