The “Greed is Good” Tory call-to-arms Boris Johnson speech got a lot of column inches last week. It was almost (horrifyingly) refreshing to have Conservative ideals so honestly spoken aloud like that. I generally like to avoid doing my comic on something everyone has already commented on but I liked the idea of taking the Twilight Zone approach and pitching these elitist, divisive viewpoints as some sort of horrific sci-fi near future.
I enjoyed throwing a few references to classic sci-fi into this one. There are homages to the Colorado architecture from Sleeper, Logan’s Run jumpsuits, HAL, and even EVE from WALL-E.
Rob Ford’s such a gift to a topical comedian isn’t he? So much so that I’m not entirely sure he actually exists. I’m convinced that a team of Daily Show, SNL, and Colbert Report writers grew him in a lab somewhere. Thus, this comic was born.
I really enjoyed trying to do some Frankenstein/horror lighting and homage the Nosferatu staircase shot. I’d love to do more of this when I don’t have so many panels to fit in such a small area. It was a lot of fun to draw and colour.
FIFTY! Taking into account a couple of double issues and conference issues this marks my first year contributing to the New Statesman. I’m extremely proud to be part of the magazine and proud of the work I’m doing there. Every week I feel like I’m getting closer to finding In The Frame’s voice and I’m happy with how the weekly routine is starting to feel like second nature. Thanks to everyone at the NS for all the hand-holding, proofing, editing, and support this past year. Fingers crossed ITF makes it to 100!
You can read the archived 50 here.
This week is all about the Lord Mayor’s banquet in which Cameron called for austerity from a golden lectern. Something most people would consider beyond parody. Challenge accepted.
Somehow, while I wasn’t paying attention, the John Lewis Christmas ad has become some sort of annual event. I missed that memo.
This new one has a Keane song covered by Lily Allen and a cartoon hare. My grandad was an animator on Watership Down so helped me and kids of my generation view cartoon rabbits/hares with the cautious suspicion they deserve. So it was probably never going to appeal to me. Still, why not use a bit of cynical, mawkish marketing as an excuse to draw a depressing relationship-gone-sour comic in an attempt to subvert it? That’s what I always say.*
* Full disclosure – I have said this once.
When Angela Merkel responded to the revelation that the US were bugging her phone, she commented that “friends don’t spy on each other”. It made me think about those times when I’ve sat and listened with morbid curiosity to those random pocket dials that sometimes happen. And so this comic happened…
NB. The title for this was originally “Ouroboros: or Life of a Viral Video”. Just to heap that meta on.
Yes, I shared that Russell Brand interview with Paxman the other week on facebook like everyone else. Yes, I was excited to see dissatisfaction with the status quo articulated by a charismatic and witty figure with a large fanbase. No, I don’t like the “don’t vote” takeaway. Yes, the whole “revolution” talk is a little embarrassing. Yes, Brand’s fairly sexist rhetoric elsewhere makes him a difficult figure to rally behind. Yeah, I like some of the Robert Webb piece this week (though my friend Dan pointed out it was essentially this scene from Peep Show as an article). But my word, the internet fell into wonderfully familiar patterns when this all went viral. The immediate shares, the backlash, the twitter spats, the “bored of Russell Brand” comments, the “bored of people being bored of Russell Brand” comments, the opinion pieces, the counter-opinion pieces… By the end of the day it felt like the whole thing was an art installation about the internet.
Hence this cartoon.
Banksy’s in New York. Tackling those big, monolithic corporations that everyone else is too afraid to criticise. Yes, his latest work is a critique of that shadowy behemoth McDonalds. Finally! Sorry Corporate America, you’ve just been Banksyed. Ouch. Maybe if someone can go ahead and make a documentary about the evils of McDonalds too we can– wait… hang on a sec… McDonalds? What is this, 2004?
Low hanging fruit Banksy. Low hanging fruit.
Here’s a new poem comic written by Chrissy Williams (who has recently been nominated for the Michael Marks award!) and illustrated by me. We had a lot of fun bouncing ideas and rough layouts back and forth on this.
As they used to say in art college, “if there’s a news story that allows you to draw Patrick Troughton era Doctor Who, never pass that up”. So here we are.
Naturally, Congress finally managed to reach an agreement the day this was published.
I’ve had this idea for a while now. It pops in my head whenever I see an interview with a female author/politician/campaigner/artist etc. in a broadsheet weekend supplement. It’s infuriating.
I chose to do it this week after seeing fellow comic artist Isabel Greenberg interviewed in The Metro. It was a wonderful piece of exposure for Isabel and her work, and a great sign for UK comics in general. But the condescending and surprisingly sexist way in which it was presented was saddening. Luckily, Isabel herself comes across very well. But can we all stop this obvious, patronising presentation of female interviewees now please?