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British Comics News and more from the news team

Last Build Date: Sun, 03 Dec 2017 13:20:42 +0000


New Comics and Graphic Novels set to launch at this year's Lakes International Comic Art Festival

Tue, 10 Oct 2017 09:15:00 +0000

The Lakes International Comic Art Festival tales place this weekend in Kendal (13th - 15th October 2017). Along with its free Family Zone, comic creator talks, signings, exhibitions, illustration portfolio reviews, Finnish Village (and sauna!) there are a number of new comics and graphic novels getting their launch at the hugely-popular annual event.Among them are Grandville: Force Majeure by Festival Patron Bryan Talbot (published by Jonathan Cape), Graphic Science by Darryl Cunningham (Myriad Editions); and the Festival's very own tribute to comics legend Will Eisner to mark his centenary, the Spirit Centenary Newspaper. Grandville: Force Majeure launches at the Festival just as news breaks that the rights option for a proposed Grandville TV series have been bought by Euston Films, the graphic novels adapted by Doctor Who and New Tricks writer Julian Simpson.Festival partner Page 45, the award-winning Nottingham-based comic shop, will be offering all three new titles in the Georgian Room of the Comixology-sponsored Comics Clock Tower, where Festival Patron Emma Vieceli will be signing her brand-new Young Adult LGBT graphic novel BREAKS (co-created with Malin Ryden) on both Saturday and Sunday morning. Dozens of comic creators will be selling new independently-created comics, artwork and more, throughout the weekend in the Clock Tower, including Marc Jackson, who's new comic Here Comes Cat Stevens! was commissioned by LICAF; and Australian comic artist Bruce Mutard, who brings his new work Post Traumatic with him, along with a number of other antipodean creators as part of a Caravan of Comics. Look out, also, for the annual Festival anthology edited by Dan Berry, assembling comic stories created during the Festival's Cartoon Cafe Challenge sponsored by Wacom over the weekend and printed within 24 hours of creation! The Spirit Centenary Newspaper features a cover by Becky Cloonan and work by Brendan McCarthy, Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips, Graham Dury and Simon Thorp, Chris Samnee, John M Burns, Sergio Aragonés, Peter Milligan and Duncan Fegredo, Seth, Jason Latour, Jonathan Ross and Bryan Hitch, and Michael Cho. The project, the brainchild of comics academic John McShane, was realised with support from IDW Publishing and Kitchen Sink Press publisher Denis Kitchen. Proceeds from sales will go to LICAF’s Creators’ Development Fund. "I don't know how real editors do it, but curating this project has been well worth the wait," says Sean Phillips, who edited the newspaper. "All the creators involved have more than surpassed my expectations to produce a great tribute to Will Eisner's The Spirit. "Creators include some of my favourite artists and writers and the hard part was deciding who to ask. Luckily everyone said yes, including my absolute favourite, John M Burns. Sorry to everyone else, but having John draw a page for this is one of the highlights of my career. All the pages are great, but this one was a real thrill! "My thanks to everyone involved with fitting this project into their busy schedules, even if some people's definition of the word 'deadline' is more elastic than mine..." Celebrating Will Eisner's work, the Festival also ran a Revealing the Spirit of the Lakes competition, the winners to be announced at the weekend. Students across the globe were invited to celebrate the incredible creative comic art legacy of Will Eisner and his iconic vigilante – The Spirit - by imagining a vigilante hero or heroine for the Lake District. The top five entries will go display in the Warehouse Café at the Brewery Arts Centre, Kendal, until 5th November, alongside The Spirit of Eisner exhibition. The Lakes International Comic Art Festival returns for its fifth year to Kendal, Cumbria this weekend, from 13th to 15th October 2017. Celebrating comic art from across the world, the weekend festival takes over the town of Kendal, on the edge of the Lake District. The festival brings the biggest names in comic art to Cumbria with over 70 special guests from across the comic world. This year, artists, creators and writers f[...]

