Bill Griffith - Zippy: Walk A Mile in My Muu-Muu
- Paul Dale
- 13 March 2008
Having made his first appearance in Real Pulp Comix in 1971 Zippy is getting old. For the uninitiated Zippy is a polymath, free associating pinhead who wanders the consumerist besieged wastelands of the US. Griffith’s strips, which appear in many newspapers across America, are surreal and nonsensical meditations on pop culture ephemera and what Zippy calls ‘randomosity, senselessitude, absurdology.’
With his yellow and red polka dot muu-muu (a Polynesian shirt which looks like a maternity gown), puffy white shoes and philosophical non sequiturs, Zippy is a beguiling and perplexing creation whose roots lie in Robert Williams’ 1960s hot rod art coupled with the abstruse weirdness of Lynch’s Eraserhead. With no real jokes and so many mad political, philosophical and cultural references in each strip that Griffith feels the need to provide a ‘pindex’, Zippy is an acquired taste, but once acquired it is not easy to give up.