If you’ve ever needed proof that potty humor in general – fart humor in particular – these images depicting epic flatulence battles should do the trick.
There’s a centuries-old scroll called He-Gassen (“the fart war”) dating to Japan’s Edo Period (1603-1868) that depicts men, rear ends bared, spraying powerful gusts of gas toward each other – gas that can break boards and cross wide battlefields to win the day.
Though the depictions aren’t entirely unique – Arabian Nights features a story titled “The Historic Fart” and Apocolocyntosis, a satire possibly written by Seneca, references a “shart” (“When he had made a great noise with that end of him which talked easiest, he cried out, ‘Oh dear, oh dear! I think I have made a mess of myself.'”)
And bathroom humor has a long history in European political dissent – this is a woodcut from 1545 entitled “Kissing the Pope’s Feet”:
But back to Japan…
In the Japanese art, Westerners in particular were apt to be blown away by the strength and prowess of the Japanese wind, so the scroll pictured also counts (crudely) as a political cartoon.
The creators of South Park have nothing on whoever created it, for sure.
If you want more (and of course you do), you can check out the full collection here.