An everyday story of leftwing folk

Monday, 25 November 2013

Workers Institute of Marxism Leninism Mao Tse Tung Thought

When the story of the three "domestic slaves" set free the other day included "Brixton" and "Political ideology" and "1970s", my thoughts immediately turned to these guys. And it looks as though it really was them.

Back in my old scuffling days we used to look out for these people when on demonstrations, especially in London. They used to sell a closely-typed duplicated newletter that carried stories about the "desperate antics of the fascist bourgeoise" and heart rending tales of various "worker comrades" and the terrible oppression they met on a daily basis. And the "gang of four in the imperialist heartlands - Birch, Baines, Reakes, Evans" (these were the leaders of 4 other tiny British Maoist groups). We spent hours rolling about with laughter at the truly bonkers ranting of this lot.

And they're here (I was going to say the rump of them, but you can't have a rump of something that was so small to begin with), still barking after all these years. Part of me is really glad to know that.

PS Added 26 November. Reminded by a news report this morning that it was "this very year, 1977" that the People's Red Army of China would sweep out across the globe and liberate mankind. I never knew how they squared 1978. Apparently they then claimed that China had used computers in satellites to take over the West and the Soviet Union. Turns out that bit was true.

Monday, 18 November 2013

The Marchers: Number 8

Got a new battery for my laptop, so able to work in bars and stuff again.Yay!

Been wanting to tell this gag for SO long. Feel so much better for getting it off my chest.

Coming to the end of Phase 1 of the Marchers - 1 more episode to go - not that there's much Theoctitus left, it still has that momentum. Lots of ideas going in all kinds of directions from here on. And I've had a couple of ideas for other strips, too.

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

The Marchers: Number 7

A bit of fun and high jinks for a change. You can't keep a good character down...

Possibly my favourite so far. Especially the last frame. Somehow akes me think I ought to think of a Christmas card or a Special at the very least.

Saturday, 19 October 2013

The joys of advertising

It's always a delight when I get a parcel from overseas that has used local newspapers and other ephemera in the packaging. I'm like one of those legedary kids who spend more time playing with the box rather than the Christmas present. This time I got a DVD from Malaysia wrapped in what appears to be a flyer for the local equivalent of Lidl.

This one's my favorite.
It gives an insight into how people in distant places see you. AND THEY KNOW THE TRUTH. Wouldn't you just love some Fat Spread on your burnt bread right now?

Monday, 16 September 2013

The Marchers Number 6

At last a new episode. Slowly dying battery on my old laptop/tablet is part of my excuse. But anyways, here we are.

Monday, 15 July 2013

The Marchers: Number 5

Here at last. The old Trotskite did start out as bein someone specific, but he ended up looking like so many of these wizzened old strugglers. There are just so many about. Could be any of them.

I'm still kind of with Theocritus, too. Praxinoa and Gorgo meet an old crone who makes a cryptic allusion to the Trojan Wars... Plus ca change.

Monday, 3 June 2013

The Marchers: Number 4

Here comes episode 4. It's like how we're put on earth to embarrass our children. I stated out thinking I'd have a thought bubble in the last frame saying "embarrassing..." But I don't think it needs it.

Still pretty much a straight lift from Theocritus, really. My 19th century copy says that people thought Idyll XV seemed modern back then. Still does in a spooky way, I think.

Saturday, 11 May 2013


This is another one of the Japanese TV dramas I've got from I don't know why I decided to buy this one. The blurb only really refers to episode 1 and doesn't really do the story justice. It must have been the pic of the gorgeous Kaho on the cover.
Hitorishizuka is a kind of shrub, apparently, with small white flowers. But (based on my scant knowledge) I think there might be a sense here of "Shizuka alone" (Shizuka being the name of the protagonist) and also maybe "the quiet one".

Shizuka (Kaho) goes missing after graduating from Junior High and we witness her story obliquely, through a series of murders and untimely deaths that she is implicated in. Over the 6 episodes we build a picture of Shizuka and her motivation. And at the end, she does achieve some kind of redemption. Through love, I guess.

It's a bleak tale, and nobody comes out of it well. There are police who fail to join the dots (wilfully sometimes) and put the organisation before truth. There are petty, cowardly yakuza. Child pornographers and pimps. All human life, as it were.

Kaho puts in a really good performance as Shizuka - I believed in her character's ability to manipulate people to get the results she wanted. She is the only character who appears in all 6 episodes, but she is supported by a whole bunch of really good character actors. I particularly enjoyed Matsushige Yutaka as the vice cop in episodes 3 and 4.

A cracking yarn, and well worth getting hold of if you can.

Monday, 6 May 2013

The Marchers: Number 3.

Doing this as and when I can. I reckon I've got about 20 pages/episodes kind of planned that mostly add up to a story. So I'll keep at it and see if I can get back into a routine.

Monday, 15 April 2013

The Marchers: Number 2.

Had a wee bit of time this evening to move on with this one...
I like Penny's daughter. She hasn't got a name yet. Maybe we won't find out. In my mind Penny just refers to her as "Stupid Girl". She will get her revenge, no doubt.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

The Marchers. An everyday story...

While I've beeen struggling to get back into Policy Police, I've kept getting distracted by other ideas. So with a deep bow to Theocritus...
This one has been a long time coming. I originally had the idea for this strip back in the late 70s - and was reminded of it a couple of years ago while rummaging in the attic. I wondered if it had the legs to be resurrected in the here and now - I had a couple of half ideas for some 4 panel strips but I wasn't sure who these people were ... then I found the voices I wanted for a couple of characters  - Penny and Georgie - in Praxinoa and Gorgo in Theocritus' XVth Idyll.

I just needed a hook to pull them into the world of now. So lets see how it pans out. I've decided to run them here cuz you know what they say about the Policy Police. Just when you thought you were out...

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

A helpful suggestion

I was shopping in Tescos the other day - I normally shop at Asda - and was reminded of their helpful approach to labelling and allergy advice. Following all the recent horse meat unpleasantness, I think they should follow the same model.

So labels on burgers should read:
  • No horse
  • Not produced in a facility that handles horse
  • Cannot guarantee that this product does not contain horse

That should do it.