The new issue of League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen: Century came out last week, and as the team reach 1969, we see the continual plans of Oliver Haddo, analogy for Aleister Crowley as he continues his lives, now using a fictional equivalent of the Rolling Stones and their performance in Hyde Park, here named after Mr Hyde. But these were my favourite references, reading through.
1. Basil Fotherington-Thomas
We kick off with on Basil Fotherington-Thomas from the Molesworth books, a series of private school memoirs written by the illiterate Molesworth. He “loves the sounds of nature” and “he is a wet and a weed”. In League he has grown up to become a Rolling Stone/Brian Jones analogy, but still wears his Miss Joyful Prize for Raffia Work from the books.
2. Mr C.
Jacky Carter, as portrayed by Michael Caine in Get Carter, although his speech patterns are closer to his role in Alfie. But also has traits in common with John Constantine. Family up north, the trenchcoat, the blonde hair and here investigating the occult, even if Mr C finds the idea ludicrous.
3. There Will Come Soft Rains
Dark They Were And Golden Eyed was London’s first comic shop, and Berwick Street was its second location, here portrayed as There Will Come Soft Rains. Both titles are from Ray Bradbury short stories. Gosh Comics moves to Berwick Street next week.
4. Fred Kite and the Steptoes
Okay so it’s just a fleeting glimpse. But Harold Steptoe and father from Steptoe And Son (remade in the US as Sanford And Son), passing by Peter Seller’s Fred Kite, trade unionist with Stalinist dreams, a Hitler moustache (Hynkel moustache in this world, I guess) and it seems a Norsefire logo from the V For Vendetta movie as a badge. Some clips of the both below.
5. The Rutles.
Just as The Purple Orchestra are a fictional version of the Rolling Stones, using Mick Jagger’s role as a singer in Performance as a way in, The Rutles are The Beatles. The Rutles were a creation by Eric Idle and Neil Innes, a Beatles parody for their show Rutland Weekend Television that span out into their own movie, All You Need Is Cash, which cameoed George Harrison.
There are tribute bands now. But here are the original copies… if you know what I mean.
Jess Nevins is putting together a complete Annotations to the book, I’ve already sent him a few I noted that he hadn’t… but was pleased to discover the observation that Brian Jones bought AA Milne’s home.
I love that about League. You can keep on keeping on reading the book, time anfter time, finding something new. So… what have you found that Jess hasn’t yet?