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24 May 2019

Signal comic #1 - cover by Don Harley

A while, while researching the Wonder comic from Esso (which is a blog post for another day entirely) I stumbled across an article on Lew Stringer's always excellent Blimey blog (here) about a comic called Signal.

Lew only had (has?) one issue - issue 4 - but what really piqued my interest is that the cover art is by Don 'Dan Dare' Harley. There's no information on the comic in any of Denis Gifford's reference books so the comic looked likely to remain a mystery...I don't claim to have solved the mystery but I have recently acquired another copy of Signal comic - this time #1, so let's have a look at it...

The format is just the same as issue 4 (so, 8 pages, photogravure printing, size is slightly larger than A4)…

The kids in this adventure are different from the kids that in issue 4

The adventure strip (artist looks like Pat Williams to me) Castle Glorious and the white knight is there on page 3 

John 'Captain Pugwash' Ryan is another ex-Eagle alumni who gets to contribute a strip to Signal

The Holiday Adventure strip continues on the back page...

On page 7 there is a competition that has a closing date of 31st October 1961 - so that's a better idea of a date than we had previously. Lew has confirmed that he's dated #4 as 1963 because the editorial says "...now that 1963 is here". So issue #1 in 1961, 2 issues in 1962 and (at least) one issue in 1963. The editorial comment in #1 says "...your chums will be able to get their own copies - but only of course when they go for their six-monthly check-up". So maybe it only came out every 6 months? Anyway, we've found out a little more but I'd still love to find issue 2 and 3 - can you help?

23 May 2019

Charley's War Battle cover by Joe Colquhoun up for grabs - auction ends tonight

There's a great opportunity to get hold of an original Charley's War Battle cover by Joe Colquhoun here - unlike a number of Joe's Charley's War Battle covers by Joe that I've highlighted here this cover WILL sell. 

How do I know that? The opening bid price of a penny (rather than £500+) means that this is going to find a new home - good luck with this if you decide to bid.

UPDATE...UPDATE...UPDATE...UPDATE...The bidding ends just before 10PM tonight and the bidding is already up to £620

22 May 2019

Cartoon Museum set to re-open on 1st July

Great news for all fans of comics and cartooning in general...the Cartoon Museum (formerly based just by the British Museum) have been in touch to announce the opening date for their brand new venue, this is what they've had to say... 




Photo: Will Potter


The new Cartoon Museum will open to the public on Monday 1st July 2019 at its new home on Wells Street near Oxford Circus.



A short walk north of busy Oxford St, a new London must see destination is preparing to open its doors. London’s Cartoon Museum has been a fixture of the UK Cartoon and Comics world since 2006. After raising over £1 million and a six month fit-out the Central London venue is due to re-open in July. 




The Museum has been designed by celebrated architect Sam Jacob who has created a vibrant and playful space that celebrates the language of cartoons and comic art. With cartoony smashed windows, desks with feet, a stairwell decorated with icons from over a century of cartoon characters, word balloons and tiger-striped flooring, the Museum will provide a vibrant and welcoming experience.



The move to Wells Street is pivotal giving the museum a permanent home for the next 25 years in Fitzrovia. The flexible and accessible new space includes two main gallery areas – one for the Museums permanent collection, and another for changing special exhibitions, a new Clore Learning Studio, and destination shop.


London’s popular Cartoon Museum has recorded over 400,000 visitors since it opened in 2006 and will be even more diverse, engaging and entertaining than before, with the new display curated by Cartoon Museum Trustee and political cartoonist Steve Bell. We aim to tell the story of the history of cartoon and comic art with superb examples from the museum’s 6,000 strong nationally important collection, and which features work by over 300 artists.



HLF funding has allowed the museum to add to its considerable archives of British original comic artwork and the opening exhibition aims to make the most of this, featuring more than a century’s worth of British comic creators and original artwork from The Dandy, The Beezer, Judy, Jane Bond, 2000AD, V for Vendetta, Roy of the Rovers and Watchmen and many more, including many works that have never previously been on public display.





The Cartoon Museum team are busy planning an exciting and dynamic programme of exhibitions and events that will continue to animate and add humour to London’s cultural landscape through 2019 and beyond. Watch this space!



‘Moving to a permanent home just off Oxford Street is very exciting for The Cartoon Museum. With important collections of cartoons, caricatures and comics, the collection is an important part of Britain’s heritage. Sam Jacob’s unique style has helped us to design a creative and fun museum space from scratch - right in the heart of the city.’
Oliver Preston, Chairman



‘The new Cartoon Museum will build on the success of the past 12 years, enable us to bring our amazing collection to life and share it with wider audiences.  We intend to provide a fantastic visitor experience and there will be something for everyone to enjoy, young and old’.

Becky Jefcoate, Museum Director




'Cartooning is a peculiarly urban artform, particularly as practiced in London from the early 18th century onwards. So it makes complete sense for the Cartoon Museum’s new home to be just as firmly entrenched in the heart of the metropolis as our old place. This is a unique opportunity to build on the extraordinary richness of Cartoon history to create something entirely new for the future.’
Martin Rowson, Political Cartoonist and Trustee

21 May 2019

Lawless convention - a tribute to Carlos Ezquerra - part 1

This weekend saw the brilliant "Lawless - tribute to Carlos Ezqueera" convention take place at the Doubletree by Hilton hotel in Bristol...there's a lot to cover from the weekend so I'm going to break it down into a series of blog postings - first up some of the Carlos Ezquerra art that was in display...










