Garfield is as irresistible to the internet as lasagna is to Garfield. And yet, after years enjoying everything from the eerie comic remixes of Garfield Without Garfield’s Thought Balloons and Minus Garfield to stuff like memes centered around the strip where Jon definitely drinks dog cum or the sundry horrors of an entire Instagram dedicated to Garfield miscellany, it’s seemed for at least a day or two now that everything Garf has been strip-mined, used-up, exhausted.
Fortunately, as a Twitter account called pipe garfield shows, this is not the case. There are, despite the odds, fresh new angles into the world of Garfield just waiting to be explored by any artist dedicated enough to dig deep into the archives.
The original strip used by the account was ushered forth into the world on July 27, 1978. A classic Jim Davis gutbuster, Jon Arbuckle sits in a chair reading his newspaper, reaches for his pipe, and finds it missing. “Now where could my pipe be?” he thinks. We see Garfield, that crazy cat, puffing away on the missing pipe in the last panel. “Garfield!!” John yells. Everybody laughs.
And yet, as complete an artistic expression as the 1978 comic is, @GarfieldPipe understands the nearly limitless potential of the image of Garfield sitting with a pipe in his mouth, with or without Jon yelling at him for his filthy habit.
As many variations as there are in this style, the account isn’t above reworking the original formula, which always ends with a glassy-eyed late ‘70s-style Garfield miraculously holding a pipe in his mouth on the third and last panel. There are, after all, so many more wonderful results to be had when Garfield and his pipe are liberated from the confines of punchline and freed to take strange new forms.
For those still intrigued by the profound nature of an orange cartoon tabby smoking a pipe, we’re happy to say that Lasagna Cat, the world’s foremost Garfield analysts, previously made the strip the topic of an hour-long critical monologue that should help guide the curious Garf-head to a deeper understanding of Davis’ genius.
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