Heathers: The TV series

I was a huge fan of the original movie, one which only improved with repeated exposure. We reviewed it not once but twice, then wrote in depth about the original script in Trash City #12 and it’s undeniably a case where the film could simply not be made today. It came out a decade before Columbine pushed school violence front and centre. While I can hardly call that “a kinder, gentler time,” its pitch-black humour regarding the topic would be considered thoroughly inappropriate these days. Though as writer Daniel Waters points out, “No one wanted it to be made in the late 80s, either.” Still, it became a musical, about which I have absolutely no interest. Then, in 2018, a TV series was made – the third attempt to do so – and that’s when the shit truly hit the fan.

Read More

Howard Jones + Midge Ure

Farnsworth Hall, Mesa
June 26th, 2022

I got to cross off two eighties icons for the price of one here, and also visit a venue we’d not been to before. Looking at their schedule (or even the marquee outside, above), they seem to specialize in tribute groups, e.g. Ronstadt Revival, The Magic Of Manilow or – and I quite liked this one’s name – Shania Twin. These caused one friend to wonder if we were sure these were going to be the real Howard Jones and Midge Ure. I am pleased to confirm we did not have to accept any imitations.

Read More

Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark

Paramount Theater, Denver
March 14th, 2022

It took a very long time before I got to see OMD live. I think I became aware of them in the autumn of 1980, when their first hit, Enola Gay, hit Radio 1. I was certainly a fan: Architecture and Morality was on very heavy rotation on my bedroom record-player, though they drifted off my radar after Paul Humphreys left the group in 1989. Their re-formation in the mid-2000’s was well off my radar, but a few years ago, I bumped into a documentary about the group on YouTube, which re-ignited my interest. In January 2019 – a mere thirty-nine years after first hearing them – I finally got to see OMD when they played Tucson, Arizona in support of an art exhibition about, of all things, dazzle camouflage.

Read More

Fuck you, Jimmy Savile

I was watching the Netflix documentary, Jimmy Savile: A British Horror Story, over the weekend. I was reminded of the time, over 20 years ago and well before he was officially outed as a massive pedophile predator, when I brushed tangentially against him. In 2000, I had published a spoof Have I Got News For You transcript supposedly detailing out-takes from the show episode in which he appeared, and which saw Paul Merton tear into Savile mercilessly. Demon, my hosting provider at the time, got hit with a legal take-down notice.

Read More


Warfield Theater, San Francisco
March 11th, 2022

After two days there, I am convinced San Francisco is a hell-hole. Chris’s catchphrase on the trip was “I smell weed”, while mine was “Insane homeless person or angry Bluetooth caller?” Even the iconic cable-cars are terrible. You spend 45 minutes waiting to get on, in frigid conditions, then the view you get as you bounce around like a bingo-ball is this, because it’s so overpacked. It therefore says something about my love of Sparks that we were prepared to endure all of this and go there for the band – the first time I’d ever seen them live, after almost fifty years of liking them

Read More