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21 March 2019

Hulton House - the home of Eagle, Girl, Swift & Robin & much more!

Here are some photos I took (in the mid-90s?) when I went on a 'pilgrimage' to Hulton House on Fleet Street - no point going looking for it now as it's long since demolished

Actually, I think I was just on the bus and suddenly realised there was Hulton House so I hopped off the bus and took these photographs.

I love the fact that the door handle is an H 

This clock reminds me of the clock on the Daily Express building (albeit that's an art deco Egyptian style classic).

Hulton Press moved into the building (from their previous main base at 43/44 Shoe Lane; and 4 other locations) in autumn 1956 and the building was officially opened on 14th February 1957. 

The move to the new building occurred when Hulton were at the height of their publishing powers. It was a short-lived triumph as 

Picture Post, the flagship publication of Hulton Press closed on 1st June 1957 and within 2 years the whole of Hulton Press was in serious financial trouble (sometimes blamed on the move to the new building). In March 1959 almost he whole operation was sold to Odhams Properties, who renamed the business Longacre Press.

Here's a view of Hulton Press House from Eagle 22nd March 1957 (volume 8, issue 12) - with a rather (New York) Guggenheim-esque extension for the Hulton Gallery. 

With thanks to Adrian Perkins (and his contribution to Eagle Times volume 12 #3, autumn 1999, on the history of Hulton Press).

20 March 2019

Charley's war art for sale - ends tonight

Ending just after 9pm tonight is this Charley's War cover by artist Joe Colquhoun cover for Battle - at the time of typing it's been bid up to £300 but surely it has a little way to go yet...
You can bid on it here - good luck!

19 March 2019

Southport 2000 - the 2nd Eagle exhibition

There have been 3 major exhibitions at the Atkinson art gallery in Southport relating to Dan Dare, Eagle & Frank Hampson. The first (and biggest) was in 1990, the most recent has closed and then there was another big exhibition in 2000.

The photos below were all taken at the (50th anniversary of Eagle) exhibition in 2000...

Plenty of original art was on display... 

Merchandise associated with Dan Dare and original art...

Spaceship models used for reference in the production of the Dare strip

Props used in the production of the Dare strip - some are now in the permanent collection of the Atkinson

18 March 2019

Published work

Just trying to get a record of my published work recorded somewhere...

Title Issue / Date Subject
Fanscene #2 Comic convention programmes - an incomplete look back
Fanscene #2 Eaglecon 80
Fanscene #2 The 1968 comic convention brochures
Fanscene #1 A brief history of Dan Dare fandom
Comic Scene volume 2, issue 1, April 2019  Billy's Boots in Dutch
Comic Scene volume 1, issue 3, December 2018 Fury
Comic Scene volume 1, issue 3, December 2018 The happy warrior
Comic Scene volume 1, issue 3, December 2018 The long and complicated guide to collecting Charley's war
Comic Scene volume 1, issue 3, December 2018 True War
Comic Scene volume 1, issue 1, October 2018 Yvonne Hutton and Roy of the Rovers
Comic Scene volume 1, issue 1, October 2018 Professor Peabody
Comic Scene volume 1, issue 1, October 2018 Marie Duval
Comic Scene volume 1, issue 0, August 2018 collecting Roy of the Rovers
Eagle Flies Again   #3, 2001 Call me a conspiracy theorist if you will
Doomlord memories
Eagle Flies Again  #5, October 2002 Dan Dare on TV
Eagle Flies Again #6, January 2003Dan Dare on TV
Eagle Flies Again#7, Spring 2003
Strip walk!
Dan Dare on TV
Eagle Flies Again#8, Autumn 2003Dan Dare on TV

Eagle Flies Again
#9, Winter 2003 Dan Dare on TV
Eagle Times
Eagle Times
Eagle Times
Eagle Times

Lady Lovely Locks and the Pixietails

In a break from my normal look at boys comics here's a glimpse of a comic that I came across a couple of times recently, having never seen it previously. Michael Carroll covered it on his blog (here) when thinking about the Marvel UK '70s and '80s leftovers (as he described it).

I could see that the cover was likely to have been drawn by Mario Capaldi (although it's uncredited) so I thought I'd acquire a single issue as a curiosity. Alongside the usual colouring in sort of things and games for kids there was 3 pages of this strip...

ok - so I wasn't expecting that, what's this strip? Looks like some sort of bandes dessinées - but that's quite a large choice, any chance of a signature?

