Wednesday 7 December 2011

The reprint collection you've all been waiting for....

Eagle and Swift 20 June 1964 Vol 15: 25

Geoff West, of the Book Palace and IllustrationArt Gallery, let me know that he has finally signed the paperwork that allows him to go ahead with a reprint collection of Heros the Spartan. On his team he has Peter Richardson

Now, if you've been lucky enough to see their reprint of Embleton's Wulf the Britain, you'll know that they are both committed to quality reprints. By my rough calculations, if you tried to buy every Bellamy copy of Heros (that's 95 episodes plus the Eagle Annual 1966) in the original Eagle comics you'd be paying (at roughly £3.50 each) £332.50 (plus the annual) and that's if you could find them - they are increasingly rare to find. So a reprint is well worth looking at particularly with the commentaries and introductory articles

The Bellamy stories appeared in:

  • EAGLE Vol. 13:43 - 13:52, 14:1 - 14:9 (27 Oct 1962 - 29 Dec 1962, 05 Jan 1963 - 02 Mar 1963)  Heros the Spartan: The Island of Darkness by Tom Tully  
  • EAGLE  Vol. 14:10 - 14:43 (09 Mar 1963 - 26 Oct 1963)  Heros the Spartan: The Eagle of the Fifth by Tom Tully 
  • EAGLE  Vol. 15:23 - 15:42 (06 Jun 1964 - 17 Oct 1964)  Heros the Spartan: Axe of Argath by Tom Tully 
  • EAGLE  Vol. 16:9 - 16:30 (27 Feb 1965 - 24 Jul 1965)  Heros the Spartan: The Slave Army by Tom Tully 
  • EAGLE ANNUAL 1966 pp.89-96 "Heros the Spartan" [No title]  

And because I can't publish a blog entry without pictures I scanned the episode from Axe of Argath story and you can see that I show the folds in the comic, the patchy blacks etc. This is the stuff that Geoff and friends have to contend with, but they did it with Wulf, I'm sure they can do it with Heros. I know that various famous comic artists quote Heros as an influence on them including Dave Gibbons, John Byrne and Barry Windsor-Smith and I'm sure I have missed a whole raft full. If you detect some excitement on my part there's a good reason. The biggest query I get to the website and blog is "where can I get reprints of Heros?" and i have had that in several languages - thank Google Translate!

I will keep you informed but start saving those pennies, cents, euros, etc

Eagle and Swift 20 June 1964 Vol 15: 25


John Michael Jackson said...

This has been on my Christmas wishlist for decades. I can hardly wait. :)

Anonymous said...

Amazon has been teasing us with the pending publication of a Heros collection for ages. Am I to understand that book will have a retail similar to that of Embleton's Wulf?

Sigh, I was really hoping for something more attainable like the recent TV21 reprint books. If it had come out several years ago, I wouldn't have blinked, but with today's economy and my job prospects... Colour me bitterly disappointed.

Norman Boyd said...

Hi Anonymous
Yes, the Amazon 'tease' was for the Titan edition which is now not going to happen(same as their Bible Story reprint that FB did) and yes, this will be similar to Wulf the Briton.

I asked Geoff West to comment regarding the production:
"As you know with such a project we cannot and will not produce a cheaply reproduced edition. The nature of the work involved and the printing will of course make this a deluxe volume and hence not a bookshop edition, but we think this art deserves the CORRECT treatment and the finished book will be worth every penny, in fact cheaper than buying the original comics!"

...and I have to agree. We've not got a history in this country of comic reprints anyway, so I'm just glad this is English and glad it's being reproduced properly.

I found the double page spreads 'trapped' in the gutter of the recent Century 21 reprints frustrating - particularly when they'd gone to the trouble of getting original artwork and reproduced it so beautifully!

Anyway, here's hoping your financial situation allows you to get a copy...if not, don't forget, Libraries are wonderful things!