Friday, April 14, 2006

WSJ.com - Misery Begets Art -- And an Emmy Nomination

WSJ.com - Misery Begets Art -- And an Emmy Nomination: "After the success of the movie 'American Splendor', many misfits and malcontents might think their story is worthy of the big screen, but Jerry Zucker and his brother have focused on the small screen. Their site combines unusual animation with comic relief and recently garnered an Emmy nomination.

The Gimmick

Mr. Zucker lives the unassuming life of an all-American schlub. He tends to date women that aggravate his allergies. He admits that a stern remark from an unkind waitress can stir a wave of insecurity. And his list of petty grievances and personal objections is finely honed.
"I hate moths. Last summer my apartment was attacked by those flying vermin," says Mr. Zucker, 46 years old. He has turned these degradations into an animated Web site appropriately named ItsJerryTime.com, on which he battles a cast of tormentors that includes the Meal Moth, his landlord and an alleged telephone conspiracy perpetrated by a duo of old ladies.

Jerry, who has polished these seething complaints into an art form, created the cartoon character "Jerry Zucker," an online alter-ego in a cartoon series that mixes the personal style of a blog with the comic sensibility of a sitcom.

Launched in November as a collaboration with his brother, Orrin Zucker, a graphic designer with his own animation studio, the Web site now includes six installments of Jerry's mild misadventures. The action, or what passes for action, takes place either in an apartment cluttered with the nostalgic debris of his 1960s childhood or in the course of his mundane daily travels."

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