Monday, October 22, 2012

This Week In... 1976 - Monster Fun!

This week 36 years ago saw the last but one issue of Monster Fun land on the shelves! By the end of the comics run Gums was the cover star, a comical rip-off of the box office hit Jaws in 1975. Unlike a lot of comics where th efront cover story ended on the back cover, Gums continues over the page inside the comic.

Of course, the reason for this was because the back cover was given to an advertisement fot TerborLand, which were various toys you could get for free - providing you had enough Trebor bar wrappers of course!

Ken Reid was incredible at drawing monsters, so of course an entire comic about them was right up his street (although admittedly, nothing ever matched his art for the Power comics)! His contribution to Monster Fun was Martha's Monster Make-Up. This make up would turn anything it touched into a living fiend! Well, everything except the jar it was kept in and Martha's finger to flick it with!

Just because Monster Fun was ending didn't mean that Fleetway's comic industry was going with it, as the bottom advert for an early Krazy issue proves!

Robert Nixon no longer drew Gums for the front cover, but he did draw Kid Kong, a strip about a giant gorilla with an everlasting hunger for bananas!

A lot of the strips that appeared in Monster Fun managed to survive the merge into Buster, but one that didn't was Barrie Appleby's Freaky Farm. This particular episode however, was illustrated by Les Barton (Cheers Andy!).

Monster Fun folded after just 73 issues, barely a year after it had first started in 1975. Not only did it feature some of the weirdest characters ever to appear in a comic, but it involved some of the best cartoonists as well, with Leo Baxendale's final weekly work appearing within its pages.


Andy Boal said...

That particular Freaky Farm strip was by Les Barton. Only being three in 1976, I only ever saw reprints, but most Freaky Farms I saw seemed to be by Jim Watson, but it wouldn't be the first time I was wrong!

George Shiers said...

Thanks Andy - I've updated it!

Unfortunatly Freaky Farm doesn't appear in Denis Gifford's Catalouge of Comic Characters, and a quick google search revealed nothing - but I'm confident that Barrie Appleby was the artist?

Andy Boal said...

Find me some samples and I'll confirm it one way or another!

George Shiers said...

I'll post some examples in a few days! :)