Saturday 31 December 2011
Friday 30 December 2011
|Images copyright MARVEL COMICS|
In fact, I'd go further. I'd say it's so unlikely a point of view that it would never have occurred to anybody had he himself not cleverly implanted the suggestion into people's minds, while pre-emptively protecting himself from accusations of vanity (or delusion) by 'modestly' claiming not to subscribe to the idea. However, the notion of him perhaps being the best Silver Surfer artist to date has doubtless now taken root.
"That's why I don't really understand how an artist can entrust something that important to a hired hand, no matter how good he may be."
"To me, it's monstrous to have an important part of the look of a page determined by an outsider."
"My letter is alive. It dances on the paper. It reflects my personality."
"I'd... rather have my own letters than the intrusion of someone else's style on my page. I really fail to understand how artists can tolerate this."
"The excuse of legibility is, I think, a very poor one. It is something that can be done away with."
Clearly Moebius's main mistake is in thinking that a story exists for the purpose of reflecting the artist's personality. I'm not interested in Moebius's personality (or that of any other writer or artist, come to that). At least, it's not my primary concern when I buy a comic, book, or DVD. I bought Parable because I'm interested in the Silver Surfer, not Moebius. The purpose of a comic, or any other form of storytelling, is to say "Look at that, look at him, look at them, look at the premise, the story, the situation" - not "Look at me!".
Of course, it goes without saying that any body of work - whether it be comics, books, music, movies, poetry, sculpture, any form of art, in fact - will reveal, to a greater or lesser extent, some aspect of the creator's personality, whether he wishes it to do so or not. However, that should be a secondary result, apparent only after enjoyment of - and reflection on - the work itself.
In illustrating a story by another writer, he acknowledges the collaborative nature of comicbooks, so it seems misguided (to say nothing of egocentric) not to allow someone better qualified than himself to render the script in a way that makes it more readily accessible to the reader, and also complements the art more effectively than his own sub-standard attempts at 'graphology'.
|Here's how it should be done. Art by John|
Buscema, lettering by Phil Felix
Posted by Kid at Friday, December 30, 2011
Thursday 29 December 2011
Anyway, the closing date was yesterday (28th), so I'll save the pristine condition, unopened, unread book from 2001 for another time. That should give you all a chance to do a bit of swotting up on the subject in the meanwhile. (Am I good to you, or what?)
Posted by Kid at Thursday, December 29, 2011
Monday 26 December 2011
|My old primary school in 1984/'85|
Thirteen years later, things were pretty much the same as they'd always been, apart from the absence of the annexed huts in the grounds of my old primary school. Around four years later (1989), amenity housing for the elderly was built on the field in the foreground, and - currently - a new school is being built on the football pitches in the background. When it's completed, at some as yet undetermined time, the old school - my old school - will be demolished and houses and/or flats will be built in its place.
I attended this school for nearly five years (between '65 and '70) and, due to its proximity to my house, I also played within its grounds 'after hours' and at weekends. Even after moving from the neighbourhood, I found myself back in its hallowed halls on many occasions over the years; at coffee mornings, jumble sales, and Christmas fayres and the like. It's strange to think that one day, in the not-too-distant future, this small but reassuring pleasure of reconnecting with this particular aspect of my childhood will be denied me when the school is no longer there.
Posted by Kid at Monday, December 26, 2011
Saturday 24 December 2011
|From The Dandy, issue dated Feb 8th, 1964|
I'm actually ancient enough to remember when KEN REID's artwork appeared in D.C. THOMSON comics, before he later became a mainstay over at ODHAMS PRESS, then FLEETWAY/IPC. The original artist of ROGER The DODGER, he also drew JONAH and GRANDPA for The BEANO, as well as the adventures of BIG HEAD And THICK HEAD, which appeared on the back page of The DANDY every week.
So, here's another Christmas treat for all you discerning Criv-ites - two Big Head and Thick Head back-page Dandy delights for your personal perusal and appreciation.
Friday 23 December 2011
|Art copyright REBELLION, poem copyright ME*|
The cover doubled as the 2000 A.D. Christmas card that year, sent from the office of THARG The MIGHTY to all contributors. I still have mine tucked away, in case it ever becomes valuable. Watch out for me on the ANTIQUES ROADSHOW in about 30 years.
*In case you're wondering, I never submitted an invoice for the 'script', so consequently was never paid for it. That means IPC/FLEETWAY, EGMONT, or REBELLION never acquired the copyright for it.
There's a wee story behind this poem, so in case any of you are interested, here it is. One day back in the late '70s or early '80s I was browsing through some old Reader's Digest mags stored up in the loft and happened to read an article by someone lamenting the loss of magic from their adult Christmases in comparison to those of their youth. It struck me as being a good theme for a poem one day (when I could be bothered), but I never got around to writing it until, weeks or months later, one of my pals 'phoned me and said he was writing a poem, but was stuck on how to end it - could I assist? Sure, I said.
He popped along and showed me what he'd done. The last verse was incomplete, lacking either two or three lines to draw things to a close. I therefore made a few suggestions, including the title, and he was delighted, incorporating my contributions into his poem, and off he eventually went, pleased with the result. However, his meter wasn't exactly perfect in places and his rhyme was a bit forced at times, so I essentially rewrote the poem overnight and made what I considered improvements in those areas.
