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.

Showing posts with label Mike Brown. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Mike Brown. Show all posts

Thursday, March 26, 2015


The hardcover book came with a poorly drawn cover that had nothing to do with the Frankie Stein story inside; it was 112 pages thick and cost £2.25.

Contents: The Abominable Ho-Ho Man (gags in full colour on front endpapers by Artie Jackson), Draculass (3 two-pagers by Terry Bave, including one in colour), Freaky Farm (2 three-pagers by Russel Brooke, including one in colour), King Arthur and His Frights of the Round Table (a three-pager and 2 two-pagers, reprints from WHOOPEE!, two by Robert Nixon and one by a ghost artist), The Little Monsters (three sets by Martin Baxendale: at The Zoo; at the Sports Day; at the Garden Centre), Kid Kong (a four-pager and a three-pager (reprint) by Robert Nixon), Art’s Gallery (2 two-pagers by Mike Lacey, probably reprints), Brainy and His Monster Maker (a two-pager by Tom Williams and 2 two-pagers by someone else), Mummy’s Boy (2 two-pagers by Norman Mansbridge), Hot Rod (2 two-pagers of reprints from WHIZZER AND CHIPS, artwork by Alf Saporito), Major Jump (a two-pager and a one-pager, both reprints from MFC weeklies, artwork by Ian Knox), The Ghost Train (2 three-pagers reprinted from WHOOPEE, artwork by Brian Walker), Frankie Stein (a 6-pager by Robert Nixon), X-Ray Specs (3 three-pagers, all reprints, artwork by Mike Lacey), Terror TV (a 4-pager and a 3-pager, artwork by Barrie Appleby), Monster Mirth (1 page of gags by Artie Jackson and 1 page of gags in colour by Tom Paterson (reprints)), Badtime Bedtime Story: One Billion Years B.C. (an 8-page set by Mike Brown); Frankie’s Fun Pages (2 two-pagers of puzzles), Ronnie’s Robot (a 2-pager by Mike Brown), Gums (a 2-pager by Robert Nixon); Tom Thumbscrew (a 2-pager by Norman Mansbridge), Strong Silent Type (Frankie Stein strip cartoons by Sid Burgon, reprints from Shiver and Shake), Dough Nut and Rusty (a 3-pager in colour by Jim Crocker), Teddy Scare (a 3-pager in colour by Barrie Appleby).

Russel Broke was put in charge of Freaky Farm for the second year in a row. In the first episode two treasure seekers visit Freaky Farm armed with their metal detectors and run into a giant worm with a machine gun, a speaking tree, a monster queen bee and a freaky tractor:

In the second episode the army pick Freaky Farm for their exercise:

In Kid Kong Gran’s uncle Bert comes to visit from Australia:

Robert Nixon’s other contribution was a new 6-page episode of Frankie Stein. In it Prof. Cube tries to get rid of the ‘gormless goon’ by building a swing with rubber ropes and using it to catapult Frankie out of his life, but ends up with more repair and damage bills. He becomes a street artist and musician to raise money. Frankie decides to help him and proves to be so good at it that a record company offers him a big contract:

In one of her three stories in this Annual Draculass finds her chamber of horrors in a French restaurant:

The two shows featured in the double-helping of Terror TV in this Annual were The Ghoul Old Days and Some Monsters Do ‘ave ‘em. Both were drawn by Barrie Appleby who also illustrated the episode of Teddy Scare:

It’s good to see a new Badtime Bedtime Story after a two-year break. In One Billion Years. B.C. school boy Terry shares a story of how he went back in time. Here are the opening two pages:

This was the last Badtime Bedtime Story ever but it wasn’t Mike Brown’s only work in this Annual:

Mike Brown isn’t the only disciple of Leo Baxendale whose work features in this book - Martin Baxendale provided three panoramas of the Little Monsters and here’s one:

There are two more MFC Annuals  remaining …

Monday, February 23, 2015


In comparison with the previous edition, the Annual lost 16 pages and cost 55 p more, i.e. £1.80.

