It’s Like … ‘No One You Know’

House pets eloquently dissecting their own primal instincts. Children verbalizing disillusionment in adultspeak. Patients and therapists locked in passive-aggressive combat.

Welcome to the deadpan world of cartoonist Bruce Eric Kaplan.

With scalpel-sharp precision, Kaplan cuts through the genteel falseness in our cluttered, overly analyzed urban lives.

Kaplan himself insists that his inspiration comes from a much simpler source: “It’s completely personal. I’m just a victim like everybody else.”

Raised in Maplewood, N.J., Kaplan grew up with a minimal interest in comics. After college, he worked a thousand jobs before cracking the Hollywood nut with a television writing assignment. In his spare time, Kaplan sent reams of single-panel cartoon ideas to the offices of The New Yorker, only to receive its equal in rejection slips.

Then, in 1991, while authoring banter for the 43rd Annual Emmy telecast, the aspiring cartoonist received another correspondence from the Manhattan-based magazine, this time announcing their purchase of three panels. It was a euphoric event for Kaplan. After all, within the world of gag cartoonists, The New Yorker is the equivalent of playing Carnegie Hall. Kaplan has been cartooning for the periodical ever since.

Currently supporting “No One You Know,” the just-released collection of his cartoons, Kaplan has spent the better part of his life satirizing our lives in the big city — and not just with his comics. Kaplan also wrote scripts for sitcoms “Cybill” and “The Naked Truth” before achieving another career high by joining the staff of “Seinfeld.” Hired to write for the acclaimed NBC comedy’s last season, Kaplan was responsible for some of the late sitcom’s most memorable half hours, including (not so coincidentally) the one in which Elaine sets out to prove that New Yorker cartoons are not funny.

“If I hadn’t written it,” says Kaplan, “I would’ve hated it!”

For information on purchasing original cartoon art by Bruce Eric Kaplan contact Storyopolis (310) 358-2500.