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Big Bollocks & Rude Kids: The hilarious vulgarity of UK comic magazine Viz
07.25.2018
07:51 am
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David Bowie kicking back while having a laugh at UK comic Viz.
 
For nearly 40 years British comic Viz—sometimes referred to as Britain’s “funniest” magazine—has been putting out pages full of satire poking fun at various UK institutions and celebrities by a cast of offensive fictional characters. Illustrated ingrates such as Buster Gonad, Sid the Sexist, Terry Fuckwitt, Sweary Mary and the Rude Kid would all make regular appearances in the comic along with ridiculous profanity-laced dialog mixed with the region’s colorful slang. A few of the comic’s vulgar characters, like Sid the Sexist, The Fat Slags and Roger Mellie also made their way to television in the UK as adult-oriented cartoons. 

One of Viz’s calling cards was their craftsmanship of fake ads. Fictional (sadly) products for chastity pants for altar boys, and its companion product, “Father Begone,” a priest-repellant spray, delighted its readers. Viz was very much inspired by MAD Magazine and the images of legendary MAD illustrator and contributor, Sergio Aragonés. What made Viz stand apart from MAD was the belief you could never go low enough for a laugh. In fact, one could say Viz lowered the bar for low-brow humor lower than anyone else in the adult comic game. If you are fond of the word fuck and appreciate the art of toilet humor, then Viz is for you. If you still have any doubts regarding Viz’s wide appeal, David Bowie was apparently a big fan of the comic magazine.

If you’re already a fan of Viz, or a new one after reading this post, there are a few books which may interest you, such as Viz: Sid the Sexist—The Joy of Sexism, and one based on Viz’s Big Fat Slags. As I mentioned at the top of this post, the magazine is still publishing issues today, and back issues can also be obtained over at their official site, as well as other merchandise. I’ve posted images from Viz’s comics below—some are slightly NSFW.
 

A funny fake ad from UK magazine, Viz comics.
 

 

 
More Viz after the jump…

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Posted by Cherrybomb
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07.25.2018
07:51 am
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The Gun Club, Screamin’ Jay Hawkins and Joe Strummer on ‘Art Fein’s Poker Party’
07.24.2018
08:28 am
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Art Fein, Bull Moose Jackson and Paul Body, 1985 (via Another Fein Mess)
 
You know what they say: “Ain’t no YouTube rabbit hole like an Art Fein’s Poker Party YouTube rabbit hole, ‘cause an Art Fein’s Poker Party YouTube rabbit hole goes deep into the bowels of the internet for a very great distance.” It is whispered in some corners of the web that there are as many episodes of Art Fein’s Poker Party as there are stars in the universe.

Fein, the onetime manager of the Cramps and author of The L.A. Musical History Tour, hosted a freewheeling talk show on public access during the eighties, nineties and nothings. Art Fein’s Poker Party was broadcast from sea to shining sea; John Peel watched it. The show presented its guests—Arthur Lee, Nick Lowe, Brian Wilson, Al Kooper, Peter Buck, Randy California, Willy DeVille, Tav Falco, Dion, Pearl Harbour, Willie Dixon, Chris Spedding, P. F. Sloan, Peter Case, Ike Turner, Mojo Nixon, Carlos Guitarlos, Jerry Cole, Peter Holsapple, Dr. Demento, Dwight Yoakam, Brendan Mullen, Harvey Sid Fisher, Steve Allen, et al.—as you might have encountered them over a meal or a drink, telling jokes, obsessing over favorite records, trying to one-up each other’s road stories. They sang and played real pretty sometimes, too.

Below are clips from appearances by Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, Jeffrey Lee Pierce and Joe Strummer. Art Fein, please upload the Arthur Lee episode of Poker Party to your luminiferous YouTube account.

