March for libraries 

There were two marches in London last Saturday: the million masks march (widely reported in the press) and a national protest against library closures (less so). A quarter of all libraries have been lost since May 2010. Since then, we’ve seen this venerable and worthy profession hollowed out by austerity and its cheery Cameroonian coverContinue reading “March for libraries “

Draughts, London’s first board game cafe: Morning Star column 17/11/2015

For a lot of people, board games either evoke fuzzy nostalgic childhood memories or unfurl anecdotes about how their sister punched a wall while playing Monopoly at Christmas. But in the past half a decade, there has been a revolution in the genre, with beautifully designed and conceived games increasing in popularity. The most popularContinue reading “Draughts, London’s first board game cafe: Morning Star column 17/11/2015”

Rebel Footprints: A Guide to Uncovering London’s Radical History: Morning Star column 01/09/2015

IF YOU stand on Great Dover Street across from the Tube in Borough, south London, and look north, you see the historic church of St George the Martyr. It’s overlooked by the new “iconic” skyscrapers of the city across the river, which tower over the old church like drunken teenagers leering over a wall toContinue reading “Rebel Footprints: A Guide to Uncovering London’s Radical History: Morning Star column 01/09/2015”

Arnie all-nighter at the Prince Charles Cinema: Morning Star column 08/09/2015

THE Prince Charles in London’s West End isn’t the only repertory cinema in Britain. There’s the magnificent BFI, for instance, with its lovingly curated seasons and its carefully calibrated programme that balances beautifully between pretension and popularity. But the BFI wouldn’t show Mothra, an infamous Japanese monster film from the 1960s. It’d never arrange aContinue reading “Arnie all-nighter at the Prince Charles Cinema: Morning Star column 08/09/2015”

Dirty Rotten Comics: Morning Star column 16/10/2015

A MAN in a bar has antlers grow unexpectedly from his forehead. While you’re digesting that, a woman’s mind wanders as she’s subjected to terrible rock music while taking an MRI scan. A kid can move mountains with his mind but would rather play Playstation, while a cheery piece of marshmallow goes for a doomed walkContinue reading “Dirty Rotten Comics: Morning Star column 16/10/2015”

S*M*A*S*H and These Animal Men at Heaven 11/09/2015: Morning Star column 15/09/2015

IN THE comic Phonogram: Rue Britannia, they’re known as retromancers who are trying to resurrect the long-dead musical magic of the past. At London’s Heaven on a Friday night, the old punks and new wave of new wavers have come to worship the sound of 1994, in the form of S*M*A*S*H and These Animal Men.Continue reading “S*M*A*S*H and These Animal Men at Heaven 11/09/2015: Morning Star column 15/09/2015”

The rise of social gaming: Morning Star column 24/10/2015

A GROUP of young men are gathered around a screen. On it, a small spaceship piloted by a young anime-style girl is scrolling from left to right, skilfully avoiding a barrage of laser fire and enemy ships unleashing a quite staggering amount of weaponry. The boss — a huge, flying battleship — hoves into view,Continue reading “The rise of social gaming: Morning Star column 24/10/2015”

Has Doctor Who lost its edge? Morning Star column 30/09/2015

IT’S the story of a suspiciously human-looking alien. With a magic box. Travelling through space and time. Having adventures. You’ve probably seen it. I’m talking Doctor Who here, as series I love. Though it may not be that important in the cosmic scheme of things, it’s a jewel in the BBC’s crown which is adoredContinue reading “Has Doctor Who lost its edge? Morning Star column 30/09/2015”

The Bluetones at the London Forum 24/09/15: Morning Star column 6/10/2015

AT THE pub in the back streets of London’s Kentish Town, The Bluetones — due to play at the Forum across the road — are at the next table. It’s as good way as any of knowing that a band aren’t due on stage yet. The Bluetones are back. Had they ever gone away? TheContinue reading “The Bluetones at the London Forum 24/09/15: Morning Star column 6/10/2015”

Aama Volume 4: You Will be Glorious, My Daughter: Morning Star column 13/10/2015

AN AMNESIAC man wakes up in a desolate landscape. As he focuses his unexpectedly perfect eyes — wasn’t he near sighted? — a gorilla wearing a satchel appears over the horizon. From the waist down, the robot has human legs. The gorilla is delighted to see him, then worried that he can’t remember a thing.Continue reading “Aama Volume 4: You Will be Glorious, My Daughter: Morning Star column 13/10/2015”