Ring Fit Adventure

From the wild gymnastics of Super Mario, exploring The Legend of Zelda’s Hyrule, WarioWare’s wacky motion control mini-games, and exercise entertainment products like Wii Fit, Nintendo mascots and characters want their players to be active. I’m a gamer, flabby and prone to jogging injuries. And with gyms still high-risk – blending low-impact exercise and cheerful gameplay seems like a decent …

Queer liberation means trans equality

Queer liberation in Britain has a chain of successes: partial decriminalisation, age of consent, adoption rights, employment equality, the Equality Act, abolishing Section 28 and winning same-sex marriage. With exceptions on the left, its early radicalism has been defanged. Capitalism treats LGBT+ people as a mature advertising market. Plugs for supermarkets, banks, bars or violence-monopoly state institutions at Pride marches …

Keep the SNP Honest, vote Socialist

Column for the Yes Edinburgh South magazine. Informal, tabloid-style writing, largely pitched at Yes pals who are disappointed with the way the SNP have run to the right. The next upcoming challenge for the Yes movement is keeping a pro-independence majority in Holyrood. And to ensure as many of the organised political voices in our movement have a platform in …

Tech tools: to liberate or enslave

Covid-19 (C-19) has exposed the contradictions inherent in 21st century capitalism. While Richard Branson brings his billionaire begging bowl to the public purse for a handout, sanctions for the unemployed have restarted and sharp reductions in furlough payments are in store. To keep the rigged economy running, the Tories shove workers into taking great health risks. “Stay at Home” has …

Statement – standing for Social Media Officer

I was asked to provide a 500 word statement to the SSP when standing for the post of Social Media Officer. The social media of a political party should reflect its choices, priorities and activism. Each intervention should tell a story. It should address and promote our perspective on current affairs and work done. It is one of the most …

Skywalking for all: The Last Jedi soars

The Last Jedi may have been the Star Wars film I really wanted but didn’t know I did until I saw it. Which, on revisiting it on Blu-ray for the Voice, is one of the best compliments I can give it. It remains a complex, tersely written and beautifully performed space opera – which pulls off the achingly sweet feeling …

Works to nourish the uncolonised mind – Ursula K. Le Guin

I generally do not weep when my heroes die. But I do for Ursula K. Le Guin, speculative fiction writer, poet, scholar and genius, who left us at the age of 88. Not all tears are wrought of misery – mine are of joy that her work, writing, wisdom was shared to me, enriched me, and sadness that it has …

Fan Edits and The Empire Strikes Back

There are few more rejigged, tweaked, re-released and given a facelift films than Star Wars (1977). Even in the earliest years of its existence, producer/director George Lucas made a habit of altering it – for instance, adding in the Episode IV: A New Hope subtitle to its first 1979 re-release to prepare the ground for a series of sequels and …

George A. Romero – Land of the Dead reconsidered

Fans of American pulp horror cinema mourn the loss of George A Romero, leaving us after 78 years after a mercifully brief battle with lung cancer. In his early years, Romero went to Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh and stayed there after he graduated, making shorts and TV documentaries, scraping together the cash to make a breakout film – “Night of …