Speed Reads

last night on late night

Seth Meyers stages live New Yorker cartoons, while David Remnick over-explains

The New Yorker's often-abstruse cartoons are treated like the literary set's Sunday Comics page. The one-frame cartoons are frequently funny, but so famously hard to understand that Seinfeld got an entire episode out of a particularly cryptic one. That's the background for Seth Meyers' second installment of theatrical re-enactments of New Yorker cartoons, featuring his Late Night Players and some real, not-particularly-hard-to-get cartoons.

These living comic strips are entertaining enough, but the highbrow icing on the cake is New Yorker editor David Remnick explaining what the cartoons mean. In great detail. There's a nice little tribute to frequent cartoon contributor Charles Barsotti, who died last month, near the end. Consider this the after-dinner mint to your late night nosh. --Peter Weber