Father McKenzie’s Sermon (w/apologies to McCartney/Lennon)


About joshcomix
Brooklyn-based cartoonist specializing in nonfiction comics about topics like Hurricane Katrina, the media, travel, and finance.

14 Responses to Father McKenzie’s Sermon (w/apologies to McCartney/Lennon)

  1. bardot says:

    ! this forced me to find and listen to this song.
    fun fact: although i own john lennon records, i made a conscious effort never to buy any beatles stuff

  2. man_size says:

    I adore the art. I don’t get the comic.

    • 4_eyez says:

      Is it comics?
      Good question. I look at it like I’m having a continuing conversation with the song. The lyrics are very imagistic and it struck me that given many (most?) readers’ familiarity with the song, I could use the words as a jumping-off point to imagining the scene at Eleanor’s funeral. It was fun picking out details – like Father McKenzie’s socks, or Eleanor’s jar of rice – and adding them to the tale.
      I agree that on its own, the one-pager is problematic as a stand-alone piece, but personally I enjoy the frisson generated by the two. There’s something intriguing to me about using pop-culture artifacts and common reference points as markers to bounce ideas off of, to spark further creativity.
      You see this all the time in comics, where creators use previous creators’ work in a self-referential way to tell their own stories. Whether it’s ripping off a classic Buscema action pose or a panel from a Tintin comic, the artist uses their swipe to include the reader in an associated set of meanings which gives further resonance (hopefully) to their own work.
      Final thought: if I had simply illustrated the scene in a typical way, just one image, no titles or balloons, I’m sure you couldn’t object to it. Boring, but standard. But by “illustrating” it in comics form, it rubs you the wrong way. Maybe you’re putting inherent limits on what comics can do?
      BTW, here are the lyrics:
      Ah, look at all the lonely people
      Ah, look at all the lonely people
      Eleanor Rigby picks up the rice in the church where a wedding has been
      Lives in a dream
      Waits at the window, wearing the face that she keeps in a jar by the door
      Who is it for?
      All the lonely people
      Where do they all come from ?
      All the lonely people
      Where do they all belong ?
      Father Mckenzie writing the words of a sermon that no one will hear
      No one comes near.
      Look at him working. darning his socks in the night when there’s nobody there
      What does he care?
      Eleanor Rigby died in the church and was buried along with her name
      Nobody came
      Father McKenzie wiping the dirt from his hands as he walks from the grave
      No one was saved

  3. Anonymous says:

    I totally picked up on the details… and I don’t think its just because I am a Beatlemaniac. Most people will know this song, and will get the references- which are very striking in the lyric- and it’s cool that you fleshed it out more, writing a sermon for Fr Mac, and showing us the scene. Each panel, pretty much, has something from the lyric.
    Works as a one pager, but naturally I want MORE! 🙂
    Now, are there any copyright issues with you using this? Probably not, as the actual lyrics are not used… but on a related note, your Let It Beast design was banned from Cafe Press for being infringing.

    • 4_eyez says:

      Re: Sweet
      yo bc, your comments mean that much more to me knowing you are a true beatles afficianado!
      re: “let it beast” — my first CD cover, a keen t-shirt, and now officially censored. the coolness never stops!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Re: Sweet
      that’s unfortunate BC, their checking dept. has slip ups though….
      they printed my logo on a dozen shirts….you know the one 😉
      ..Love the comic strip btw…another beatlefreak here.

  4. Anonymous says:

    father mckenzie
    omg i love the beatles!!!

  5. Anonymous says:


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