Scream!

October 1, 2013

Scream09

I wonder why IPC decided that the UK needed a horror comic in 1984? Weren’t they just asking for trouble? There’d been complaints about the violence in “Action” only a few years earlier and “Scream!” was a proper horror comic unlike earlier titles such as “Monster Fun” and “Shiver and Shake” which featured light hearted comedy/horror strips. Despite containing pretty good artwork (although the covers were variable…) and well-written stories “Scream!” only lasted for 15 issues between March and June 1984. As they so often did with Warren and EC comics (and 2000AD) “Scream!” had a host, Ghastly McNasty (!?!) introducing the comic. Surprisingly when the comic folded it was absorbed into “Eagle”. Only a couple of “Scream!” strips featured in this new “Eagle and Scream!” and the “Scream!” part was quietly dropped as soon as they could.

Scream04

Scream07

Thirteenth Floor

The common concensus is that the most imaginative story in “Scream!” was “The thirteenth floor”. An apartment block was built (without a thirteenth floor) but with a sentient computer to manage it. Said computer was not only sentient but also psychotic. It created it’s own thirteenth floor and proceeded to take gruesome revenge on any occupants of the building that it took a dislike to.

Scream08

Scream11

Scream14

Scream15

PS: Some issues came with “wraparound” covers. See Number 9 in full size by clicking twice here.

PPS: After the comic finished there were still a few Holiday Specials produced, probably published because there was still some inventory to use up that was a bit too gruesome to be placed in other current comics. I suppose they were published for the Summer holidays when perhaps they ought to have been saved for Halloween.

Scream Holiday Special 1986

Scream! Holiday Special 1986

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This world today is a mess

October 1, 2013

Donna Lubertha Hightower died a few weeks ago aged 86.  I’ve always liked an early tune by her from 1951 entitled “I ain’t in the mood”. Presumably this would have been released on a 78rpm disc. I particularly like the way her vocal seems to be double-tracked rather like those fab Les Paul and Mary Ford tunes from the same period.

donna

“This world today is a mess” was written by Donna and released in 1972. It was a hit in many countries but not in the USA or UK (but it’s surprisingly familiar when you hear it).

Nuff said 42

October 1, 2013

Summer Nights

In the States they make a big thing about All Hallows Eve (although the concept only really caught on there in the  beginning of the C20th). Shops here over the last few years have increased the Halloween plastic tat available whilst down-playing fireworks and Guy Fawkes night. Young children can no longer buy individual small fireworks for tuppence. When I think what fun we had as children throwing bangers around. Catherine wheels and Jumping Jacks were particular favourites. Bangers inserted in the fuselage of Airfix planes produced interesting results. They want to stop the harmless fun of the UK tradition of burning effigies of Mr Fawkes and replace it with people dressing up in horror masks. Talking of horror, I notice that Uncle Creepy and Cousin Eerie are once again lurking around the comic racks. And Vampirella comics continue to be published but they seem to be missing that undefinable something. I always liked this Arthur Adams cover from sometime in the 1990s though.

Modern Beauties

October 1, 2013

Jean Rogers

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Between 1936 and 1939 there were nine different series of these photo cards to be found in packets of BAT (British American Tobacco) cigarettes. I’m unsure which brand though. Some of the actresses featured are/were famous whilst others are too obscure to rate a single mention on the Interweb, but then it was a long time ago.

Jean Rogers and Priscilla Lawson are best known for appearing alongside Buster Crabbe in the first and most famous of the Flash Gordon serials. Jean was Dale Arden and Priscilla was Princess Aura, daughter of Emperor Ming the Merciless of the planet Mongo (!?!).  It seems that Jean died in 1991 aged 75 and Priscilla died as long ago as 1958 at the young age of 44.

Priscilla Lawson

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Dale Aura and Flash

Occupy Comics

October 1, 2013

Occupy Comics 02

I missed issue number 1, probably because I wasn’t looking for it and probably because I don’t particularly agree with their politics. That being said the first three issues are definitely worth the price of admission if only for the text pages containing Alan Moore’s massive, detailed history of comic books. As it is written from his “anarchist in the UK” perspective it is ten times better/more insightful than a hundred american “histories” on the subject.

Occupy Comics 03

Comics will eat themselves

October 1, 2013

Miss Fury 05

When I wrote about these two characters a while (years?) back the assumption was that they were long-forgotten comics of interest only to part-time panelologists such as myself. Yet here we are in 2013 and “Miss Fury” and “Brain Boy” live again. About the only hero left to be resurrected now is “Fatman the human Flying Saucer”………………

Brain Boy 01

PS: Yes, there really were “Fatman the human Flying Saucer” comics !?!

fatman

Manyak

October 1, 2013

Manyak 213

“Maniac” (or perhaps the “L” is part of the title and it maybe translates as “I’m a maniac” ?) is a current monthly Turkish adult comic/magazine available on regular news-stands that appears to be a cross between Viz and a 1960s Underground publication. The 6 page centrepiece strip “Memory Lane” certainly looks cosmic.

memory lane

I was surprised at the vulgarity, nudity and x-rated language within the pages. Evidently Turkey is now far more westernised than I realised.

crude