The Null Device


There will soon be a children's TV series about the London Underground. Underground Ernie, being made for the BBC, will be set on the iconic underground system, and will feature a cast of anthropomorphised tube trains named after lines:

Each of the trains has a different character, with Bakerloo being a detective, Circle a hippy chick, Victoria a caring grandmother, Jubilee a gadget-mad teenager and Hammersmith and City competitive twins.
There will also be visiting trains from the US, Russia and Australia. (Maybe the Australian one will be an Akubra-hatted roadtrain named Bruce or something.)

The press are having a field day with this, in light of ongoing commuter misery on the creaking system. Metro suggests some plot lines, involving characters fixing the dodgy brakes on Northern Line trains and rescuing fainting commuters in an episode named "Summer Fun" and a maintenance man using the wrong spanner to fix tracks. Meanwhile, the Times article on the series is quite sarcastic.

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In the Red States of the US, there is now a conservative children's book, whose villains are those evil godless socialists in the Democratic Party:

Written by Katharine DeBrecht, a mother of three, it tells the story of two young brothers who try to make money from a lemonade stall but are thwarted at every turn by left-wing politicians who threaten to put them out of business.
Several of the characters in the book are instantly recognisable, including "Congresswoman Clunkton" who tells the boys to reduce the amount of sugar in their lemonade and forces them to add broccoli to every glass.
Later the boys are ordered to take down a picture of Jesus by the civil liberties lawyer Mr Fussman and eventually lose the stand when it is taken over by the government of "Liberaland", at which point it goes broke.
Their story turns out to be a dream, however, and the boys are able to pursue their free-market ambitions when they wake up.
This book was apparently second only to Harry Potter on the Amazon children's book chart.

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