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Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Comic Cuts - Upcoming Books

More upcoming comic-related books. Orion are the latest company to announce their schedule for the second half of 2008. The most interesting title for most of us will probably be the one immediately below. The stressed look of last year's Eagle Annual: The Best of the 1950s Comic has been retained but the book is much bigger (at 326 pages) and Jeremy Briggs has reported (at Down the Tubes) that the pages appear to have been reformatted (citing this article in the Daily Mail (9 May 2008) which has further images).

The Eagle Annual of the Cutaways, ed. Daniel Tatarsky. ISBN 978-1409100140, 18 Sep 2008.
After Dan Dare, the most famous and fondly remembered part of the Eagle comic was the cutaway. Basically, these were beautifully detailed drawings of the inner workings of pretty much anything: from steam trains, jet liners and racing cars, to oil wells, suspension bridges and tube lines beneath Piccadilly Circus. The Eagle had a team of three or four artists, but the king of the cutaway was undoubtedly L. Ashwell Wood, whose forensic attention to detail—be it a cross section of the Cutty Sark or a grand landscape of how electricity is generated—enthralled a generation of school boys.

It's worth a note that the previously announced Eagle Annual: The Best of the 1960s Comic has been pushed back to September 2009 and Tatarsky's Dan Dare, Pilot of the Future: A Biography appears to have disappeared completely, perhaps awaiting a confirmation that the Dan Dare movie will actually happen.

Fred Basset 2008, by Alex Graham. ISBN 978-0752893853, 30 Oct 2008.
From making sure he gets the most comfortable seat in the house, to stealing sausages with his friends Jock and Yorkie, Fred Basset is a dog like no other... Another wonderfully entertaining collection of cartoons from the Daily Mail's classic Fred Basset strip, featuring one of the most endearing and enduring of Britain's cartoon heroes. Fred Basset is without doubt the acknowledged authority on chasing cats, eating whatever food his owners leave unattended, and people watching. With his sidekicks Jock and Yorkie, Fred Basset's brilliantly dry wisecracks grace publications worldwide.

Asterix Omnibus 2, by Rene Goscinny & Albert Uderzo. ISBN 978-1409101338, 18 Sep 2008
In this fabulous collector's edition of Asterix, books four to six are collected in one volume for the first time ever. In Asterix The Gladiator, the Romans capture Cacofonix as a gift for Caesar who plans to throw him to the lions. To rescue their bard, Asterix and Obelix have to become gladiators. In Asterix and the Banquet, the Romans build a barricade around the village. So Asterix and Obelix demonstrate their resistance by going on a journey around the entire country, collecting local specialities on the way. Asterix, Obelix and co visit Egypt in Asterix and Cleopatra, where they are entranced by the Sphinx, the pyramids and Cleopatra's nose. Also available in paperback.

Asterix Omnibus 10, by Rene Goscinny & Albert Uderzo. ISBN 978-1409101352, 18 Sep 2008.
In Asterix and the Magic Carpet, Cacofonix's awful singing voice comes to rescue of the lovely Princess Orinjade, who is about to be sacrificed by the guru Hoodunnit. In Asterix and the Secret Weapon, Caesar has unleashed a troop of female legionaries, relying on the chivalrous Gauls not to fight women. But Asterix and co have a trick up their sleeve—Bravura, the female bard. In Asterix and Obelix All At Sea, Obelix is first turned to stone and then reverts to childhood as punishment for drinking the druid Getafix's magic potions. In search of a cure for him, Asterix and friends sail to the wonderful continent of Atlantis, ruled by its high priest Absolutlifabulos... Also available in paperback.

A little additional information about the upcoming (22 May) release of the Dan Dare Voyage to Venus Part 1 CD (ISBN 978-0752898766): this will be an audio drama with the cast including Rupert Degas, Tom Goodman and Kate O'Sullivan.


  1. Any indication of when the really gorgeous looking "deluxe" versions of Astrix might get published in English, Steve? They've been going back into the original books and re-colouring original art etc for some time now in France and the pages look fantastic.

  2. See: and click "The Grand Collection image.

    The Asterix Grand Collection is only available in French and in German.