In a bold development for the fanzine of British comics, Crikey! has boosted its page count from 48 to 84, increased frequency from quarterly to bi-monthly, and has upgraded from black and white to glossy full colour stock for just a one pound increase in cover price. Most welcome of all, from the current issue (No.11) Crikey! is now available in Borders bookshops and selected newsagents across the UK.
The latest issue came out last week and I was pleased to see that even my corner shop had a copy. Contents of Crikey! No.11 are a good mixture showcasing the variety of British comics. There are interviews with Dez Skinn on his career, Steve Holland on his new Bear Alley Books venture, Pete Nash on Striker, and a talk with Euan Kerr on his long stint as editor of The Beano.
Other features include David A. Roach expertly writing on the life of artist David Wright; Tony Ingram's third part of the History of Marvel UK; Pat Mills on Tammy (corrected from the article in a recent issue); William Rudling on Jeff Hawke; Stephen Poppitt on Charlie Peace, and much more. Plenty to read for £4.99.
It's a vast improvement on some of the flaws of the earlier issues. It's lost most of the "Oi, do you remember when..." type of material that relied on hazy memories instead of proper research and it's good to see the writers adhere to the wise adage "Write about what you know" instead of making wild assumptions about the gaps in their collections. There are still a couple of mistakes but as far as I could see, nothing alarming. (Odhams began their Marvel reprints with The Hulk in Smash! not the Fantastic Four in Wham! as one article claims.) The coverage of a wider variety of comics suits Crikey! well and editors Glenn B. Fleming and Tony Ingram are to be congratulated on their accomplishments.
Filling 84 pages every two months is quite a task and I hope Crikey! continues to prosper and live up to its potential. If you don't have a Borders near you, or your independent newsagents don't stock it you can still order the magazine online directly from the publishers, and subscribe to future issues: