Classics From the Comics

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MLP* on Sat Jun 26, 2010 5:37 pm

AndyB wrote:I think it's Barrie Appleby

Cheers. Cool

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Mon Jun 28, 2010 9:05 am

AndyB wrote:They goofed on Souper Boy. John certainly drew all the strips I remember, but Vic Neill created him, and drew the strip they printed.

Still great content though!
Mr Fraser holds his hands up to his error and promises to be on guard against others in the future...

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MLP* on Wed Jul 21, 2010 5:40 pm

Picked up No 172.

Another Korky cover. Sad I think they need a bit more variety with the cover stars they pick and as before the frame blow up does the artwork no favours.

Flicking through, The Nibblers is a strip that I somehow forgot all about for the last thirty years. Smile

Bertie Buncle and his Chemical Uncle.
Never heard of this strip before but they don't make comic strips with titles like that any more. Very Happy

Looking forward to giving it a read later.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Mon Jul 26, 2010 5:36 pm

Personally, I'm just delighted that Bertie Buncle and his chemical uncle made it in! Another strong lineup of characters, many of whom haven't had a lot of exposure lately-and I'm really getting into the ongoing saga of the Space Kids!


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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MLP* on Mon Jul 26, 2010 5:44 pm

tony ingram wrote:Personally, I'm just delighted that Bertie Buncle and his chemical uncle made it in! Another strong lineup of characters, many of whom haven't had a lot of exposure lately-and I'm really getting into the ongoing saga of the Space Kids!

The Space Kids is definitely what is bringing me back each month at the moment. Cool I'm glad they're giving it a decent run.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Sun Aug 15, 2010 11:58 am



Issue #173 hits the shops this week: anyone else remember Nutty the coal imp?

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MLP* on Sun Aug 15, 2010 5:35 pm

tony ingram wrote:
Issue #173 hits the shops this week: anyone else remember Nutty the coal imp?

Another Biffo cover. I'm detecting a pattern here. Korky next month I guess.

On the plus side, looks like they've used the whole of the strip this time which works much better than blowing up a single frame.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Sun Aug 15, 2010 5:37 pm

I like the complete strip on the cover, I must admit-more evocative of the original comics themselves. But why always Biffo and Korky? Why not Ginger or Mickey the Monkey?

OK, maybe not Mickey. He was, admittedly, often rubbish. Bananaman, maybe?

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MLP* on Wed Aug 18, 2010 5:45 pm

Picked up a copy today.

Looking forward to reading The Three Bears strips.

Glad to see something from Hoot this time. I remember buying that comic for a while after it launched.

I'm not keen on the text strips but judging by the letters page they have their fans, so fair enough. They don't take up much room anyway.

King Cobra next month - looks intruiging ! Smile

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Wed Aug 18, 2010 5:52 pm

King Cobra is a fantastic strip-very glad to see them diversifying into more than just the humour titles!

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MLP* on Sat Aug 21, 2010 9:34 am

Another great read. The Space Kids continues to be a highlight. Very Happy

Enjoyed the Three Bears section. The strips were well chosen to give a selection from different "eras" of the strip. I notice the bears were naked in the original one. It would be good if they reprinted in a future issue the story in which they got their outfits.

The Bash Street Kids was my favourite strip this time. lol! funny.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Sat Aug 21, 2010 9:45 am

MLP* wrote:Another great read. The Space Kids continues to be a highlight. Very Happy

It does. Anyone know how long the strip ran for?

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MR X on Sun Aug 22, 2010 6:38 pm

The above Biffo on the Helter Skelter is probably the first-ever BEANO I ever saw while very young; sadly there's no date on this one, but if it dates from around 1965-66, it's pretty certain to be the issue I have been seeking for decades.


Two weeks ago, I got 16 1965 BEEZERS via e-bay, and by sheer coincidence they feature the selfsame Ron Smith Space Kids story/artwork. This tale never made it 'til the end of '65 as far as I can gather, though Ron Smith contributed many strips to this comic [and TOPPER] in the 60s and 70s.


Quite remarkable he turned out such grim fare as Judge Dredd at the end of the 70s onwards!


It has to be said that the BEEZER-TOPPER artwork that appears in Classics, while better than nothing, isn't a patch on the real Mc Coy. I have about a year's worth of these 60s comics, and I crave more. The original item is of course, twice the size printed in CLASSICS, and half of the sixteen pages were in full-colour. It's the difference between watching something on youtube versus seeing it at the cinema......I was stunned by the quality [greatly diminished in CLASSICS] when I finally revisited these 'widescreen' comics again last year.