New York Comic Con 2017: Day Two

Sat, 07 Oct 2017 08:25:00 +0000

Tony Esmond reports from New York Comic Con... lucky man!Day Two at the New York Comic Con 2017 opened early as I realised that I can actually see the Javits Center from my hotel room. I headed down for breakfast with the normal cronies and spotted a possible love connection between one of them and the steroid swallowing waitress (I shall take the secret to my grave!!!)I headed down without Mr Harrower today (he's off doing some art stuff in Harlem) and lined up again. I've been really impressed with both the security here and the speed they get you pushed through onto the site. All the staff so far have been friendly and professional.The Shadow with art by Giovanni Timpano published by Dynamite ComicsI headed straight to Giovanni Timpano's table and had a chat with him about his Shadow/Batman series. He showed me some of the inked pages and they look superb. I've been a fan of this guy's work for a long time. It was great to see him and his art up close. Definitely an artist to watch out for.Find out more about him at or follow him on Twitter @GioTimpanoOn the left, Mr Brent Schoonover and on the right, the Mighty SiuntresDuring the weekend I also got to catch up with Wordballoon's John Siuntres. This is a podcast that I have been listening to for a bonkers amount of years and I always try and search John out and thank him for what he does. I highly recommend having a try. It is, in the main, an interview show with some of the best in the industry.I managed to introduce John to Christian Wildgoose and we chatted about a possible  Wordballoon/Awesome Comics Podcast crossover event!Check it out on iTunes or follow the podcast on Twitter @johnwordballoonIt was also great catching up with old pal Sarah Woolley. I bought her book Charlotte and the Quiet Place, written by Deborah Sosin, a couple of years ago for a friend's kids and they absolutely loved it!We chatted about her newly released art in Bitch Planet: Triple Feature. Search her out online and buy some of her work. Top stuff. If you are at the convention, then head over to Booth L-10 in Artists Alley.You can find her online at or follow her on Twitter @SaritaJeanineWith the change in layout after the knocking down of the building that used to be a home for Artists Alley I've noticed that things, events or signings seem to be cropping up in all the nooks and crannies of the Javitts. The DC/Vertigo booth is down on the ground floor at the far end. It's got a small signing/queueing area and a small exhibition of the Justice League movie costumes.It seemed a little out of the way and out of place somehow. Jim Lee was sat on his own at a table (and you don't see that often). Later in the day, David Finch looked a tiny bit lonely?The United Kingdom was, as always, out in force at the NYCC. The Titan Comics booth was looking spiffy and after spending a couple of minutes only at the 2000AD booth, I began to suspect that there may be a few sore heads from the previous night's larking about. That's a tradition I am proud to say continues.I also bagged myself a copy of the Steve Dillon Memorial Charity Sketchbook (for sale for $10 at the 2000AD booth) that is being sold to raise money for the Hero Initiative. As previously reported on downthetubes, it boasts a heartbreaking image of Steve himself by Bill Sienkiewicz and contains art from a who's who of talent on interiors.You can buy a copy or donate to this worthy cause at It will also be on sale at the MCM London convention on 27th – 29th October.Garth Ennis tribute to Steve Dillon is here on downthetubes.I closed the day out with a panel - and it was a cracker. Run by IDW, it was split into two parts. The first dealt with the new Shelly Bond spearheaded Black Crown imprint and featured spotlights on some great books. It was brilliant to see Peter Milligan (who will be at the Lakes International Comic Art Festival next weekend) taking centre stage and [...]

Dulwich Picture Gallery to host first major British exhibition devoted to Tove Jansson

Fri, 06 Oct 2017 16:38:00 +0000

Hot on the heels of the Moomin-related activities at this year's Lakes International Comic Art Festival, there's an exhibition of the work of their creator Tove Jansson at Dulwich Picture Gallery, which starts on Wednesday 25th October 2017 and runs until 28th January 2018.One of the most celebrated illustrators of the 20th century, Tove Jansson is known internationally as creator of the Moomin characters and books, a phenomenon which continues to stretch across generations. Her wider outputs of graphic illustration and painting, however, are relatively unseen outside her home country of Finland.150 works, including a selection of self-portraits and paintings never seen before in the UK will reintroduce Jansson as an artist of exceptional breadth and talent, and provide an insightful overview of the key stages of her prolific career. Ultimately, Jansson’s most enduring desire was to be an artist and this exhibition will reveal the unwavering passion that kept her working and exhibiting as an accomplished fine artist alongside her career in graphic illustration. width="320" height="266" class="YOUTUBE-iframe-video" data-thumbnail-src="" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen>Tove Marika Jansson was born in 1914 in Helsinki to the graphic artist, Signe Hammarsten and the sculptor Viktor Jansson. She grew up with her two brothers Per Olov and Lars in an ambitious artistic family, living and breathing art. The open-minded, bohemian atmosphere encouraged the talented young Jansson to search for her own artistic expression, which produced striking results with intuitive certainty from an early age.In the midst of the mass bombings of Helsinki in 1944, Jansson managed to get an attic studio in the centre of the Helsinki. The studio became her cherished home, a source of power and a haven, where she created her most renowned paintings and texts. It was there that Jansson finished her first story featuring Moomintroll.The Moomins and the Great Flood (1945) was the first volume in the series that was to become the most prominent and best-known part of Jansson’s career as an artist. As a writer, Jansson did not want the stunning success of Moomins to limit her freedom either. After Moominvalley in November (1970), it was time for something new.In 1968, she had published the childhood description Sculptor’s Daughter for adult readers, but it was the acclaimed collection The Listener (1971) that showcased her as a short story writer for the first time.Jansson’s studio in Helsinki was dedicated for work, but since her childhood, she had fallen in love with the sea and archipelago (a love reflected in the Lakes Festival's exhibition, Tales from the Nordic Archipelago, which continues at Kendal Museum until 2nd November).She spent many summers on the tiny island of Klovharu in the Gulf of Finland. There and in her frequent travels abroad, she was accompanied by her life partner Tuulikki Pietilä, graphic artist and professor.• Tove Jansson (1914 - 2001) 25th October  2017 - 28th January 2018 Dulwich Picture Gallery, Gallery Road, Southwark SE21 7AD | Exhibition Information and related events | Buy tickets• Official Moomin web site:• Tove Jansson books on [...]