Screamin’ Jay Hawkins and Paul Body:
 

 
Much more after the jump…

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Posted by Oliver Hall
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07.24.2018
08:28 am
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Exercise with Iggy Pop and Nash the Slash on cable TV, 1982
07.19.2018
08:46 am
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All these years listening to Iggy Pop’s 2 Record Set—the brilliant New Values LP plus bits of Soldier and Party—I just assumed Iggy was singing about Nash the Slash because he thought it would be neat to mention the bandaged Canadian multi-instrumentalist and Murph the Surf in the same song. But I shortchanged the relationship. Nash the Slash was Iggy’s opening act on a 1982 tour, and the two lunatics visited the set of Calgary’s music video show, FM Moving Pictures, for a frank, candid, no-holds-barred discussion of farting through bandages and assembling Mansonoid dune-buggy armies to rule the deserts. Let’s not rule out the possibility that Nash and Iggy enjoyed an aperitif in the green room beforehand.

The sound is glitchy, but this version of the video, courtesy of the FM Moving Pictures YouTube channel, is like way better than any previously uploaded copy. Longer, too.

A little past the seven-minute mark, they rise from their seats to demonstrate some of the exercises that comprise “the Osterberg method” of physical fitness. This workout is 100 percent about giving you a solid core and toning your whole body. NSFW, except it be a fuckword-friendly workplace.
 

 
More after the jump…

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Posted by Oliver Hall
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07.19.2018
08:46 am
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Comedy God Rik Mayall talks ‘The Young Ones’ with co-writer Ben Elton from 1985
07.17.2018
01:41 pm
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rik.jpg
 
Has God seemed distant recently? Does He no longer return your calls? Did He forget your birthday? Does He no longer go down on you?

Well don’t lose faith kids, just say a prayer to Rik Mayall.

Comedy God Rick Mayall may have died in 2014 but he is now up there in Heaven making Jesus laugh with his fart jokes, impressing Moses with his humungous willie, and drawing cartoons for Mohammad.

I tell you, I often say a prayer to Saint Rik of The Young Ones. And you know, most times I get a reply. It could be a merest waft of noxious gas, a childish burp, a disdainful snort, or just the usual disembodied hand waving two-fingers at me.

If people pray to saints and what-have-yous who have been dead for hundreds of years then why not Rik who has hardly been dead at all and brought his penis, I mean happiness to millions of people.

I first came across Rik accidentally when I hit the remote button during a porn movie (ahem) suddenly the screen was filled with this bug-eyed loon reciting poetry about theater and Vanessa Redgrave. Who was this juicy hunk of mammal? What was he doing? Why was he so angry? Why was he so funny?

Mayall was one of those “Alternative Comedians” who had established themselves through London’s pub rock circuit before finding residency at the Comedy Store in London in the late 1970s. There was a whole bunch of them: Alexei Sayle, Nigel Planer, Peter Richardson, Dawn French, Jennifer Saunders, Andy de la Tour, and Mayall’s comedy partner Ade Edmondson. And if the press were to be believed (which generally they’re not) these young people were taking over everything. To be fair, it was very difficult to see any one of these acts in the late seventies early eighties on TV. Yes, yes, they did, of course, pop up on late night chat shows like Friday Night, Saturday Morning, or the strange one-off hybrid series like Boom, Boom, Out Go the Lights—which mixed traditional and alternative comedy, or sketch shows like the hugely popular A Kick Up the Eighties. But a five minute blast here or a half-hour there wasn’t exactly storming the Crystal Palace.

At the time out of the Alternative Comedians, it was between Mayall and Sayle who appeared the most on TV. Sayle had been the compere at the Comedy Store who changed his style of stand-up after seeing Robin Williams. He performed his Marxist-inspired routines on a variety of what might be loosely termed traditional shows—most surprisingly on O.T.T. an adult version of kids cult show Tiswas—kids, Sayle once remarked, loved him, but he wasn’t exactly fond of the little critters. Mayall, meanwhile, appeared in adverts for candy bars, sketch shows, music shows (reading his poetry, of course), and then established himself in the nation’s psyche as the investigative reporter Kevin Turvey in A Kick Up the Eighties.

