Friday, May 16, 2014

Comic Cuts - 16 May 2014

I had an interesting message from Gary Russell, who was editor of Doctor Who Magazine way back in the days when I was editing Comic World. Gary put me in touch with John Ainsworth, who has written extensively about Doctor Who and been heavily involved in the Big Finish Doctor Who audio stories. After talking to John, I learned that he had a tape-recording of an interview he conducted with Dennis Hooper. This was one of a series of interviews used by John to produce 'Beyond the Frame', a series of articles published in Doctor Who Classic Comics, edited by Gary.

I received a copy of the recording on Wednesday and spent the whole day trying to clean up the sound with a sound editor that cost me $15 many years ago. And it actually worked pretty well. Dennis's very quiet voice was almost swamped by hiss and a regular knocking sound—which I believe was the microphone picking up the sound of the tape revolving!—but I've managed to pick it out of the background so that his words are mostly discernible.

So that has taken up a chunk of the week. I had intended to concentrate solely on layouts, but that didn't quite work out as I was doing little bits of rewriting on Monday. But I put together some pages that I was happy with on Tuesday, so we're about twenty pages in as of Thursday mid-day, which is when I'm writing this, taking a break from listening to the still hissy but slightly more listenable interview, looking for anything that will add value to the Countdown story.

I was sad to hear of the death of H. R. Giger, famous for his work on the Alien movies. I interviewed him back in the 1990s but I have absolutely no memory of where the results appeared.

Giger's death has rather overshadowed that of Patrick Woodroffe, who died in the early hours of Saturday, 10 May, following a brief illness. Woodroffe was a prolific artist around the time I started reading SF in a big way in the mid-1970s. He did some beautiful covers for Quartet, including novels by Michael Moorcock, Harry Harrison, Futura, notably their reprints of A. Merritt, Panther, Pan Books, Sphere and Corgi.

Being a long-time rock / prog rock fan, I also began seeing his covers on LPs by Pallas, Budgie, Judas Priest and Greenslade. He also did a cover for The Strawbs Burning For You which was also used on the Corgi paperback edition of Brian Aldiss's SF history, Billion Year Spree—and it took me only forty years to realise.

Next week sees the continuation of our little series of mysterious Commando artists. Any help from our European or South American readers would be very welcome in identifying these creators.


  1. Hi Steve, Just catching up with your past blogs and spotted your reference to Patrick Woodroffe as the cover artist of the Panther edition of 'Two-Eyes' by Stuart Gordon. I have before me all three volumes in this series and only the third has a cover credit namely 'Jim Burns. I thought he had done all the covers but can you put me right? Cheers, Tim K

  2. One-Eye and Two-Eyes are by Woodroffe, Three-Eyes is by Burns. A pretty good list of his covers can be found here.



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