s I said in the previous post (here
), when SMASH!
shuffled off this mortal coil (on 27th March 1971
), its ghost haunted VALIANT
for a while - but that wasn't the only
way in which it managed to maintain a presence for another few years past its final issue. Right up until 1975
, a SMASH!
Annual appeared every year in August/September for the following year. (That is, the Annual which went on sale at the end of a year in the run-up to Christmas was for the year to come.)
SMASH! had ten Annuals in total - four in its ODHAMS incarnation, six in the IPC/FLEETWAY one, but there was an eleventh book in the form of the SMASH FUN BOOK 1971. Feast your eyes on the covers for 1971 to 1976 in the pic-fest which follows.
Might as well throw in the 1969 & '70 Holiday Specials - just so I can show off my recent acquisition of the latter. A replacement for the replacement of my original, as it were. (Relax, it makes sense to me.) Also included is the 1971 Valiant & Smash! Holiday Special, seeing as how Smash! is part of the title.
And now, for completists, here are the four original ODHAMS PRESS Annuals. (Published by Hamlyn Books.) The front and back cover for 1968 are included.
(Click on any image to enlarge, then click to enlarge again.)
Considering that the new SMASH! hit the stands in March of'69, it's odd that the 1970 Annual reflected the previous incarnation of the comic rather than the new one. The Annual would've been prepared at roughly the same time as the comic was due to be relaunched, so that makes the discrepancy even more puzzling. Quite a few readers must have been confused as to why the Annual of their weekly comic bore very little resemblance to it when it went on sale in August or September of '69.
The 1971 Annual for its former companion title, WHAM! (the weekly having vanished from the shelves in 1968) must've seemed even more of an anomaly in contrast, the tone and format being in the old ODHAMS style as published by HAMLYN. I can only conclude that the Annual usually sold well, hence its inclusion in the publishing schedule that year.
The name SMASH! survived for nearly ten years, from its first issue in 1966, to the final Annual for 1976 - surely a success in anyone's book.