Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Farewell Lady Thatcher

People in England of my generation call themselves "Thatcher's children". Whether you are left or right politically, her influence was undeniable as she re-shaped the dialogue of both politics and economics in Britain.

She was mercilessly satirised by cartoonists, especially by the TV series Spitting Image that seemed made especially for her and her confrontational style of politics.

One of the puppet artists on Spitting Image was the hugely talented Tim Watts, who I got to work with in the early 90's on The Thief and The Cobbler, after Spitting Image had been retired from its regular ITV spot.

Tim was one of the best draughtsmen on the film - I used to look enviously at his drawings - wishing that I could be that good. He was one of the only animators on the film who could get the villain Zig Zag to look just right.

Tim said that all the newspaper cartoonists tended to draw Thatcher with a huge nose - so he and the rest of the spitting Image team did the opposite - just to be different. But of all the caricatures of Thatcher, their is the one that sticks in my mind, a brilliant weekly satire on the theatre of politics that, at the time, re-shaped our country.


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