Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The Five Greats - No. 2: Davy Law

The second great in the series is Dennis the Menace creator Davy Law! Born in Edinburgh in 1908, Law was a born artist, and started drawing for D.C. Thomson on 1945.

Then, in 1951 came his most famous creation - Dennis the Menace! Our spiky-haired pal first appeared in Beano issue 452, and still runs today! In the mid - 50's, Law also drew Dennis in the Weekly News.

His other famous creation is Beryl the Peril, who first appeared in the first issue of The Topper, from 1953. Beryl currently appears in The Dandy, illustrated by Steve Bright.

What made David such a good artist was not the detail he put into his strips, but the way that he could make anything he drew funny. Sadly, he passed away in 1971.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Current Projects!

There are three current projects I'm working on at the moment, and I know some of you are already aware of all of them, but I'll share them here anyway!
1. Graham's Onions

I began writing and drawing Graham's Onions several years ago, but then dropped it after episode four. However, I picked up the pencil again and have since drawn two new episodes - #5 and #6! As you may be able to tell, the whole reason I started the project was to learn the style of Ken Reid, and although I'm no way near his level of genius, I'm pretty proud with what I've done!

There is a new episode put every Friday - so if you like it make you you keep returning!


2. Whizzer and Chips

I've decided to go ahead and write a summary of every Whizzer and Chips issue produced! I'll only be including images of the stories if they're brand new or if it's a change of artist, and there will also be story summaries and scans of anything important in each issue - ad's, messages etc.


3. ERK!

For those of you who knew about my website The Nipper Index, I've now renamed it to ERK!, and am going to write character summaries etc. from lots of different titles as I go on. However, I hope to stay focused on less famous British comics, such as Nipper, Spike, Hoot etc.


Friday, July 27, 2012

The Five Greats - No. 1: Dudley Watkins

Although there are many fantastic cartoonists in British comics, there are five who are often considered the greats! The first of those is Dudley Dexter Watkins, who drew Desperate Dan, Oor Wullie, Lord Snooty and Biffo the Bear to name a few.

Watkins was born on the 27th Febuary 1907, and his first illustrated work, entitled 'Our Gymnasium Class' appeared in Boots staff magazine called The Beacon, in 1923.
But he quickly entered comics, and in 1925 Watkins was offered a 6 month trial at D.C. Thomson. He accepted of course, and that decision would change his life, as he remained working at DCT for the rest of his life! He was so highly regarded at Thomson, that he and Allan Morely were the only artists allowed to sign their work!
The first Oor Wullie!
The first Broons!
His most notable work is as the illustartor of The Broons and Oor Wullie, who both began life in the Fun Section of The Sunday Post on 8th March 1936. He would continue producing weekly strips for these characters until his death, but the strips still run today!

Dudley Watkins passed away on the 20th August 1969, leaving behind thousands of strips, which, like the other comic greats, still live on in memory!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

This Week In... 1971 - Cor!

This week in 1971 was Cor's 60th issue, and as usual the front cover featured Gus Gorilla drawn by Hot Rod's artist Alf Saporito. As usual at the end of every strip there is a mysterious man who always pops up saying the same line "You can't make a monkey out of Gus!' In all Fleetway comics all the speech bubbles are written in capitals (and they all end in either a question or exclamation mark), but instead this speech bubble is written in lowercase! 
The character on page two really deserves a spot on this blog! His name is Whacky, and drawn by Mike Lacey our fun chum always ends up getting a good whacking throughout the strip! Whacky began at the very beggining in issue #1 and, after a very good run, ended in issue #174. I like the way that in the first panel he uses the word "spanking" - it's as though he knows what's going to happen to him!

Hire a Horror was an excellently written and drawn strip, illustrated by Reg Parlett! In this episode two bank robbers hire a giant mole to help them transport all their cash, but of course it all backfires on them at the end (although unusually the last frame doesn't show them being transported to the cop shop by a slightly overweight policeman)!
The very first Chalky strip by Terry Bave!

Possibly one of the most successful characters to come out of Cor! was Chalky, and #60 was his very first appearence! As you can tell from the above page, he wasn't a fantastic artist at the start of the series, but he soon rapidly improved and was quickly producing sketches that fooled everyone! Chalky survived the merge into Buster and would survive their until the comic folded in 2000!
Cor's Danger Mouse beat the T.V. celebrity by over 10 years, although in this run he wasn't so popular, as he only had a few appearences in Cor! According to Kazoop, Danger Mouse was reprinted from Smash! comic. 
There were several adverts in this issue, including one for Super Mousse on the back page, but the most important one was the above ad for some 1971 Holiday Specials. Sadly the Whizzer and Chips one isn't there, as that is the special I'll be reviewing in a few days time! 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Crumbs! It's a new/old comic!

Dandy artist Steve Beckett recently announced Crumbs comic, a brand new web-comic in the classic style of 70's comics! Even the pages are yellowed! So far it can be found on Steve's site by clicking here, but later on he plans to give it it's very own website - once enough material is drawn!

Go and take it look - it's fantastic!

Frame from Ratman!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Krazy Comic Disguises! (Part 2)

Issue 37
Here is the final section in the Krazy back cover disguises gallery. I've left out issues #40, #55, #56, #57 and #58. 

Issue #67 has been left out as it is the same as issue #65 - a spotter book (could be wrong on this though as I don't actually have this issue).
Issue 38

Issue 39 - A colour it in page instead of a disguise.
Issue 41 - Possibly the most convincing!

Issue 42

Issue 43

Issue 44

Issue 45

Issue 46

Issue 47

Issue 48

Issue 49 - Cut out Krazy rocket!

Ad for back page inside #50

Issue 50 - Cut out badges.

Issue 51

Issue 52 - I wonder if this is the artist's hand print?

Issue 53

Issue 54
Issue 59

Issue 60

Issue 61 
Issue 62

Issue 63

Issue 64

Issue 65

Issue 66 
Issue 68

Issue 69

Issue 70

Issue 71

Issue 72

Issue 73 - More cut out badges 
Issue 74

Issue 75

Issue 76

Issue 77

Issue 78

Issue 79 - Last weekly issue.

1981 Holiday Special
You can see all the Krazy front covers over at Peter Gray's blog here: