Saturday, 9 February 2013


Images copyright MARVEL COMICS

Back in February 1979, comics editor DEZ SKINN - who was then in charge of MARVEL U.K.'s complete line - capitalized on The INCREDIBLE HULK's TV success by releasing ol' Jade Jaws in his very own weekly comic (cover-dated March).

Unlike earlier British Marvel mags which had reprinted U.S. material (even CAPTAIN BRITAIN was produced in America), the new periodical featured U.K. originated strips - with the exception of the reprinted LEE & KIRBY 1960s story, ANT-MAN.  The new Hulk tales were based more on the BILL BIXBY/LOU FERRIGNO TV show than his Stateside comicbook, but the U.K. content dwindled over time, especially once PAUL NEARY took over the reins from Dez Skinn.  The comic lasted for 63 issues and introduced NIGHT RAVEN into the mainstream Marvel Universe in the process.

Hulk Comic (alongside its companion weeklies, MARVEL COMIC and SPIDER-MAN COMIC) was in some ways a return to the style of the ODHAMS PRESS POWER COMICS of the 1960s, in that reprints were resized approximately two U.S. pages to one U.K. page.  In the main it was handled quite well, but the reshuffling of sizes allowed the odd mistake to creep in from time to time.  (See the second tier of the third Ant-Man page on this post for an example.)

I thought my American readers (especially Nifty NICK CAPUTO and Bashful BARRY PEARL) might like to see what the first issue (sans adverts) looked like - especially the 'made in Britain' Hulk strip, which will be reprinted alongside other U.K. created Hulk tales in a book due out in July.  Keep your eyes peeled.


baab said...

Moore and Gibbons take on Hulk is really interesting.
Straight away I dont think Dave Gibbons is ready to draw hulk at this stage in his career.He is a great artist and has too distinct a style.
But it did not put me off reading the story.
How much did Alan Moore cram in there?
I had to count the pages when I finished it.
And it all takes place during a very short period as the hulk falls down a big hill into a town.
And how perverse of Alan Moore to turn the Hulk blue for this story.
Reminded me of the seventies D.C. Horror comic short story with its ghostly justice ending.
Did they draw the whole series Kid?

Nothing in it really,but hey, I enjoyed it.

Cant even look at Nick Fury in a magnified mode....those gritted teeth.

I have read Night-Raven and really admire David Lloyd.
I usually think of his art as a puree of fifties and sixties british comics.
There is a silence to it .

Evil cram of Ant-Man.

thanks for posting.

Kid said...

If I remember correctly, it was Steve Moore and not Alan Moore who wrote this episode, although the two apparently worked together on various things (I think). In fact, it's said that it was Steve who showed Alan how to write for comics.

The second episode was drawn by Steve Dillon and the third by John Bolton, but I can't remember if there was ever a regular artist.

As for Gibbon's portrayal of the Hulk, remember that he was doubtless instructed to draw the Hulk something like the TV incarnation, so he wasn't drawing him as he normally would have.

Thanks for commenting.

baab said...

Steve Moore,thats not a name I am familiar with.
i just assumed.

I was sorely disappointed by the Hulk t.v. series.
I saw the first at my Nana's and remember being quite delighted at the whole idea of it,but Lou just did not do it for me.
When everyone at school became big fans i clung to my comics in a geek hissy fit.(probably).

Kid said...

Actually, I always thought that Lou Ferrigno looked more like the Hulk (facially) without the absurd wig they gave him. There was at least one episide where the wig seemed less like a mop-head and he almost resembled ol' Hulkie from the comics. All they really should have done is give him a more pronounced forehead and a Frankenstein fringe and he'd have been almost perfect.

Dez Skinn said...

Thanks for that, Kid! It was Steve Moore, yes, a guy I'd worked with at IPC a few years earlier (as was Steve Parkhouse) while the rest - with the exception of 16-yr old newbie Steve Dillon - were assembled from my old House of Hammer magazine. Alan Moore hadn't even appeared on the scene back then.

But talking of House of Hammer I've just discovered a couple of years old sweet little documentary about my Hammer days O thought I'd share if you really want to reminisce:

And, BTW, it was the success of Hulk Comic which led directly into impressing the BBC enough to let me have the rights to produce a Doctor Who magazine.

But Night-Raven? He's a character without which there'd never have been a V for Vendetta (then what anonymous masks would everybody be wearing today?.


Kid said...

Thanks for commenting, Dez. I'd noticed that the same 'Fantastic First Issue!' blurb had been used on both the Hulk and Doctor Who front covers, but had assumed the Doc's had come first. I was obviously getting them out of sequence, not having paid attention to the cover dates. Right - I'm off to watch you on YouTube. Everybody follow me.

Dez has made a small typo - the actual link is http://www,

Just to be clear - that's a capital 'I' (as in 'EYE') and a small 'l' ( as in 'EL', not a number '1') before the 2.

-3- said...

Fascinating. Due to my typical aversion to the black & white reprint books, i'd missed this completely. Both original UK production, and with the different focus makes it a very interesting potential dig. Already sent for the first half dozen issues to take a better look.
Thanks for the pointer, once again.

Kid said...

Take a look at my post called 'From The Marvel U.K. Vaults - The Incredible Hulk', 3 - it contains all the British stories from comics and annuals, and will save you some money if you decided you wanted a full set of originals.

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