So far so good. But it was when he wrote and devised The Young Ones with Lise Mayer and Ben Elton circa January 1981 that the world was about to change and a Comedy God appear unto nations.
 
03younuns.jpg
‘Once every lifetime…’
 
Nine o’clock on a Tuesday night, November 9, 1982, The Young Ones were unleashed onto the world. Though the series followed a traditional sitcom format of four people in a room with a TV, The Young Ones managed to divide a nation and started, for want of a better word, modern comedy. This was a time when there were just four main channels on British TV: BBC 1 and 2, ITV, and the newly launched Channel 4—which some areas of the country didn’t yet receive. Television hadn’t changed much over the previous decade or two. Monty Python and Spike Milligan’s Q series had made some inroads but their shock value had gone. The Young Ones horrified an older generation who believed these four selfish, nasty, incompetent, and odious characters Rik, Vyvyan, Neil, and Mike would corrupt their offspring and lead to the downfall of civilization. Some wanted the show banned. Others wanted the BBC Licence Fee stopped. But, for a younger generation who were starved of any television programs they could relate to, The Young Ones was like a hand grenade going off at a church service.

Keep reading after the jump…

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Posted by Paul Gallagher
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07.17.2018
01:41 pm
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Groovy photos of Bruce Campbell, Sam Raimi & more on the set of all three ‘Evil Dead’ films
06.26.2018
07:25 am
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Actor Bruce Campbell and his childhood pal director Sam Raimi.
 

Yeah, you know my kids, fortunately, have seen enough of my working life that they know it’s not all blowjobs and limousines.

—actor Bruce Campbell on the reality of being Bruce Campbell

The last week of April was a sad time for fans of Bruce Campbell after the veteran actor (and author) broke the news he was “retiring” from portraying the chainsaw-wielding Ashley Joanna Williams from the trifecta of awesomeness that is the Evil Dead film series. The story of how Ash and The Evil Dead came to be is a pretty sweet one when it comes to Hollywood folklore beginning when director Sam Raimi and Campbell came across each other in high school. When they first met, Campbell thought Raimi was a “creepy weirdo” and he tried hard to avoid him until they found themselves paired together in the same drama class in 1975. Campbell agreed to be Raimi’s assistant for magic shows he had put together for the class and the academic venture would inspire the teenagers to start making movies. According to Campbell, he, Raimi and four other aspiring drama kids joined forces spending as much time as possible making Super-8 films sharing the responsibilities of actor, director, scriptwriter, and camera operator. A short six-years later Raimi would release his first full-length film, The Evil Dead starring his buddy Bruce as Ash Williams—a role Campbell reprised in 2015 for the television version of the film series Ash vs. Evil Dead, 34 years after the wisecracking character came to be in 1981. Before the somewhat surprise cancellation of the show, Campbell said he would pull the plug on Ash himself if cable network Starz yanked the show. Once the ax fell on Ash vs. Evil Dead, Campbell confirmed his days playing Ash were over.

Cambell, aka The Chin, as he is often affectionately referred to, celebrated a birthday this past Friday—his 60th—hanging out in Sacramento, California while the Fandemic Tour dropped in for the weekend. To date, he has at least 125 acting credits to his name and many of Campbell’s fictional alter-egos, such as Ash and his portrayal of an elderly, infirm Elvis Presley in the 2002 cult film, Bubba Ho-Tep have helped to further mythologize Campbell as an actor with the ability to create characters so believable they become one and the same. Much like their days making Super-8 flicks in high school, filming The Evil Dead was a collaborative effort in every sense of the word, Campbell, Hal Delrich/Richard DeManincor (Ash’s pal Scotty in the film) and other actors routinely did their own stunts which regularly sent them off to the emergency room after being injured on set. Bruce Campbell lost a couple of teeth in a freak accident involving a cameraman and actress Betsy Baker (Ash’s girlfriend Linda in The Evil Dead) lost all of her fucking eyelashes after having a prosthetic mask removed from her face. Raimi would elude to this occupational hazard at the film’s premiere by hiring ambulances to park in front of the theater helping to build the hysteria around the blood-drenched flick. After filming principal scenes during conditions so cold it froze cameras and wiring, many actors bailed never to return The remaining crew—thirteen to be precise—took up residence in the cabin in Morristown, Tennessee where the movie was being filmed. There was no running water, no heat and as filming came to a close, the crew took to burning furniture to keep warm. The Evil Dead was a hit as was the follow-up, 1987’s Evil Dead 2, and the final film in the series, Army of Darkness.

