Tuesday, 7 October 2008
African Concord = best magazine ever
African Concord was a big Nigerian magazine in the 90s. Their remit mostly covered politics, football and coups or outrages in either. I found a couple of copies lying about in a cupboard at home and couldn't believe the splendour that lay within. Remember Nollywood? Well this is like a Nollywood film transformed into a magazine. The New Statesman looks like the Beano compared to this heavyweight. Ok, my tongue was well and truly stuck in cheek then, but this is like nothing you'll ever see.
They don't give a shit about offending the military government who were running a dictatorship at the time and accuse them of 'Playing the Ostrich' which is something I haven't heard since those really bad debt management adverts. Whatever, they're still delivering Private Eye style slews without any hint of comedy or irony.
Then there are the cartoons. It's like Steve Bell has gone mental and Robert Crumb has invaded his body, but he only has five minutes before Bell regains his senses. What is this cartoon saying? It seems straight forward at first. We're all fighting the usual left wing enemies corruption, indiscipline, and seccession. Then things start getting a little freaky when drugs, hawking (wtf?) and inflation pop up.
But then just when you thought nothing could be more bizarre the triangle of hurt rears its head: 419 gangs, biya and of course who could forget Shaba skirt. I asked my dad if these were things he knew about. Obviously 419 gangs stuck a bell but Shaba skirt? hmmmmmmmm it sounds like something someone in Shoreditch would wear.
Even the adverts are next level shit. Balls to convention, we're just gonna have a guy sat about like an overwieght Stringer Bell from The Wire puffing on a tab. And look who's there in the corner? That's right his trophy wife. Bingo. Aspirational advertising for the masses.
Believe me there is a lot more where this came from. Just wait til we get to the caption competition. Phew