The Unquotable Trump
By R. Sikoryak, Drawn & Quarterly, 48 pages, $21.95
Credit R. Sikoryak with a consistent method: Using the style of decades-old funnybooks, he "adapts" literary masterpieces, or the iTunes Terms and Conditions, or, here, quotations from Donald J. Trump. As in much conceptual writing and art, that simple idea serves as the hook, but the details of Sikoryak's execution – his brainy gags and technically impeccable mimicry – make every page provoking and ingenious. In his latest, the artist plops the American president's orange skin, yellow mop and B-movie babblings onto corny old comic-book covers. "I'm a supermodel!" Trump says in the heat of the primaries, drawn as a Basil Wolverton/Mad magazine-style grotesque; postelection, he's the gargantuan duckling Baby Huey, scurrying away after carving his own likeness into Mount Rushmore. Sikoryak excavates absurd scenarios that perfectly complement the presidential pearls of wisdom – Manichean, bombastic and often moronic. I wonder if the campiness of Sikoryak's comic-book inspirations defangs his satire too much. Trump's cartoon avatars may seem nefarious, but he also comes off as ludicrous, bumbling and, worst of all, harmless – immune to parody yet again.