Think Global, Read Local: the logic of ‘Dodgem Logic’

November 3, 2009

Cult comic book writer and anarchist, Alan Moore,  is behind the launch of “the 21st century’s first underground magazine” from his home town of Northampton. Issue 1 of ‘Dodgem Logic‘ is due out this month and will combine underground art, politics and entertainment. Better still it will include eight ‘local’ pages which can be customised to suit different regions, cities, towns or villages – a strategy which should be adapted by papers like Freedom, Black Flag or Class War.

Dodgem-Logic-issue-1

Alan’s incredibly talented daughter, Leah, and the equally as talented Mr John Reppion (creators of the ‘Wild Girl’ mini series) say on their blog

Drawing upon an overlooked and energetic pool of local talent as well as numerous friends and co-conspirators from comic books, the arts or entertainment, Dodgem Logic sets out to provide a splash of subterranean exotica in a bleached-out cultural and social landscape. Published every other month by counter-culture veterans KNOCKABOUT, Dodgem Logic is a forty page full-colour spectacle that, in addition, has an eight-page local section in each issue, thus inviting other areas to publish regional editions by providing their own inserts.

As cheap and beautiful as a heartbreaking teenage prostitute, Dodgem Logic has a cover price of £2.50, with its content similarly tailored to the fiscal toilet-bowl that we are currently engaged in sliding down. Regular columnists provide delicious, inexpensive recipes, wide-ranging medical advice, simple instructions for creating stylish clothing and accessories from next to nothing, guides to growing your own dinner by becoming a guerrilla gardener, and, in the first of Dave (The Self-Sufficient-ish Bible) Hamilton’s environmental columns, a bold experiment in living with no money. The same approach to helping readers deal with socio-economic meltdown and a blitz of repossessions is there in upcoming features on the present-day resurgence of the squatters’ movement, or in our communiqués from the Steampunk/ Post-Civilisation gang on how to start rebuilding culture and society before those things have broken down completely and our children are reduced to battering each other to a bloody pulp with their now-useless X-Boxes in a dispute over the last tub of pot noodles.

Not only seeking to give practical advice on getting through a rough stretch, Dodgem Logic is also committed to alleviating the attendant sense of anguish and despair by brightening the world with the astonishing cartoon-work of League of Extraordinary Gentlemen’s sublime Kevin O’Neill or that of underground legend Savage Pencil; the musings of Father Ted, The IT Crowd and Black Book’s own Graham Linehan or of the nation’s sweetheart, the implacably positive Josie Long; even a delirious commemoration of the lunar landing’s anniversary by the masterful Steve Aylett. In addition to a variously-hosted women’s column launched by Lost Girls co-creator and erstwhile underground cartoon artist Melinda Gebbie, Mr. Moore will himself be contributing a lead feature on the history of underground subversive publishing from its origins in the thirteenth century, along with various illustrations and words of advice. All these and many other sterling features, including a free CD of magnificent home-grown Northampton music over fifty years, will be contained in the historic premiere issue, sporting an hallucinatory  front cover by digital artist Tamara Rogers and debuting this November. Wake up and smell the fairground ozone! No ramming!

They also point out that Northampton is a typical English town with its fair share of problems, but also its share of homegrown talent.

Northampton [is] a community that is right at the geographical, political and economic heart of the country; one which has half its high street boarded up and is at present dying on its arse, just like everywhere else.

Let’s hope that Dodgem Logic gives Northampton and every other town the creative kick up the arse we all need to make things better for ourselves 🙂

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