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 Original artwork. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Original artwork. Show all posts

Sunday, August 30, 2015


In his interview for Golden Fun magazine Ken Reid said he developed the character of Frankie Stein from an idea suggested by Wham! Editor Alf Wallace.

Initially Ken didn’t name the friendly monster Frankie Stein, and the reasons are quite clear: in the classic story Victor Frankenstein was the creator while the result of his experiment was the Frankenstein monster. Following the scenario, Frankie Stein should have been the inventor, not the monster, and Ken’s original plan was to keep it that way: this early pencil sketch tells us that he considered the name of Frankie Stein for another character:

Had he stuck to the original idea, one of the long running characters in British comics would have been known by another name (Ken had a shortlist of four), likewise his neurotic parent, but that’s another story that I will save for later.

Saturday, August 15, 2015


As a special treat, today I offer you a look at Bill Ritchie’s first drafts of what later became front covers of the first two Sparky annuals. I photographed them during a recent visit to my mate Peter whose collection of UK comics, free gifts, original artwork, etc. is by far the biggest in the World.

I’ve placed the paintings side-by-side with the actual covers, spot-the-difference puzzle style. In reality, they are approx. twice the size of the printed versions. Enjoy!


Monday, July 28, 2014


I will take a short break from Frankie Stein and Monster Fun Comic and show something else instead. It is not very often that one gets to see original Ken Reid artwork offered on eBay and last week fans had one of those rare opportunities, actually, two of them. Two pages of sketches were up for auction. I can recognise Big Head and Thick Head as well as Jonah’s sister Jinx in the first one, so it must be from 1963 or 1964. The page with artwork on both sides sold for £108.23:

Fudge the Elf is the centre-figure of the second page which was offered in a separate auction. I think I can also recongise a policeman and a thief from Ali-Ha-Ha and the 40 Thieves. I will take a guess that the page is from the early 60s before Ken had given up drawing Fudge the Elf for Manchester Evening News. There is also a possibility that the page is from a later period, perhaps 1963, after Ken recovered from his nervous breakdown. If that’s the case, the artist probably sketched Fudge the Elf for his own pleasure, reminiscing about the character that he had created and drawn for so many years. Oh, and isn’t that Ken Reid’s self-portrait on the other side? The page sold for £173.00:

Saturday, April 19, 2014


I will take a short break from MONSTER FUN COMIC and share this curious find which I came across a few days ago:

Stating the obvious, this is a picture of the front cover of COR!! Annual 1987, or to be more precise - the original artwork for the book. It was offered by Compal Comic Book Auctions in their 2010 Winter catalogue and went for £194. The piece was described as follows: Cor!! Annual front cover original artwork (1987) drawn and signed by Robert Nixon. Starring Ivor Lott and Tony Broke. Poster colour on board. 18 x 13 ins.

What’s so curious about it? – you might ask. Well, if any of you followed my COR!! series on this blog, you may recall that the last COR!! Annual came out in 1985 for the X-mas of 1986.

It turns out Fleetway had plans to publish one more COR!! Annual but then something made them reconsider. This finished cover with text and even the company logo suggests the book must have been cancelled when it was in an advanced stage of production, perhaps they’d even made a ‘dummy’.

Check out the promotional flyer that came with November 29th editions of BUSTER and WHIZZER AND CHIPS in 1986. I get an impression that the awkward empty spaces with text may have been originally intended for the annuals that were scrapped at the last moment and COR!! Annual 1987 appears to be one of them. Note how COR!!’s Ivor Lott and Tony Broke are still amongst the crowd of characters at the bottom of the centrespread:

And since we are on the subject of COR!!, I invite you revisit the opening article of my COR!! series HERE because I have recently updated it with some cracking images of the free gift that came with COR!! No. 1 back in 1970.