Monday, October 15, 2018

The SCREAM AND MISTY SPECIAL returns this week!

After the success of last year's special, Scream and Misty return again for another combined Halloween Special. The 52 page issue will be in newsagents this Wednesday, 17th October, but if you have difficulty finding it you can order it directly from the publisher at this link:

There's also an exclusive Misty and Scream cover variant that you can only buy from the publisher:






 Following the success of last year’s fright-filled outing, the Scream and Misty Special returns this Hallowe'en!

With a creepy cover by Kyle Hotz and a 2000 AD webshop exclusive cover by Lenka Šimečková, two of Britain’s best loved comics reunite for an anthology of brand new tales - guaranteed to terrify and entertain you!

With more treats than tricks, this issue features Black Max by Kek-W and Simon Coleby, 13th Floor by Guy Adams, John Stokes and Frazer Irving, Black Beth by Alec Worley and DaNi, Best Friends Forever by Lizzie Boyle and Yishan Li, and Decomposition Jones by Richard McAuliffe and Steve Mannion.

Cover preview: The Tempest No.4

Continuing its theme of parodying old UK comic covers, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: The Tempest No.4 features this beauty satirising classic British humour comics. Alan Moore and Kevin O'Neill are doing great work on this comic so don't miss it! 

Here's the solicitation info. Order it from your comic shop today!

Order No. OCT180733

(W) Alan Moore (A/CA) Kevin O'Neill

Legendary swords clash atop the Paris Opera in 1913, while almost a century later a declining London witnesses assassination attempts, summit meetings in Haggerston Park, and the catastrophic return of a 1960s super-adventurer. Elsewhere, in the four-dimensional territories adjacent to the North Pole, a lost Shakespeare play sees its first and last performance, while Queen Gloriana's conjurer finally reveals the nature of his five-hundred-year-old game. Topping off an already heady mixture, this issue's classic Seven Stars reprint depicts our halcyon heroes as "Captives of the Creepyverse," another reason not to miss the unfolding of Moore and O'Neill's fulgurant finale in issue four of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Volume IV: The Tempest.

In Shops: Dec 26, 2018

SRP: $4.99

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Radio Times features the new TARDIS

A heads up for collectors of Doctor Who memorabilia. This week's Radio Times, on sale Tuesday 16th October, will have a feature on the new TARDIS interior, and an exclusive cover shot of the new Doctor.

Response to the new series seems overwhelmingly positive so far from those who have watched it. Jodie Whittaker has captured the Doctor's personality perfectly and there's no doubt that she's the same character who has been portrayed by over a dozen previous actors. The supporting cast are likeable too, and it'll be interesting to see their characters develop over the coming weeks. The stories feel fresh, whilst maintaining a classic Doctor Who structure, and the new film quality looks sensational. This IS Doctor Who

I know some have chosen not to watch it simply because a woman has been cast in the role. Well, they're missing out on good telly. If viewers can accept an alien shapeshifter who has been skinny, short, blonde, curly, old, young, or whatever in previous regenerations they should be able to accept a change of a few more chromosomes for the character to become female for once. The gender of the character shouldn't be an issue. The personality and principles are what define The Doctor, and Jodie Whittaker has nailed it. 

The Blackpool Dalek

One of the attractions of Blackpool in the mid-1960s was a Dalek ride that was situated (as I recall) in an amusement arcade on the central part of the Promenade. It was a full-size red Dalek, albeit somewhat off-model, that had an opening in its left side and a little seat inside. For the price of 6d (or was it a shilling? I forget.) you could sit inside operating the Dalek's appendages as it turned from right to left on its base. I think it spoke a few Dalek phrases too.

Believe me, that was a highlight of a holiday when you're seven! 

The Dalek was removed decades ago, replaced by flashier attractions, but on a recent trip to Blackpool I spotted it again! I don't know if this is the actual one that was in the resort 50 years ago, as there were others at other seaside resorts, but the model design is the same. Presumably a collector has cleaned it up and possibly given it a lick of paint. It's not functional any more but it makes an impressive display.

It's part of a display of vintage amusements at The Ice Cream Shop / amusement arcade in Blackpool's Waterloo Road. The display was roped off, so I couldn't venture closer, and there was no staff member available to ask about it, so I just had time to take the photos you see here. The Dalek can be seen through the window, but not very well, so I've highlighted it a little here. You can just about see the opening in the left hand side of the Dalek and the little seat inside...

It was very pleasing to see that vintage Dalek again after so many decades, along with the other classic amusements on display. Happy days!

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Preview: 2000AD Prog 2103

It's another packed issue of 2000AD on Wednesday, and this edition also pays tribute to the great Carlos Ezquerra, who sadly passed away a few weeks ago. A fuller obituary will appear in November's Judge Dredd Megazine

UK and DIGITAL: 17th October 2018 £2.85
NORTH AMERICA: 17th November 2018 $6.75
COVER: Adam Brown

In this issue:
JUDGE DREDD: THE SMALL HOUSE by Rob Williams (w) Henry Flint (a) Chris Blythe (c) Annie Parkhouse (l)

BRINK: HIGH SOCIETY by Dan Abnett (w) INJ Culbard (a) Simon Bowland (l)

FIENDS OF THE EASTERN FRONT: 1812 by Ian Edginton (w) Dave Taylor (a) Annie Parkhouse (l)

SKIP TRACER: LEGION by James Peaty (w) Colin MacNeil (a) Dylan Teague (c) Ellie De Ville (l)

KINGDOM: ALPHA AND OMEGA by Dan Abnett (w) Richard Elson (a) Abigail Bulmer (c) Ellie De Ville (l)

Available in print from: newsagents and comic book stores via Diamond
Available in digital from: 2000 AD webshop and apps for iPadAndroidWindows 10

Preview: Judge Dredd Megazine No.401

It's a busy week coming up from Rebellion Publishing with 2000AD, Judge Dredd Megazine, and the Scream and Misty Special arriving in newsagents on Wednesday. Here's a preview of the Meg...

UK and DIGITAL: 17th October 2018 £5.99
NORTH AMERICA: 17th November 2018 $13

In this issue:

JUDGE DREDD: QUARANTEENS by Rory McConville (w) Clint Langley (a) Annie Parkhouse (l)

LAWLESS: ASHES TO ASHES by Dan Abnett () Phil Winslade (a) Ellie De Ville (l)

STORM WARNING: OVER MY DEAD BODY by John Reppion, Leah Moore (w), Jimmy Broxton (a) 

BLUNT II by TC Eglington (w) Boo Cook (a) Simon Bowland (l)

THE DARK JUDGES: THE TORTURE GARDEN by John Wagner (w) Nick Percival (a) Annie Parkhouse (l)

Features: Scream! & Misty Special, Sniper Elite, Worlds of 2000 AD RPG

Bagged reprint: 
Johhny Woo: A Bullet in the Head - Gordon Rennie, PJ Holden, Patrick Goddard, Dylan Teague

Available in print from: newsagents and comic book stores via Diamond
Available in digital from: 2000 AD webshop and apps for iPadAndroidWindows 10

Friday, October 12, 2018

El Mestizo is coming!

Ready for pre-order now is El Mestizo, a collection of the classic strip by Alan Hebden and Carlos Ezquerra that originally appeared in Battle weekly 40 years ago. One of the late Carlos Ezquerra's favourite strips to work on, this shouldn't be missed!

Here's what the publishers had to say about it:

He ain't on anybody's side but his own - Alan Hebden and Carlos Ezquerra's groundbreaking character El Mestizo is now available to pre-order!

Bursting out of the pages of legendary Battle Picture Weekly and perfect for fans of Moebius's Blueberry and the motion picture Django Unchained, El Mestizo was once a slave who managed to escape to Mexico. Now he’s come back over the border – a mercenary for hire!

39 years of DWM

Doctor Who Magazine notches up 39 years of publication this week. An impressive achievement for any mag these days. It started out as Doctor Who Weekly back in 1979 of course, and I wrote a blog post about that first issue a few years ago, which you can read here:

That first issue had 36 pages with only four in colour. These days it's an 84 page full colour mag published every four weeks. The current issue is No.530. Here's the cover to look out for...

...and issue 531 will be out next week. I'll post a cover preview on this blog as soon as it's revealed!

I've always thought Doctor Who Magazine was a great mag, even before I started contributing to it four years ago. To find out more about the magazine, visit their website today and take advantage of the subscription offer to save money:

...and don't miss the next episode of the new season of Doctor Who this Sunday at 6.55pm on BBC One.

Mazeworld Collectors Edition

I'm still catching up with stuff so I'm a bit late previewing this book which was published last week. Mazeworld was one of the best strips to appear in comics in the 1990s and deserves a place on your bookshelves! Rebellion are collecting some great strips these days and there's more good stuff to come!

CREATIVE TEAM: Alan Grant (w) Arthur Ranson (a) Ellie De Ville (L)
RELEASE DATE: 4th October (UK) 24th October (US)
PAPERBACK, 194 pages
PRICE: £19.99 (UK) $29.99 (US)
ISBN: 9781781086568

From one of 2000 AD's most visionary creative teams, the complete fan-favourite Mazeworld saga in a larger, deluxe collector's edition! Thirty years after the British parliament suspended the death penalty, the gallows have returned and Adam Cadman finds himself being the first person to be hanged since 1964. But as his life drains away, Adam is transported to a strange, new dimension, populated by warriors and mystical beasts: the bizarre Mazeworld!

