1. English people living together in sin.

    British three-panel strip comics are a strange breed. Currently the ones you can find in the daily newspapers skate freely on the thin ice right in the centre of Lake Crap. We're talking out-dated 'er indoors stroke mother-in-law from hell gags, cheap, rehashed one liners that should have been left dead decades ago, poor to non-existent storylines, one dimensional characters and bad, uninspired artwork. As a child with a paper round, British strip comics regularly disappointed me and now, as a moderately grown-up person, they make me weep for the fact that I have changed, my friends have changed and the whole world has changed but they, remarkably, have not. Andy Capp, Beau Peep, George and Lynne... the entire tragic ensemble.

    Now, your Americans have always had the right idea regarding how to go about presenting funnies in a small amount of space. The polar opposite of their British counterparts in just about every respect. Sure, there are exceptions but, by and large, you know what I mean.

    And so to Bobbins and how easily it equates to bird's teeth: It's British, it's hilarious. It's heavily influenced by the American philosophy of strip comics which, as is said above, is most definitely A Good Thing. Launched upon an unsuspecting world on September 21st, 1998, Bobbins follows the lives of the staff in and around 'City Limit', a magazine based in Tackleford, a cathedral city just north of the Midlands in England. Among its cast is Rich Tweedy, the unlucky-in-love designer, Tim Jones, music writer, bad musician and inventor, Fallon Young, a genetically-created super-spy who became obsolete before fulfilling her purpose when the Cold War ended and Len Pickering, the magazine editor residing on the crazy-as-dog-food-jam side of eccentric. Oh, and there's also Shelley 'Ginger Ninja' Winters who's just an all-round sweetie-pie, but that's just my opinion...

    With more pop-culture references than you could shake a stick at, guest appearances from the likes of Mr. T, Callista Flockheart, Radiohead, Calvin and Hobbes and the cast of Bloom County, together with storylines involving alien visitations, spook trains, the tao of winking, fridges with interdimensional gateways and variety performances at The Royal Albert Hall designed purely to woo Drew Barrymore, Bobbins represents normal life under the constant threat of turning surreal at any given moment. In short, it's probably the best sit-com Britain has produced since Spaced (although, technically, I think it predates Spaced, only just) and an infinitely better soap opera than Eastenders. This, my friends, is how strip comics should be done. No, really.

    Bobbins was created and drawn by John Allison and is hosted by the web comic uberlords Keenspot.

    call says: Don't forget the frequent My Bloody Valentine references. ;)

    find the strip at:

  2. British slang definition.

    A popular term around the north-west of England and widely used by Mark and Lard, bobbins describes something that is unbelievably bad without just cause.

    Oh my God, have you heard that new Britney Spears single?

    Cor, have I? It's bobbins, isn't it?

    Absolutely. I voted to have her put down.

I believe the British slang definition is a polite synonymn for bollocks. This allows you to get through the first syllable of the word 'bollocks' and then change your mind, in much the same way that you might exclaim "Fudge!", "Sugar!", or perhaps "Blinking heck!".

Useful for when those of us that swear habitually suddenly find ourselves in polite company.

'Bobbins' originated as Timperley rhyming slang as popularised by the musical comedian Frank Sidebottom (aka Chris Sievey)

As rhyming slang, Bobbins derives from: 'Bobbins of cotton = Rotten'.

This predates both the Bobbins comic strip and Mark & Lard's usage.

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