Monday, 3 February 2014

Nostalgia Isn't What It Used To Be...

Today brought up a strange collision of ideas. (Well, stranger than usual.) While looking up something else on the Internet, I was reintroduced to the artist, Bruce McCall. It turns out he's a Canadian author and illustrator from Simcoe, ON. I saw his stuff years ago when I was in university. He did a number of "articles" for the National Lampoon on some really odd and hilarious almost-historical things.
The collision came about with my family's involvement in the Steampunk movement and the Steampunk meeting Beth, Katie, and I went to Friday night. Steampunk leads the charge in "retro-futurism" or "faux-nostalgia." It's all THE PAST AS IT NEVER WAS! If that isn't a segue into wargaming, I don't know what is! A good friend of mine says all wargaming is fantasy wargaming. If it wasn't, the outcome of every re-fight would be exactly the same.
I ask you, what fun would that be?

So here are a few of Mr. McCall's wilder military-ish drawings: (Some include captions and explanations which make me laugh very hard.)

This is called "the Feather-fighter" and I have no idea why. Nor do I know what the markings are.

This one is my favourite and also expresses Mr. McCall's love of "pig-iron."
He used it in another faux-advertisement for a car built of "solid pig-iron" with the slogan "Tell the man you want one!"
Some of the language is a bit "politically incorrect" but it's still funny!

These pieces are not military-oriented but show disgustingly conspicuous consumption in a parallel -and ridiculous- 'tween Wars period.

Auto-gyro jousting! Just the thing for a weekend at Palm Beach!

Tank Polo! Tell the man you want to play next time you're in the Hamptons!

For the sporting Prussian.
This first one made me laugh like crazy! Mr. McCall has a gift for the automotive absurd.

Remember... McCall is a Canadian!

The sheer size and extravigence of the vehicle... and the absurd background!
World's Fairs! Rockets! Barns! Chaingangs! A front seat the size of your dining room!
Lastly we have this... a chemistry lesson and the most civil of civil wars...
If you don't laugh at this, there is offically no hope for you!

Nice day, eh?
Did I hit you? Sorry!


  1. I had a book of his work ages ago.I liked the Zeppelin hunt and pics of miniature golf courses in particular. Thanks for reminding me of this...

    1. You're welcome! I was tickled pink when I found those drawings -and more!- on the internet.

  2. I'd not seen these before, although some of the aircraft designs reminds me of the flights of fancy of Jono - the originator of my Jono's World project. I've departed rather from his original concept, whilst he has gone onto other things, but his design for war machines, aircraft and heavy naval units of c.1940 technology were interesting, to say the least!

    1. I'm glad you enjoyed them. I relish the absurdity of the art and I love the pig-iron wheels on the Russian transport.

  3. Terrific stuff. A great marriage of whimsy and irony.

    1. I included your Canadian Civil War pic and I love the rejected periodic table.

    2. Don't you love Celinedion as one of the "solid gasses"?