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Depressing Comics is an independent underground comic, issue #1 of which was published in London in 2003 by 2 unemployed young men, who continue to produce the comics themselves.
The comics consist of cartoons, diagrams, illustrations, short pieces of text, sections of dialogue as well as some comic strips. They are made from the cheapest materials available: double sided A4 photocopies, folded down to A5 and stapled by hand. The Depressing Comics logo on the front of each comic is hand coloured in red pencil crayon – something intended to give worth to these cheapest of materials.
Depressing Comics has been sold at various independent shops, gigs and exhibitions and events across London since it was first published. Issue #5 was published in 2009 and Issue #6 is currently in production.
Issues #1 – 4 of Depressing Comics each came with a free CD, featuring tracks by musicians, artists and writers living in or connected to London. These CDs also contained some readings of the text pieces from the comics, by the two authors, and it was these readings which were later developed into the radio series Dear Puppeteer.

Dear Puppeteer is a radio series adaptation of Depressing Comics, created for Resonance 104.4 FM in London by the 2 authors of the comics. The shows consist of readings of the short text pieces and comic strips, dramatised with music and sound effects and interspersed with tracks by unsigned acts (many of which featured on the free CDs given away with issues #1 – 4 of Depressing Comics).
The name Dear Puppeteer was taken from the first line of a letter addressed to a previous tenant of the rented flat, in Hackney, where the authors were living at the time when the first issues of Depressing Comics were published.
The readings which comprise Series 1 of Dear Puppeteer (episodes #1 – 5) were recorded on a tie-clip microphone plugged into a Dictaphone and edited on an obsolete second hand computer donated to one of the authors: continuing the no-budget DIY approach taken in creating the comics. The readings were all made by associates of the authors and Series 1 of Dear Puppeteer was broadcast on Resonance 104.4FM (www.resonancefm.com) in 2009.
Note: Dear Puppeteer was mixed and edited on headphones – so as to prevent the other people in the room watching TV at the time from getting annoyed – which means that it sounds best on headphones.
Series 1 of Dear Puppeteer was given away as a free MP3 CD with Issue #5 of Depressing Comics.
The readings which comprise Series 2 of Dear Puppeteer were recorded on a microphone bought for £3.95 from a charity shop, giving it a clearer sound quality than the lo-fi Series 1.