Friday, 17 October 2008

Dogbreath 19

An up to date title here? Sure:

(A) Its a really nicely produced fanzine devoted to Johnny Alpha and the rest of the SD Agents, so falls in the remit of this here Blog

(B) I wrote a tale, i'm chuffed to see it in print, and the arts lovely.

So there.

Wednesday, 15 October 2008

Thunder - Issue 2

So, two copies plop on my mat this morning to add to the collection.

The first is the ever elusive second issue. Didn't come with the Black Max Bat, but at only 3 quid i can live with that.

Its actually a very good copy - nice and tight, no pulling at the staples and little in the way of browning.

Open it up, there's Black Max and, blast, the colour has bled through to the first page, as sometimes happens.

Doesn't prevent reading though, and how interesting it is too. Not got the first issue yet with its Eric Bradbury opening but here in issue two we've got past the introduction of Max and now meet Wilson. He arrives on the scene wet behind the ears with his only concern being his C.O, the brilliantly named "Groucher Gromett". But he's also in a region where airplanes have taken off, never to be seen again... Of course its Max and his - singular - pet Bat. Of note here are the classic lines ("First FEAR to freeze the blood... then DEATH!") and the VERY odd look to the Bat.

Other than that, its quite a weak issue for a second issue, even Adam Eterno dumped in 70's America's not much cop with some pretty duff art, and the only thing of note is the odd two-tone colouring on some of the strips, the most striking being Furys Family seen here.

Thursday, 9 October 2008

Mind Wars & Jesus Redondo

Been having a re-read of all my Starlords. The Strontium Dog and Ro-Busters strips are as familair as ever, Timequake was a bit of a plod after a while, Planet Of The Damned was an interesting idea wasted and Mind Wars was pretty crap.

Can understand why i'd forgotten this dull, repetitive, cliche rubbish but the BIG suprise is the art of Redondo.

How did i never appreciate this guy back then? A brilliant artist (who must be one of the best from back then for drawing women) and an incredible draughtsman - look at the shape of some of those panels and how they overlap.

Its been a joy to read this strip to see how he went about things.

What a brilliant bloke.

Sunday, 5 October 2008

2000AD - Prog 62

Has the rightly praised Cursed Earth epic in Dredd, but other things of note going on here for me is the stunning art in Inferno by Belardinelli - he'd truely made Artie Gruber his own by now (and this perspective shot... well, words fail) - the vastly over-looked Brian Lewis on cover and Dan Dare duties and Tharg doing an Action by nicking the latest popular whatever and bunging it in - here we have Mach One doing a Close Encounters.

Warlord - 31st January 1976

Blimey, haven't read any of these since they first came out. Can't remember much and, judging by this example, i don't blame myself.


Cliched plots, terrible scripts, worse art.

And what's with the limited colouring? Here's the only interior example (from the main strip. You'd think they'd made an effort art-wise wouldn't you?) - a red plane and a pink control centre. Why'd they bother?

The only strip i can remember liking was "Union Jack Jackson", which could've been in Battle, but its not much cop here. And the racisism is quite disturbing.

What a let down. Doubt i'll be getting more.

AIEEEE! COUNT: one singular GI "Aieee!"

Saturday, 4 October 2008

Starlord - 10 June 1978

Massive, massive, MASSIVE apologies to anyone who's kept returning to this here site expecting an update and being denied.

Sorry about that - getting deeply back into modelling (especially of the Ma.K sort as seen on this sister site - ), along with a resurfaced interest in Arthurian legends and WW2 history and a total disinterest in the comics i buy weekly/monthly (you bad boys know who you are), has made for little compulsion to dig out a dusty, musty back issue.

Feeling really guilty about that, so promise from now on to post here more regularly and get back to eBay for more fixes.

To balance it up i've had another delve at random into my childhood and here we have an issue just about falling into my remit of June '68 - '78 (the point i left school and become an adult. Whatever that means.)

I LOVED Starlord. Loved it more than 2000AD. By this time Tharg's organ had become pretty much established and, therefore, rather predictable. Starlord was different. i couldn't have cared less about the "editor" and his woes, these stories had a feel to them that 2000AD had kinda lost in the couple of years it'd been out. At least that's what i thought back then and still do now.

So what floats my boat in this issue?

First up, a stunning cover by Kevin O'Neill. Does it still exist? And if so, how much is it worth now? Its a measure of the titles still newness that things like characters colour schemes aren't set yet - witness the rather fetching blue of Ro Jaws.
Inside there's some brilliant art from Ian Kennedy on Ro-Busters, especially the stunning colour splash page, which brings back memories of Frank Bellamys work on Thunderbirds. One day Ian is going to get the credit he oh so much deserves for his work, and it won't be a day too soon. Its criminal how much he's been over-looked all these years. As for Ro-Busters, it was my favourite strip of the title and it still holds up very well now. Give me the upcoming GN of these tales rather than the palid, instantly forgettable ABC Warriors in the Prog right now.
Find it interesting that all the pull-out games in this comic are still in there. Guess all my friends had grown out of comics at this point so there was no reason to take them out?
Planet Of The Damned has a following these days, and quite rightly so. It was the nastiest of the strips and a lot of fun too - here we have Hell's Angel's types up against a Nazi submarine crew on an alien world. Brilliant.
And finally Timequake. A very much overlooked strip, with a a main character who was basically Dredger transplanted sideways, it had a lot of nice ideas, like this one here - the Nazis have won WW2 and Martin Bormann is a Time Traveller.
You'll notice i haven't mentioned Strontium Dog. That's for the reason i didn't - heresy - rate him that much at this time. Too 2000AD.