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Saturday, 12 May 2012

Dan Dare art, Marvel UK collections up for auction

The Summer 2012 auction at Compalcomics is open, with nearly 200 British comic-related lots up for biding, including Dan Dare art by Frank Hampson, a limited edition Dan Dare bust and collections of 1980s Marvel UK titles such as Captain America and Forces in Combat.

Compalcomics last auction in March saw Dan Dare and Eagle powered into the stratosphere with £555 pad for The Eagle Club letter and Membership Card, £565 for Dan’s interplanetary figures boxed set by Crescent Toys and £390 for the Horlicks Eagle Rocket Cup and badge.

In their latest catalogue they highlight the second part of a collection with a Frank Hampson Dan Dare artwork, one of his earliest boards, from Eagle Volume 1 No 33, pubishd in 1950, in which Dan's memory is restored by Volstar the Theron. Hampson's artistic devotion to detail is perfectly illustrated from Volstar's Venusian habitat down to Daniel McGregor Dare's argyle socks!

Also on offer are high grade bound volumes of Eagle from 1951-1959. There’s a super Super-sonic Space Pilot Gun, brilliantly boxed, a rare Dan Dare bust – one of only 20 cast, and an affordable double-page artwork by Carlos Cruz from 1987 featuring the Mekon and Dan in battle at London’s Natural History Museum.

There’s further original art of Beryl The Peril by Davy Law. David 'Davy' Law (1907-1971) found international fame by introducing Dennis The Menace to unsuspecting Beano readers in March 1951. He also penned Beryl The Peril, Captain Hound and the accident prone nitwit, Corporal Clott. Law's artwork rarely comes to market, so this lot, a page from The Topper, will attract plenty of attention.

There's also art from Look and Learn's The Trigan Empire by Don Lawrence, Grendel by Ron Embleton, Oor Wullie by Dudley Watkins and a six board complete Bionic Woman story by John Bolton pubished in Look-In, in which Jaime Sommers is bequeathed an ancient key – but faces mortal danger as she encounters the evil clan of Uncle Ebeneezer in The House of Six Locks!

This aucton's rare British comics selection includes The Dick Turpin/Spring-Heeled Jack Library from 1902, The Beano Comic No 1, The Beano Book No 1 and Beano and Dandy bound volumes from 1949 and 1950, Lion 1-45, Misty 1-23 - and Tiger No 1, pubished in 1954, with free gift Space Gun and 6 press-out Flying Saucers, all in their original bag.


The US section offers Classics Illustrated #43-74, mainly first editions, and the first tranche of our DC Comics one-owner collection spanning one hundred lots including Superman from 1948-1955, Action, Adventure and Superboy from 1959-1970s, Showcase #9 and #10 and Lois Lane #1-6.

Our favourite item - which may attract interest from beyond the comics community given his now international status as a fine artist - is a Rolf Harris self portrait, dedicated to a fan in the 1960s. Oh, and the DC Superheroes Pen Set from 1977!

• Bidding closes on Tuesday 5th June at 8.00pm UK time. Catalogue at: www.compalcomics.com/catalogue/index.htm. There are 316 lots in this catalogue.

• If you have a question about any of the items in the catalogue, please send an email to Compalcomics director Malcolm Phillips at comicbookATcompalcomics.com

Friday, 11 May 2012

Comicscape Issue 3 out now

The third issue of Chris Smillie's Comicscape, a free 48-page magazine offering reviews, news, and views for May 2012, is available now online.

Top news stories include big successes for Marvel in their comic arc AvX and spectacular box-office smash, Avengers Assemble. 2000AD announces a partnership with IDW, whilst bringing back the Dark Judges to the weekly. Meanwhile, DC re-introduces Earth-2, as Image reveal the demise of Paul Grist's Jack Staff.

In 'Tales That Astonished', the indie mag goes back to the epic Legion of Superheroes: The Great Darkness Saga, while ''This Day In Comics' visits Resurrection Central from May 1982. In Versus, it’s Wolverine against your friendly neighbourhood Spider-Man, while The Old and The New feature pits Defenders #4 from 1973 against Defenders #4 from 2012.

Post-apocalyptic BBC drama Threads is the 'Flick That Time Forgot' and a New comic strip, 'Kid Tiger', begins.

• Read online at: Issuu.com/starscape/docs/comicscape3; Myebook.com; and graphicly.com

Or download a pdf from Yudu

• Starscape web site: http://StarscapeOnline.com



Convict Commandos return to, er - Commando!

Here's the lowdown on the latest Commandos, on sale now in all good comic shops.

Alan Hebden's Convict Commandos make a return for the first of two adventures - the second is out in a fortnight - while a Soviet tank does its best to burst out of one of this round of covers, courtesy of Janek Matysiak's pen.

Meanwhile, the Commando team have been scurrying around in the archives for another pair of dusty but classic... well, classics. We think you'll like 'em!

Commando No 4495 - Rain Of Terror
Story: Alan Hebden Art: Manuel Benet Cover: Manuel Benet

In action once again, the Convict Commandos - Jelly Jakes, Titch Mooney, Smiler Dawson and Guy Tenby - undertake their most dangerous mission yet.

As if ruthless Nazis and silent stranglers weren't hazardous enough, even the skies are loaded with death... and it's raining down on them!

Commando No 4496 - T54 A Tankful Of Trouble
Story: Alan Hebden Art: Morahin Cover: Janek Matysiak

In 1956 the Russians invaded neighbouring Hungary to quell a popular uprising. The newly-operational T54 tank - successor to the wartime T34 - was used by them to devastating effect in the campaign.

When British Intelligence learned that Hungarian rebels had captured a fully operational T54, a team were sent to recover the mighty machine's design secrets.

But with Hungarian government troops and the Russian Army on their trail, this mission was going to be no walk in the park!

Commando No 4497 - The Gold Collection - Break-Out!
Originally Commando No 41 (October 1962)
Story: Henderson Art: Ortiz Cover: Ken Barr

Night after night the tunnel leading from the German prison camp grew longer. Day by day the hope of escape increased.

Then came THE NIGHT... and only one prisoner knew that German fingers were ready to press machine gun triggers; that cold Nazi eyes peered through the gun sights... WAITING.

"This is well-crafted tale and no mistake. Sort of Ice Cold In Alex meets The Great Escape to use a film comparison," says Commando Editor Calum Laird. "The author manages to make what could be a tedious trek across the desert riveting by introducing a…well, let's just say a wild card to stop spoiling it. It's skilfully done and works really well.

"The cover is a magnificent piece of work - you could almost see it as a film poster, too. There's menace and fear in that face rendered in blues and blacks.

"The inside art holds up its end well, lots of dark half-shadows matching the tension of the tale and plenty of movement when the action gets going.

"Well worth another airing 50 years on."

Commando No 4498 - The Silver Collection - Gold Train
Originally Commando No 2102 (July 1987)
Story: Alan Hebden Art: Terry Patrick Cover: Jeff Bevan

With the Japanese war machine making swift advances through Java every day, it was vital that the country's gold reserves were moved to safety. Captain Jan Ruiter was assigned this task. All he had to do was escort a train carrying the gold to the coast. An easy enough job, you might think. But not when the troops under your command are a bunch of rookies and a group of battle-hardened Japanese veterans are hot on your trail!

"Every Commando story needs a good hero - so more than one must be even better," feels Deputy Editor Scott Montgomery. "A mix of characters - and the ensuing conflict as they clash - is essential. Writer Alan Hebden is a master of making memorable characters.

"At first glance, the hero of Gold Train is Captain Jan Ruiter, tasked with transporting gold reserves to safety. However, for me, Aussie train driver Hogey Dubbs - and even his clanking, trusty steam engine Esmeralda is like a character - steals the show. Now let's find out if they can stop the villains from stealing their gold!"

• Official Commando web site: http://www.commandocomics.com

 • Commando Official Facebook page


• Click here for subscription information or write to: D.C. Thomson & Co Ltd, The Subscribers Department, Commando Library, 80 Kingsway East, Dundee DD4 8SL or Freephone (UK only) 0800 318846


Commando is also available for iPad and iPhone. The apps are free to download through the Apple iTunes App Store and a digital subscription is priced at £4.99 per month, compared to a £99 annual print subscription. For those not sure there are four free issues to download prior to making a purchase.


