Friday 17 August 2007

...ADDITION: Bellamy's Star Trek work

Due to a frequently occurring erroneous statement on Bellamy's Star Trek work, (please don't hate me Rod ) I thought I'd wade into the waters with this blog entry.

The following comment appears in several places around the Net:
"Bellamy and Alan Willow produced covers for the series [TV21], which alternated between Star Trek and other titles until such painted illustrations were dropped as of issue 42 to allow an increase from two to three pages of Star Trek material per issue."

This originates (I believe) from a misreading of the wonderful The Gerry Anderson Complete Comic History which says: "Alan Willow is probably not a name most Gerry Anderson fans would recall... he is best known for the text illustrations in several early Doctor Who Target novelisations. But a few years before this, he painted most of the covers for TV21 & Joe 90 from late 1969, until the Star Trek strip replaced these on the front page in the summer of 1970."

To see the new series of TV21’s covers go to Comic Magazine’s sales site -and SCROLL DOWN. You’ll see no Bellamy covers at all, as he only drew for the first series. All those covers by Bellamy (five in total) were of Captain Scarlet strips.

At the time of Star Trek's first appearance in UK comics (Joe90 #1 dated 18th January 1969), Frank Bellamy, was still about to give another 9 months on his version of Thunderbirds in the original series of TV21 (and later 4 issues of the combined TV21 & Joe 90 – the new series). In TV21 #209, dated 18/01/1969 his cover for Joe 90 #1 appeared in an advert.

This picture is a poorly joined scan of my copy which has travelled a long way since I bought it!

He never drew Star Trek in comics!

Bellamy won the 1971 Academy of Comic Book Arts Awards (for material published in 1971; awarded in 1972) for "Best Foreign Artist". Due to a technicality it was his Radio Times work on Star Trek that was judged rather than any of his past comics work as he was, at the time, not working in comics as such, but had just started Garth in the Daily Mirror. Barry Windsor Smith recommended him as a worthy candidate but due to the fact he wasn’t doing comics works they had to find a comic strip to display. Marv Wolfman showed some original Heros artwork and Bellamy won the award based on his Star Trek in the Radio Times. He also did two other Star Trek works; single panel illustrations to accompany the TV listings in the Radio Times

Hopefully this clarifies this misunderstanding. Any comments?

Thursday 16 August 2007

Weblink: Garth - Cloud of Balthus

Rod McKie, illustrator extraordinaire, has mentioned his love of Bellamy's Garth on his blog. He reproduces some pages from the Titan Book reprints and reminds us why Bellamy's Garth was so loved by many.

Note: Martin Asbury, who replaced Bellamy on the strip, illustrates the head of Garth in the illustration below, (and he did the cover for the reprint book too.)

For those unfamiliar with Rod's work, he kindly shows some examples here.

Wednesday 15 August 2007

...Addition: Northamptonshire Evening Telegraph

I've managed to get a few of Tony Smith's articles on Bellamy, written after Frank Bellamy's death Tony did however meet and interview Frank. Alas his first published work on Frank was his obituary.

This one is from 17th July 1990 and was written "to mark the 40th anniversary of the legendary Eagle comic" - to you and me that means the Hawk reprint books, The Adventures of P.C. 49, Harris Tweed, Riders of the Range and, of course, Fraser of Africa .

One particularly interesting feature in this article is a reprint of the rarely seen Bellamy work in the Football Telegraph or Pink 'Un, the sporting paper insert for the Northamptonshire Evening Telegraph. (18 October 1949) "All forms of transport were used by Kettering fans to see - Kettering win"

The readers at the time (1947) would have been familiar with the football clubs' nicknames - see my key on the NET page- and Tony Smith kindly provides clues in his 1990 article

Monday 6 August 2007

Alan Class, Ally Sloper and Bellamy

ALLY SLOPER number 1 was published in September 1976 by Alan Class with Denis Gifford as editor. Frank Bellamy created "Swade", for the comic/magazine, a Wordless black and white 3 page strip. Unfortunately he died before being able to do a strip for the second issue (in which his obituary appeared).
I knew that Bellamy had been invited to the launch of Ally Sloper but Nancy, his widow, couldn't remenmber if he actually attended the event in London.

Terry Hooper has managed to interview Alan Class and he kindly put the question to Alan regarding Bellamy's appearance.
I'll leave you to read the full article which includes reference to the launch aboard "the Steam-ship “Tattershall Castle”,which was berthed on the Thames near Blackfriars Bridge". The master-of-ceremonies was, apparently, the comedian Ted Ray - a name I haven't heard for ages.

Thursday 2 August 2007

...Weblink: Comic Librarian's heaven!

I have always enjoyed seeing annotations to some of those popular graphic novels of the Eighties - Watchmen, V for Vendetta, Sandman etc. In the prehistory of the WWW, we had command line interfaces and boy, were they tough to learn! I always tested them by looking for any comics related materials and starting dribbling on discovering text files of this sort of material! Remember this is before web browsers, and images on the net!

Anyway, Peter Karpas and friends have put together all these miscellaneous web references in one place on their strangely-titled including reference to one!

I feel humble as there are few UK entries!

Pictures taken from the Eagle strip "The Happy Warrior"