Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Valiant and TV21 - 1st Jan 1972

Lets have a random dip into me back issues box and see what we come up with shall we chums?
Starting off with the usual dreary cover which put me right off buying it in the first place, we have the following:
CAPTAIN HURRICANE. Never, ever read this strip. Think back then, even as a 9 year old, i'd decided war was war and comedy was comedy. And its a talented strip that can combine the two. And this ain't it.
YELLOWKNIFE OF THE YARD. A strip that started this week and i've never heard of before. And i can see why - a pretty duff tale of an American Indian becoming a detective at Scotland Yard with even duffer artwork. And the usual for the period racism - on the level with Little Plum, but in a dramatic setting. Can't ever see this being given a graphic novel.
JANUS STARK. Much more like it. The start of a new tale and here he is taking "... time to show his incredible feats to more humble communities cut off from the main world. In a tiny crofters village in the Scottish Highlands..."
And show off he does, interrupted by a hermet who the villagers reckon is a werewolf. Thats the first page. Here's the second, where Janus is attacked by the Wolfman. I've never read this strip and don't have part two but i'm reckoning, even though the beastie is wearing the hermits clothes, its all a deception. As far as i know, the supernatural never truely appeared in this strip. But i may be wrong. What's incredible here is that we have the set-up, characters introduced, a mystery, a bit of action and a setup for the next episode all in two pages.
RAVEN OF THE WING. A tale of a gypsy footballer. Not for me.
STAR TREK. An incredibly duff two-pager, with appalling art. Tssk.
THE SWOTS AND THE BLOTS. How i loved and still love this strip. Even when Baxendale was on the Bash St Kids, he never showed the sheer lunacy on display here. Brilliant, genius stuff that SO needs collecting. My children love this strip, though they find the usual ending of the teacher whacking the heck out of one of the kids backsides rather puzzling.
THE RETURN OF THE CLAW. Deeply into Crandell's SF phase now, with him battling alien robots. Not too good.
KELLY'S EYE. Rather a good tale this, where Kelly and the prof have travelled to an alternative Earth where their counterparts are nasty bad guys. Lovely art and a nifty sound efecct. "Spluunch" indeed.


james corcoran said...

Any ideas if Janus Stark is collected anywhere?

Mangamax said...

Its a criminal shame - but no. We was massive in France and there were some albums produced there but over here, nada except for reprints in annuals and summer specials. Was really hoping Titan would follow up their Spider and Steel Claw editions with one of Mr Stark but, alas, nowt yet. Real sahme as that format would really best suit.

james corcoran said...

Thanks Mangamax, I'll try the bargin bins next time I'm on La Rue Dante there are some great comic shops all on one street and some do loads of old stuff, great posts by the way!