Showing posts with label Unpublished_Fantasy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Unpublished_Fantasy. Show all posts

Friday 1 November 2019

Frank Bellamy and the Secret Life of Bob Monkhouse

I was looking for a copy of the Bob Monkhouse 'wall' of art and realised I have never blogged about it beyond mentioning it in passing back in 2011. So let me correct that straight away.

A screenshot from "Secret Life of Bob Monkhouse" BBC4

The Secret Life of Bob Monkhouse was first broadcast on 3 January 2011  and ran for 90 minutes. The blurb for the show was:
The extraordinary story of comedian Bob Monkhouse's life and career, told through the vast private archive of films, TV shows, letters and memorabilia that he left behind.
The anonymous writer who contributed to IMDB said it better:
When Bob Monkhouse's widow died and his house was being prepared for market, the amazing extent of his private collection of video and audio recordings was realized. Among them were many treasures which had previously been believed to be lost to the nation. This films delves into just some of the highlights of that trove, and reveals the multi-layered man behind the glossy TV persona.

It's not currently available on the BBC iPlayer or on YouTube (there are many Monkhouse videos on YouTube) but is repeated from time to time.

So what's the significance to Frank Bellamy? You'll know, if you follow this blog, that many Bellamy originals have now come on the market from Bob Monkhouse's extensive collection.

A quick tour of one corridor in Bob Monkhouse's art collection
 As the camera pans down the corridor we can clearly see some Bellamy - the three Garth "Sundance" strips (see below) plus what looks like "Heros the Spartan" below them and the fantasy piece you've previously seen here. 3 Garth "Sundance" story strips (E206, E212 and E223) came to auction previously from Bob Monkhouse's archive so we are yet to see these three and of course, the family may decide to keep them.

Garth: Sundance E180

Garth: Sundance E182
Garth: Sundance E191

I think Alan Burrows saved me a lot of work when he showed us some of the Heros strips that Bob Monkhouse owned. Episode #21 of the Heros story "The Slave Army" (published in Eagle Vol 16:29  17 July 1965)
Eagle Vol 16:29  17 July 1965
and also from correspondence with Bob, Alan showed us this 'fantasy illustration'.
Fantasy illustration
I know for a fact that this is not all Bob owned (especially as some have come up for auction in the last few years) but several fans remember this documentary and the fact so many Bellamy pieces were identifiable. There! I've now blogged about that too!

Monday 7 September 2015

Frank Bellamy and Bob Monkhouse


I apologise for the delay in posting recently (I missed my once-a-month target last month) this is due to re-plastering and the need to put everything into self-storage to protect it from the dust.  I have identified what I can below but not exact numbers, if you need to know let me know and on un-packing I shall pin the issues down.

Alan Burrows kindly forwarded these pictures he received from the late Bob Monkhouse from his extensive Frank Bellamy collection. He forwarded them to my FB Facebook page and I thought maybe some people here may not be on Facebook, so here for your pleasure is Mr Frank Bellamy.

Bob appeared to be a really amiable guy - just look at the drawing on the envelope he sent Alan. People forget he started out as a comic artist, because his later career as a comedian and quiz show host was so successful.

Bob Monkhouse cartoon for Alan Burrows

Fantasy piece by Frank Bellamy
On the websitelisting I labelled this "Fantasy piece" and put it under Unpublished material . Does anyone know any different? Was it published? I love the skull mountain and the usual Bellamy device of a man pointing out of the frame!
Heros the Spartan from Eagle

Heros the Spartan from Eagle

Heros the Spartan from Eagle

Life study by Frank Bellamy

Lord of the Dragons - published in Once upon a time
 This was published in Bellamy's lifetime in a book called Once upon a time (along with and the book is available via the usual channels and not too rare or expensive. I listed it in my Articles on Frank Bellamy section
Thunderbirds from TV21 #138
From the Thunderbirds story "Space Mirror" which ran in TV Century 21#137 - 140

 It's well known that Bellamy, before taking on a strip, would provide the editors of comics with a sheet of designs. These would show his vision of the characters he would be drawing. However two have lawys puzzled me as they seem very specific

Below we see Dan Dare, Fraser of Africa and Thunderbirds and bear in mind these are photocopies of negatives, or older photocopies so this is all we have as a record, until someone scans the artwork.

Dan Dare operational uniform

Dan Dare Space Fleet  uniform

Fraser of Africa

I have seen the next two before but not the inscription which explains why we have these pieces. In TV21 issues 93-98 Don Harley took over my favourite story from Bellamy while he took a break to produce the Avengers TV series episode "The Winged Avenger". So it looks as if Bellamy drew a character sheet for Alan Tracy and Brains in their spacesuits which Harley could follow. He could have just done a photo but we have to remember that this sort of reproduction process took longer than we do now, where phones, scanners and iPads are available to take instant photos for sharing!
"Frank Bellamy 'visual' given to Don Harley for Thunderbirds

Alan Tracy and Brains from Thunderbirds
I'll save the others for another day as I'd like to do some research in my comics but that will have to wait for my unpacking. Many thanks to the very generous Alan Burrows for sharing this wonderful collection of reference material