I urge serious comics fans to seek out the real thing...you can pick them up cheap sometimes.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MLP* on Sun Aug 22, 2010 6:46 pm

MR X wrote:Two weeks ago, I got 16 1965 BEEZERS via e-bay, and by sheer coincidence they feature the selfsame Ron Smith Space Kids story/artwork. This tale never made it 'til the end of '65 as far as I can gather, though Ron Smith contributed many strips to this comic [and TOPPER] in the 60s and 70s.

Wow. Had no idea it was that old ! Shocked

MR X wrote:
It has to be said that the BEEZER-TOPPER artwork that appears in Classics, while better than nothing, isn't a patch on the real Mc Coy. I have about a year's worth of these 60s comics, and I crave more. The original item is of course, twice the size printed in CLASSICS, and half of the sixteen pages were in full-colour. It's the difference between watching something on youtube versus seeing it at the cinema......I was stunned by the quality [greatly diminished in CLASSICS] when I finally revisited these 'widescreen' comics again last year.

£2 a month for Classics is still the best bargain in the British comics market right now though. Smile

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Sun Aug 22, 2010 7:00 pm

It is indeed. Though I share X's appreciation of the Beezer and, especially, the Topper in their original form-great comics, even if you did have a helluva job reading them without getting tangled up in them at times! Razz

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MR X on Sun Aug 22, 2010 8:08 pm

The 1965 Beezers I picked up were very cheap; 6 quid including postage.....however, they have to be handled very carefully, as quite serious crumbling effects can affect the comic's condition, depending on how they have been stored.

I don't regret getting them however.....there's even the Christmas edition in there. Older copies than this appear to be in better condition though, so it's always worth checking.

I would describe these copies I got from '65 as 'reading copies'!


The Space Kids story is in full-colour, and I cannot stress enough how better the original item is.


I still buy and enjoy Classics though, MLP: it's the only publication ever where I have bought every single copy from number one [in 1996].


Last edited by MR X on Sun Aug 22, 2010 8:12 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Sun Aug 22, 2010 8:10 pm

I bought a bundle of assorted Beezers from 1975-77 not long ago, and they're still pretty good-though after all these years, I still can't stand Ginger!

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MR X on Sun Aug 22, 2010 8:16 pm

I don't mind the Watkins Ginger, Tony....the later Bob Mc Grath version I wasn't too struck on. Bob was much better on LITTLE MO or the 3 BEARS.


BEEZER/TOPPER had KEN HUNTER ['Danny's Tranny', etc] who I thought was a brilliant artist, easily on par with anyone drawing for BEANO or Dandy.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Sun Aug 22, 2010 8:18 pm

Danny's Tranny-now you're talking! That and Send for Kelly were probably my favourites from those titles...

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MR X on Sun Aug 22, 2010 8:24 pm

George Martin the Kelly artist also wrote most of the scripts as well, I understand.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Sun Aug 22, 2010 8:27 pm

MR X wrote:George Martin the Kelly artist also wrote most of the scripts as well, I understand.
One oif the comparatively few strips that changed its title a couple of times-I remember it as Send for Kelly, but I believe it was also Nick Kelly: Secret Agent for awhile, wasn't it? And I I it was also jusst plain 'Kelly' on occasion...

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MLP* on Mon Aug 23, 2010 5:36 am

MR X wrote:
The Space Kids story is in full-colour, and I cannot stress enough how better the original item is.

I would definitely pay a bit more for Classics if they included some colour pages. I had no idea that Space Kids was in colour but I remember many of the strips in Classics originally being in duotone (usually red/pink) and I miss that in the reprints.

tony ingram wrote:I bought a bundle of assorted Beezers from 1975-77 not long ago, and they're still pretty good-though after all these years, I still can't stand Ginger!

I was never a Beezer reader back in the day (The Numskulls is the only strip I remember) but I agree, from reading Classics Ginger is not very appealing. He seems a bit weak and generic for a cover star. Must have been popular though as I think the strip ran for a very long time ?

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by GBF on Mon Aug 23, 2010 6:21 am

The Numskulls are the only t hing I remember about the Beezer - except its size. cyclops

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Mon Aug 23, 2010 10:01 am

GBF wrote:The Numskulls are the only t hing I remember about the Beezer - except its size. cyclops
I always preferred Ken Reid's 'The Nervs', basically the same idea but with that touch of reid grotesque that made his strips so memorable.

