Tag Archives: cobra


While there’s a frighteningly comprehensive movie firearms database, there’s no decent movie knife database and it’s a shame. I’m currently researching some classic cinematic blades for another project and while this Wiki was set up, it never really took off. I’ve noticed that people take knives as seriously as I take other things and why not? They’re beautiful, tactile items, provided they’re not sticking out your body. I never knew that Rutger Hauer’s switchblade in ‘The Hitcher’ was a custom Jeff Harkins Triton or that Emilio Estevez wields an extremely rare Bali Song butterfly knife during one of my favourite scenes in my favourite movie (check the thread here).

My two favourite knives, wielded by two genuinely scary characters, but unique enough to become an extension of the villain themselves, is the Night Slasher from ‘Cobra’s spiked knuckleduster knife (custom-made by Herman Schneider and later stolen, but seemingly turning up in ‘New Jack City’ 5 years later), a weapon so awesome it made me like the movie, despite the rest of it being dire and ‘Geraldine’ as wielded by Alan Arkin’s sleazy Harry Roat in 1967’s ‘Wait Until Dark.’ Geraldine is a gravity knife set inside a small statue of a woman, made in Italy as part of a run of 5 for the movie. Roat’s goth-beatnik look, with the sunglasses and leather jacket (in fact there’s a few great coats in the film on the villains), plus that final leap, makes him a memorable protagonist, but it’s Geraldine that really sets him apart from other bad guys. I can’t buy an official replica of Geraldine to keep as multiples in the cutlery drawer, but you can buy a Night Slasher repro.

It’s the switchblades that inspire the most dedication though, with this forum thread pretty much covering every screen blade to ever pop out with a satisfying click — it’s good to know what Polanski slashed Jack’s nose with in ‘Chinatown’ (a Rizzuto copy apparently), but oAROWANAo’s multi-part ‘Switchblades in the Movies’ series on YouTube is insane, covering the weapon’s appearance in movies between 1920 and 2009…89 years of slashy cameos, from backstabbing sneaks to cocaine testing from its tip. There’s a certain beauty to this device and its presence onscreen as silencer, negotiator and executioner is unbeatable.

Oscar from 1992 blogging Educated Community ‘zine covers reminded me of the couple off later issues I have in black bags somewhere. The whole New York for a Japanese visitor demographic was pretty unique and while it never came back after a #15/#16 double issue. Salutes to Yuka Iwakoshi (former X-Girl manager), Atsuko Tanaka, Hiroyuki Hatakeyama & Masaki Matsui Inada for putting in the work and documenting something genuinely interesting before the variations on a theme and global community aura deaded that aspirational downtown clubhouse mystique and made everyone feel involved. This site is promising an archive book and it’s something I’m keen to see — the fanzine’s end in 2005 feels timely, with the blog rising at that point as the new mode of education. Still, what made noise between 1999 and 2005 seems to be slowly disappearing from the internet as hosting bills aren’t paid and Google finds new ways to put the last week’s content at the forefront of a search.

Mr Chris Law sent me this video of the story of the Rip City Black Flag skateboard that fascinated me when I saw it in ‘Skateboard’ magazine a few years after that original release. The wrongly screened bars and the spray paint solution is amazing. As David Markey’s ‘We Got Power’ gets an official UK release in January, there seems to be a brief tie-in, with Jordan Schwartz involved in both the board and the book. The 1984 ‘Thrasher’ ads were pleasantly low-key and lo-fi — a Hosoi and Black Flag crossover is nice moment as bluesy misery sludge meets the aerial master’s long-haired kamikaze look.

Now that a decent burger is as ubiquitous in central London as a Starbucks and that for a few hours there was an In-N-Out on these shores, I’ll stop moaning about a dearth of the ultimate foodstuff. I don’t care about a lack of reservations or that everywhere is manned by mustachioed men in scoop neck tees with hand tattoos, just as long as their burgers are good. So what about the ramen? I wanted an Ippudo in London, but it looks like their spot’s being covered on the tonkotsu front. For years I yearned for bowls of pale fat-flecked cholesterol for lunch but could only find other ramen variants. Nagomi did a decent version but booking and peculiar opening hours put me off. Then a restaurant that called itself Tonkotsu opened up, but a Japanese friend recommended somewhere else for a non-porky variant having been disappointed by their noodles.

I’ve had my eye on Bone Daddies on Peter Street (opposite Supreme, to create an axis of food and noodle hype) since ex-Nobu head chef Ross Shonhan displayed an obvious enthusiasm for tonkotsu in this interview. It didn’t disappoint (and was half price for the opening weekend too), with that salty complexity in the broth and an egg that was boiled properly rather than neglected until it’s white and beige (Shonhan understands the importance of the egg to a good bowl or ramen. As time goes on, that bowl should get better and better (Bone Daddies had barely been open longer than the 20 hour pork bone boil when I visited). The killer application (figuratively and literally) was the extra pipette of pork fat I added to mine for 50p. All dishes should come with the pipette option. When I fall to the ground, clutching my chest, you can blame the tonkotsu and that greasy, clinically applied optional extra, but I regret nothing.


