My illustration for the 2018 Fall Classic. DODGERS V RED SOX.

A fun and informative read by Tom Hoffarth at TheDrillLA




Velvet Elvis is back in vogue…

Months ago, I applied for an open position with the NFL. The “job” requirements kinda fit  my skillset:

“The NFL is seeking a Social Media Illustrator to create engaging and cutting-edge illustrations for the NFL’s official social platforms, as well as other NFL-affiliated channels”

Knowledge of Football; Prior experience ‘creating engaging illustrations of varying complexity and style’; skillful illustrator; work on deadline; strong character illustration skills; and strong writing skills.  

Gee, I thought – this seems to fit my (multiple) skill sets.

I’ve worked in mass media for decades. I’ve produced illustrations of varying complexity for decades. I meet deadlines.  I’ve illustrated and written published articles. I thought: Gosh,  I’ll get some response – right? But I didn’t. Not even a: “thanks no thanks”. Nothing. My application apparently went into the trashcan.  The NFL’s winning candidate was, apparently, a D grade Elvis-on-velvet artist.

With months of advanced notice that Drew Brees would break Payton Manning’s passing yards record, the NFL put its Elvis-on-Velvet dude on high alert. On October 9th Brees broke Manning’s record and the NFL published its Brees-on-Velvet art.

It depicts Brees (I guess) with Andre the Giant hands. On Brees’ right, Manning with an enormous melon (looking more like Brett Kavanaugh than Payton Manning) also has Andre the Giant hands and a right arm that, I suspect, was detached and dangling from his body (thus the sad face). Manning is depicted in a Bronco uniform rather than a Colts uni. Why? Apparently because Manning set his record in Denver?

In the foreground and to Brees’ left is 6’2″ Favre – much shorter than 6’0″ Brees, and looking starry-eyed at nothing in particular. Favre is dressed out in a Green Bay uni. His right arm looks like it was severed and reattached by Dr Frankenstein. Why is Favre in Green Bay green when he set his record in Viking purple? Meh… forgetaboutit…

The good news — if you’re a starving street artist currently painting Elvis or Bullfighters-on Velvet, be encouraged – the NFL might hire you. Screen Shot 2018-10-08 at 8.25.42 PM.png



nutcrackerI think I watched the NFL kill itself yesterday. People a lot more football smarts than me have concluded the same thing. Clay Matthews’ sack of Alex Smith yesterday was a textbook football tackle. It wasn’t overly violent, Smith wasn’t hurt, Matthew had no intention of hurting him -and didn’t hurt him. Matthews’ helmet never touched Smith’s. Matthews’ apparent crime was landing on top of Smith. Apparently defenders are supposed to change their position in midair and risk their own injury so QBs can continue to be treated, not like a football player, but protected Prince of the Kingdom  — never touch the Prince.

It’s really absurd. No one outside of the league office thinks this is good for professional football. The NFL has turned this grand game into a waltz of nonsense and turned the on- field officials into nutcrackers.

RIP NFL – it died yesterday in Washington DC

Movie Review

It’s the afternoon, I’m bored and felt like writing. Also I watched a stink-pile of a movie last night so why not “review” it. Jurassic World; Fallen Kingdom.

The good news first. If you like movies with 1st class CG and a garbage script this is your ticket to paradise. Let’s be clear – it’s not all that unusual to see awesome CG. What is not usual is science-fiction with a coherent plot. The Jurassic World sequel was unmoored from decent story telling and had so many logical disconnects it was impossible to keep track of all of them.

The movie begins three years after the park is overrun and abandoned. Scene one: two idiots are in a submarine, in the middle of the aquarium that housed the Giant Dino fish – remember the big fishy looking reptile that ate great White Sharks like they were sardines? Story opens in the middle of night, in the middle of a raging downpour. The sub switches on so many lights, they could likely be seen from outer-space. Of course the intrepid submariners get eaten by the Giant Dino Fish – As predictable as the virgin dying first in a slasher movie.It’s 3 years later and how the giant Dino fish still alive is an unanswered plot hole that even the Giant Dino Fish could not fill — wasn’t the aquarium landlocked and Dino Fish needed to be fed like a zoo animal? Why yes, movie watchers you would be correct.  Forget logic, forget story continuity,  the sequel screenwriters  thought they needed to created a giant gate to the open ocean so  mosasaurus could munch on surfers in the next film….I guess, And frankly can anyone explain how Jurassic World science dudes found a mosquito with a mosasaurus’ DNA? Underwater Mosquitoes 70 millions years ago? Anyway…

The submariners  are there to retrieve a piece of Dino bone at the bottom of said aquarium. Wait… what? Why not send a robot to do that in daytime when you can kinda see. Nah, that would make sense.  Of course Dino Fish is released to the open ocean after eating the submariners, because the doors where left open…

Fast forward to a US Senate committee debating if the US government will save the Dinos from a second extinction – because the whole mythical Costa Rican island is about to explode in a volcanic eruption. Wait… what? Hold on, the park builders spent (likely hundreds of millions on a park, with an active volcano…? Oh, ok. But isn’t this island  Costa Rican? Why is the US involved at all? Meh never mind….

