Saturday, August 01, 2009

Heeeere's Johnny!

Steve Holland's Bear Alley Books have just announced the third title in their new line of albums reprinting classic British comic strips. It's to be two volumes of Johnny Future, which originally appeared in Odhams' Fantastic weekly in 1967-68.

The first volume will also include The Missing Link, the original name for the strip before it, and the title character, evolved into the superhero Johnny Future. Overall, the strip ran through Fantastic issues 1 to 51 with episodes of various page lengths in black and white, plus a 14 page full colour complete story in the Fantastic Annual 1969. All strips were drawn by Louis Berjemo, whose beautiful and dynamic artwork gave the scripts a considerable lift.

Johnny Future was the only British strip in Fantastic, with the rest of the 40 page weekly taken up with reprints from U.S. Marvel Comics.

The Missing Link/Johnny Future is a fondly remembered strip by many readers who grew up with comics in the Sixties, including Alan Moore, who was inspired enough to name one of his characters Jonni Future when he created the anthology Tomorrow Stories for Wildstorm Comics.

Both volumes of Johnny Future are scheduled for October, and will include an foreword by veteran comics writer Steve Moore (who was actually on the staff of Odhams back then), an info-packed introduction by Steve Holland, and new covers by Garry Leach with Una Fricker.

Meanwhile, the first two books from Bear Alley, Cursitor Doom and The Phantom Patrol are coming this month, and can now be ordered from the Bear Alley Books blog at


Anonymous said...

Luis Bermejo is alive. Is he going to be compensated economically for this reprint of his work?

Lew Stringer said...

I don't know if he owns it or not. Do you expect a small press publisher to make a profit?

Sid Smith said...

I still have my Fantastic annual from around 1968 or 1969 with the Disastro story reprinted in it. Can't really recall that much about the strip being much good - the Missing Link malarkey was an obvious Hulk cash-in and his transformation to Johnny Future felt like they'd suddenly got bored with the whole "Link is big. Link is strong" schtick. Nevertheless, good news about it getting the reprint treatment and I'll be buying this one.

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