There’s a lovely bit in Asterix and the Soothsayer where Getafix the druid, standing over his cauldron, turns to the titular Gaul and says “You know we never stoop to wordplay, Asterix…”. The gag that follows is typically groan-worthy, but the real joke, of course, is that stooping to wordplay is pretty much all they ever did in Asterix, when the Romans weren’t getting beaten up. Puns are abundant, from character names to chief Vitalstatistix’s assertion that “It’s our moral duty to return that child to its parents”, causing Asterix to remark “Yes, it’s a question of morale”.
Anyway, I was thinking about all this when reflecting upon the fact that here at Brian of Morbius, wordplay is pretty much all we do – well, that and scathing reviews, outlandish conspiracy theories and the occasional video. I make no apologies for being good at bad jokes. Nine times out of ten, the key in getting a bad joke across without having to contend with groans and grimaces (or, worst of all, complete silence) is knowing when to tell it. I’m never going to be Stewart Lee, but many’s the time I’ve managed to get a chuckle where none is really deserved simply by picking my moments. And the memes help. Why bother telling a joke yourself when you can get Photoshop to do it for you?
But even if I’m reasonably I.T. literate, I cannot for the life of me set up a simple network. There is another PC in the boys’ bedroom that I’ve fetched down from the loft. I just want a simple LAN, and my gosh I am struggling. They just won’t talk to each other. I am like B.O.S.S. in ‘The Green Death’, singing “Connect, connect, connect, connect” to the tune of the Brandenburg Concerto. And while it is a definite stretch to say that life mirrors art, it’s strange that just last week I was watching ‘The Krotons’, which also features the Second Doctor struggling with a computer.
Those of you unfamiliar with the Second Doctor but familiar with Sherlock may recognise this catchphrase from its use in ‘A Scandal in Belgravia’, which opens the second series and which features Benedict Cumberbatch infiltrating a Middle Eastern terrorist cell just because he can, before rescuing Irene Adler from certain death.
So I wondered whether this might work better if we were to use Troughton’s eyes and Victoria’s face, and –
– well, “no” is the answer. The top image isn’t too bad, but dear God, Victoria’s head looks like it’s been awkwardly glued on to Lara Pulver’s burka-clad torso (which, of course, it has, metaphorically speaking). I think I’d better put this one down to experience, and it is here purely for the purposes of scholarly integrity.
Still, the idea of classic lines of dialogue given a new lease of life has intrigued me for a while, and hence the following.
There will be more at some point, but not today. I’m all punned out.