New York Comic Con 2017: Day One

Fri, 06 Oct 2017 12:08:00 +0000

Tony Esmond reports from across the Atlantic on his first day at New York Comic Con 2017...(Day One - mandatory haul photo)Last night was a doozy. I met up with Marc Laming, Amri and Adrian Hashimi (check out for some of the best art you'll see), the Mighty Harrower and Mr Bob Fingerman. The aim was to have drinks with some buddies and stay up as late as humanly possible. I ended up drinking at a bar with Bob until late and stumbling back to my room.Bob Fingerman is the kind of guy that it's a privilege to know. His book Minimum Wage remains one of my favourite ever comics and he is always funny and thoughtful. He's got an IDW panel at 6.45pm on Friday at the NYCC. Head down. Find more about this creator at or on Twitter @fingerboI now have a small yet perky hangover!I got to the venue about an hour and a half early - just about early enough to sail through the metal detectors and line up in the hall, which was long and packed - but everyone was in good spirits and friendly. It was good to hear much talking about comics as we waited.Myself and Mr Harrower examined the day's events whilst in the huge line. (See above photos for an interesting reaction). For the first time ever, NYCC staff took pity on us and they let everyone in around fifteen minutes early. The main floor and lobby was already a rugby scrum. I don't have a clue where all these people could have come from!We made for artists alley which was still calm(ish). I heard talk that it was taking exhibitors a good hour to get in themselves and subsequently quite a few of the desks were empty.We talked our way around the aisles and met up again with Mr Laming and Christian Wildgoose, as well as Brent Schoonover and Brian Vander.Brent Schoonover from Captain Marvel - left - and Marc Laming from Star Wars and X-Men Gold on the right. I actially challenge you to find better comissions in the hall this year as I watched both of them kick it out of the park all day!Christian Wildgoose from DC's Batgirl on the left and Brian Vander from Reckless Heroes' Operation Boom on the right. This table is known widely as 'Party Central'In my wanders, I got to have a good chat with Russ Braun about his and Garth Ennis's new Aftershock Comics series Jimmy's Bastards. I bought some signed copies and his new sketchbook. This is a cracking series and full of the humour that runs on from these creators run on The Boys.Bumped into the three 11 O'clock comics Podcast guys and shot the proverbial!Sarah GraleyI caught up with UK creator Sarah Graley who was experiencing her first NYCC and was heading off to take part in a couple of panels. The artist on 'Kim Reaper and Rick and Morty can be found at or on Twitter @sarahgraleyartA few circles of Artists Alley and I braved the main floor and ought a handful of back issues and then made for the Valiant booth. I got to chat to possibly the most positive man in comics, Dinesh Shamdasani. We talked about all their stable of books. My only complaint is that I own pretty much everything on their stall!If you want to get on the Valiant bandwagon I would highly recommend Divinity and The Valiant as entry level drugs! Great stories, well considered action heroes, class writers and artists.One of the best things about wandering the sales floor on the slightly less busy Thursday is that there is plenty of room to grab some back issues and also look at the ruddy amazing original art on show!Have a look at these really old and imaginative pieces I spotted.Jim Steranklo (that's some barnet!)The main hall was a bit more managable through the day and myself and Matt Harrower took the opportunity to grab a few presents for pals back home fill some holes in the back issue lists.Claudio SanchezWe also managed to grab some time with Claudio Sanchez from the band band Coheed and Cambria. Along with his wife Chondra Echert and Daniel Bayliss, they produced [...]

Walking Dead exhibition opens in New York today at the Metropolis Gallery

Fri, 06 Oct 2017 09:58:00 +0000

If you're in New York for New York Comic Con right now, then you may be interested to know the Metropolis Gallery is hosting a free Walking Dead Comic Art Exhibit …just a ten-minute stagger from the Javits Center.The Walking Dead exhibit, which opens this evening (6th October) and runs until 1st December 2017, features original comic art, TV production art and CGC graded comics celebrating the ‘TWD’ zombie phenomenon. At Metropolis, a unique gallery dedicated to comic art, fans can feast their eyes on the world’s most complete collection of Walking Dead comics and art.“This show features the best of everything,” says Vincent Zurzolo, Metropolis Gallery curator and co-owner of Metropolis Collectibles, “from the highest-grade copy of the first comic book in the series…to Tony Moore and Charlie Adlard’s original art featuring iconic scenes…to concept art created by the late, great John Watkiss to inspire the TV production.” The exhibit precedes a massive Walking Dead auction - featuring the first auction of the more than 500 pieces of art and 750 comic book - ending on 5th December 2017 and on Metropolis’ online auction site, collection is valued at $500,000 and, remarkably, it all belongs to a single consignor, James Johnson, a contractor on the Jersey shore whose passion for zombies dates back to George Romero’s horror classic, Night of the Living Dead. He started his collection after getting hooked on the TV series in 2010.“I started by collecting TV props,” says Johnson, who also collects baseball cards, stamps, gas promo trucks and toy soldiers. “Like many people, I didn’t even know the show was based on a comic book. But once I found out, I became obsessed with building the ultimate collection of Walking Dead comics and comic art—I’m a completist.”But now Johnson is giving other collectors a chance to gorge on his treasures. These include the highest-grade copy of Walking Dead #1—which holds a 9.9 CGC rating out of a possible 10—and artwork featuring favourite characters such as Rick, Michonne, Negan, The Governor, Ezekiel, Tyreese, Glenn and more. “The Walking Dead is a worldwide phenomenon,” says Zurzolo. “Yes, it’s about zombies, but what hooks people in is watching people make their way in a post-apocalyptic world without rules—and of course, with zombies. This collection is a phenomenon, too, because of its breadth and depth. There’s nothing like it.” Don't forget that if you can't make it to New York, Walking Dead artist and Comics Laureate Charlie Adlard is at the Lakes International Comic Art Festival next weekend!• The exhibit’s opening reception will be held Friday 6th October from 6.00 - 9.00pm and is open to the public. Thereafter, the exhibit is open for viewing Tuesday - Friday, 11.00am - 5.00pm until 1st December 2017• The Metropolis Gallery is located at 36 West 37th Street, 6th Floor—just 10 minutes on foot from the Javits Center - so expected ravenous TWD fans will make their way from Comic Con to devour the collection en masse• Metropolis Gallery web site:• Click here for The Walking Dead auction• Click here to view art for sale at Metropolis Gallery [...]

Netflix orders "Raising Dion", based on director Dennis Liu's young superhero comics project

Fri, 06 Oct 2017 09:18:00 +0000

Netflix has ordered a ten-episode season of Raising Dion, a new SF drama series based on a comic book of the same name by award-winning director Dennis Liu, illustrated by Jason Piperberg.In the comic, Nicole, a young, African American single mother discovers that her young son has magical abilities. Life was hard enough keeping up with the bills - let alone trying to keep track of her seven-year-old son’s invisibility, plasma powers and telekinesis.In order to study his progress, Nicole films her son 24/7, with the help of her friend, Pat, who is an aspiring filmmaker. But when Nicole starts to notice mysterious men tailing her, and with Dion’s developing abilities constantly changing and becoming more powerful and possibly evil, she must find the courage deep within herself that she can raise Dion on her own.Raising Dion was also made into a short film. Here's the trailer: width="320" height="266" class="YOUTUBE-iframe-video" data-thumbnail-src="" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen>Carol Barbee, executive producer on Lifetime’s UnReal, will serve as executive producer and showrunner and actor Michael B. Jordan will also serve as an executive producer, and will appear in the series as the titular character’s deceased father.• You can download the first issue of the comic for free on Dennis Liu's web site ( or buy a physical copy to support the creation of the next issue• Find the Raising Dion project on Facebook [...]

Parables of Care - a free comic about dementia that will touch your heart

Fri, 06 Oct 2017 08:52:00 +0000

Here's a touching new comic you can read for free online: Parables of Care. Creative Responses to Dementia Care, as Told by Carers is now available.  This16-page publication presents true stories of creative responses to dementia care, as told by carers, drawn by Dr Simon Grennan (whose credits include the graphic novel, Disspossession) with Christopher Sperandio, and edited and adapted by Simon, Dr Ernesto Priego (City, University of London, who downthetubes readers will recognise as editor at the Comics Grid) and Dr Peter Wilkins (Douglas College).It's a short comic, but there are some lovely one page strips included that will touch your heart, especially if you have had direct experience of, or cared for dementia sufferers. Some won't make for an easy read, but others offer valuable ideas for coping with stressful situations for both sufferers and carers.The comic - available as a free online download, or, if you live in the UK, available as a print comic by order, is is a project of the Centre for Human Computer Interaction Design, City, University of London, The University of Chester, UK, and the Douglas College in Vancouver, Canada."Research has shown that comics have the potential to have a positive impact on the health and quality of life of people who engage in comics reading and creation," says Ernesto, "contributing to transform attitudes, awareness and behaviour around illness and contributing to create new opportunities for empowerment and more positive behaviour."Parables of Care explores the potential of comics to enhance the impact of dementia care research in particular - and seeks to make a contribution to enhancing the public impact of the best practices in dementia care resulting from City HCID research by exploring and embracing the communicative affordances of graphic storytelling in general and graphic medicine in specific."We hope that Parables of Care contributes to enabling stronger links between academia, dementia care practice and comics scholars and practitioners."This is a smashing, thought-provoking short read, well worth your coffee or tea break. Check it out.• Download Parables of Care. Creative Responses to Dementia Care, as Told by Carers  as a PDF file, under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, from City Research Online here - there is no need to register, just click on 'download' next to the file thumbnail• If you live in the UK you can request printed copies at no cost here• Read more about the project here [...]

In Review: Ismyre by B. Mure

Thu, 05 Oct 2017 16:26:00 +0000

Review by Tony EsmondIsmyre by B. MureFull Colour - 80 pagesPublished by Avery Hill Publishing"A fantasy mystery story..."The Story: In the city of Ismyre, Ed the sculptor works as his widower neighbour sings strange melodies late into the night. He places the finished figurine on the shelf and notices that there is an empty space where another one should be. Perplexed, he sleeps, whilst his neighbour continues to croon. Meanwhile, across the city, a government building explodes into a mess of plants and flowers...Exploring themes of loneliness in cities, ecology, craftsmanship and the self doubt that goes with making things; Ismyre is a quiet and fantastical mystery tale set in an old world of ordinary magic...The Preview: This is a book that I have been waiting to see for a while now. Dave and Ricky from Avery Hill publishing had the table next to ours at London Super Comicon last month and spoke about how much they were looking forward to its release.Ismyre opens on a quote that struck an obviously contradictory cord with me as I read onwards:'The sculptor carves because he must' - Barbara HepworthThe central character is an anthropomorphic cat. He is a cat with worries in a number of areas. He seems unable to commit artistically, he sleeps badly, he seems generally an everyman leaf blown on the whims or people he meets and also has the problem that someone keeps breaking in to his flat and stealing his sculptures. So let's observe the contradiction that he must carve, but for a while does not and is worried about sculpting in ice (so stick that in your pompous quote, Ms Hepworth!).It's actually the moments that lampoon so-called creatives that made me smile the most in this comic. It's hard not to see them as dunderheads from time to time - and this certainly had me chuckling,Strange drunken friendships are made, scurrilous government officials are met and observed being really quite badly behaved (wags finger), a woman who looks like a crocodile acts as an artists agent - and there is some strangely crap magic in the mix.The story itself is a strange one to me. It jumps about and at moments lacks any real direction. I sat and watched as the characters dashed, argued, sang, slept and plotted. It's a slice of the strangely absurd at moments. It leaves you curious and a tiny bit confused at moments too. It's not really for kids and steps over the line to be an adult comic through setting and words.'Genius never tells, or sleeps. But snacks are very important.' (I try never to believe foxes!)But, obviously, the story takes a large second place to the sumptuous hues and line-work of the art. The city at night sits in greys and blues and golds and opens on some really gorgeous set pieces. The initial moments of the neighbour singing in the otherwise quiet and action free night is something I could stare at all day.The art looks straight out of a Roald Dahl book with the added bonus of being carefully detailed and sequentially pleasing. It's a loose cartoony style and B Mure shows us some real style with the characters featured.My favourite by far is the character echoing that bad boy of the past Mr Fox in the shape of 'Faustine'. A mystery of a character, who keeps having to dash off for babysitting duty or just decides at a moments notice to kick a front door.To me, this is a book that you can return to again and again. Don't worry about the scattershot plotting style - just dive in and enjoy the nattering dialogue and absolutely glorious visuals.Another worthy addition to the Avery Hill stable.• Find out more about this book and others at or follow them on Twitter @AveryHillPublbr | Avery Hill Publishing titles on Where's that Faustine spin-off comic!?Many thanks for reading [...]

Cold War Commando!

Thu, 05 Oct 2017 15:45:00 +0000

Here's the intel on the latest issues of Commando (Issues 5059-5062) from DC Thomson, on sale now in all good newsagents across the UK and various digital platforms. Expect Cold War espionage, Battle of Britain aerobatics, lost Napoleonic treasures and despicable acts of Nazi treachery in this week’s bundle!Commando 5059: Home of Heroes: Target: ARMAGEDDONStory | Iain McLaughlin | Art | Rodriguez & Morhain | Cover | Janek MatysiakAfter Germany surrendered in 1945, many Nazis fled to South America, choosing to live out the rest of their days in peace, but one U-Boat captain, Heinrich Kessler, had other ideas. Disgusted by his government’s surrender, Kessler’s hate for western culture burned through the decades until he decided to strike back. He might not be able to destroy his enemies – but he would push them to destroy each other!Now, in the heat of the Cold War, the Russian and American navies must work together if they are to defeat a greater evil that threatens the world…Iain McLaughlin’s nautical narrative is filled with stunning seascapes from Rodriguez and Morhain, who detail the various warships and submarines that battle on and beneath the surface, carrying over from Janek Matysiak’s moody submarine cover.  Commando 5060: Gold Collection: The Fighting FewStory | Maitland | Art | Gordon C. Livingstone | Cover | Gordon C. LivingstoneOriginally Commando No 386 (February 1969) Reprinted No 1123 (May 1977)“No-one would deny that the Battle of Britain produced more heroes than any other action of the Second World War.”A Golden Age classic, ‘The Fighting Few’ follows three pilots who formed one of the closest units the war had ever seen. Spending every minute to spare in the air, Flying Officer Gavin Roberts’ team was nigh on unstoppable. The only thing that held them back was Squadron Leader Connor, who, duplicitous and cowardly, took every chance he could to run away – even at the cost of another pilot’s life. So, facing Connor’s self-preservation and the relentless Luftwaffe, Gavin’s trio must train and fight harder if they are to survive and help Britain on the road to victory!Bringing Maitland’s story to life, Gordon C. Livingstone provides the cover and interior artwork, making it easy to see why his designs are so beloved by comic fans. Commando 5061: Action and Adventure: Fenshire SilverStory | George Low | Art and Cover | Keith Page Uncovering a crate of silver finery from French soldiers in the Peninsula War, Fenshire Rifle Lieutenant Adrian Seacombe could not believe his luck, that is, until he perished on his return to British soil. But that silver would stay with the Seacombe line, eventually reaching his descendant who fought with the Fenshire Rifles regiment in the Second World War. But does this new Seacombe care more about the treasure than his men?With art and cover design from Keith Page, George Low’s ‘Fenshire Silver’ is an adventure through the ages, from flintlock face-offs in Spain 1810, to the iconic Lee Enfields of World War Two.5062: Silver Collection: Time to Pay!Story | K. P. MacKenzie | Art | C. T. Rigby | Cover | Ian Kennedy Originally Commando No 2648 (March 1993)Sent to join the Italians at the front, Strumbannfuhrer Gustav Braun was an evil and cowardly man. Panicking at the first sight of the action he had avoided so far, he ordered a unit of Italians shot down so he could steal their trucks and flee. But Captain Mario Celini would never forget this. Even after Italy surrendered, Mario joined the Allied fighters to push back the Nazis and maybe even get his revenge on Braun…A different perspective on the war from K. P. MacKenzie, this ‘90s classic builds the perfect villain before introducing us to the heroes who will try to take him down. With beautiful depictions of the Italian countryside in C. T. Rigby’[...]

