Page 45 Review by Stephen
"Everything you look at tells you it's the future. But everything you hear is the same old same old."
Politics for a start, and a public so self-centredly apathetic it cannot even be arsed to get out from in front of the TV once every four years to drag its sorry collective carcass down to the polling booths and vote.
(If you don't vote then you have no right to complain about any aspect of life in the UK. Please don't tell me they're all the same. If you think the BNP is the same as the Liberal Party then I agree that you should at least have your hand held at the booth, but if you decide not to vote because you don't think yours will count then you are an outrageously egocentric wanker I don't even want to take money from.)
As the Presidential Election looms in the wake of last volume's murder, there is a pause to take stock. Everything's changed. The President has gone to ground leaving the ruthless, misanthropic opposition candidate Callahan to bask in a new electoral sympathy, whilst Spider Jerusalem stands way, way up on the balcony of his luxurious new apartment, sequestered from the political intrigue that he feels sucked him in but also from the streets below. It's there that mothers are having to pawn their child's favourite teddy bear for the sake of an appetite suppressor, where all manner of injustices are taking place because of the people in power: those with no ambition, or worse still, those with the active ambition to screw everyone over. Then suddenly both candidates want to be interviewed by the man they loathe most. They're going to wake giant up...
Meanwhile, as I say, it's all fun and games down below with a "back to basics" Rechristianity movement stoning people on the street:
"We're bringing moral order to our communities first, before we take it to the country. And I'm afraid that has to include the death penalty."
"Well, I can't proffer you a complete list..."
"I'm recording this for a column. Summarise. Let's bring your truth to the people."
"Oh, I like that. You're a filthy man who should have God's wrath visited upon his nether regions, but you have a good heart. Well now... homosexuality, heresy, unchastity before marriage, cursing one's parents, fogletism, women who get abortions, people who advise them to do so..."
"And why stoning?"
"It's traditional, clean and holy. And cheap, of course. Furthermore, it puts law in the hands of the people. Executions should be community projects."
Darrick Robertson's one-panel punchline to Spider Jerusalem's wicked desecration of some young children's snowmen is one of the funniest things I've ever seen.