We have a natural fear of the sewers. It’s where all of our waste and rubbish goes. Human waste, fat from cooking, old bits of veg, tea, coffee, gone off milk and custard plus what comes off us in the bath or shower. It really doesn’t bear thinking about. However, there are some people who have to think about it. These are the gallant men and women who look after our sewers and drains to make sure they are all working to the best they can be. It is a job made a lot easier with the intervention of CCTV Drainage Surveys. Companies like www.wilkinson-env.co.uk/sewer-repairs-drain-lining-concrete-cutting/drain-lining can put a small camera down the drain or sewer to see what is causing the problem.
One other group of people who don’t turn away from the fear of the sewers is that of the creative writer. There is plenty of fantasy and fiction set in this modern underworld where the ugly and unwanted go to live out their angry lives. Here are some examples.
- The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Michelangelo, Raphael, Donatello and Leonardo, all named after Italian artisans, are some of the most famous characters to come out of the sewers. Protected and trained by a giant Rat called Master Splinter, the Turtles fight crime and seek vengeance against the evil Shredder.
- IT. Steven King is one of the most prolific horror writers ever to grace the globe. He’s not just about tales of horror but one of his most notable villains is the thoroughly evil clown Pennywise who lures children to a grisly fate down in the sewers of Derry in Maine.
- Cabal/Nightbreed. Next to King is Clive Barker. Barker is another prolific writer and has been the author of several bestsellers down through the decades since the 1970s. One of his best tales is that of Cabal, a series of stories set in the strange world of Midian. This is a place populated with monsters but not necessarily malign ones. They avoid humans by living in the sewers and this underworld. The books were made into a cult film called Nightbreed. The main bad guy is a deranged human that is determined to hunt them all down, the monsters are innocent victims persecuted by the “normal” people above.
- The Penguin. When he is abandoned by his parents because of his deformed looks Oswald Chesterfield Cobblepot is dumped in a sewer to find his own way in life. It’s a very sad tale. However there is an upside, the baby Cobblepot is rescued by penguins that have escaped the local zoo and have formed a colony in the sewers below Gotham City. The Penguins raise the boy and he soon rises to become the Batman supervillain Penguin. Sporting a top hat, tails, waistcoat and monocle he is the gentleman of crime, not that he treats Batman and Robin, or the people of Gotham in anything but nasty and unpleasant ways.