Blakeson - Writer

Cardiff-based film, theatre and gig reviews, cultural ramblings, whingeing, short films, etc.

Friday, February 03, 2006


Met the probable student producer of my final PhD film this week. Looks good. At the very least, it’ll be a relief not to have to do absolutely everything myself.

As an occasional author, part of me is slightly disappointed at the watering-down of the Government’s proposed Incitement to Religious Hatred legislation. Free speech is all well and good, but imagine the ££££ worth of publicity for any playwright, novelist or comedian taken to court and inevitably found Not Guilty. I mean, if a jury finds it impossible to convict the leader of an openly racist political party of racism, Rowan “Ron” Atkinson’s really got nothing to worry about.

The real problem, of course, is faux-liberal self-censorship. I was present when a theatre director who was planning a reading of a play about Arab slave-traders semi-seriously expressed the fear that it could be subject to prosecution as insulting to Islam. Would a play about “Christian” slavers be perceived as insulting to Christianity? Are we really so wanting for excitement in this country that we’re desperate to bring repression upon ourselves, just so we can stoutly oppose it? The phrase “tilting at windmills” inevitably comes to mind.

Schlepped down to Cardiff Barfly last night, for the first time in months  - a rare opportunity to see a band from my home town of Stoke-on-Trent – Agent Blue, the latest in a proud line of Potteries punk legends, following on from The Veins, Discharge and Venus Beads. Except their van broke down, so they couldn’t make it. Stuck around for two local bands, though – From Within (angsty Valleys rock in the Funeral For A Friend mould) and The Gar (jaunty/melancholic strumming). A pleasant evening - it was good to be out and about amongst the young people.


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