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Subject: question for Phil Alexander

Written By: Phil Carmichael on 11/10/03 at 02:42 p.m.

As a relative novice to parody writing compared to your good self I would welcome further feedback with regard to my Big Bad John (Nov9th). Thanks for compliments about the song(I worked for hours on it) but you mention it was only very good not brilliant because of the mixed messages about the alien and Two Jags...so it wasn`t consistent. Please post some further thoughts to explain further. When I wrote the parody
i thought John could be an alien and drive two jags!!! Thanks Phil :)

Subject: Re: question for Phil Alexander

Written By: philbo_baggins on 11/11/03 at 03:22 a.m.

OK, Phil..

It's a very funny idea, actually - one that gets better on revisiting.  I often get a sort of feeling when I reread one of my parodies before submission, that *I* know what I'm writing about, but it isn't necessarily immediately obvious to the reader coming in from the cold where I'm trying to get to.

I think the 4ft 6/weighed 245 is probably too much of an exaggeration: it was a distraction which left me not realizing you meant Prescott until you mentioned the two jags.. that tied in the previous verse, but JP is still quite a bit taller than 4', even allowing for exaggeration.  Incidentally, they showed the clip of him punching the smug-faced egg-thowing farmer last night on Room 101... and I think you'll find it was a left he threw ;-)

Back on-topic: I think you tried to weave in too many threads with the true bits, the "alien" bits and the bomb / breaking wind bits.  IMO, this would work best with just the one story - introduce your character, ignore the alien and Al Quaeda links and tell the tale of the House of Commons being demolished by a demonic gust of wind (so to speak).

I'd be tempted to change the fourth line to "And at the touch of an egg, he'd fatten your lip" (or something like that) to give more clues earlier on about whom you're writing.

I do like the lines:
"His speeches were a jumbled blend
Kinda Stanley Unwin meets Bill and Ben"
... if you wanted to be unkind to folks over in the States, too, you could stick a couplet in comparing his speech to GWB's...

Phil