Commando Comics iPhone App on iTunes


Commando Comics iPad App on iTunes

In Review: The Bluecoats - Rumberley

Cinebook returns to the American Civil War for their fifth book of The Bluecoats - Rumberley, written by Raoul Cauvin and illustrated by Willy Lambil, translating the 15th of Les Tuniques Bleues albums into English for the first time.

The war is raging fiercer than ever and it is taking its toll on the armies of both sides. After the latest battle Cavalry Corporal Blutch searches the battlefield for his friend Sergeant Chesterfield and gets the stretcher bearers to take the injured Chesterfield to the overcrowded field hospital. Both armies have lost so many men that they both have to retreat to gather reinforcements, but the Union General decides that he must leave his injured behind in the nearest town. The problem being that Rumberley is a Confederate town.

Before Cinebook started translating Les Tuniques Bleues as The Bluecoats, only one other album had made it into English when, in 2004, Reney Editions in the United States published the eleventh album Des Bleus En Noir Et Blanc as The Blues In Black And White under the series title of The Blue Tunics. You would have thought that if any English speaking country was going to like the American Civil War-based Bluecoats, it was going to be America - but it was not to be and Reney didn't publish any more. So it is heartening that Cinebook has now reached their fifth book in the series.

My initial reaction to The Bluecoats back in 2010 with The Skyriders was lukewarm when I didn't really take to the mixture of combat and humour. However this is the third Bluecoats that I have now read and I am starting to come round to this series. I never had a problem with Lambil's artwork which is fun when it needs to be and his splash panels here show off a remarkable number of characters as the two sides' troops clash in the main street of the town.

However it is Cauvin's plot that stands out here, beginning with a splash panel of the dead and dying of a major battle with the simple text box "No comment" ("Sans commentaire" in the original French version) which doesn't just set the scene for the plot, but something of the tone of the book as well. Rumberley is about the wounded of one army in the Civil War arriving in an unfriendly town, how not just their arrival but the war in general affects the non-combatant civilians of the town, and how, when the troops who are on the town's side return, the town's folk manage to get one over on both sides to their own benefit. This is also the reluctant Corporal Blutch's story in which, as one of the few able-bodied amongst the injured, he has to take on a greater responsibility for his comrades than he would normally be comfortable with, yet he still makes the most of any chances to wind up Sergent Chesterfield and even their badly injured Captain Stark.

The Bluecoats - Rumberley is a humorous tale with a little extra pathos that is helping me warm to this series of books.

• There are more details of the English language editions of The Bluecoats on the Cinebook website.

• There are more details of the original Dupuis editions on Les Tuniques Bleues
website (in French).

• Cinebook will be at the Bristol Comic Expo this weekend, 12-13 May 2012, 2012 and at BD and Comics Passion at L'Institut Français, London, 24-27 May 2012

Thursday, 10 May 2012

'Kill Shakespeare' creators hit the UK for signing tour




The Canadian creators of IDW Publishing’s Kill Shakespeare comic book series look to court controversy this month by bringing their take on Shakespeare and his characters to the birth country of the Bard himself this month – on a two-week signing and convention tour of England.

“Colonists” Conor McCreery and Anthony Del Col will be appearing at the Bristol Comic Expo as well as the Kapow! Comic Convention this month, along with a number of store signings in London, Manchester, Leeds and Stratford-upon-Avon.

Series artist Andy Belanger will be joining the duo for the Kapow! Convention and a London signing.

The trip to the UK is the final leg of their spring 2012 convention tour, which has seen them make appearances all over North America as well as at the Middle East Film & Comic-Con in Dubai last month.

One of the covers of
Kill Shakespeare
#12
To prepare for the tour IDW Publishing has also announced that they are releasing a fourth printing of Kill Shakespeare Volume 1: A Sea of Troubles.  Originally released in April, 2010, this is the first half of the series that pits the Bard’s greatest heroes against his most menacing villains in a quest to track down and kill – or save – a wizard by the name of William Shakespeare.