Oh, and Ginger was the Beezer's cover star from its first issue in 1956 onwards, aside from a few years in the sixties when he was ousted by Pop, Dick & Harry.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MR X on Mon Aug 23, 2010 5:24 pm

apologies, MLP: SPACE KIDS is not in full-colour [the colour centre in the same issue has Doctor Q by Ken Hunter] : SPACE KIDS has red and pink tone.

Ron Smith did produce loads of artwork for BEEZER/TOPPER that was printed in full-colour, however. These had often very large frames, depicting spectacular scenes of mayhem. I hope adding examples on here at some point.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MR X on Mon Aug 23, 2010 5:56 pm

OK:I'll try this experiment. Here's the original 1965 Space Kids layout that was reprinted in a recent Classics:


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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Mon Aug 23, 2010 5:58 pm

That pink and red does actually add something, doesn't it...

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MR X on Mon Aug 23, 2010 6:01 pm

Sure does Tony, and please remember this artwork was twice the size reprinted in Classics.

Next, here's the colour centrespread from the same issue, 'Doctor Q' by Ken Hunter:


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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MR X on Mon Aug 23, 2010 6:06 pm

This next one is from a 1966 TOPPER....the centrespread 'Three eggs in a basket' by Ron Smith is typically dynamic of much of the artwork produced in this period.

Some examples have pterodactyls attacking the heroes in massive panels, etc.




Hope these pics give some sort of example to younger readers.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Mon Aug 23, 2010 6:11 pm

That is beautiful stuff. There's nothing like it being produced today...

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MLP* on Thu Aug 26, 2010 1:17 pm

Had a flick through the new Annuals in the local bookshop in an idle moment.

There's an 80s Beano / Dandy reprint one. I had no idea that in the 80s Korky aquired three Huey, Duey and Luey style nephews !

The Korky strip in the new Dandy Annual is pretty much unrecognisable as the same character.

Also unrecognisable is Lord Snooty in the new Beano Annual. He looks nothing like the bowler hatted, bow tie wearing original, making me wonder why they bother trying to "update" him at all rather than just creating something new.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Thu Aug 26, 2010 1:27 pm

To be fair, the current Snooty isn't the original-he's his grandson, Lord Snooty III.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MLP* on Thu Aug 26, 2010 1:32 pm

tony ingram wrote:To be fair, the current Snooty isn't the original-he's his grandson, Lord Snooty III.

Grandson ? Christ. Shocked He's been busy. Snooty was still a kid when I used to read the strip back in the 70s. There must have been a couple of teenaged dads at Bunkerton Castle since then ! affraid

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Thu Aug 26, 2010 1:38 pm

MLP* wrote:
tony ingram wrote:To be fair, the current Snooty isn't the original-he's his grandson, Lord Snooty III.

Grandson ? Christ. Shocked He's been busy. Snooty was still a kid when I used to read the strip back in the 70s. There must have been a couple of teenaged dads at Bunkerton Castle since then ! affraid
The original Snooty was the one who appeared in the thirties and forties with the original gang (Hairpin Huggins and the rest). The later version, with the gang seen from the fifties to the eighties, was later retconned to be the second (although several of his pals, like Scrapper Smith and Big Fat Joe, date back to the original incarnation), and Snooty III first appeared in 2008 and was stated to be the grandson of the original from the beginning.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MR X on Thu Aug 26, 2010 7:59 pm

The annuals this year are noticably slimmer than they used to be [same as last year]. The colour schemes are good, though.

On the Golden Years annual cover [which seems to centre on the 80s] there is a Davey Law Dennis close-up that probably dates from the 60s..........ah well, variety is the spice of life, and all that.


I was hoping there would have been a DANDY version of the massive 'HISTORY of the BEANO' released 2 years ago.....sadly this doesn't seem on the cards......I would have loved BEEZER/TOPPER versions in the same format, but maybe there's just not enough interest out there.....

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Thu Aug 26, 2010 8:27 pm

Well, at least Classics is trying to redress the balance.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MLP* on Thu Aug 26, 2010 8:45 pm

MR X wrote:The annuals this year are noticably slimmer than they used to be [same as last year]. The colour schemes are good, though.

On the Golden Years annual cover [which seems to centre on the 80s] there is a Davey Law Dennis close-up that probably dates from the 60s..........ah well, variety is the spice of life, and all that.

