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Saturday, November 19, 2016

Space Ace volume 7

Ron Turner's Space Ace returns with a new serial story from the pages of Lone Star that was originally curtailed in favour of a rather more action-packed yarn: "Trouble on Titan" ran for only three episodes before Turner, feeling nervous that SF was on the downturn, decided to increase the emphasis on Ace's Space Patrol activities, just in case, and wrapped up the 6-part storyline with a new direction for part four and a new 2-part conclusion, "Slaves of the Zirkons".

Turner had nothing to worry about, as the strip would run for quite a few years. However, it means that this is a somewhat fragmented story, with the disappearance of the research ship Pandora from Saturn's moon, Titan, resolved with no real explanation.

But it's the artwork that most will be buying the magazine for, and that doesn't disappoint. Turner's designs for the Titan natives and wildlife is up to his usual high standards and while the story is slight (and you can easily see the point where Turner gave up on the original storyline), it is engaging enough to carry you through to the end.

This issue also contains a back-up tale from Lone Star Annual in which Space Ace and Bill track down a time-travelling inventor who has found himself trapped in the past with an invading alien race.

As always, the original black & white strips are enhanced by John Ridgway's colours, which take full advantage of what modern computer colouring can do whilst retaining the spirit of Turner's own colour palette.

You can get hold of this latest volume for £8.95 (UK) or £12.50 (Europe) and £14.50 (International) including p&p — and that's pretty much at cost, I can assure you — with payments through Paypal via spaceace.54 AT or by cheque or postal order to John Lawrence, 39 Carterweys, Dunstable, Beds. LU5 4RB.

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