Wednesday, 30 September 2009

On your marks, get set...

Yesterday I had a free afternoon (ostensibly to return a faulty stairgate) obviously I used it to go comic shopping instead. First stop Gosh for a pleasant chat with Mr Salmond and co-workers about Batman: Arkham Asylum, Hellblazer, digital comics, Alan Moore and Ghost Rider. Picked up Vol 5 of Drifting Classroom before hitting Forbidden Planet and grabbing Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? which is next up for reading on my list of great SF novels I've never read. From there by tube to Fantastic Realm in Finsbury Park where I found Boss Man Tim in exasperated mood. Trying to run a struggling comic shop is a stressful business. Credit to him he had all of the books on my list from last week - including Fantastic Four 571 which most UK shops didn't get (Another piece of Diamond fuckwittery). Then home and out in the evening only to find that son had puked all over sofa and rug while in grandparents care. Can't get stink of vomit out no matter what I try. The joys. Read FF 571 and have to report - IT'S FUCKING ACE! Free minute for updating finishes. Apologies for lack of paragraphs. LLC out!

Monday, 28 September 2009

The Spirit of 2000AD distilled in two thought balloons

Scan from M.A.C.H.1 as featured in 2000AD prog 54, March 4th 1978

Saturday, 26 September 2009

Read R.E.B.E.L.S.

R.E.B.EL.S. from DC is the best space opera you're not reading. It's got Braniac 2, The Omega Men and Starro, who is without doubt the coolest villain in the history of American comics - intergalactic mind-controlling starfish FTW!

Snappy writing from Tony Bedard, beautiful Moebius-type pencils from Andy Clarke AND lovely colours from the fella who makes Conan look so pretty, Jose Villarrubia. It's a fucking spacey treat so it is...

Ten Salicrups - LOL!

Thursday, 24 September 2009

Brief bits

I'm now well into my second week as a stay at home dad and I have to tell you chums, it's proper fucking hard graft!

Obviously the fact that I am supervising a two-year-old for most of the day has eaten into my comic reading time, but I have read a few bits and bobs - Batman and Robin #4, which is still top notch even without Frank Quitely. Blackest Night #3, which was utter tosh, but enjoyable tosh all the same. Volumes 1-3 of 20th Century Boys, which doesn't hit the spot in the way that Drifting Classroom or Uzumaki did, but which is still good enough to make me think that I want to read a lot more manga. I am Legend the novel by Richard Matheson, which is one of those books which I always meant to read and now have. Hard to believe it was written over 50 years ago - high quality horror. I've gone and downloaded a copy of the Will Smith film to compare. No doubt it will be terrible.

No shopping lists lately as getting to the comic shop has become a bit haphazard. I'm aiming to pick up some stuff on Tuesday. When I'll actually get the chance to sit down and read it is another matter entirely.

Wednesday, 23 September 2009

From the disco to the outer limits of space!

Now that's an ad! I demand you click it to experience it in all its late '70s intergalactic glory.

Oh, and just because the makers of the Warrior's Battle Jacket never mentioned Battlestar Galactica, doesn't mean Glen Larson didn't have every right to sue the fuck out of them!

Scan from the back of The Rook #2, February 1979

Tuesday, 22 September 2009

For Fuck's sake, not more black and white scans!

Oh yes my imaginary chums - MORE! MWAHAHAHA!

Lifted from the calcifying pages of the July 1988 issue of Speakeasy, here's a nice selection of ads for London comic shops of the time...


DEAD. They just closed the megastore too.

? Quality Comics were the publishers of Warrior. Apparently they also had their own shop. Anyone know what happened to it? Perhaps it still exists. My nose starts bleeding when I go south of the river so I don't know.

ALIVE. Looks exactly the same today as it did then.

ALIVE. This ad is great - Gosh about to go LARGE!

ALIVE. Although, of course, FP has moved again since 1988. This is another great ad marking the merging of Forbidden Planet's two shops, and the sad death of the historic Denmark Street property

? Is this the site of the Murder One bookshop or the place which Comic Showcase moved to before turning up its toes? Maybe it still exists as a bookshop. I dunno do I?! Cany you believe the opening hours? Open til 9pm, even on a fucking Sunday!

DEAD. Ah, now, this shop holds a special place in the hearts of many an ageing comic collector. Never went there myself, but I remember the ad. Funny.

DEAD (I presume). Never heard of it.

ALIVE! They even have a WEBSITE
My dad lives aht East, so I'll have to check this gaff out next time I'm in that neck of the woods

Monday, 21 September 2009

Charity Shop Comics - Smash Annual 1976

Picked up for £1 in a Stoke Newington junk shop...

It's bog standard stuff inside, but oh...that cover!

Artist unknown, but I have a feeling some George Best photo reference might've been involved. Whatever, it's a great piece. Click it for HIGH KARATAY!

For previous charity shop finds, click the tag below.

Sunday, 20 September 2009

A Good Day at The Royal National

To The Royal National for September's Mart, an event which I entered with the usual low hopes, but which I eventually left with a decent haul of tat. Here's a list of what I stuffed into the old nerd sack...

Uncanny X-Men #107: Pricey low grade copy which completes my Cockrum, Claremont, Byrne run. Paid £9.95, which was too much, but it closes a collecting chapter, so I stumped up .

