“But why take it out on the deceased?”
This isn’t uncomplimentary to the dead celebrity, but to the living cartoonists.
Obit ‘toons generally ARE knee-jerk, overly sentimental, and obvious. The two “types” shown here are well-represented among those which have appeared since Ebert’s death.
Celebrity deaths too often make for lazy cartooning. I hope that the Thatcher death MIGHT spark some original treatments, but I also expect a dozen “Maggie arriving at the Pearly Gates” cartoons from those who liked her and “Maggie facing the pitchforks and fire” from those who didn’t. (Either treatment will probably have her being welcomed by Ronald Reagan.)