Three-quarters of the way through Bill Clinton’s speech at the Democratic National Convention last night, there was a shift. The former president had been tracing his wife’s achievements and commitment to helping those who need it. Then he made a point about how we don’t always see the Hillary he’s seen and it’s because her opponents have created a version of her that’s easier to attack.
"So your only option is to create a cartoon, a cartoon alternative, then run against the cartoon," Bill said. "Cartoons are two-dimensional, they’re easy to absorb. Life in the real world is complicated and real change is hard. And a lot of people even think it’s boring. Good for you, because earlier today you nominated the real one."
Bill’s point got raucous applause, energizing the crowd in Philadelphia. And it also served some inspiration for The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. On Tuesday night, Colbert brought to life the sentient being known as Cartoon Hillary Clinton.
Cartoon Hillary smiles too much. Cartoon Hillary points too much. Cartoon Hillary is a weird robot but also a cartoon.
"I met a single mother who told me she needed a job," Cartoon Hillary said, making a point about the American economy. "I was so moved I hired her to be a talking point in my speeches. And Stephen, together we did. High touch of hands! [Cartoon Hillary’s understanding of a high five.]"
Cartoon Hillary Clinton isn’t quite as comical as Stephen Colbert’s Cartoon Donald Trump, and perhaps that’s the point. That even in cartoon form, she’s not that laugh-out-loud funny. But he does let her get in one jab.
"That’s what I love about America," Cartoon Hillary says about the idea of equality in the country. "It’s the only place where a secretary of state, senator, and life-long public servant can be put on equal footing with a screaming cantaloupe."