The Greatest Golden Age Stories Ever Told: A nice 288 page hardback of golden age DC stories printed in 1990. Bought for £11 (bartered down from £16) from the Comicana stall of all places.

Captain America The Classic Years Slipcase: Wow! Top purchase. A rare out of print two volume hardback collection of the first 10 issues of Simon and Kirby's original wartime run on Cap. Bartered down from £30 to £25. A genuine comic treasure at a great price (£12.50 cheaper than it was when it was originally published, for crying out loud!). Cheapest I've ever seen this on ebay is £75.

Back Issue #32: 75p gets you articles on the history of Marvel's Handbook series and LLC childhood favourite, Dial H for Hero.

Speakeasy #88 + #91: Late 80s British fanzines choc full of brilliant ads for comic shops living and dead. I'll be scanning these in this week. 50p for the pair.

The Rook #2: 25p for this old Warren mag. Bought for this cover...

What If Han Solo was a weapon-wielding Chippendale?

So, all-in-all a very nice haul. I was slightly disappointed by the Heroclix Man's absence, as treating myself to a little plastic toy on the way out has become something of a tradition/unhealthy compulsion.

No matter, I put aside my sadness at the lack of Man-Toys to take a few new snaps to add to my growing archive of Mart shots...

An entire longbox of X-Men Annual #10. I think this is what an optimistic dealer would refer to as, "an impressive warehouse find". What in the name of God possesses someone to shove a whole box of this in the van when picking out the stock to take for the day?

While I was taking this pic, a very respectable looking woman wandered up to the stall-holder and asked if he had heard of a graphic novel called "Fable". He just stared at her blankly, leaving me to explain that "Fables" ran to several volumes and that if she wanted to check it out, she was best off heading over to Gosh! Christ knows how she ended up at The National.

A rather blurry snap of the pre-code horror man holding court. I like this geezer's stall, it's full of expensive rarities. He doesn't half blow on though. The punters in the picture are listening to his usual wank job over Wally Wood.

King of the Mad Stinkers! This bloke is properly crazy and properly smelly. Here he is, resplendent in his Eagle T-Shirt, boring a stallholder to tears about Blue Tack - apparently he uses it to put up all his posters. This shot was taken three minutes into a five minute list of every single poster he has ever owned.



I am back from a short break in France.

Updates resume with the obligatory snapshot of a comical foreign sign...


Friday, 11 September 2009

Fat Man With No Name

My good friend and Raindance Film Festival nominee Mr Wheatley...

I saw this photo on HIS WEBSITE, and thought of this...

Been playing it at top volume all day.

Well done son, and good luck!

As for me...I'm wankered and out of a job (the two are connected*). On holiday for a week now, so no updates for a wee bit. Soz.

*Sober update extra! When I say the two are connected, I mean I got pissed at my leaving do, not that I was fired for being drunk!

Thursday, 10 September 2009

(S)Mart People

Yes, (S)mart people - the witty headline for a quite fantastic feature in the 1988 2000AD Sci-Fi Special.

If you've ever been to one of London's occasional comic marts or read my reports (see sidebar. ED) then you know that these glorified jumble sales at The Royal National are quite downbeat occasions. But it wasn't always like this. When I were a lad, London's monthly mart was a HUGE event, a veritable comics bazaar staged within the cavernous confines of Westminster's Central Hall, and a real highlight for serious comic collectors.

I honestly used to tick off the days on my calendar between these gatherings. There were no trades back then, see? No internet either. If you wanted to read an old issue of Marvel Team-Up (and I wanted to read them all) you had to go and find one in the wild, and there was no better place to do that then at Central Hall. It was such a big event that even the top creators used to pitch up for a squizz.

Ah, the memories. I'd save all month, load up on 10p comics then get the 24 bus home and lay my haul out on the frontroom floor, gazing in wonder at the glossy covered American exotica, before devouring it in front of the A-Team.


Of course, the time when comics and roleplaying ruled the world are long since gone. Those huge marts are the stuff of legend now, but, thanks to old copies of 2000AD, you can relive the magic. All of the scans below can be clicked to blow up the nostalgia. Enjoy...

Sorry to butt in. Love this pic! Pat Mills looks like he should be in The Sweeney!

There you go chums. Hope you enjoyed that little trot down memory lane. Catch you later.

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

Sea-Monkeys of Hackney...RISE!

Yeah, they're all dead.

I shouldn't weep, they had a good innings for brine.

To read their heartwarming story click HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

Two more scans from the 1987 2000AD Sci-Fi Special, and then I'll stop, honestly

Well, OK, three. But I promise, no more after today...

Torquemada going comic shopping at the original Forbidden Planet in Denmark Street!

Awesome Low Flam Judge Dredd dressing gown.
Time from seeing this to hunting for it on ebay: 2.5 seconds

Lemmy eating his prog.
What, no MotorDredd pun?

Monday, 7 September 2009

Inside the mind of Martin Pickles

2000AD reader Martin Pickles' 5th place entry in the "Design a trap to kill Slaine" competition which ran in 2000AD Prog 462. By far the best of all the prize-winning entries, I can't believe it didn't win...

You sick fucker, Pickles!