Win free movie tickets with Dr Bristow

Doctor Bristow’s Movie-a-go-go is showing only the best terrible movies, and invites the audience to relax, jeer and tweet along as he uses top-secret cold-war technology to project the tweets into the film itself. This has never been done in England before and he wants you to come and check it out.

The first movie is Showgirls, here, see:

Doctor Bristow is committed to serving you, the viewing public, only the finest fresh cut snark hand delivered from the Internet, this isn’t just twitter sarcasm this is Doctor Bristow sarcasm. Which is why he is bringing back Tweet Of The Week.

To guarantee only the highest quality tweeters the good doctor will be inviting the best tweeters that month to come to the next event FOR FRICKKEN FREE.

If you have seen a tweet that has the shine of the long knives, as brutal as a headbutt, or simply funny as all fuck and deserves to be nominated, simply retweet (old-style, you know so you can add stuff) with the hashtag #drtotw.

Dr Bristow himself will be checking the hashtag each week and before the next event and the three people deemed winners* will be given a free ticket to the next show. One lucky nominator (pulled from the virtual hat) gets a freebie too.


The Bristow Boys

*Doctors decision is final, he’s a doctor for chrissakes – he knows what he’s doing.

We’ll also have games and a surprise supporting feature. Tickets on sale now, with special early-bird offers.

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A free Bristow e-book: Concrete and Cocktails

Can you drink in all of Birmingham city centre’s independent hostelries in one day? Yes of course, although it might not be sensible.

An unchained psychogeographic adventure from the editors of Dirty Bristow—Concrete and Cocktails: a journey to Birmingham’s glitter-stained independent heart.

Concrete and Cocktails Cover

Download your free mini-e-book of our trip to the pub, and the pub, and the pub, and the pub…

You can get Amazon to send it direct to your Kindle (or  Kindle app) if you have trouble, don’t want to, or can’t self-load. Unfortunately we can’t do anything about the price bar set it as low as they let you (we promise not to go mad with the 30p royalties).  Go see on the Amazon site.

We’re very happy for you to distribute the files to anyone you like, it’s free, it’s good promo—but we’re happier if you direct them to this site so they can see our other stuff and hopefully buy a magazine or come to an event. Issue two is available to buy right now.

How’s about tweeting about this for us too?


Pier Review

We’re currently writing a full book, but we need your help. Financially mainly. We’re to take on the challenge of visiting every one of England and Wales’s 56 surviving pleasure piers in two weeks.

Piers are the phallic symbols of our desire to own the motherly sea; our Victorian forefathers covered them with the lace dressings of amusement to prevent the working class getting too excited. Since then they’ve rotted slowly, like Britain’s empire and its self respect. Those from Birmingham are perfectly placed to write about an ephemeral British seaside because that’s what the seaside is to them: a ghost, a Vaseline-smeared Shangri-La cobbled together from Carry On films, hazy childhood memories and nostalgia for a bygone era.

Go see all about it at


Cover photo of The Nechells Park, on Nechells Park Road corner with Cuckoo Road in Birmingham, by Elliott Brown.
Concrete… on Kindle


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Booze Your Own Adventure

It might not appear that obvious, but one of the inspirations for Dirty Bristow was a magazine aimed at teenage computer game fans. Your Sinclair, was the first publication that I read that sought to be more than its remit—yes it did reviews and forthcoming attractions, but both within those and in the normal extraneous features of a magazine (news, letters page and so on) it showed no regard for the boundaries of its topic or audience. It was, for the want of a better phase, grown-up.

But grown-up didn’t mean serious or rude—the mag could be, but wasn’t often, serious and its rudeness was very mild—it meant not being po-faced or sniffy about ‘other’. It meant that it wasn’t afraid to expand the horizons of the reader, and it wasn’t afraid not to explain things that you could go off and find out elsewhere.

Yes, alongside Crash, it was a beacon of intelligent writing about a maligned subject—many of the writers went on to bigger things after the computer they were covering faded from view. The computer games journalism industry was a great place to find talent at that time, better perhaps that the more traditional music papers, Charlie Booker came from games—who’s broken out of music journalism in the past five years?

They were responsible for my first steps as a publisher too. Along with a couple of others from school, I started a fanzine: Blast. Yes, it was named for the vorticist’s journal. No, it wasn’t much to write home about. I don’t have any copies left to see whether it forewarned of Bristow.

One thing all these magazine had in common was something sellotaped to the front—a tape.

It sometimes contained demos of games to come. It often, especially when the format was on its way out, contained free versions of old games. Sometimes it even contained in-jokes (YS’s Advanced Lawnmower Simulator is the classic), such as this:

Hold My Hand (Very Tightly)

That is YS journo Rick Wilson (or Whistlin’ Rick Wilson as he was styled), with his croon-classic Hold My Hand (Very Tightly).

So, when we decided to have a tape. I knew it had to somehow have a tribute to those tapes of my youth. We wouldn’t think to make you put up with us singing, so we wrote a computer game. For the ZX Spectrum of course. It’s a choose-your-own-adventure all about how we made Dirty Bristow issue one, heavily fictionalised but still it’s all true.

You can download it for your Spectrum emulators, or play it online here.

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