So, in honor of Mr. Campbell reaching his seventh decade of being undeniably groovy, I thought it would be fun to take a look at photos taken on the set from all three Evil Dead films. Remember, all of this is possible thanks to a bunch of 20-somethings brave enough to go into the woods with lights, cameras, and a shit-ton of fake blood—hell-bent on creating horror history. Pretty much everything I’ve posted below is NSFW. Bow to the King, baby.
 

Bruce Campbell taking a look at Bad Ash with director Sam Raimi on the set of the 1992 film ‘Army of Darkness.’
 

Campbell in full prosthetics with cameraman James Fitzgerald on the set of ‘Army of Darkness.’
 
Much more after the jump…

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Posted by Cherrybomb
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06.26.2018
07:25 am
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‘Hey, Hey we’re the Grungies’: Pitch-perfect ‘Ben Stiller Show’ sketch skewers 1990s Seattle
06.20.2018
10:37 am
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As the son of Anne Meara and Jerry Stiller—both alums of Second City—Ben Stiller was an early inheritor of the improv tradition that today is a key element of all big-budget comedies. Stiller’s career got an early boost after he wrote, directed, and starred in “The Hustler Of Money,” a remarkably dead-on and suitably high-octane takedown of Martin Scorsese’s 1986 movie The Color of Money, which appeared on Saturday Night Live when Stiller was just 21 years old. It took only a few years for Stiller to be running his own sketch show on Fox, a show that more than any other can be said to contain the originating DNA for the coming generation of comedy (which is now entering its dotage). The writing staff of The Ben Stiller Show featured not only Stiller but also Judd Apatow as well as Bob Odenkirk and David Cross, who would spearhead their own daffy sketch intervention called Mr. Show, which HBO fitfully supported for several years in the late 1990s.

In January 1992 Nirvana played Saturday Night Live, in a moment that cemented the status of grunge as the sorely needed generational response to the calcified pop scene in which the likes of C+C Music Factory, Paula Abdul, and Bryan Adams could dominate the charts. The first season of The Ben Stiller Show began in the autumn of the same year, and sure enough, it aimed its satirical eye at Nirvana and its Seattle cohort of Gen-X rock bands.
 

 
In “The Grungies,” the eponymous quartet, occupants of a single Seattle apartment, has the imprudently uncommercial practice of destroying its instruments onstage. Wearing flannel and Doc Martens (of course), Stiller’s “Jonsie” has the goatee of Soundgarden’s Chris Cornell and (eventually) sings like Kurt Cobain, while the fellow playing the wordless goon “Tork” is assigned the task of adopting Cobain’s trademark blond mop of a hairdo. Stiller and Co. brilliantly adapt the Monkees TV template to land its barbs; the conventions of that show are mimicked with such loving perfection that one suspects the presence of a ringer—a hunch confirmed when Micky Dolenz himself materializes promising a pile of major-label cash.

Watch it after the jump…

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Posted by Martin Schneider
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06.20.2018
10:37 am
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‘Benji Takes a Dive’: Watch America’s favorite canine become the first dog to scuba dive
06.19.2018
09:15 am
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Dogs have done some pretty stupid shit for our entertainment. Toto, Air Bud, Beethoven, Lassie, Spuds Mackenzie—they may have been famous film and TV canines, but you do realize that they had no idea what they were doing, right? I’m sure some Hollywood actors often don’t, either.