Del Col and McCreery recently received their second straight Joe Shuster Award nomination for Best Writing in a comic series.  The duo is pitted against such talents as Jeff Lemire and Kathryn Immonen in the category.

“We’re quite chuffed to see what people in England think of our take on the Bard,” says McCreery.  “We expect some nay-sayers but we’re eager to show everyone that this project is just as vital a reflection of the Bard’s work as anything coming out of the Globe Theatre or Stratford-on-Avon.”

Kill Shakespeare has been in hot water before, after Shakespearean scholar Kimberly Cox denounced the series as “bull****” and said that “these guys really are helping to kill Shakespeare.”

However, the adventure series, which incorporates Hamlet, Juliet, Othello, Richard III, Lady Macbeth, Puck and others, has received high praise from media such as the New York Times, NPR, BBC, CBC and Fangoria.

The series has also spawned a 90-minute stage show that debuted in association with Toronto’s acclaimed Soulpepper Theatre company in November of 2011 and is scheduled to tour to various locations across North America this autumn.

The current signing schedule includes:

• Bristol Comic Expo - Saturday 12th - Sunday 13th May
• Travelling Man (Manchester) - Wednesday 16th May
• Travelling Man (Leeds) - Thursday 17th May
• Forbidden Planet London Megastore - FRiday 18th May
• Kapow! - Saturday 19th - Sunday 20th May

• Published by IDW Publishing, more information about the series can be found at www.killshakespeare.com. The graphic novel is available at all major comic and book stores and digitally through iTunes or ComiXology.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Win tickets to see to see Pat Mills and Kevin O'Neill!

The BD and Comics Passion Festival is back in London later this month - and we're delighted to announce DownTheTubes has two pairs of tickets to give away for their Pat Mills and Kevin O'Neill event, titled "London and Other Realities"

This is the second festival organised by London's L'Institut Francais in association with Comica Festival, it's intended for fans of comic books, graphic novels and bandes dessinées.

Taking place between between 24th and 27th May, the festival features a terrific line-up of extraordinary creators (Christophe Arleston and Jean-Louis Mourier, David B., Guy Delisle, Karrie Fransman, Tom Gauld, Pat Mills, Kevin O’Neill, Luke Pearson, Grzegorz Rosinski, Jonathan Ross), music (Mesparrow), performances (Freeeks Factory), films and the best booksellers (Gosh!, La Page, Cinebook).

Pat Mills is the creator of 2000AD, developing its main character Judge Dredd and many popular stories such as Sláine and ABC Warriors. He worked alongside Joe Colquhoun (Charley’s War) and Kevin O’Neill (Nemesis the Warlock and Marshal Law). He is currently working on a screenplay for Subotica Films and writing his eleventh volume for best selling graphic novel series Requiem with Olivier Ledroit.

Kevin O’Neill is one of Britain’s greatest comic book illustrators. Although his art got him in trouble with his publisher IPC in the past for being “too violent and disturbing,” his distinct style has gained him great popularity. He has produced art for The ABC Warriors, Tharg the Mighty, 2000AD, co-created Marshal Law and Nemesis the Warlock with Pat Mills as well as The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen with Alan Moore.

To win tickets to see Pat Mills and Kevin O'Neill's talk, simply answer the question below and send your answer, together with your contact details, including phone number, johnfreeman6-bdl@yahoo.co.uk.

What is the theme of Pat Mills and Kevin O'Neill discussion at the BD & Comics Passion festival on Saturday 26th May 2012?

Entries must be received by 7.00pm GMT Monday 21st May 2012

With nearly 30 events including live drawing, talks, exhibitions, workshops, a drawing jam with Mesparrow and a dress-up party, the team behind it say this innovative festival will have something for everyone.

In addition to the official web site (www.bdandcomicspassion.co.uk )  there’s also a Facebook page for the Festival.

