The official Merlin magazine - launched in September but a victim of publisher Attic Brand Media going into administration last month - will make a return at some point.
That's the official line from a representative of the 22-year-old company, the customer and consumer magazine publisher behind Kick, National Geographic Kids and Kraze Club, one of the UK’s most popular children’s general interest magazines.
Media Week reported that ABM went into administration in mid-November, with the loss of at least 17 jobs. According to their sources, four ABM titles – Merlin, Kick, Kick Extra and Kraze Club - were to close but National Geographic Kids would continue to be published under a new company.
We now understand that Merlin, too, will continue to be published but no relaunch date has been announced and the publisher has not been named.
"Unfortunately Attic Brand Media has gone into administration and will no longer be publishing magazines," the company's former Marketing & Promotions Manager Peter Johnson, who is still working on National Geographic Kids, told downthetubes.net.
"I do believe someone else will be publishing the second issue of Merlin however I'm not entirely sure who - or when it will go on-sale."
As we previously reported, Merlin, which closely emulated the format of the BBC's Doctor Who Adevntures but was planned as a monthly rather than weekly title, launched in Septmber and included an orignated comic strip comic strip written by Damian Kelleher and drawn by Lee Carey. Retailing at £3.20, Attic were offering worldwide subscriptions for the title, the first magazine of the company's planned Futura Specials series, a range which also includes the football-themed posters and puzzles magazine, KiCK! Extra, and the games and entertainment title, Kraze Club.
The first issue also featured exclusive cast interviews, souvenir posters and prizes - including a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet Merlin actor, Colin Morgan. (We're told the competition will be honoured and the winner informed direct by the Merlin TV show production company, Freemantle Media).
"It will be a magical treat for boys and girls aged seven to 14 (and a guilty pleasure for all those Merlin fans who are that little bit older!)," the PR proclaimed.
Launched in 2008, the Merlin TV series tells the story of young Merlin in Camelot, as he comes to grips with his powers and destiny. Merlin's success and popularity continues to flourish across the globe .
Several publishers previously pitched for a license for the Magazine, and samples designs and strips materials were created by Interzone illustrator Smuzz for one dummy.
In addition to Merlin, Attic Brand Media previously launched some of the UK's most popular teen, kids and TV magazines, including TV Hits, B, All About Soap, Sugar, the UK's first "baby glossy" for teenage girls, and Inside Soap, the UK's first dedicated soap title.
We're sorry to hear about Attic Brand Media's woes but hope it won't be long before Merlin
returns to newsagents shelves.
• BBC Merlin site: www.bbc.co.uk/merlin
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