The blog of Richard Thompson, caricaturist, creator of "Cul de Sac," and winner of the 2011 Reuben Award for Outstanding Cartoonist of the Year.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Antonin Scalia caricature by Richard Thompson

At some point, Richard drew Justice Scalia. The original was given to Art Wood and is now in the Library of Congress.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Compleating Cul de Sac first edition goes out of print

Compleating Cul de Sac's first edition is now out of print, and it's good news!

We're pleased to announce that we (aka The Thompsons) are just about to sign the contract with Picture This Press for them to publish the grandly-themed Richard Thompson Library. Compleating Cul de Sac version 2.0 is being expanded by editor Rhode and designer Bono Mitchell with more interviews, more Thompson art and more Team Cul de Sac art, even as we type. Any profits from this book will continue to be sent to the Michael J. Fox Foundation to fund Parkinson's research, as we had arranged to do with the first edition.

The draft of The Incompleat Art of Why Things Are with an introduction by Joel Achenbach is in the hands of the publisher who's working with his designer on the book. Scott Stewart is continuing to work on a new collection of caricatures.
In the meantime, all of Richard's Cul de Sac books, and The Art of Richard Thompson are still available from his traditional publisher, Andrews McMeel.
We hope you'll enjoy the new books as they come out over the next several years .

Mike Rhode

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Can you name these men?

Philip Mangano, (the Bush administration's "homelessness czar") done for the June 2004 issue of The Atlantic (thanks to Mary Parsons!

As mentioned earlier Scott Stewart is going through Richard's caricatures with the aim of doing a book of them. This involves identifying the subject of hundreds of drawings.  As an experiment in crowd-sourcing, does anyone recognize these two characters?

John Kasich (thanks to blog reader Sam, 
and editorial cartoonist Nate Beeler)

Friday, January 15, 2016

More Richard Thompson in Food News

Here's a list of all the issues that I noticed Richard's work in. While we show the covers, Richard also has interior artwork in them. Hat-tip to Scott Stewart who first found this resource for the issues.

3:3: Summer 1986 -
5:1 Spring 1988 - (internal illos)
7:4 Winter 1990 - (page 15)

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Another illustration from Food News, Spring 1987

Here's another image by Richard from the bygone days of the last century. One can really see his Searle influence here


Wednesday, January 13, 2016

'Food News' Cover of Cows and Chickens

Scott Stewart is working on going through Richard's caricatures with the aim of doing a book on them. He pulled this quote out of an interview Richard did with Mike Rhode and went digging until he found this picture.

RT: Well, if people see you in the Post, they think of you especially if it's local … around Washington there are a lot of associations and every association has a magazine or a newsletter or some print venue (this is in the '80s when everything was print). They have holes to fill too, so… You could support yourself on that, whether you want to or not. The government too – I did something for the publication Food News at the Department of Agriculture drawing some cows and chickens. If you get a chance to draw a cow, you can't turn it down. (Audience laughs).

MR: Wildly-collectible now…

RT: Yeah, exactly.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

A Richard's Poor Almanac "Star Wars"

This just in from a curator at the Air & Space Museum who owns the original. Richard did it when there was a Star Wars exhibit in the museum.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Even more Cul de Sac stocking stuffers - playing cards!

Suicidal Clown Playing Cards
Suicidal Clown Playing Cards by Thompsoniana
Look at another Deck of Cards online at
So You Think You're Lucky? Playing Cards
So You Think You're Lucky? Playing Cards by Thompsoniana
Check out Luck Classic Playing Cards online at zazzle
Tragedy and Comedy Playing Cards
Tragedy and Comedy Playing Cards by Thompsoniana
Shop for another Deck of Cards online at

Need a last minute holiday card?

Check out Thompsoniana cards on Zazzle. They're 1/2 price through Sunday with the code EXPRESSCARDS

You'll be glad you did. Where else are you going to get a "Cat in a Sombrero Card"?

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Happy Beethoven's birthday

Richard Thompson traditionally wishes all his fans a Happy Beethoven birthday. On his behalf, I do so today (a day early as it turns out so you got TWO days of best Beethoven wishes). - Mike Rhode

Monday, December 14, 2015

New holiday Thompsoniana swag available

Richard has always stood for giving his fans what they want* so today we unveil some more Christmas ornaments and other swell gift items. Coincidentally**, they're also on sale, today only, for 50% off with before-Christmas delivery. Use the code: ZGIFTSBYXMAS. - Mike Rhode

Saint Santa ornament by Richard Thompson
Saint Santa ornament by Richard Thompson by Thompsoniana
Shop for Christmas Ornaments online at
Silly Cosmology Ornament
Silly Cosmology Ornament by Thompsoniana
Check out other Turtles Ornaments at

*Not really. Especially when they're his editors.
**Also untrue.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

A Cul de Sac Thanksgiving, 2008

originally appeared in the Washington Post Magazine, Nov 27, 2008.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

David Bragunier

David Bragunier was principal tuba player for the National Symphony Orchestra  for 43 years. He was also my friend Bono Mitchell's neighbor for 37 years; neighbor, friend, brother-she-never-had. [He passed away in July - here's his obituary in The Post. I believe he commissioned the Mstislav Rostropovich caricature that Richard shows below - MR].