Contents: Freaky Farm (a 2-pager on front endpapers in colour by Jim Watson), Hot Rod (3 reprints from WHIZZER AND CHIPS, artwork by Alf Saporito), Frankie Stein (a 3-pager in colour by Brian Walker), Tom Thumbscrew (a 3-pager), King Arthur and his Frights of the Round Table (4 reprints from WHOOPEE!, including one in colour; artwork by Robert Nixon), Spot the Space Changes puzzle (2 pages), The Castaways (reprint from Whizzer and Chips, artwork by Ron Turner, 23 pages), Gums (a 3-pager by John Geering and a 3-pager by Tom Williams), Fun Wars (10 pages by Doug Baker), Teddy Scare (2 pages), Martha’s Monster  Make-Up (a 2-pager by John Geering),  Terror TV (a 4-pager by Barrie Appleby), Brainy and His Monster Maker (a 2-pager by Tom Williams), Draculass (two 2-pagers by Terry Bave), X-Ray Specs (a 3-pager by John Geering and a 2-pager by Tom Williams), The Heat is On maze, Terry Dactyl Stone Age Detective (a 4-pager), Major Jump (a 3-pager), The Ghost Train (7 pages of reprints from WHOOPEE!, including two in colour on back end-papers; artwork by Brian Walker), Sir Twistalot maze (artwork by Cliff Brown), Jason and his Joggernaut (2 episodes), Monster Mind-Mixers (1 page signed by Ian Bennett), Mummy’s Boy (a 2-pager by Norman Mansbridge, possibly a reprint), Grimly Feendish (a 4-pager by Paul Ailey), Kid Kong (a 3-pager by Tom Williams), The Adventures of The Scarlet Pimply-Neddy (reprint of the BBB from MFC No. 50), Dough Nut and Rusty (a 3-pager by Jim Crocker), Creature Teacher (a 3-pager in colour by Tom Williams).

Frankie Stein consolidated his front cover position but I am unsure who the illustrator was. Inside, there is only one Frankie Stein story, drawn by Brian Walker and presented in colour. Prof Cube makes Fredastein - a girl monster, hoping she will annoy Frankie and drive him away. Of course, he miscalculates again – Fredastein proves to be as disaster-prone as Frankie; as a side-effect, Frankie comes to appreciate the company of girls:

Kid Kong also received only one strip this time. Trying to help Gran redecorate the house, Kid smashes a few holes in the walls and goes to get a brick-man to fix them. In a weird twist of circumstances, he catches two bank robbers and spends his reward on house repairs and – surprise surprise – ‘nanas. The artist is Tom Williams who did quite a lot of work for this edition, including an episode of Creature Teacher in which a photographer calls to take a class photo of 3X and ends up getting photographed himself:

… an episode of Brainy and His Monster Maker in which Brainy monsterizes a mushroom:

… an episode of X-Ray Specs:

… and an episode of Gums in which the shark is eager to be allowed into the annual water carnival and demonstrates his talents as a clown and a performing seal. This time no one tries to take away his false teeth for a change:

Like Tom Williams, John Geering also illustrated one episode of Gums in which the shark wants to scare some divers who are after giant clams but finds himself in trouble with others of his own species:

… and an episode of X-Ray Specs in which Ray annoys other kids by winning all the games at a X-mas party but becomes popular again in the end:

Besides these two strips, John Geering contributed a double-pager of Martha’s Monster Make-Up in which Martha visits a new hair salon in town:

Jim Watson drew one episode of Freaky Farm in which the Farmer receives two wiseguys who’ve come to rob him:

Terry Bave’s contribution was two episodes of Draculass. Here is one:

The episode of Terror TV is by Barrie Appleby:

Major Jump is by the same ‘artist’ who drew it in the previous edition:

Those who put this Annual together probably thought one poorly draw strip wasn’t enough so they brought in more ‘talent’ to draw the episode of Tom Thumbscrew:

…and the episode of Teddy Scare:

54 pages of this book are definitely reprints, including Hot Rod, King Arthur and his Frights of the Round Table and Ghost Train which had already appeared in previous editions of MF Annuals. There are two new and welcome additions to the reprints package. One is The Adventures of The Scarlet Pimply-Neddy – the Badtime Bedtime Story from MFC No. 50. Pages of the reprint are twice the size of the original pull-out booklet – a perfect way to appreciate quality artwork by Mike Brown. I prefer the black and white version of the reprint to the cluttered colour presentation in the original BBB:

The other reprint is 23 pages of The Castaways by the excellent Ron Turner. The strip is originally from WHIZZER AND CHIPS where it ran from the first issue of 1972. Here are two sample pages:

In part two of my look at MONSTER FUN ANNUAL 1981 I will cover all the new strips featured in this book, including Fun Wars and Jason and his Joggernaut, and mention one or two artists who are new to me.

All Images 2015 © Egmont UK Ltd.  All rights reserved. Used with permission.