20 May 2019

Macdonald Hastings - part 2

Following on from my posting yesterday about Macdonald Hastings (here) here are the details of his other, more well-known book...even so there are some rare variants to look out for,

Here's the book - front cover...

...and back cover...

There are 2 editions published by Michael Joseph (so interestingly not published by Hulton Press)...the first edition (book 2 in the photo below) is just dated 1953 whereas the 2nd edition (book 3 in the photo below) says "second impression October 1953" and also says August 1953, which I assume relates to the first edition.

1955 saw a cheaper version (no photographs; rather than 60 photographs) published under the 'Children's book club edition' banner. This cheaper version is on the left in the photo below and you can see that it's a little smaller than the 'full fat' version [books 2&3] and there is no publisher mentioned on the dustjacket.

The book on the right of the above photo is a book that I only came across recently and, published in 1954, is a German edition of the 'Eagle Special Investigator' book.

The book uses the same photos as the version in English (although the photos are actually a little sharper in the German edition). So, I'm guessing there may have been OTHER foreign editions of this book, the question is am I right? Have you seen any other foreign editions of his Eagle books?

19 May 2019

Macdonald Hastings - The search for the little yellow men

'The search for the little yellow men' was published in 1956 by Hulton Press as a look at Eagle's very own Special Investigator, Macdonald 'father of Max' Hastings, travels in the Kalahari desert. 

Eagle volume 5 #49 to Eagle volume 6 #19 had featured his exploits - so that's an amazing 24 weeks of coverage in Eagle

That wasn't quite his longest series (that would be the series that came immediately afterwards, all about his travels in the Middle East) but it's still a far cry from his more usual single episode 'challenge'.

So here's the usual 'novelisation' of the story - it's less than 150 pages.

Another view of the book...

But there are also other (even rarer) editions - this is the US edition from (October) 1956 - not as many photos as the UK edition. 


This tribal image is lurking beneath the dustjacket...

There was also this second US edition from (December) 1962 (no dustjacket) - where the young hunter has been promoted from the back of the book to the front!

Come back tomorrow for more Macdonald Hastings rarities...

18 May 2019

Daemonifuge - Kev Walker & Jim Campbell - part 2

As promised yesterday here is a guide for which issues of Warhammer monthly to look out for to catch-up with all things Daemonifuge (book 1)...

Issue 4 - the only time Daemonifuge made it to the front cover, cover by Kev Walker

Issue 5

Issue 6

Issue 7


Issue 9

Issue 10

Issue 11



17 May 2019

Daemonifuge - Kev Walker & Jim Campbell - part 1

I've enjoyed tracking down comics that were published in the late '90s / early '00s relating to the Warhammer (40k) universe. Some of this interest comes from (as far as I can see) an incomplete understanding of what comics were published, so I'm going to take just one story today and look at how / when / where it was published, Daemonifuge
Note this all relates to Daemonifuge book 1, rather than book 2.  

Originally published in Warhammer monthly issues 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10 & 11 [which I'll cover tomorrow], a period from June 1998 to January 1999.

The material above (plus additional pages) was then printed (in 1999) in this volume (ISBN 1-84154-117-6). Classic US comic book size. 
In 2002 the material in this book was re-published in a 3 issue mini-series (classic US comic book size)...

The material in issues 4 & 5 (plus additional pages) was reprinted in this March 2002 issue 1 (of 3) of Daemonifuge

The material in issues 6 & 7 & (some of) 9 (plus additional pages) was reprinted in this April 2002 issue 1 (of 3) of Daemonifuge.  

The material in (some of) issue 9 & 10 & 11 (plus additional pages) was reprinted in this May 2002 issue 3 (of 3) of Daemonifuge

So of all the material published in Warhammer monthly very little was re-published in a mini-series, in fact it was only this series and The Redeemer, which I covered here. Only a couple of the books were published in hardback AS WELL, but Daemonifuge was...

At this stage in my researches I can't say if this was the only over-sized book that Black Library ever published by this is definitely an oversized volume...

So here it is (from 2002), utilising elements of the mini-series covers...(ISBN 1-84154-261-X) 


And here it is with the smaller book for comparison... 

There was a further edition in 2005 (of which I don't own a copy) called Daemonifuge: Heretic Saint (ISBN 1-84416-251-6) which looks like this...


And the story itself? That's pretty good too :) - good luck tracking all this stuff down people.

16 May 2019

Marvel UK's Worzel Gummidge weekly

For all fans of John Cooper's work don't forget that the Marvel UK Worzel Gummidge weekly (NOT to be confused with the Marvel UK Worzel Gummidge monthly) is stuffed full of his art. 

It seems like a hard set to collect so here's what I've managed to track down quickly...all covers by John...got any spare issues? Get in touch!

Issue 1

Issue 3

Issue 12

Issue 15

Issue 16

Issue 17

Issue 18

Issue 19

 Issue 22

Issue 23