Ah-ha! There's the signature, in nearly the penultimate panel there's something that looks like 'Crisse'. OK so pop over to (here), look in C and find Didier Crisse - could it be him? What strip might it be?

Hmmm, he seems to have illustrated a strip about a Japanese Princess in 'Tintin' magazine 1980-87 with Bom (writer presumably). So a quick bit of googling and we suddenly have a strip called 'Nahomi'.

So there we have it - a very obscure reprint of a European comic strip in the UK.

Here's a foreign edition of Lady Lovely Locks issue 1 - again, cover looks like Mario Capaldi's work.

And the Marvel UK #1

...and #2

17 March 2019

When Dan Dare was 50

So the Frank Hampson exhibition that was on in Southport has closed (yesterday), to provide a pick me up for all Dan Dare / Frank Hampson fans out there I present a selection of photographs that I took nearly 20 years ago! These were taken from the very successful Dan Dare touring exhibition that travelled all over the country thanks to the hard work and generosity of a few collectors.

The exhibition was held in the Brunswick Centre (in Bloomsbury) at the British Cartoon Centre (currently moving from its later home by the British Museum to a new home, opening in May)...

rare Eagle goodies on display...

 Peter Hampson (son of Frank Hampson, on the left) meets the daughters of Marcus Morris

16 March 2019

Audio Visual Design Technicians needed

Just a small image today to celebrate the last day of the Frank Hampson exhibition at the Atkinson gallery...this is a photo I took 15 years ago at the Eagle Society get-together in 2004t and shows (I think) Susan Stranks (daughter of Eagle writer Alan Stranks) holding a poster that Frank Hampson had illustrated...
I'd never seen this poster before (or since) and I've blown it up as much as possible to try and show you what this career for the 1980s looked like...

The woman in the black jumper is Frank's long-term assistant, Joan Porter.

The man on the left of the picture (Professor Eric Fernie) is holding a token that would have entitled you to a free copy of the first issue of the original Eagle comic (you can just about make out the enormous promotional eagle that was mounted on a car to help with this giveaway). 

15 March 2019

It's Red Nose Day commands the Mekon

Maybe you hadn't heard?
So what can you do? You have to do as you illustrious leader says and Smile!

You can donate right here, even if the Mekon probably won't

Frank Quitely talk tonight...

This is tonight, don't forget!

Aye Write have announced a signing with artist Frank Quitely coming in March...

As they say here...
Frank Quitely, legend in the world of comics, talks about the comics that have most inspired and entertained him throughout the years. 

Quietly grew up in Rutherglen and studied at the Glasgow School of Art before launching the underground comics title Electric Soup in 1990. This brought his work to the attention of Judge Dredd Megazine editor David Bishop leading to work on many iconic titles
He is perhaps best known for his frequent collaborations with Grant Morrison on titles such as New X-Men, We3, All-Star Superman, and Batman and Robin, as well as his work with Mark Millar on The Authority and Jupiter’s Legacy. 

Friday 15th March 6-7pm, tickets are £10 (plus booking fee)

14 March 2019

Psychogran exhibition - don't miss out!

Not much longer for fans of David Leach's Psychogran comic character to pop into the Bellue Vue pub (just by High Wycombe train station fact fans) to catch his Psychogran exhibition.

I popped in the other evening to have a look at what was there...

There's plenty of prints of the images from Pyschogran #2 - these are available to buy at £20 (unframed but signed) and £30 (framed and signed)

There's also the very first sketches of Psychogran - and plenty of other original art...

Here's the 'Gran from the pages of Oink (strip entitled 'Waiting for the bus')

The story behind the 'birth' of Psychogran

Original art on display...

David's biography...

13 March 2019

The art of Ian Kennedy announced by DC Thomson

DC Thomson have announced the book so many comics fans have long awaited...The art of Ian Kennedy.

The book is available to pre-order here - 160 pages, £40. Here's what DC Thomson have to say about it...

Celebrating 70 years of Ian Kennedy’s artwork for DC Thomson.
DC Thomson Media’s Heritage Comics team are proud to present the first-ever ‘Art of’ book dedicated to this master of the comics medium. Rarely seen original pages and sketches from Kennedy’s illustrious career at DC Thomson are represented here in a way they’ve never been seen before. A celebration of seventy years of true comics genius from the pages of publications as diverse as The Topper to Warlord, Lucky Charm to Starblazer, set out chronologically from 1950s to the present day, with a glimpse into the future, we give you ‘The Art Of Ian Kennedy’.