New Lakes International Comic Art Festival "App" offers artwork rewards

Thu, 05 Oct 2017 14:08:00 +0000

Heading to the Lakes International Comic Art Festival? Get the Festival app on your iPhone, iPad or iTouch - and grab some artwork rewards as you explore Kendal.Created by Mobetrics, a Cumbrian mobile technology and app development company, the app, designed by Joe Lethbridge at Cactus Creative, will enhance your Festival experience by providing event information, assistance in finding venues.With Bluetooth enabled, the app also offers the option to collect artwork on your as you go along, by artists such as Duncan Fegredo, Aimee de Jongh and Christian Ward, among others.This is the first phase and the Festival is looking for your feedback on what will make the app, and the Festival, even better!Based in Cockermouth, Mobetric's work designing apps for IOS, Android and Blackberyy includes Stolen Lives,  a learning resource featuring an illustrated comic book, which builds upon extensive research into the use of visual content and mental exploration to aid learning as well as employing the principles of transformative learning techniques.Cactus Creative - a team of eight - are based in Kendal in The Factory – an independent, creative hub which is home to other talented creatives and artists. Their work includes Kendal's own web site ( and work for Keswick's Theatre by the Lake.• Download the app from iTunes here (requires iOS 10.3 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod touch)• Comic Art Festival• Mobmetrics: | Follow Mobetrics on Twitter @mobetrics• Cactus Creative: | Follow Cactus Creative on Twitter: @cactuscreative [...]

Monad Journal Launch Symposium at the University of Northampton

Thu, 05 Oct 2017 13:28:00 +0000

The University of Northampton  is to host the launch of a new peer-reviewed open access online journal MONAD next month - and comics writer Alan Moore is among invited guests for the Launch Symposium.The Monad Journal Launch Symposium on Thursday 9th November is a free one-day research symposium to officially launch the Monad project and journal at the University of Northampton, Faculty of Arts, Science and Technology.This event will feature a selection of excellent speakers (programme below) addressing various of forms of transformative practice in relation to progressive change. The event is free for the first 50 registrants. A lunch and refreshments will be provided.Following the Symposium a 'Transition' event format will be making a very special return to the Phoenix Bar in Northampton. Special guests include: World-renowned author Alan Moore; legendary ska-punk band Inner Terrestrials; comedian, musician and writer Andrew O’Neill; and writer-poet Sophie Sparham.Transition events aim to bring innovative, independent and academic research, about methods of realising progressive change, to the wider community,” explain organisers Roy Wallace and Cavan McLaughlin, "while providing a safe, shared, creative, recreational space for everyone. We will continue to investigate the principle of transformative practice, over a beer or two with performances from our special guest, all of whom are both hugely entertaining and inspiring examples of how you can 'be the change you want to see in the world."Symposium Programme10.00-10.45: Registration and coffeeNewton Grand Hall, Newton Building, Avenue Campus, University of Northampton10.45 Introductions11.00 Panel 1 – Transformative PractitionersStephen Godfrey (Artist) & Cavan McLaughlin (University of Northampton)Phototerragrams: Organic and photo-chemical collaborations with the earth.Arte Artemiou (University of Northampton)Imagining a Transformative Performative EducationAnne Crossey (Artist & Independent Scholar)The Emperor is Wearing No Clothes: Clothing as metaphor in Thomas Carlyle’s Sartor ResartusCarlos Ruiz Brussain (ERAM Escola Universitaria – University of Girona)Nailing the Snake: Dealing with the elusiveness of liminal experiences in self-transformative creative practice and research.1.00 – 2.00 Lunch and film screenings2.00 – 4.00 Panel 2 – Transformative PracticesLuc Robene (University of Bordeaux) & Solveig Serre (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)Negotiating borders between hegemonic culture and the restricted culture of subversion: How to write the history of the punk scene in France (1976-2016)?Alasdair Gordon-Finlayson (University of Northampton)Title TBC (presentation on meditation)Peter Duchemin (Memorial University of Newfoundland)Designing a Transformative Chronology: Experiments in calendar construction.David Luke (University of Greenwich)Psychedelics as Transformative Praxis4.00 – 4.30 Coffee break4.30 – 5.30 Panel 3 – Monad Journal Launch Discussion PanelRoy Wallace (University of Northampton), Cavan McLaughlin, Carlos Ruiz Brussain, Helena Blakemore (University of East London), Luc Robene, Solveig Serre• To register for the Monad symposium visit: | To book your tickets for Transition (after party) visit:• To find out more about the Monad Journal and Project visit: [...]

Call For Papers: Storytelling Conference 2018

Thu, 05 Oct 2017 13:13:00 +0000

The organisers of the Storytelling Conference 2018 (10th - 11th July) at the University of Suffolk have announced the call for papers is now open.

