I’d no idea of the meaning of the phrase when I was commissioned by Radio Rentals to produce a calendar for them back in the 70s when I was really just starting on my career as a cartoonist. The artwork does not exist as far as I know, any more, nor does Radio Rentals. They would hire a TV to you for a few quid per month. Those tellies were generally walnut encased monsters that sat in the corner of many sitting rooms with their 3 channels ready to leap into colourful action at the press of a button. Remote control? You’re kidding me. I suppose that with a choice of just three the need to get up and down from the comfy chair was less necessary than today.
As well as a politically incorrect scenario, you would see politically incorrect programmes, such were the times. In this scenario Grandad is getting his pipe into lung choking action whilst Mum is bringing through the home made mince pies. Dad is settling down with a big beer after a massive Christmas dinner, whilst the kids are starting to use their newly acquired pressies, one who has a junior chain saw is about to try it out on the Christmas tree, whilst the one on the sofa is looking at his newly acquired Action Man Vagrant, yes I know, hands up, not a good look!
I came across this copy from all those years ago when I repossessed it from my late parents, my mum and dad kept the calendar for all this years, bless ‘em. Actually, this copy, judging by the fading copy might be a scan from the original. Magic marker colours faded to nothingness.
You might say that I was influenced at the time by Mad Magazine, with all the likely things that might happen in this drawing.Young cousin in the background has set off his model aeroplane and it has just sliced through the Xmas decorations and will no doubt land in the trifle. The potential possibilities are enormous.
I am amused that I was allowed to do almost anything with this series of drawings. Not something that the modern corporate company would allow these days, all I had to do was put a telly in the picture. For the technically minded the drawings were done in Pentel Sign pen for the line work and then coloured in magic marker, some chalk pastels might have been used here and there, but absolutely no digital faffing, it wasn’t even invented.
How things have changed.