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Friday, November 01, 2013

Comic Cuts - 1 November 2013

I was going to start today's column with a picture of our food bin, which was blown over by the storm that hit the UK on Monday. We survived intact, as I believe did most people. The fence panels shuddered and slammed against their moorings but didn't escape (unlike the last time we had some windy weather). The trees blew around a bit but weren't threatening. We certainly didn't wake up to find a stray trees in our garden as we did back in January 2007.

However, when I was taking a walk that morning, I noticed that our neighbours on both sides had lost fence panels and a tree had fallen into the driveway of someone's house just around the corner from where we live.

I thought my sarcastic little joke might not seem so funny to some readers; and as I'm writing this days later the joke has lost any impact it might have had first thing Monday morning. So that's why you're getting a picture of a fallen tree, not a fallen bin.

In a little coda to Saturday's review of the new Egmont Thunderbirds book, I want to mention that they are also publishing sets of postcards based on Battle and various girls' comics as well as a set of Thunderbirds cards with stills from the original TV show. I've only seen the latter, but I had a great time going through the postcards remembering all the different episodes that they came from.

I should also mention that Egmont have released a limited edition, signed and numbered print of Graham Bleathman's FAB-1 cut-away drawing. I can't find it on their Classic Comics website, but you can get the postcards from Amazon at a knockdown price; the Battle and Girls' Comics postcards are also available.

I've spent part of this week finishing off the Gino D'Antonio book, which I'm calling Worlds of Adventure after the sub-title on the debut issue of Tell Me Why magazine, which read "The World of Adventure—In Living Colour. The bulk of the pages are laid out – namely the 77 pages of stories – and I'm working on the introduction and cover.

The book is going to be quite expensive because it's full colour, but it'll look beautiful. It'll make a nice Christmas present for someone.

Random scans. Just before I started writing this column, I heard that William Harrison, author of Rollerball, died at his home in Fayetteville, Arkensas, on 22 October at the age of 79. He died of renal failure. He was born in Dallas, Texas, on 29 October 1933, and adopted by Samuel Scott Harrison and his wife Mary Etta Cook Harrison. He was named William Neal Harrison and educated at Texas Christian and Vanderbilt Universities before attending the Iowa Writers' Workshop in 1961.

He was married to Merlee Portman in 1958 and moved to Fayetteville in 1964 where he began teaching. He received a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1973 and remained at the University of Arkasas until retiring in 1998.

Harrison published dozens of short stories and  nine novels, several of them set in Africa  where Harrison travelled widely. His most famous story, "Roller Ball Murder", was originally published in Esquire in 1973. Harrison adapted it into the dystopian classic Rollerball (1975), directed by Norman Jewison and starring James Caan as Jonathan E., whose fight for control over his personal freedom threatens the corporations that control the world. The quality of the original film was not always recognised until it was remade by John McTiernan in 2002. Harrison also adapted his novel Burton and Speke, about the 19th-century exploration of the Nile, as the 1990 movie Mountains of the Moon.

And one more for good luck. As it was Halloween last night, here's a Roger Hall cover from Corgi Books from the movie tie-in The Flesh and the Fiends.

I'll be finishing off the Flying Saucer Review series over the weekend and next week – a little late – we'll have our monthly upcoming and recent releases columns, plus whatever else I can squeeze in. And I should have more news about the Gino D'Antonio book next week.

1 comment:

Alberto Soares said...

Steve, just to let you know I'm looking forward for the Gino D'Antonio book.
Let's just hope it's not very expensive...
Keep up the good work.
Alberto