RND/ to consider the bizarre ‘post Brexit’ cultural politics of Watch Dogs: Legion, in terms of a “Campaign For Real Cockneys” vs M.U.N.T:
In which people trying to live in the UK look at Watch Dogs: Legion, shake their heads slowly and wonder from what precise, oddly hyper-nationalistic cultural anus such utterly dreadful ideas spray forth from – but then partially realize their own stench in the resulting modern media cloud..
3840×2160 .jpg edited in Gimp
3840×2160 .jpg edited in Gimp
Imagine a grass roots “Campaign For Real Cockneys” spontaneous arises to counter the rise of so-called ‘Mockney Wankers’ in media, aka “Showers of Total Munts” (mockney usurpers who are never trustworthy. In terms of authentic cockneys, it turns out that, unofficially at least, Dick Van Dyke is seen by the C.F.R.C as an “Edge case” – that, compared to some of the utter wankers pathetically trying to pass for the salt of London’s dirty earth, “At least he tried, gawd bless ‘im.”)
Dangerous unacknowledged ideological ironies abound, however. Consider that the C.F.R.C, rather than some inherently pre-existing expression of ‘authenticity’, is merely just another carefully (politically) constructed campaign designed by those who already have power within society to cynically manipulate other idiots desperate to be told what they think they already believe – in this case, the mere idea that a ‘campaign for real cockneys’ might somehow be remotely ‘authentic’. Welcome to modern fantasy island England.
So to perhaps, might one see the apparent natural, healthy, spontaneously yeasty ‘rise’ of populist alt right (ie. scummy fascist) political movements in the UK and right across Europe – which are in fact mere knee-jerk calls back toward some entirely illusionary ‘pure state’ – reactionary, socially regressive ‘will of the people’. (Note: for a start, ‘the people’ – “Hey I’m just a common laard marffed cockney wideboy, just like you lot, innit!” – don’t exist. Thank goodness.)
And yet, near total Munts do seem to exist in the modern mediascape – living cliches, lazy cultural shorthand stereotypes, walking parodies of their own worst unacknowledged aspects. “Ain’t nobody even look like dat,” as Flavor Flav once accurately observed. Self facilitating media nodes, ghost-shells and stand along complexes, bad copies without originals. Right Wing Michael ‘I made it from nuffin’ Caine. Ricky Fucking Gervais and his punchable tosser’s mug (to which one cheerfully suggests the timely addition of a M.E.W: Mile End Wallop):
London Mockney Media representations can be roughly divided into a single sentence: “Sharp suits and ‘ard looks.” Think “Gangster No. 1” (2000, Paul McGuigan.) Think of Guy Ritchie (possibly Mockney Patient Zero, along with Damien Hurst, of course) and his perfectly awful RocknRolla (2008) – where even the spelling is enough to make you wonder how long has the UK been a dark, eye-rolling laughing stock (lock and smoking barrel) to other, perhaps more sophisticated countries with actually nuanced and challenging media self-representations.
A developer of Watch Dogs: Legion talks about Londoners as a ‘people who never give up’. Somehow he seems to have swallowed wholesale some obscure, populist myth about ‘That Bulldog Dunkirk Spirit’. Compare and contrast this nonsense (as one must) with the classic awful Your-Dad’s Cult TV series “Dad’s Army” (not shown here out of respect for those who have little respect for such dead, tired bullshit.)
In which the insanity of Brexit seems to have warped the (perhaps already warped) ideas in a certain wartime speech:
Even though large tracts and many old and famous States have fallen or may fall into the grip and odious apparatus of European rule, we shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the bitter end. We shall fight France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the media, we shall defend the idea of ‘our island’, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight the E.U on the beaches, we shall fight it on the landing grounds, we shall fight it in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight it in the hills; we shall never surrender the idea of Ze Authentic British People for a whiter, brighter and cleaner ENDLAND. *burp*
– Winston Churchill, paraphrase of speech given June 4th, 1940
Of course, the simplest critique of Watch Dogs: Legion is to state it has nothing whatsoever to do with Brexit and is simply cashing in on (yet another) total political fuckup instigated by pasty posh assholes in power out on some colossal scam to make themselves even more money (heck, sounds a lot like the AAA Videogame Industry.) Likewise perhaps, one might question the remote pseudo-idea that a bunch of apathetic citizens (“DedSec wants YOU!” – “What, everyone can join? Where do I sign?”) armed with the latest in hand hand electronic consumer telecommunications devices are somehow going to take on the combined might of an inherently (and long, long-since) totalitarian government simply by wearing shite plastic skull masks and spittin’ loose mockney jive like a bunch of fahkin canhts. (Excuse my Cultured European.)
It seems the deep rooted psychic delusions of distant and future empire are belching forth one again, forming Watchdog’s utopian people’s distopia:
DEDSEC = BREXIT = A KILLING JOKE
Example Reference Links
- RPS: Watch Dogs Legion: how to talk like a fackin future fackin cockney
- Wikipedia: We shall fight on the beaches
- r/TrueFilm: Dunkirk and Britain’s myth of itself
- Robert What: Forza Horizon 4 and the Befuddlement of Britishness
- Robert What: Breaking Point: Brexit themed rnd