Fast forward some more. A private army shows up to remove Dinos with military grade helicopters and a 100Million dollar cargo ship. Chris Pratt’s character and love interest Bryce Howard are betrayed and left to die. Love interest, Pratt and a irritating cuck who spends most the movie screaming like a 4 year old end up fleeing from both an erupting volcano and sprinting Dinos. They miraculously  find one of those ball shaped glass vehicles in the middle the field they are running through. What are the odds -right? Unlike the theme park (it looks like it was abandoned 50 years ago) the glass sphere is pristine – not a bit of dust or dirt on it. Oh, ok. Beta Male and Love Interest end up flying over a 200 ft cliff into the ocean while strapped in the sphere.  Pratt rescues them, of course.  While underwater Pratt fires a 9MM handgun at the glass and those blasts cause bullet holes in the glass. Wait… what? In Jurassic World, didn’t Jimmy Fallon fire a .45 at the glass and didn’t the bullet bounce off the bullet proof glass? Yeah  but, in the sequel Pratt fires a 9MM, underwater and those tiny shells penetrate bullet-proof glass. Forget that water is 800 times more dense than air and a 9MM would travel about an inch  before losing all momentum.  Whatever. And – ya the ship sails away undetected… by anyone. An island being destroyed is a world event. An island with the only Dinos in existence and a volcano about to envelop everything might be even more news worthy  but all world governments and press are apparently taking collective naps when the bad guys remove the Dinos.

That’s the first 20 minutes.

The cargo ship (apparently) sails past the Coast Guard and all local folks  and it docks in Northern California undetected at some rich dude’s enormous close-to-the-ocean estate with giant paddocks built specifically to house the Dinos. Wait, what? How did all that get built so fast? Never mind..nothing to see here.

Pratt and Love Interest are captured – but instead of killing them the bad guys put them in a cage. Are they going to feed them to the carnivores?

The rest of this awful movie is setting up the next sequel. Its awful. But it made 1.3 Billion from people willing to spend 15 clams on CG and a terrible story. It’s further evidence that all a movie needs now is stuff being blown up. Story be damned.


‘MEMBER LAST YEAR when Clay Helton was a genius? Remember two years ago when Helton was dog-meat after three games and was incompetent to coach an 8 year old’s AYSO soccer team? I do. Depending on the results on any given Saturday, Helton can be a loved or hated by SC faithful. Right now he’s not exactly loved in Trojan Land. To be honest without Sam Darnold the team does kinda look… terrible.

At present, USC’s fanbase wants a divorce. If Helton doesn’t make a memorable turnaround SC will be filing papers and moving on. USC Fickle fans


SERENA WILLIAMS is the best to ever play women’s tennis. She’s also a diva who, when losing, tends to blame everything and everyone within a tennis ball’s throw. Remember when she threatened to stuff a ball down a linesman’s throat. I hate to break the news but great athletes can be great big jerks.

Williams’ epic melt down was unfortunate and she made it all the worse by claiming that her punishment was the result of sexism. She claimed men are not punished like she was punished. Facts got in the way. The New York Times researched and it turns out men are sanctioned at three times the rate women are. Why? Likely because men are generally bigger jerks than women.

Williams claimed that her coach wasn’t coaching. Her coach admitted he was coaching. She threw a fit while she was losing the match and losing her cool and broke her racquet. She called the Ump a liar and a thief. She then demanded that the umpire apologize to her. Her pique was self-generated, windy nonsense. She wasn’t the victim of sexism, she was the victim of her own self-induced jerkism.




Mark Knight apparently has no self-control and has no editor with self-control and he has no executive editor with a rudimentary ability to see the obvious. Justice Potter Stewart famously said about obscenity: “I’ll know it when I see it”. Justice Stewart would see the obscenity and racism in Knight’s cartoon. Knight’s explanation is, in “Australian” rubbish. There are a dozen ways he could have draw the concept of Williams being a big whinny baby. Like, draw her as… a big baby. He could have drawn Osaka in the foreground, her back to the camera , Osaka looking stunned glancing at Williams as a silhouetted figure slamming her racquet with the same talk bubble. All of the racist elements would have been eliminated and I assume he could have avoided drawing Osaka as a beach Barbie. But I suspect Knight’s intention wasn’t to comment about bad behavior; I think this cartoon was all about the international reaction he knew he’d get. And, apparently he has an editor who backs him up. Bottom line – a tabloid got what it wanted – millions of eyes on a garbage cartoon and it sullied my profession. I don’t need to repeat the vast condemnation I’ve seen – it’s well deserved. It includes a 2,000 word article in the New York Times ( with quoted “experts” on cartooning) and experts on race relations. Suffice to say I was shocked and saddened that Knight muddied what I consider an honorable and important art form – editorial sports cartoonist. I think I’m at the top of my craft and I am proud of the work I do and it hurts when I see exploitation for prurient reasons.

Justice Stewart would definitely declare Knight’s cartoon obscene. So does Justice Jimmytoons, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Sports Cartoonist.