Friday, October 14, 2016

Just arrived in newsagents...

Here's a quick look at some of the British comics that were published this week. There are of course more titles than this, but in this post I'm only focusing on the ones available in newsagents and supermarkets, not the numerous independent comics available in comic shops or at conventions...

We start with Count Duckula (cover above), in which... hang on! There's a Count Duckula comic now? No, it's just a trick flip cover to the latest issue of Danger Mouse (see below). Issue 4 contains an all-new Danger Mouse strip written by Alex Collier, plus loads of fun features. Well worth any kid's £3.99.

Danger Mouse is published every four weeks by D.C. Thomson, who also publish Thunderbirds Are Go! which is up to No.13 this week. It contains a comic strip adaptation of the episode Legacy drawn by Martin Baines. All good stuff, although 8 pages is too cramped for adapting a full episode and I'd prefer to either see more pages of strip or each episode split across two issues (ie: 16 pages) to give the story more breathing space.  

This issue of Thunderbirds Are Go! comes with a free mask of The Hood. It could be said that some of us don't need it...

Also from D.C. Thomson this week is Beano No.3856 which leads with an extra-length Roger the Dodger story, and is packed with comic strips. All new material too! Don't miss it!

The Beano Christmas Special is also out now, with 68 full colour pages of all-new material and a free set of stickers inside. I'm very proud to say I drew the four page Bash Street Kids story in this issue, which was written by Andy Fanton. 

For older readers there's 2000AD No.2002, which continues the new stories that began in the previous issue. 2000AD has consistently been a great comic for nearly 40 years now and shows no sign of weakening. A must-buy!

Marvel Legends No.3, from Panini UK, has 76 pages reprinting recent Marvel material of Thor, Iron Man, and Captain America. Big changes have happened to the Marvel Universe over the last few years and this is the place to keep up with it. 

Last but not least, Viz No.260 is another 52 pages of adult satire with loads of strips from top UK cartoonists. You'll find it on the top shelves of the finest newsagents in the country. 

Also out now, although you might struggle to find it in newsagents, is Comic Heroes No.29, with 132 pages of comics news and views. I bought mine from Nostalgia and Comics in Birmingham yesterday, as WH Smiths still don't have it in stock. 

That's just the comics that have arrived in newsagents this week. They join the titles from previous weeks that are still on display such as Toxic, Doctor Who Adventures, Commando, and more of course. Support UK comics, and Never Be Without A Beano - or any of the others!

16 comments:

John Kerry said...

This seems a far cry from the sixties. Although I live in Canada I recall there being far more than this available at W.H. Smith and Sons, which back then had stores all over Canada. Of course Beano was around back then and Thunderbirds are Go brings back memories of the old T.V. Century 21 comic.

Lew Stringer said...

As I said above, this is just a selection of this week's comics (most comics are monthly now). You're right though; there are far less comics in newsagents now, as they've been replaced by children's magazines that have no comics content. (There are dozens of those.) However, as I've pointed out before, there are lots of independent comics that newsagents don't stock (or won't stock) that are available in comics speciality shops, at conventions, or via mail order. There are also graphic novels available in bookshops, so all in all there's still a fair number of titles around.

Anonymous said...

7 comics and a Special does not constitute a "thriving comics industry".

Lew Stringer said...

You're right, Anon, and if you actually read the posting you'll see that I mentioned there are far more than seven comics published in the UK. Also, who are you quoting there, because they're not my words.

Stephen Parry said...

I want - no, I demand - an actual Count Duckula comic. Lew, publish and write one, please!

;-)

Robert Carnegie said...

Some W H Smiths are hiding the Marvel (Panini) and DC (Titan) reprint comics. Do they have a theft problem? Hamilton has them behind the counter, and East Kilbride has one top shelf - having moved all their magazines to the rear of the store, apparently because they get in the way of greetings cards (I didn't actually ask). Is this a general pivoting of the business? Of the industry?