Sunday is a good time to just bang out a blog full of stuff other people have put me onto. Mr. Errolson Hugh put me onto this incredible piece from Outside Online about GORE-TEX’s monopoly and the rise of NeoShell that’s some real reporting from Mike Kessler. On the subject of technology, I’m currently enjoying the Nike+ FuelBand, even though I’m as non-athletic as it gets. With devices, there’s scope for misuse — mine has already been on a dog’s collar, amassing 211 FuelPoints through some stair and hall-based hype. Minus the canine, it gathered 113 during AC/DC’s ‘Back in Black’ at a wedding reception on friday. It’s like being rewarded for energetic stupidity — I’m already a fan. I have to salute Tom Scott for highlighting D-WHY’s ‘Macchiato Music‘ — forget trap rap, because this is NATO strap rap. I don’t know what to make of it, but I believe the moment when Kid said to Kamron of the Young Black Teenagers “Do me a favour — talk white” in ‘House Party 2’ he unleashed this kind of thing. More’s the Pitti. Dude can rap though, but if you’re going to do the Italian thing you need to be name checking Gianni Agnelli — as every menswear blog and book is keen to reiterate when they’re not telling you how to wear a suit and pocket square. Don’t listen to them for instructions — just look at some Gianni images, but if you’re looking to imitate, remember that the great man’s whole style was born of risky tweaks to formalwear, so to carbon copy kind of defeats the point. ‘Life’s ‘Everybody Works For Gianni’ piece from a November 1967 issue has some good Agnelli images — no over the cuff timepieces, but study closely and you can see the little quirks.

Farewell Moebius. The internet’s got us dropping ‘RIP’s all over the place — usually for the kinds of people under appreciated during their living years (chill, I’m not going to link to any Mike & the Mechanics). If we aren’t rest in peace-ing, we’re Tweeting death anniversaries. If we aren’t doing that, it’s about commemorating dead people’s birthdays. Nothing wrong with any of that, but it shouldn’t water down the resonance of true legends passing. Moebius’s relationship with Jodorowsky, work for ‘Heavy Metal’ and more was an evident inspiration for personal favourites like Geof Darrow (who collaborated with him), but his concept art for ‘Alien,’ ‘Tron’ (I had no idea that he contributed to ‘Space Jam’ and ‘Masters of the Universe’), that never-filmed ‘Dune’ adaptation and the late 1980’s Epic compilations of his work, with volume 4’s ‘The Long Tomorrow & Other Science Fiction Stories’ having a huge influence on me, setting heights so lofty that they’d rarely be matched by anything elsewhere, which fueled my cynicism by the time I reached my teens. Ridley Scott was inspired to make ‘Blade Runner’ because of ‘The Long Tomorrow’ — I was just compelled to hunt similar levels of detail and emotion on the printed page. 2007’s ‘In Search of Moebius’ BBC Four documentary is worth a watch, but regardless of the lack of English dialect (I watched a dubbed version on TV around 1987 though), 1982’s ‘Les maîtres du temps’/’Time Masters’ is a beautiful-looking movie from the director of the occasionally sampled ‘Fantastic Planet.’ The ending’s great, after the great man’s death, it’s kind of appropriate here.

It’s not like Clarks are strangers to making sporting versions of the Wallabee — there was a Wallabee Sports in the 1970’s and Nike famously made a collection of leisure shoes (that were actually pretty good) the following decade that flopped. Sports-casual, as Alan Partridge demonstrated, isn’t easy. Mr. Agnelli’s mix of tailoring and luxury hikers is it done correct, but many flopped. Still, with the visvim Polke and Nike HTM Macropus homaging Clarks’ classic, as well as many weaker moc-toe mockeries (I think I’ve used that obvious wordplay here before, so apologies for that), I was always surprised that they never brought the Sport back. What we did get was the Clarks Originals Cobra a few years back that never made much noise, but branding and contrast stitch aside, was a smart little tribute. It even included some crepe on the outsole. In burgundy it was good but in black it was bland and cheap-looking. The new wave of Clarks models that got a Footpatrol launch last week pays tribute to the Desert Boot and the Wallabee Boot and I like the Tawyer Mid a fair bit, with the update looking strong in both colours. The ballistic nylon and leather mix is good (the Cobra played with a similar combo) and the EVA sole isn’t too tricksy, which is where the Cobra stumbled. Still, I’ve seen the Cobra looking good with shorts and the burgundy Tawyer has similar potential, as well as scope for “Wha’ dem?” queries from men in the street. It’s all in the unobstructed curve from tongue to toepiece. Pretty good. Respectful updates and the beauty of those Wasabi Oi Polloi makeups makes it a good time to be championing Wallys.