More variant covers

Jun 1, 2016

In my quest to reach the furthest dusty corners of comicology I’d like to mention these two comics that I just happened to be reading recently. Marvel Treasury Editions were those comics produced between 1974 and 1981 that although not quite the largest comics ever produced (see elsewhere in this blog for one of those) at “tabloid” size they were certainly much bigger than the regular ones. Surprisingly, the majority of them had variant covers produced for UK distribution featuring pence rather than cents for the price.

Marvel Treasury Edition 16 UK price

I don’t know by what means Archie comics were distributed here in the UK. Before the advent of comic shops and direct distribution I hardly ever saw any. They didn’t very often appear on spinner racks when I was a youngster so I’m not sure if Thorpe and Porter officially imported them (although they were responsible for some black and white British reprints of Archie comics for a time here in the UK in the 1950s). Perhaps Archie comics (and Harvey comics…..which didn’t seem that commonplace either) came over in bundles of unsold back issues like the Dell/Gold Key/King comics you’d find in Woolworths selling for 6d each in the 1960s.

number 5

This Sabrina comic sports a UK only price on the cover. Oddly enough, none of the other issues in the series before or after show a similar UK price (although there are some other issues sporting two different barcodes, presumably for News stand and Direct distribution variants).

All Marvel comics (and presumably Archie comics) of the 1960s to 1980s that sported variant UK price covers were printed in the States at the same time and place as their own issues. But how many of these comics destined for export would actually have been printed?? These american comics showing UK prices must have surely accounted for less than 10% of the total print run. Therefore my prediction is that when the rarity of our UK variant issues are finally appreciated (like is already beginning with Canadian/Whitman/different cent prices variant covers) then they must at some point in the future become extremely valuable and much in demand for $$$$thousands by comic collectors in the States. Or not.

see also

One thousand

Jun 1, 2016

not action 1

A mere five years ago I was disappointed to see that Action comics (No 1 June 1938 – No 904 October 2011), along with the whole DC universe had reverted back to issue number one. They’ve evidently now had a change of heart. After 52 issues of Action Comics Volume 2 we seem to have back-tracked to Volume 1 again. They’ve added the 52 Volume 2 issues to the original 904 and now we are presented with issue number 957 continuing the original continuity. Bonkers or sensible? Who knows. That’s comics for you. And now Action comics is going to be published fortnightly unlike the previous monthly schedule. Wasn’t it 8 times a year in the 1960s and weekly in the 1980s?? I can’t keep up. Still, at this rate it looks like there WILL be an Action Comics Number 1000 sometime early 2018.

Here is an Action Comic that hasn’t the slightest relevance to any of the above.

Miller Action Comics

PS: And they’ve done the same thing to the numbering with Detective Comics. However most of the other DC titles have in fact started again at Number one.

It seems that the centre of the known universe is actually a barely-inhabited island called Forvik off the Shetlands (formerly known as Forewick Holm). The current ruler, Captain Calamity, has discovered that no documents exist to prove that it is part of the United Kingdom and is claiming it should be declared a Crown Dependency like Jersey and Guernsey and therefore capable of having it’s own currency, taxes and laws.


A guidebook is available right here.

Twenty eight

Jun 1, 2016


I think one of the greatest inventions of the modern age has been the humble mp3 player. I don’t want to access my music by tapping and scrolling past a million “apps” (whatever an “app” is) on a phone. I don’t want to stream stuff around the house via some complicated server and 100 button remote control. I don’t want to rescue my CD player and turntable from the shed just yet….though never say never. I’m quite happy with a plain and simple mp3 player. This one contains over twenty eight hours worth of my all-time favourite tunes and is still less than a quarter full. The music may not be CD quality but the convenience of a matchbox-sized box in my pocket makes up for that.

twenty eight

Blah blah blah blahdy blah blah etc etc etc here.

Ne’er cast a clout

Jun 1, 2016

Old sayings dept:-      Ne’er cast a clout ’till May be out. There are two interpretations of this saying. Some people think “till May be out” means until we reach the month of June. Others believe the phrase “till May be out” refers to May blossom/the flowering of Hawthorn trees bushes and hedges which here in the UK can be anytime in May, or even in late April. Of course “Clout” or “Clowt” in this instance means clothes (although at other times it can mean to thump/slap/punch someone).


My hat!

Jun 1, 2016

my hat