Never doubt the cultural influence of comic books and graphic novels.

When we were kids I had a mate called, unsurprisingly enough, Dai Jones.

Dai Jones had an immensely fertile imagination.

It was fed and fuelled by comic books of the Superman, Batman and Fantastic Four kind.  We had really heavy conversations, even in primary school.  He could have been a professor, no doubt.  But he ended up working in Superdrug, and I think I know why.

This is what he did to me and, another mate, Andrew Ball:  he told us we could be superheroes.

I know, I know.  We must have been sweetly innocent to believe this fable and fabric of nonsense, straight out of the comic books, chanelled into Dai’s imagination and back out into the ‘real’ world.  "But Dai, how are we to achieve this superhero status?" we would justifiably ask.  "Don’t worry about that boys, I’ve got it covered: I’m making some super-serum in my Dad’s house".

Yes.  Super-serum.  In his Dad’s house.  On the Brynifor council estate in Mountain Ash, back in 1966.

It would be fair to question the validity of Dai’s claims, but we were far too distracted by his promises of all the trappings superherodom brings: super powers like jumping over buildings, stopping speeding bullets, telepathy, and of course, the girls.

But we got tired of waiting.

Dai kept on promising and promising, but nothing was delivered.  In the end we demanded the Super-serum.  We demanded the ability to jump over buildings, stop speeding bullets, and of course, the girls.  We followed Dai home and impatiently waited outside his house until he ‘brought forth’ the Super-serum.

Eventually, out he came with a bowl full of water.

A combination of Andrew Ball and me in a towering rage almost reached superhero proportions WITHOUT the Super-serum.  We threw the bowl of water over Dai’s head and walked home.

Sad, but true. 

One comment

    Andy Ball

    May 19, 2006

    I was equally annoyed

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