Perhaps you are familiar with the popular film franchise, Benji. Its namesake was a small, golden mixed-breed pup whose wit and right-place-right-time arrangement allowed him to solve capers and protect those defenseless humans who truly needed him. As a result, Benji was a much-adored canine worldwide and his premiere 1974 film was a massive commercial success, which spawned an excess of sequels. Earlier this year, Benji made his streaming debut with a newly revamped, made-for Netflix film. I didn’t watch it.

But what you probably didn’t know is that in addition to being an acting dog, Benji also **allegedly** holds a world record. For scuba diving. Aired in 1981, Benji Takes a Dive at Marineland was a made-for-television special that follows the ever-so-lovable pooch as he ventures below the surface, to go where no dog has ever actually wanted to go.
 

Lana Afghana
 

PW Pugit
 
While a ‘behind-the-scenes’ approach could have deemed worthwhile, there isn’t much to report back on this Benji special. It’s hosted by Lana Afghana, a dog-mermaid puppet reporter who is sexually attracted to our protagonist (played by a female dog, mind you). Joining Lana is Benji’s manager PW Pugit, a Boss Hogg-type bulldog (also a puppet). The story begins as Benji arrives by sailboat at Marineland of Florida, a marine mammal park on Florida’s Northeast coast - where the momentous dive will take place. Jesse Davis and the Mulberry Squares, a calypso band of singing fruits, take us into the film’s musical number “I Don’t Know,” containing the rather morbid lyrics “I don’t know can dog survive, when he takes a dive.”
 

The Mullberry Squares
 

What the fuck…
 
The most interesting character of the storyline is its villain Boris Todeth, a communist militia dachshund puppet who attempts to ruin the dive in the name of political ideals. He even goes as far as swim to the very bottom of a shark-infested tank to steal Benji’s custom scuba suit. The plan is quickly exposed, but it didn’t really matter anyway because there was barely any conflict to begin with.
 

Benji and Boris
 

Benji feeds dolphins
 
It all pays off when Benji takes his historic dive. What a beautiful moment. Did he realize how magical it was? Probably not. Was this a miserable experience for him? Very likely. Benji’s suit was specifically-designed for the television special, all the way down to the special hatch that was installed for treat rewards during training. Benji spent weeks practicing diving in a backyard pool in California and whatever that entailed, it was enough to prepare him to swim among the fishes of Marineland.
 
Watch Benji take a dive, after the jump…

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Posted by Bennett Kogon
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06.19.2018
09:15 am
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Bloody brilliant Nintendo TV ads from the early 90s starring Rik Mayall
06.12.2018
08:04 am
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A photo of actor Rik Mayall (RIP) as his namesake Rik in UK television show ‘The Young Ones.’
 
Actor Rik Mayall, whom we lost four years ago this past Saturday, will never be forgotten thanks to his lasting gift of making us laugh at his own, beautifully executed expense. During his career, Mayall played wild fictional characters with enviable viciousness especially his highly-quotable namesake Rik on UK series The Young Ones and for most American audiences, his role in the much-loved doleful comedy, Drop Dead Fred. So when Nintendo made a power play in the UK in the early 90s to try to compete with popular rival Sega, they hired Mayall to appear in a series of television commercials. According to the website Nintendo Life, the company hoped using Mayall as a spokesperson would help them appear less “family friendly” to consumers.

Not only the star of the commercials, Mayall helped write dialog for many of the ads along with Black Adder producer John Lloyd. At the time Mayall was one of the biggest celebrities in the UK, and Nintendo lined his pockets generously for his work which Mayall used to buy a house he nicknamed “Nintendo Towers.” Seven or so spots were shot over five-weeks, and more were planned, but Nintendo’s Japanese owners didn’t “get” Mayall at all and ended his contract with the company. Since I’m fully confident our Dangerous Minds readers get Rik Mayall I’ve posted footage of his nutty Nintendo commercials below. Game ON!
 