Available in print from: book stores, Amazon, and comic book stores via Diamond.

Here's a preview of the first chapter....

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Pedantic Stan at the Lakes this weekend

I won't be at this year's Lakes International Comic Art Festival but John Freeman will, and on his table you'll find copies of Pedantic Stan the Comics Fan, - a collection of the strip that John and I did for Speakeasy back in 1990. John wrote the early strips and I wrote/drew the rest.

The 16 page A5 mini-comic covers all of Stan's adventures in comic shops, comic cons, comic shops, comic cons, and... yep, Stan's life is very narrowly focused. 

If you're not attending the Lakes, you can buy the comic directly from me at my website: 

Grow a Pair - at the Lakes this weekend

It's the Lakes International Comic Art Festival in Kendal this weekend. I won't be there but cartoonist Marc Jackson will be, and he's bringing his new comic with him. 

As a departure from his usual children's comics, Grow A Pair is aimed at adults, but with the same daft style of fun from Marc that we're used to, albeit darker. Here's Marc to reveal more...

"It’s the tale of 13 year old Dusty Danson, who after seeking advice from his talking pin-up poster, gets super powers from a Space Genie called Gene. Dusty discovers that with great powers comes… well, you’ll have to find out! This is my first foray into comics for a slightly older audience (Teen+) and I’ve had fun doing something a little different, both storywise and visually!"
Marc explains more about the background to the comic...

"I’ve worked in partnership with The Lakes Comic Art Festival and Wacom to create the comic, it’s my first full length comic drawn using a Cintiq. Part of the project required me to blog about the creation of the comic on social media and I regularly posted images on my instagram"

Monday, October 08, 2018

Cover story

Skid Solo art by John Vernon.
Decades ago, it was common practice for the covers of British comics to feature a story, or at least the start of a story. The initial reason was that as the early comics of the late 19th Century / early 20th Century only had 8 pages the editors wanted to make sure their publications were giving value for money.

Another reason that publishers of old liked to start stories on the cover is that they believed they held the attention of potential readers for longer than one single image would. And the longer it held their interest, the more likely they'd be to buy it.

As time went on, and the page count increased, it became less necessary to feature strips on the covers, and comics (particularly adventure comics) tended to prefer using one large image for impact. These days it'd perhaps be considered too juvenile for 2000AD or Striker to start a strip on the cover.

Here's a selection of British adventure comics from the past that regularly put strips on their covers. I've scanned several Tiger covers as that comic used cover strips more often than its stablemates. 

What's your preference for adventure comics? One big representational image, or a story starting on the front cover? 

TV21 cover by Mike Noble.

Johnny Cougar cover by Sandy James.

Roy of the Rovers art by Yvonne Hutton.

Lion, Tiger, Jag ©Rebellion. 
Buddy © D.C. Thomson
Doctor Who ©BBC
Dan Dare © The Dan Dare Corporation

Sunday, October 07, 2018

Coming up in 2000AD Prog 2102

UK and DIGITAL: 10th October 2018 £2.85
NORTH AMERICA: 10th November 2018 $6.75

In this issue:

JUDGE DREDD: THE SMALL HOUSE by Rob Williams (w) Henry Flint (a) Chris Blythe (c) Annie Parkhouse (l)

BRINK: HIGH SOCIETY by Dan Abnett (w) INJ Culbard (a) Simon Bowland (l)

FIENDS OF THE EASTERN FRONT: 1812 by Ian Edginton (w) Dave Taylor (a) Annie Parkhouse (l)

SKIP TRACER: LEGION by James Peaty (w) Colin MacNeil (a) Dylan Teague (c) Ellie De Ville (l)

KINGDOM: ALPHA AND OMEGA by Dan Abnett (w) Richard Elson (a) Abigail Bulmer (c) Ellie De Ville (l)

Available in print from: newsagents and comic book stores via Diamond
Available in digital from: 2000 AD webshop and apps for iPadAndroidWindows 10

Friday, October 05, 2018

It's STOKE-CON-TRENT this Sunday!

If you're looking for a day out this Sunday (7th October) why not head to Stoke-On-Trent for Stoke-Con-Trent? You'll find me alongside other comics creators in the Science Centre building at Staffordshire University, not far from the railway station. The show runs from 10am to 4pm.

(Actors and other media guests will be in a different block I think, but head for the Science Centre for the comics.) 

I'll be bringing along Combat Colin 1 and 2, Derek the Troll, Pedantic Stan, Brickman Begins, and a few prints, plus doing sketches on request so I hope to see you there!

For more info, follow this link:

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