Tuesday, 15 September 2015

I'm back

LONG time posting here - life and other hobbies have kept me away from the comics just lately.
But, figure i've got to get back into them, so i'm all ready for THE graphic novel i've been waiting and waiting and hoping for, in just two months now.

Saturday, 23 May 2015

Can you spare a kidney?

Blimey, has one of these ever appeared for sale before?
The almost mythical last pre-ban Action goes up for sale, one of only 30 printed:


Friday, 8 May 2015

Bullet - 2nd October 1976

Right, lets take a look at one of my Welsh bargains shall we?
And lets start with a title i knew i bought to begin with (but didn't we all until the free gifts ran out?) but i'm thinking i dropped pretty quickly after Action started.
So it'll be interesting to see what Bullet was doing to compete with the young upstart.

Lovely cover with Fireball bursting out of the newspaper there, while proudly sporting his Fireball badge. As soon as i saw it, i remembered the thing but at this point didn't realise just how blatently it'd be promoted this issue.

Turn the page and we have "Frontline UK", a strip i'd totallt forgotten about until Bear Alley Books announced a while back that they were going to reprint it. As soon as i saw Ian Kennedy's stunning art on their site, it all came flooding back though (especially how i had my Airfix Scorpion Tank in all sorts of recreations in my bedroom) and i really must get that collection sometime.
In the meanwhile, i'll make do with what's here.
Boy, its "Invasion" from 2000AD isn't it? But a year earlier - instead of Volgs we have the Yellow Moon invade Britain, instead of a tough guy hero with a surname starting in "S" in Savage we have Strong.
All great fun, with fantastic art from Mr Kennedy.

Next, we have "The Killer Kangaroos" - an appalling piece of rubbish, with terrible art and cliched, stereotype characters (they're Australian and they're called Bruce and Blue), the only thing that can be said of it, and its a very slim thing, is that it kinda, sorta, prempts "Shako" in the 2000AD to come. Or its a "Hookjaw" knock-off.

I'm going to skip over "Ginger", the tale of a boy and his dog, and "3 Men In A Jeep", three men in a jeep, as they're so bog-standard i forgot each panel the instant i finished reading it.

And then we're on to "Fireball", the main strip - you can tell because he's in the centre and has a bit of colour. Coming across as a mix between Our Man Flint and Jason Wyngarde but looking more like Jimmy Hill, its a yawn of a tale, made interesting by just how blatent his medallion was. Whats the deal here? Its in every blummin' shot, whether it wants to be or not. I don't know if s there to remind readers who had one too that we're all part of the gang, or there was a way to buy them and this was product placement, but, boy, its jarring.

Final two strips are as duff as the two i skipped above. I think i'd have been drawn to "Smasher" as its a tale of a giant robot, but one read would've put me off.

A 100% perfect one from a soldier being overturned in an armoured car in "Frontline UK"

Sunday, 19 April 2015

Bargains galore in Wales

Just back from a lovely holiday in North Wales, driving 'round visiting tons of neat places.
Llangollen was neat and then made even neater when we stopped into a combined cafe/second-hand book shop and found, laying in piles and piles on the floor stacked high, tons and tons of 70's and 80's British comics.
2000AD, Bullett, Warlord, Cor!, Beano, Battle - pretty much every title out back then, loads of them, and pricing from 25p to £1.50 a pop.
This is what we got - some for me, some for the Sprogs - alas, not too many for me, as i don't need too many Actions etc now.
Highly recommended should you be in the area.

Wednesday, 1 April 2015


Slightly out of the remit for this here Blog but please indulge me.
It was a case of love at first sight when this appeared in 2000AD - big first panel kicking off some joyous imagination and bampot notions taking me right back to the early days of the Prog, Action, and a whole slew of early 70's titles when an ordinary, real life thing or situation is given a fantasy/SF angle.
And that's classic Dredd to just dispatch the threat so cooly.
And that caption is right up there with the classic "please let me drown before the Giant Scorpions get me".
So, love at first sight.
I got in touch with Carl, just on the off-chance that he might still have it, expecting the answer "no".
Stunned then when he said that, yes, he did.
And it became mine within a few days :)
Lovely piece of work - A3 with very fine linework. The backgrounds are missing out of a couple of the lower panels as Carl added them in Photoshop.
That don't matter not a jot - i've got sharks on legs and i'm a happy bunny ;)

Friday, 13 March 2015

Starlord issue 2

For my next dip i'm going almost to the end of the school years remit for this site, only two months before i left school.
So, issue 2 of Starlord and we've an odd cover - the Timequake figures at the bottom are certainly by Brian Bolland, but the Droon up top? Sure not his style at all.
Anyway, turn the page and we've got the first episode of "Mind Wars". I've gone on record as not being a fan of this strip, but the stunning art of Redondo makes it a must-read. Its a bit of an odd introduction to a hero twins - she's bathing ina very Forbidden Planet-style rock pool affair and her brother gallantly turns away as his sister emerges. This is very unusual for a strip of the time, to have actual nudity. I wonder if that was in the strip, or something Redondo came up with?

After that, we get a break-neck 4 pages of action depicting their parents murder, their abducution, their ship crashing, and their powers manifesting. Phew! Exhausting stuff, with superlative art:

We've next got "Timequake" with, bless him, the recently departed John Cooper on art duties. Quite a neat premise but hampered by having such a dunderhead as Blocker for the hero - him twigging they've started the Great Fire Of London is a classic.

"Strontium Dog" next and nothing more to say on that other than it was a bona-fide classic from the get-go, with a firing on all cylinders Carlos Ezquerra, complete with lovely garish 70's colouring:

And then we're on to "Planet Of The Damned," I LOVED this strip and i really don't understand why its not mentioned more. Fantastic art from Pena, with a real nasty edge to it - this could've been in Action two years before.

Finishing off, the superb "Ro-Busters" and this issue is noticble for me for two things - this shot of the Preying Mantis being attended to by Maintenance Droids, and the very first glimpse at Hammerstiens first head, pretty different to what we're used to it looking like:

Despite quite a few deaths this issue, none.

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

RIP John Cooper

And another childhood hero leaves us.
So long John, thanks for your body of work.