Check out the event's special new passes! (The Fan: 5 events for only £15, The Addict: 10 events for only £25)

• Download the full programme in pdf

Denny O'Neil pulls out of Bristol Comic Expo - but line-up still strong

Despite an impressive line-up of comic creators from both sides of the Atlantic at the Bristol Comic Expo this coming weekend, the event will, sadly, be without planned Guest of Honour Denny O'Neil.

The organisers have announced the acclaimed DC Comics writer and editor will not be attending Expo due to failing health.

Denny has been fighting a serious condition for some time and his doctors have prohibited him from travelling at this time.

"I’m sure you share our disappointment that Denny cannot be here this year but we wish him a speedy recovery and all the best for the future," says Mike Allwood.

Denny's best-known works include Green Lantern/Green Arrow and Batman with Neal Adams, The Shadow with Mike Kaluta and The Question with Denys Cowan, all of which were hailed for their sophisticated stories that expanded the artistic potential of the mainstream portion of the medium.

As an editor, he is principally known for editing the various Batman titles. As of 2012, he sits on the board of directors of the charity The Hero Initiative and serves on its Disbursement Committee.

Comic creators still on course to be at the Expo include writers such as Jason Cobley (selling copies of his weird wild western, Frontier), Paul Cornell, Cy Dethan, Ian Edginton, and artists such as Mark Buckingham, John M. Burns, Mike Carey, Alan Davis, Neil Edwards, Gary Erskine, Paul Grist, John Higgins, David Roach, Dylan Teague, Andrew Wildman and many, many others.

• Bristol Comic Expo: www.bristolexpo.co.uk

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

"Haunted Bowels" comic released

Glasgow-based comic writer Craig Collins has released a collection of his small press oddball comedy to date, Haunted Bowels.

Craig Collins is perhaps best known as the co-creator of Roachwell, a surreal comedy horror comic with art by Iain Laurie which was nominated for Best Writer and Best Comic at the Scottish Independent Comic Book Awards.

He's also had work published in the likes of New British Comics, Top Shelf Online, Scream Magazine, Wasted and Viz.

"Haunted Bowels is a collection of small press comedy comics," says Craig. "Gruesome gags and oddball humour, surreal comedy and morbid light entertainment.

"Omniscient beings, strange cowboys, troubled poets and unruly spectres and much more await within...!"

The 28-page A5 comic comes chocked to the gills with comics and features art by Dave Alexander, James Corcoran, Iain Laurie, Paul McCann, Rob Miller, Nulsh, Curt Sibling, Robert Thomson and Jacek Zabawa. It's available for only £3 plus postage from Craig's Store.

In Review: Keegan Jask - Tales From the Heaven-11

You know that slightly dodgy bloke in the pub who is known for exaggeration and who likes to embellish his stories? Well writer Paul Von Scott and artist Leigh Shepherd have given him a name, Keegan Jask, and sent him into space to the Omega Bar of the Heaven-11 space station.

Tales From The Heaven-11 tells nine interlinked tales of Keegan Jask as he manages to overcome all the odds, as well as various intergalactic hitmen, Mafioso and police, to return to the Omega Bar to get a drink. Do some of the most dangerous beings in the galaxy really hate him that much because he upset their plans, or is he prone to a little too much exaggeration?

Paul Von Scott has been producing anthology titles for well over ten years now beginning with the National Comics Award winning Solar Wind, an affectionate parody of British boy's comics like 2000AD and new Eagle before moving on to his roughly annual science-fiction anthology OmniVistaScope which ran for seven issues and was regularly labelled Fanzine Of The Month by SFX magazine.

Keegan Jask: Tales From The Heaven-11 reprints the eight Jask strips from OVS as well as the various adverts and one pagers that appeared in that title, plus a brand new tale, Down Among The Admin, and adds to the package with a string of extras from a Jaskopedia of all the places and characters in the strips to Paul and Leigh's 'conversation' about the creation of one of the comic strip stories. With Paul's interest in gaming, both in game creation and modelling miniatures, it is unsurprising that there is also a Keegan Jask RPG game included.

