Conjuring up cartoonish gangs in craptastic rhyme and getting a kick out of culturespawning...

I have a thing for gangs, probably because I've never been a member of a gang, 'cause I'm interested in culture/subculture and probably because I've watched way too many 'gang' films. I'm not really into 'gangsta' culture or ultra-lowbrow posturing on council estates and tend to prefer 'classier', cultured gang-centric works (show me the socio-cultural explorations of life in the Sicilian Mafia, the Yakuza or the Russian Bratva, please). My favourite gang texts, however, are the ones that are supercampy, kitsch and cartoonish. If I was joining a gang I'd only want to join one with ridiculous costumes, idiosyncratic lingo and a sense of absurdist fun. If you're going to be a criminal, you might as well be a fun and creative criminal, righty right?

The best gang flicks in my humble opinion, therefore, are A Clockwork Orange and The Warriors and I've channelled their camptastic spirit (especially that of The Warriors) into today's picture book script which is titled "Which Gang Should I Join?" The scenario is that there's a rough young hoodlum eager for ultraviolence and he's aspiring to join a gang. The text reels of list of potential groups he could hook up with in rhyming couplet style and the idea is that each gang gets a glorious accompanying illustration. Forming the characters and look of each unit would be a really enjoyable challenge for any artist and it offers all the awesome potential of worldbuilding.

It's been an absolute riot imagining up my own gangs and concocting awful rhymes to describe them. A sample of the craptastic kind of creation today's picture book involves...

Possibly the Harbour Hep-Cats, ultra-stylish dockyard goons.
Hair slicked back with beluga oil, they wield vintage harpoons.

I like bad rhymes and I really like spawning mythology, so even if it doesn't quite gel and succeed as my own supreme attempt to ape The Warriors, I've got a list of entities that could spin-off in a multitude of ways. I'd love to tell further tales of the Black-Mac Morbids (ultraviolent goth gang), the City Savages (cannibal Wall Street traders gone native), the Catwalk Nasties (psycho supermodel crimelords) and the Carnival Kingpins (killer clown big top freakshow bastards).

There's potential here for a whole lot of future trouble and that's one of the good things about this March Madness trip. You generate ideas and dredge up a fair bit of junk but maybe, just maybe, amidst all the muck their are gems that can be polished off and put on show later. As always, if anyone would like to join me and form a gang, just hit me up and we'll brainstorm our image. Alternatively you can just offer your artistic services and I promise I will never chop off your little finger or put a horse's head in your bed. Righty righty?

No comments:

Post a Comment