Monday, November 10, 2014

The Bojeffries Saga

Reams have been written about Alan Moore's two main stories for Dez Skinn's 1980s Warrior magazine. But while Marvelman and V for Vendetta were tearing up the rule books and redefining British comic books he also created a third, often overlooked strip for Warrior. The Bojeffries Saga first appeared in issue 12 and was illustrated perfectly by Steve Parkhouse. The set-up was deceptively simple as a boring, bureaucratic rent man attempts to collect long overdue back payments from the family who live in a nondescript British terraced house.

The Bojeffries are a bunch of madcap individuals including a werewolf, a vegetarian vampire and a daughter who may be the most powerful being in the universe. It was as if the Adams family had come to England and moved into a house on Benefits street. Only four episodes were printed before Warrior folded but over the years Moore and Parkhouse have published extra stand alone tales in a variety of other books. Earlier this year all of these stories were published in one reasonably priced volume giving us a chance to catch up with this weird oddity.

The early episodes set in Moore's home town of Northampton are the best and the most bizarre. The Bojeffries family appear to inhabit a version of a much earlier Britain with council houses, rent collectors, works' Christmas parties, and the remnants of light manufacturing industries it seems that Moore is recreating the life he grew up in during the fifties and sixties. The later add on tales bring the family into the 21st century and the world of reality TV and ASBOs. I have to say although Parkhouse's art is still marvellous these episodes seem more forced and have less of the weird wonder of the originals.

Still this is a great opportunity to discover these strange tales from two 2000AD droids, especially if you get the Kindle version which is currently cheaper than a cup of coffee.

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