The strangest thing about the 80s volume is that when you open it up you are greeted by two Jackie covers. Shocked

MR X wrote:
I was hoping there would have been a DANDY version of the massive 'HISTORY of the BEANO' released 2 years ago.....sadly this doesn't seem on the cards......I would have loved BEEZER/TOPPER versions in the same format, but maybe there's just not enough interest out there.....

Must get around to picking up that History of The Beano book. As you say, a companion Dandy volume seems like a no-brainer.

Something else I'd love is if they did collectors edition books collecting work by particular artists. A Leo Baxendale volume would be terrific but I'm sure there would be plenty of other artists deserving a "best of" collection too.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MR X on Fri Aug 27, 2010 8:23 pm

Ken Reid definately deserves multi-volume treatment of his entire output!

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Fri Aug 27, 2010 8:34 pm

MR X wrote:Ken Reid definately deserves multi-volume treatment of his entire output!
Yes, but that would require IPC to actually do something with what little remains of their archive...

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MR X on Sat Aug 28, 2010 7:48 pm

Why, what happened to the bulk of their archives? Don't tell me it was all dumped into a skip!

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Sat Aug 28, 2010 7:53 pm

MR X wrote:Why, what happened to the bulk of their archives? Don't tell me it was all dumped into a skip!
Yes. Got it in one. According to Kevin O'Neil, you can blame Robert Maxwell's son for that (see Crikey! #13).

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MLP* on Sat Aug 28, 2010 7:59 pm

tony ingram wrote:
MR X wrote:Why, what happened to the bulk of their archives? Don't tell me it was all dumped into a skip!
Yes. Got it in one. According to Kevin O'Neil, you can blame Robert Maxwell's son for that (see Crikey! #13).

Depressing isn't it ? Sad

The Charley's War reprints really suffer from being reprinted from scans of old comics. Just doesn't do the artwork justice.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Sat Aug 28, 2010 8:05 pm

A pity they only shoved the elder Maxwell off the boat.

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MLP* on Wed Sep 15, 2010 12:45 pm

Picked up the new issue.

Another Korky cover. These covers are getting very samey now.

Another text story too. Seems these are quite popular with the readers so must be just me who doesn't like them !

Jim Petrie is a good choice for the Classic Artists section. I grew up with his Minnie The Minx. I definitely remember seeing that self portrait from his final strip before so I guess it must've been reprinted somewhere.

Looks like just the one Space Kids this time. Maybe they are eking them out a bit to make them last ? By way of compensation there's more classic Ron Smith with King Cobra, complete with Hotspur front cover. Very Happy

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Wed Sep 15, 2010 8:08 pm

I'm still waiting for mine-and I'm itching to see King Cobra again...

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Thu Sep 16, 2010 10:49 am



Well, another good one from my point of view (and it is great to see King Cobra again, some lovely, barking mad Ron Smith art, there). But, I'm afraid it's a case of enjoy it while you can: I've just heard from Garry that next month's issue, #175, will be the last Classics From the Comics. No reason seems to have been given, just that they're dropping the title before moving to their new printer, but it's been reported in the news lately that DCT were in trouble and a lot of jobs are going, so maybe it was inevitable some titles would be hit, too. This is not a good time for British comics, it seems...

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MLP* on Thu Sep 16, 2010 12:04 pm

Bloody typical. Just as I've started buying the thing. Sad

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Thu Sep 16, 2010 12:07 pm

Classics bites the dust about a month after the revived Striker strip gets axed from Nuts, and I gather he Dandy is about to try yet another relaunch so that can't be doing too well, either. On the whole, I'm starting to think we were luckier than we realised keeping Crikey! afloat so long. Crying or Very sad


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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by MLP* on Thu Sep 16, 2010 1:07 pm

A shame that DCT have the huge archive of old strips and the only outlet for them now will be the end of year annuals.
It starts to look like the recent (IMO very successful) revamp of Classics was a last throw of the dice, with obvious money saving moves like running reprint strips on the cover instead of original art.
I can't imagine they were making a fortune off the title (the price always seemed laughably low to me) so maybe it just reached the point where it was more trouble than it was worth for the amount of money it was bringing in.

175 issues in the current market is nothing to be sniffed at though.

tony ingram wrote: I gather he Dandy is about to try yet another relaunch so that can't be doing too well., either.


Oh god, not another one ! pale Presumably this time they'll drop the last of the strips and the Dandy name altogether ! Suspect

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Re: Classics From the Comics

Post by tony ingram on Thu Sep 16, 2010 1:35 pm

Actually, I think they might be dropping the 'Xtreme' bit...

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Re: Classics From the Comics

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