Looking at the board of the RPG made me think of the old British annuals, which often included a dice game, and perhaps the best way to describe this Keegan Jask package is that it resembles a British comics annual for the character. While many other small pressers aim to produce something that looks to all intents and purposes like a US format comic or graphic novel, the 96 page, A4 sized, perfect bound Keegan Jask: Tales From The Heaven-11 could readily be viewed as a softcover British annual, with its selection of contents reminiscent of the best of the 1980s Judge Dredd annuals.

Leigh Shepherd's greytone artwork, with its multitude of different aliens, is a great benefit to the book and while the art in the early tales is less accomplished, you can see how Leigh improves in confidence as the stories progress. It is always worth checking the backgrounds for in-jokes, with Judge Dredd helmets and Dr Seuss hats appearing or one bartender to looks like he is a Doctor Who fan, showing that the artist is enjoying himself as much as the writer is.

Keegan Jask: Tales From The Heaven-11 is an impressive package which combines Paul Von Scott's tongue-in-cheek writing with Leigh Shepherd's multitude of alien creatures to create a remarkably detailed universe for one rather lovable rogue to spin his next tale.

There are more details of Keegan Jask - Tales From The Heaven-11 on the OmniVistaScope website and the book is available from the OVS shop.

Paul Scott will be launching Keegan Jask - Tales From The Heaven-11 at the Bristol Comic Expo at Brunel's Old Station Passenger Shed on 12 and 13 May 2012.

Monday, 7 May 2012

Mezolith writer Ben Hegarty visits Lancaster

Internationally renowned storyteller Ben Haggarty, writer of The DFC's Mezolith strip, returns to Lancaster on Thursday 10th May with the epic tale of Gilgamesh.

Possibly the oldest story in the world, this ancient masterpiece will be presented by Ben in a powerful performance at the Litfest Auditorium in The Storey.

The ultimate quest story, Gilgamesh tells of a bored tyrant ruling a city so beautiful that even the Gods choose to make it their home and explores mankind's eternal struggle with the fear of death.

Comic creator Ben Haggarty is a central figure in contemporary UK storytelling and has been featured on numerous radio programmes including BBC Radio 4’s Midweek, A Good Read, and The Today Programme. He is internationally respected for his passionate and lively performances.

- Ben Haggarty presents Gilgamesh: Litfest Auditorium, The Storey, Meeting House Lane. Not suitable for under 12's. Tickets cost £7.50 (£6 concessions) and can be booked through www.litfest.org or by calling 01524 62166.



In Review: The Rainbow Orchid Volume 3

Rainbow Orchid 3By Garen Ewing
Publisher: Egmont
Out: Now

The Book: At the beginning of Volume Three, Julius Chancer and Lily Lawrence are recovering from the electrifying end of Volume Two. What does the future hold for Evelyn Crow and her gang of desperate villains? Do Julius and Lily have the strength to prevent evil millionaire Urkaz Grope from enacting his evil plans?

The Review: The third and concluding volume of Garen Ewing's The Rainbow Orchid was published last month by Egmont UK, picking up almost immediately after events in Volume 2 but quickly reuniting Julius Chancer's expedition - perhaps too quickly, given the dramatic conclusion to the previous episode.

(Maybe author Garen is not just drawing on the storytelling of TinTin but the weekly classic 'film serials' of old with their glorious cliffhangers to keep their audience coming back for more).

For those who came in late, The Rainbow Orchid tells the story of an expedition to find a fantastic, possibly mythical, orchid, rumoured to grow somewhere in the depths of the Hindu Kush. It’s set in the 1920s with the main characters being a young historical researcher, Julius Chancer, and a silent-film actress and her agent.

As Garen recently described it: "I’d say it’s a sort of lost-world adventure, Rider Haggard meets Tintin!"

It's a gripping conclusion, with the kind of to of the hat to Herge (and Haggard) we've come to expect from this wonderful ligne claire series, but with a modern take of action, adventure and intrigue that leaves plenty of openings for further adventures and returning villains.

The production quality of the book is again superb, with glorious 'fly leaves' of fictional souvenirs from the adventure (newspaper cuttings, film posters, exhibition tickets etc) complementing Garen's well-honed, beautifully-realized ligne claire art. It's a shame the book hasn't also been published in hardback, which would do these even more justice.