 
HT: Nintendo Life

Posted by Cherrybomb
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06.12.2018
08:04 am
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Awesome 1966 Batman trading cards painted by Norman Saunders
06.04.2018
08:40 am
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Spikes of Death
 
Adam West’s Batman TV series debuted on January 12, 1966—the network it ran on was ABC. Over the course of a little more than 2 years, 120 delightful episodes (!) were produced showcasing West’s brilliantly deadpan comedic timing, a gallery of colorful and mentally deranged villains, and some unspecified number of celebrity cameos as the “Dynamic Duo” scaled the side of that one apartment building. It was the perfect crystallization of a certain brand of camp humor that has still never been equaled on television.

The arrival of the show ushered in ample opportunities for promotion, and one of the best artifacts celebrating the program was the Topps line of Batman trading cards painted by Norman Saunders. There were parallel lines of Batman trading cards using still photographs, but I’m not talking about those, just the Saunders paintings. Topps actually had several lines of Saunders’ Batman cards, known by collectors as the “black,” “blue,” and “red” series based on the color of the bat logo bearing the card’s heart-palpitating caption.
 

 
Born in North Dakota in 1907, Saunders broke into pulp graphics in the 1930s, when he got paid $150 a pop to do covers for classic Western tales with titles like The Lead-Slingers and Too Hot For Hell. His most famous work is likely his legendary 1962 Mars Attacks! cards that inspired Tim Burton’s 1996 movie of that name.

One of Saunders’ abiding beliefs that helps his work resonate so profoundly was his notion that effective art required a tangible real-life referent. As he told the Gannet Westchester Rockland newspaper chain (which produced my hometown Citizen Register during that era) in 1983:
 

If you do something from life, something that is really true that you see, the truthfulness and honesty in the picture comes through. I learned that. You got to paint a picture of a person, you get a person. You got to paint a picture of a dog, you get a dog. Even if you have to tack him up on the wall to see what he looks like.”


 
One of the best things about Batman as a mythic character, from the perspective of 2018, is a pleasing unity in terms of Batman’s station in life. Batman’s domain is unquestionably Gotham City, and that’s been true for the Burton movies and the Nolan movies, not to mention any number of AAA video games—and even though they are incredibly different in tone it’s also true of the original 1966 series as well. Batman fights for the people of Gotham, period. Batman isn’t some hero you can just drop into a swamp willy-nilly and make him tussle with an alligator, you know?
 

Grappling a Gator
 
Saunders never seemed to get the memo on that particular topic, and one particularly delightful aspect of his cards is that Batman is depicted doing so many “un-Batman” things, like participating in a rodeo, dealing with a ghostly baddie out of Scooby-Doo and….. yup, tussling with an alligator. (Of course, there’s a parallel lineage from the Silver Age in which escaping from deadly water traps miles away from Gotham was exactly the kind of thing Batman did.)

The cards are (obviously) prized by collectors—just a few weeks ago a single card from this set went for $599! But they’re available for far less than that as well.
 

Gassed by a Geranium
 
Many more of these delightful Batman cards after the jump…....
 

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Posted by Martin Schneider
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06.04.2018
08:40 am
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Can tears up ‘Dizzy Dizzy’ in their last TV appearance, 1977
05.25.2018
08:34 am
Topics:
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YouTube user Bruno S. has taken a lot of killer TV footage of Seventies bands and cleaned up the sound and picture. (Listen, for instance, to his Captain Beefheart live at Beat-Club.)

I particularly like what Bruno S. has done with Can’s appearance on WDR’s Musik Extra, recorded in January 1977, a few months before they ceased to exist as a live band. It’s the five-piece lineup that played Can’s last shows: Jaki Liebezeit on drums, Michael Karoli on guitar, Holger Czukay on tapes and effects, Irmin Schmidt on keyboard and Silver Surfer jacket, and Rosko Gee on bass. Music does not get much better than their jam on “Dizzy Dizzy,” the first track from Soon Over Babaluma, and “Don’t Say No” is pretty good, too.

Bruno S. omits the interview Can gave Musik Extra.
 

Posted by Oliver Hall
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05.25.2018
08:34 am
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