welcome and enjoy!

Hi and welcome to my blog about comics from other people’s childhood! It is dedicated primarily to British humour comics of the 60s and 70s. The reason they are not from my childhood is simply because I didn’t live in the UK back then (nor do I live there now). I knew next to nothing about them until fairly recently but since then I’ve developed a strong liking for the medium and amassed a large collection, including a number of complete or near complete sets. My intention is to use this blog as a channel for sharing my humble knowledge about different titles, favourite characters and creators as I slowly research my collection.

QUICK TIP: this blog is a sequence of posts covering one particular comic at a time. The sequence follows a certain logic, so for maximum results it is recommended that the blog is read from the oldest post up.

Copyright of all images and quotations used here is with their respective owners. Any such copyrighted material is used exclusively for educational purposes and will be removed at first notice. All other text copyright Irmantas P.



Friday, December 15, 2017

X-MAS ON 1956 PLAYHOUR FRONT COVERS



To celebrate the Holiday Season, here’s a nice sequence of 4 covers of PLAYHOUR young children’s comic from December 1956 featuring Dicky and Dolly & Co., illustrated (I believe) by Harold McCready. The realism of those anthropomorphic animal characters has a strange air of creepiness, don’t you think?





Wednesday, December 6, 2017

FACEACHE VOL. 1 FROM REBELLION




Last week I received my copy of Ken Reid’s Faceache published by the new copyright owner. I am proud I had an opportunity to make a small contribution to the preparation of the book, and I am pleased that the editor included a special thank you to me in the credits.


I like nearly everything about the book: introductions by Alan Moore and Ken’s son Antony are an entertaining read and offer some fresh insights; I like the endpapers and the back cover (not so thrilled about the front one); reproduction quality is impressive, considering that the stories were scanned from newsprint comics; it is nice the book is printed on plain paper rather than the glossy stock used for Marney the Fox collection published earlier this year.


The sub-title says “The Ken Reid Years”, so I would have preferred if they had left out the poorly-drawn pages by the substitute artist (16 altogether) and filled the book with Ken Reid’s art from cover to cover. 


That aside, it’s an excellent volume, a must for every Ken Reid/Faceache fan! I very much hope it does well in the bookstores and Rebellion find it worth their while to release Vol. 2, 3, etc. of this great character that happens to be one of my favourites in British comics.


P.S. - Have you noticed that the actual front cover differs from the version used in the various online articles and blogposts that promoted the book when it was first announced? Amazon and eBay sellers are still using the first version of the front cover. I am glad Rebellion changed it because as many as five scrunges in the first version were drawn by the substitute artist, while those appearing on the actual book are all by Reid! 


Monday, December 4, 2017

LAWSON WOOD INTERVIEW – HOW I DRAW



I did a post or two about the excellent Lawson Wood in the past, and this time I would like to share this short interview printed in a little booklet published by British & Dominions School of Drawing Ltd. London in the 1930s.






Here are two nice drawings by Lawson Wood in the spirit of the approaching holiday season. 



Monday, November 20, 2017

GERMAN CHEWING GUM WRAPPER INSERTS



Regular readers may know I had limited exposure to comics where I lived when I was a kid. Chewing gum wrapper inserts were among the very few sources (provided we managed to get hold of some chewing gum – it was scarce here then…). 

The other day I was looking through my old stuff and found a small collection that I put together back in the day. There are quite a few that came with Donald Duck chewing gum but I remember that my favourite ones were those offered by some German brands. One was Fix und Foxi Bubble Gum with Fix und Foxi inserts; Big Babaloo, with Otto und Alwin was the other one.

I did a quick online search and it turns out Fix und Foxi, created and illustrated by Rolf Kauka, used to be really big in West Germany and elsewhere in Europe. Otto und Alwin by Jürgen Günther were a different story. In fact, I was quite surprised to find out that Big Babaloo was made in West Germany because Otto and Alwin (the characters featured on the inserts) were from FRÖSI – children's magazine published in the communist East Germany. Check out some examples of both strips below. I remember trying to copy the drawings and found Otto und Alwin to be way more difficult than Fix und Foxi.












Driven by nostalgia, I recently bought some FRÖSI’s and will probably do a post about them here sometime soon. 

I was also impressed to learn that an enthusiast of East German comics published several collections of strips from FRÖSI, and I bought those of Otto und Alwin that I could get hold of – the print runs of 300 copies sold really quickly. I have a soft spot for reprint collections and will probably show the German books here at some point in the future.

I am curious if comic strips inserts were offered by chewing gum manufacturers in the UK?

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

WHO DREW THESE?



This time I would like to ask for some assistance of those of my readers who have a sharp eye for recognising artists’ styles. Any suggestions as to who may have drawn the 6 pages shown below? Thanks!