Friday, June 26, 2009

Comic Cuts

Most of this week's news you'll have spotted already. Chris Weston pulled out all the stops to get the colour cover of The Phantom Patrol to me this week (head over to Bear Alley Books to have a look). We've got a new logo for BAB, care of graphic designer Mark Bonsor, and we're working on an ordering system and other doodads so that you can actually get hold of books when they appear.

Most of this has taken me away from what I prefer to be doing, which is the actual contents of the books. I've not written anything, apart from these Comic Cuts columns and a couple of reviews, for a few weeks. This week I got to to research and write the introduction to The Phantom Patrol—my usual potpourri of historical info and reminiscences from anyone involved that I can get in touch with. I've also been doing some digging around for another BAB project which should be a lot of fun when it comes together.

The latest issue of Spaceship Away! landed this week with the news that Garth is coming to its pages as of next October's issue, in colour. John Ridgway, who has made such a great job with Hal Starr and Nick Hazard (and who, of course, is doing the cover for Cursitor Doom), is the man behind the colouring, telling me recently that "Colour seems to have added a whole new dimension to the strip. People who have seen it have liked it (so far)" I'm looking forward to seeing it—I've seen quite a selection of the sample strips that John has coloured up in the past and I've always been impressed.

But that's next issue. This issue sees the conclusion (and a very satisfying one) of Keith Page's "Rocket Pilot", the end of "Ex-Astris", although it was only ever a preview for a potentially much longer series which may appear yet (some readers of SA! dislike computer generated artwork but the 3-part story may have won them over), and new episodes of Dan Dare (two ongoing storylines), and reprints of "Journey Into Space" and "Nick Hazard". Spaceship Away! has always been home to some interesting articles and illustrations and this issue is no exception, with a revealing piece by Bruce Cornwell about his association with Dan Dare, and nice artwork by Don Harley, Ian Kennedy, Gerald Palmer and Graham Bleathman.

For ordering info and subscriptions, visit the Spaceship Away website. You can find some background on how the comic came to be at Wikipedia. Back issues are available.

By the way, fans of "Eagles Over the Western Front" will notice that this is a slightly longer story than the four or five episodes it has run most weeks. They'll be running over the weekend but will still be here Monday if that's the next chance you get to pop by. Just remember not to read them out of order.

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