Friday, 14 November 2014


When I was a boy two things consumed the majority of space between my ears- comic books and motorcycles. So when I came across Paul Samples "Ogri" in Ride Magazine naturally I became obsessed.

Ogri is the story of a fictitious cartoon biker of the same name. The comics focus on the day to day on goings of Ogri's life and dealings with his friend Malcolm, his dog Kickstart, his girlfriend Mitzi and the various trappings facing the modern motorcyclist. 

The thing I always liked was the mixture of detail and humor. Looking at the larger images, for example, if you look closely for a while you see that in each scene, aside from the main story, there are lots of different stories unfolding in the frame, sort of reminiscent of Martin Handford's wheres wally.

Mostly the stories revolve around similar themes with key elements- motorcycles (obviously), pigs (the police), danger, alcohol and sex (the last three best served together). Samples depictions of women in his strips have a Robert Crumb feel- that same honesty that reflects the artists interests and offers male readers something to relate to.


Since becoming a motorcyclist myself I understand much more about the way that these comics are written, the roads are a different place from the perspective of the strange minority group known as motorcyclists. Ogri really embodies the spirit of this rather unusual ilk.
Sure the roads react differently in bad weather, road debris is a deadly foe and motorists are trying constantly to kill you. But those things aside There is a vision of a biker embedded in the conscious of society, it is a tired idea of an easy riding tear away but underneath that over used cliche is a very simple idea that still rings true, before all the Marlon Brando, Evil kanevil, leather jacket wearing studded codpiece, harley davidson, tassles crap. That idea lives in the heads of all motorcyclists, we know this from the displays of comradery to each other, our talk of roads and rides or that we nod at each other when we see another biker. Its because we understand that feeling, that feeling is escapism, we can close the door on our lives and all of the nonsensical stress of modern living. Leave the work, kids, dogs, parents, girlfriends, wives or whatever behind, step out into our garage's onto our bikes and just fuck off. 

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