When I 'phoned him the next day and read him the result, he said "Huh, it's not my poem any more, it's yours!" and I suppose he was right. My version was inspired more by the Reader's Digest article, but there's no denying that my friend's poem was also an influence. I typed 'Inspired by lines of verse written by MC' on any copies I made so that he wasn't completely deprived of acknowledgement, but, of course, 2000 A.D. credit boxes don't accommodate more than one name at a time in the space allowed for each contributor, so he didn't get a mention.
I've still got his version somewhere (with my original assistance), and when I find it I'll let you see it so that you can compare their merits. His first verse is punchier than mine, but unfortunately, his meter isn't consistent, which is why I rewrote it. Because he'd said it was now my poem, I subsequently made further amendments so it reflected my 'voice' rather than his, but his incarnation will forever belong to him.
And that's the story behind the poem - hope it was of interest.
Posted by Kid at Friday, December 23, 2011
Thursday 22 December 2011
|Image copyright D.C. THOMSON & Co., Ltd|
So, let's return to an earlier era when The Dandy still sold in many multiples of thousands and, unlike today, didn't have cheap plastic tat attached to help it sell to those who don't actually want the comic itself. Kids and bigger kids - I give you the cover of the Christmas Dandy from 1947.
Back then, KORKY The CAT was the cover star, and had been since issue #1 in 1937, eventually being replaced by DESPERATE DAN in 1984. Until then, he had missed only one cover - in 1945 when KEYHOLE KATE grabbed top-billing for an issue.
|Image copyright D.C. THOMSON & Co., Ltd|
Hard as it may be for some people to believe, I know of one comics collector who has never cared much for the exploits of the indomitable Dennis. Doesn't like humour strips about 'rough boy' apparently. The irony involved in his being the living embodiment of WALTER The SOFTY is obviously lost on him. We rugged, manly, he-men type collectors can look down on his effete wimpishness with well-deserved contempt. We're Menace fans and proud of it.
Wednesday 21 December 2011
|Image copyright D.C. THOMSON & Co., Ltd|
The above three-quarter page strip from 1951 was the first one to feature DENNIS The MENACE in a 'Christmas' setting. That this was early in his BEANO career is attested by his diminutive size. Later on, when artist DAVEY LAW was under pressure, Dennis became elongated because of the speed at which Law was compelled to draw him. He eventually shrank back down a bit, but here's the Menace before he first gained the look that made him appear as if he'd been on the rack.
|Copyright D.C. THOMSON & Co., Ltd|
Nixon's style was a bit more cartoony in the classic sense, and therefore not a perfect match for the long-established look that preceded him. Which is not to say that his style was bad - it was just a tad out of sync with what readers were used to and expecting.
However, Watkins is a hard act to follow (as was Nixon in 99% of his output). I'd go so far as to say that the only artist ever to come close to Watkins (if not actually equal him, in fact) is KEN H. HARRISON, who drew Wullie and the Broons back in the late '80s and '90s.
Anyway, I can't find any Broons by Nixon in a cursory browse through my library, but, here - for Chris B (and anyone who's interested) - are some panels of Bob Nixon's Oor Wullie from the 1995 book (published in '94). I couldn't scan the full page without cracking the spine, so hopefully these examples will suffice in giving you a taste of his take on the character.
Tuesday 20 December 2011
|Copyright relevant owner|
Here's a couple more HANNA-BARBERA strips from a 1960 edition of TV EXPRESS WEEKLY. The first features YOGI BEAR, followed by two tiers of Mr. JINKS with PIXIE & DIXIE. Strictly speaking, Yogi's strip isn't Christmas-related, apart from being set in Winter, but I doubt that you'll hold that against me. The comic's cover logo doesn't necessarily come from the same one as the strips, though it just might do. (When I scanned the images I didn't bother noting the specifics of which came from what.) Due to the page-size, I had to scan it in two halves so you'll need to view each section separately when you click on them to enlarge. (Remember to click again for full size.) Well worth it though.
For all those interested in Hanna-Barbera cartoons and related topics, be sure to jump over and check out the most excellent YOWP site here - you'll love it.
The back cover features a nice BOOK WORM tale, drawn by SID BURGON, and complementing the approaching Festive Season, which would still have been around a month away when the comic first came out. Although dated December, it probably went on sale in November (at the latest), to give it plenty of shelf life and a greater chance of selling. These magazines were really very good value for money and it's a shame they're not still around today.
|Copyright relevant owner|
Anyway, all that aside, I thought you may appreciate seeing a Festive number of ol' Tiger's title from 1923 - just to give you a taste of Christmas past. Apologies to any Glaswegians who thought this post was going to be about the former RADIO CLYDE DJ, also named Tiger Tim.
Monday 19 December 2011
Sunday 18 December 2011
|Images copyright D.C. THOMSON & Co., Ltd|
Unfortunately, only UK residents can enter, and - as this is a competition for collectors - only over 21s, so no kids please. (Though you can ask a parent to enter on your behalf.)
Please also note that this competition isn't open to fellow bloggers with their own comics sites - it's 'civilians' only.
3) Which two other famous comic characters is Dennis's artist Davey Law also known for?
Okay peeps, what are you waiting for? GET TO IT!