Wednesday, June 24, 2015

This week in British comics

Here's more proof there's still life in the UK comics industry with a brief look at several titles available this week that feature all new material. The Summer Special edition of 2000AD is out today, or 2000AD Sci-Fi Special as they like to call it, featuring revivals of a few old characters in brand new strips! 

The regular weekly 2000AD also hits the shops today with issue No.1936.

From London-based Titan Comics there's the second issue of Jay Gunn's excellent Surface Tension limited series. This is truly a superb comic with fantastic art by Jay.

Also from Titan Comics today is Scarlett Couture No.3, a thriller by Tottenham-born Des Taylor...

From Panini UK, Doctor Who Magazine No.488 will be in shops on Thursday (25th June), which includes another 12 page chapter of the serial Blood and Ice by Jaqueline Rayner and Martin Geraghty, plus a Daft Dimension strip by me.

There's also the latest issues of The Beano and The Phoenix of course, and probably some other titles I've missed. 

Support the UK comics industry! You'll find 2000AD, The Beano, and Doctor Who Magazine in WH Smith and other High Street newsagents. Surface Tension and Scarlett Couture are available from comics speciality stores. The Phoenix is available by subscription and in selected branches of Waitrose and Waterstones (plus some comic shops).   

Titan Comics:


Doctor Who Magazine:

The Beano:

The Phoenix:

(2000AD cover images taken from the superb Everything Comes Back To 2000AD blog. An essential place for every fan of the comic: )


KlownKrusty said...

Lew, at the risk of arguing the toss here, would you consider the Titan titles in question a fair indicator of the British comics industry's health when I don't think they have a UK cover price or UK distribution? I suspect the concerns about the British comics industry are more about availability and sales to the UK market rather than the success of British creators, companies, etc.

I should add here that I don't consider the British industry to be in a poor state. It has moved away from the 70s IPC/DC Thompson model, but that's evolution--I never read publications from either stable as a child in the 70s as I found them childish, dated and patronising, feeling like artifacts from another generation.

Lew Stringer said...

Yes, I think it's fair to include Titan Comics. They're a UK company based in London and their comics are available in UK comic stores. In that respect they're no different to The Phoenix or other UK indies. (In fact Titan Comics are available in more comic shops than The Phoenix.) True, they only have a U.S. cover price, but that's because they're distributed across the USA. I've noticed that various UK comic shops charge various prices for comics so perhaps it's better to leave the UK price off?

I avoided including the Titan Comics by American and European creators as I only wanted to focus on British talent in this instance. I suppose 'international comics' might be a better description of Titan's output rather than 'British comics' but as they are a UK company, with the comics commissioned, edited, created in the UK I felt it was fair to include them.

As for 1970s comics; some very nice artwork but on the whole I haven't kept many of them apart from first and last issues and suchlike. I still think Action and 2000AD are great though, and Polystyle's Countdown.

Anonymous said...

I'm with Klownkrusty on this one. It doesn't count if it's not on sale in newsagents with the other remnants of British comics. You're on shaky ground including Doctor Who magazine as well. That's not a comic.

Lew Stringer said...

As I pointed out in my post last week, we can't just go by what's available in newsagents anymore. The market has changed. To ignore comics just because they aren't distributed in newsagents would exclude all graphic novels, all independent comics, and digital comics.

As for DWM, I think its regular 12 and a third pages of comic strip makes it worthy of a mention.

Anonymous said...

Titan comics are printed in America and use Diamond American distributor. They have American dollar price on cover. They are AMERICAN comics. Made in the USA!

Lew Stringer said...

Panini UK comics are printed in Italy. Does that make them Italian? Some American comics are printed in China. Does that make them Chinese comics?

Titan Comics are published and edited in London. It's a British company that distributes its comics to comic shops via Diamond because that's the system of distribution. Rebellion, publishers of 2000AD, also use Diamond to get their comics into comic stores.

I hope that explains the situation.

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