A video.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

This blog is not abandoned...

... sometimes it just feels that way. I spoke with Richard today, and he would like his readers to know that while he's having trouble physically being able to blog, he still likes to hear from people. (We're also trying to set up a workaround so he can use the blog again.)

Here's a  recent photo of Richard at a showing of The Art of Richard Thompson short film. Director Bob Burnett posted it on Facebook, writing "Alexandria Film Festival (where RT received a standing ovation after the screening) the producer Andy "Hamdinger" Hemmendinger makes an appearance too."

Here's Richard with Pixar director Pete Docter, who hired him to work on Inside Out.

And here's an image or two from the upcoming book, The Incompleat Art of Why Things Are." Details to follow when they're finalized.

-- Mike Rhode

Sunday, July 12, 2015

An Eisner

Well, two,  but one's enough. I want to thank the judges,, everyone who voted,  especially  for me, and for courage in the face of wicked witches above & beyond I'd like to thank Nick Galifianakis, David Apatoff and Chris Sparks, who had to accept the Eisner on my behalf (photo below) because I'm scared of public speaking and was busy that night.


Thursday, June 4, 2015

Ham-Fisted Plagiarism or What?

Offered here without comment is this story and this cartoon, which predates it by more than a decade...

Thursday, May 28, 2015


Are you a comics professional? Warning signs include:

  • Blood in the stool
  • Tinitus
  • Angst
  • Euphoria
  • Confusion
Plus the symptoms covered previously. If you suffer from any of these, you may be eligible to VOTE IN THE EISNERS! Named for multi-talinted  Ed  Eisner [NO, IT WASN'T. IF THS CHILDISHNESS CONTINUES RESPONSIBLE ADULTS MIGHT BE FORCED TO COMMANDEER THIS BLOG. NOW LET'S SEE WHAT BRIAN FRIES SAID.]

Reminding, asking, pleading....there's such a fine line between those words. Eisner Award voting closes June 1, and comics pros--which includes not just writers and artists but educators, librarians, booksellers, journalists, editors--are eligible to vote. I'm up for Best Digital/Web Comic and would appreciate your consideration (don't forget, if you voted online you can always go back and revise your ballot!). The link:

Other worthy names/titles I think deserve your vote (taking nothing away from their competitors) include Raina Telgemeier, Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant by Roz Chast, El Deafo by Cece Bell, The Complete Cul de Sac by Richard Thompson, Kill My Mother by Jules Feiffer, and Stan Sakai for everything.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Compleating Cul de Sac available now - New Richard Thompson book out

Richard's friend Mike here -

The Complete Cul de Sac isn’t.

Complete, that is. Compiling it while ill, Richard accidentally left out some strips. Others were purposely left out, either because he had redrawn them for syndication, or they were too tied to the Washington, D.C. origins of the strip to make sense for a worldwide audience, or he “just felt some were not funny.” Over 100 are not in The Complete CDS.

But if you’re a cartoon completist, or just want a little bit more CDS, we understand and we’re here for you. We’ve collected the lost water-colored Washington Post Magazine strips, the early inchoate musings about what the strip should be, the promotional material, the sketches for fans, and finally some fugitive Team Cul de Sac charity art by Art Spiegelman, KAL, Patrick McDonnell, Eric Shansby, Nate Beeler and others.

With Richard’s blessing, or at least active acquiescence, any money the book makes will go to Team Cul de Sac to fight Parkinson’s disease.

And if more art surfaces, we’ll do a second edition. (if you've got something, drop me a line)

Compleating Cul de Sac
by Richard Thompson, Michael Rhode and Chris Sparks
Asheville, NC: Team Cul de Sac & Arlington, VA: ComicsDC, 2015.

Available in paperback:


ebook pdf:

Save 25% on all print books with code MEMORIAL through May 27.

Team Cul de Sac art by Terry Flippo

Saturday, May 9, 2015



Order your copy of Compleating CDS from Lulu today for only $35.00 and you'll earn the envy of all you know! They'll be so sick with rage, they'll just spontaneously explode, probably! What other graphic novel can offer that?

Here's what you get:

  • All the strips, over 100 and many in color,  that were left out of the Compete CDS, even if they were salacious.
  • Rough sketches. Everybody loves rough sketches.
  • Ephemera, drawings done for promotion, drawings done  as dedications in books,  drawings done as attempts at bribery or usury or to pay off an exorbitant restaurant bill. 
There's also an exclusive, deluxe HARDBACK edition, available on a first-come-first-served basis to only our most loyal fans for only $50.00 from Lulu.

So hurry!

Today through May 10, save 20% on any print book with the code MOM20.

(Book editor Mike Rhode here - we hope to get a less expensive version out soon, which will also raise more money for Team Cul de Sac. If you need to buy one today, the paperback uses better interior paper stock than the hardcover)