Anyway... I haven't seen "Incredible Hulks" No. 3 although it is listed as out, have you? Apparently it includes the ongoing encounter of Teen-Hulk with boisterous Lady Hellbender so perhaps the D. H. Lawrence Police have impounded it?

Lew Stringer said...

That's right, Robert. Some WH Smiths are claiming there's a countrywide theft problem with comics. I'm skeptical. I think it's censorship by stealth of any comic for kids over 10.

Stephen, I must confess I've never watched Count Duckula!

Stephen Parry said...

Sometimes you have to trust your gut - I call "bullshit" on the nationwide theft. Besides, most of the WHSmith branches I go in have security guards. Are they asleep at the wheel?

This is the most unconvincing argument I've ever heard.

Chris said...

Re: Smiths hiding the Marvel/DC comics - the Smiths in Manchester Arndale have for the past two years have put sticky security tags on those mags. I complained as they were on the cover and ruining them if you tried to take them off, and for something that calls itself "Collectors Editions" they are putting collectors off from using Smiths. Smiths insisted Panini were asking them to put the tags on - however up the road at Picadilly the Smiths there doesn't put the tags on.

Roundabout way of saying I think there is a theft problem, but I don't think there is a consistent approach from Smiths when dealing with it.

Lew Stringer said...

There's always a percentage of stock that will be shoplifted unfortunately but it's odd that Smiths are only putting comics behind the counter. All comics for older kids, including Commando, 2000AD, and the Panini comics. It's their job to police their own shop, not charge publishers for shelf positioning and then not honour it.

As for tagging comics, I can't see Panini suggesting that, unless the choice was tagging or putting them behind the counter.

James Spiring said...

What's the point of that Duckula fake cover? It's bagged, so you don't see it in the shop.

John Kerry said...

Security guards at the door really don't do much good for shoplifting. To charge someone you have to see them pick up the item, conceal it and then attempt to leave the store or do something else with it and not pay for the item. An example of the something else would be the case in the store I worked where a young lady took a home pregnancy test off the shelf and then went into the Ladies restroom to use it. If you don't follow all the steps you can't do a thing.

Anonymous said...

My WH Smiths has all the comics in one place albeit the superheor ones are higher up. And my WH Smiths has Viz with the film magazines. It now has Dark Side there too. For several months it was with the true crime magazines. I rarely see comics or Viz bought in my WH Smiths. I gave up (again) on Viz as it is not good enough anymore. WH Smiths is good for Simpsons comics 3-in-a-bag for £4.99 every few months: I would not but individual issues.

Lew Stringer said...

James, the point of the fake Duckula cover is it ties in with the story inside where he's trying to take over Danger Mouse magazine.

As for shoplifting, I still find it suspicious that of all the items in Smiths that are potential thief-magnets it's only comics for older children that they've decided to put behind the counter. The fact that they're now doing it to The Dark Side too (and not any other film/media mag) suggests to me that it's really all about Smiths acting as censors.

Robert Carnegie said...

Is censorship also why such comics as Count Duckula are in plastic bags now? Or is that about thinning the herd?

I'm assuming that under this policy no one ever will see The Incredible Hulks comic No. 3 without a periscope or a small camera drone or something.

Smiths in Hamilton hid their comics a while ago. I have once been back there for some selections, but I couldn't face making an amiable but honestly puzzled nice old lady find which of three Batman titles it was that I actually wanted to buy, if it was actually there. Or it may have been Iron Man, I've forgotten. Anyway, maybe it's as well that Titan are thinning their herd of Bat-books (apparently cutting "Gotham Central", maybe because Detective Montoya is, you know - although they already outed her).

Lew Stringer said...

The plastic bags are just to stop the gifts being lost or stolen. It's a practice that's been going on for years. It was the suggestion of retailers to bag comics with several gifts as a package, although those same retailers now moan about them apparently.

As for Gotham Central, it would have been cancelled due to low sales. Nothing to do with a character being a lesbian.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...