Ten years in the making since its first appearance in indie comic magazine BAM, fans have waited a long time for the conclusion to Chancer's first epic adventure, but they won't be disappointed - even if it might prompt an unusual interest in learning the Kalasha language in some households. Garen skillfully wraps many threads, both in distant lands and in Britain, as Julius finally nears the object of his expedition, again pitted against the deliciously iredeemable villainess, Evelyn Crow.

Much of this final chapter takes place largely in a lost world where ancient technology offers the possibility a frightening development in the arms race, should those secrets fall into the wrong hands, but also the location of the Rainbow Orchid itself.

Be warned: there's a lot of exposition in this final chapter, as we find out more about the mysterious Meru, who has helped guide Julius on his quest, and the secrets of the Kalash are revealed. But if you're prepared to weather that - and full marks to Garen for carefully crafting a complex and intriguing ancient civillisation in so few pages - then you won't be disappointed by the outcome. (It certainly hasn't put off fans who have kept the book in Amazon's Top 100 Children's Graphic Novels chart over the past month).

Credit should not just go to Garen for creating this wonderful adventure - and news that more are in the works is welcome - but also to Egmont UK, for their faith in the project and bringing it to bookshops. Let's hope success for The Rainbow Orchid prompts them to publish more original graphic novels.

• There are more details of all The Rainbow Orchid books on Garen's Rainbow Orchid website which includes a shop through which you can order signed and sketched copies of the books.

• The downthetubes reviews of the previous volumes are here: Volume 1
- Volume 2

• Garen will be promoting it at various comics conventions this year. He is current scheduled to be at the Bristol Comic Expo on 12-13 May; Stripdagen in Holland on 2nd - 3rd June 2012; and and Thoughtbubble in Leeds on 17-18 November 2012.

• The original version of the story and its artwork has gone through various stages over those ten years since BAM! and Garen explains some of the differences and his reason behind the changes on The Rainbow Orchid blog. This also includes a few brief images from the new book and roughs of the cover and some other pages.

- You can also read an interview with Garen about Volume 3 and his art here on Comics Beat, where he reveals some of his plans for the future.

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Team Girl Comic Are Kickstarting Issue 5

The Glasgow-based Team Girl Comic collective have been active in Scotland for the last couple of years selling their main Team Girl Comic title, as well as the individual contributors own titles, around the various comic shops and events in Edinburgh, Dundee and Inverness as well as in their hometown. With back issues selling out and a new issue due in the summer, the TGC team, including editor Gillian Hatcher (left) and contributors Coleen Campbell (centre) and Clare Yvette (right), are now looking to get their main title onto a firm financial footing with a Kickstarter initiative.

TGC editor Gillian Hatcher says on the Kickstarter site, "In the past, we have funded Team Girl Comic entirely by ourselves, with no external support. It’s great to be independent, but it also limits our print runs. Raising money through Kickstarter will enable us to print more comics with more content. We’re also hoping to use any extra funding to reprint the now sold-out TGC issues 1 and 2, to keep all you completists happy! Our overarching reason for asking you to offer us a little bit extra this time round is to help Team Girl Comic take a step toward becoming more sustainable in the long term."

Their aim is to raise $1000 before Friday 8 June 2012 to fund the publication of TGC issue 5 in time for various summer and autumn comics events. Gillian describes issue 5 as "A5 size with a colour cover and 28+ pages of black and white comic content. We’re expecting this to be our biggest issue yet, with contributions from a whole range of TGC members old and new."

As always with crowd funding there are a list of incentives in exchange for pledges running from simple PDFs of the next issue at $5, up to a full set of Team Girl Comics along with four TGC postcards and the backer's name in issue 5 for $35. The single biggest incentive, of a night out in Glasgow with the TGC team, has already been snapped up and after only a few days they are already over a quarter of the way to their target.

There are more details on the Team Girl Comic Kickstarter page.

There are more details of Team Girl Comic on their website and Facebook page.

Team Girl Comic editor Gillian Hatcher talked to downthetubes about the title here.


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