They are inviting papers that theoretically and empirically engage with a broad range of disciplines reflecting the diverse nature o storytelling and stories substantively and methodologically.

The conference aims to bring together established academics, early career researchers, PhD candidates and students.

Topics covered by this call could include but are not limited to:

• Stories as a research method(ology)
• Storytelling in the workplace
• ‘Storied organisation’
• Stories of place, space, movement and migration
• Archaeological and historical stories
• Children, stories and storytelling
• Health and wellbeing
• Stories in and of education
• The organisation of story
• The storytelling business
• Sex and sexuality
• Ethnographic stories
• Disability and activism
• Cultures and communities
• Stories and popular culture
• Stories, leisure and sport

Welcome are traditional presentations of 20 minutes with additional time for questions, pre‐formed panels of speakers, and posters; as well as alternative modes of presentation including performance, film, photography etc.

Please send 250-word abstracts for a 20-minute presentation, 500-word abstracts for panels and 150-word abstracts for posters:

 • For further information please visit the website | The deadline for submissions is Monday 30th March 2018(image)

More Frank Bellamy "Garth" under the hammer at Heritage Auctions

Thu, 05 Oct 2017 09:00:00 +0000

Heritage Auctions is offering this Frank Bellamy Garth daily comic strip first published in the Daily Mirror in 1975 in its latest auction

J214 dated 8-29-75 sees Garth use a pilot's trick to throw the bad guys around.

The strip was produced in ink over graphite on illustration board with an image area of 20.5" x 5.5" and is in excellent condition, an item from the Ethan Roberts Estate Collection.

Other art offered in the auction, which takes place this weekend online, includes work by Jack Davis, Gil Kane, Stan Sakai and many more.

View the lot here on Heritage Auctions | View the auction

Garth © Daily Mirror(image)

Jurassic World expected to be popular draw at Brand Licensing Europe next week

Thu, 05 Oct 2017 08:38:00 +0000

2018 is going to be a perfect storm for the popular Jurassic World franchise, so it's no surprise the franchise is expected to be a big attraction at this year's Brand Licensing Europe show, taking place at Olympia, London (10th - 12th October 2017).Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, the fifth movie in the franchise, will be released in June 2018, with Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas back to battle dinosaurs. allowfullscreen="" class="YOUTUBE-iframe-video" data-thumbnail-src="" frameborder="0" height="266" src="" width="320">The 25th anniversary of the classic 1993 Jurassic Park film will be another reason to celebrate all things Jurassic in 2018, and Universal Brand Development has announced it will mark the milestone with events and special licensed products at retail.Universal fully expects Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom to build on the success of 2015’s Jurassic World, which grossed $1.6bn in global box office and was the fourth highest grossing movie of the year.Licensing for the new film is a cross-category affair and nearly 30 licensees are already signed in the UK, with more coming on board. Brand Licensing Europe is the definitive event for the European licensing industry, bringing together over 300 brand owners with over 7,500 retailers, licensees and manufacturers for 3 days of deal-making, networking & trend spotting. • Find out more about Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom here on the Universal Pictures web site [...]

There’s no escape: The Prisoner is returning to comics

Thu, 05 Oct 2017 08:13:00 +0000

Not for the first time, the short-lived, highly regarded 1960s TV series The Prisoner is being adapted for comics. Titan Comics has announced they are to publish all-new comic books written by Peter Milligan, drawn by Colin Lorimer,  to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of classic cult phenomenon, in partnership with ITV Studios Global Entertainment.The Prisoner to first aired on ITV in the United Kingdom on 29 September 1967 – and in 1968 in the United States - and despite running for just 17 episodes, was has become a cult classic with global audiences, thanks to its surreal mix of spy fiction with sci-fi, allegory and psychological drama elements.The series starred actor and, later, director Patrick MacGoohan (Danger Man, Columbo, Escape from Alcatraz) as Number 6 – the fiery British former secret agent who is abducted and held prisoner in a shadowy coastal village, where his captors try to find out why he abruptly resigned from his job.The TV show has captured imaginations ever since, spawning a following still pondering the show’s twists and turns to this day.The Prisoner inspired Jack Kirby to fashion a homage in Marvel’s Fantastic Four #84-8 1969, involving Doctor Doom's kingdom of Latveria. (There have been plenty of homages to the show in comics and other popular media since, too).Kirby was clearly enamoured of the show and it’s perhaps no surprise he was chosen to provide art and story for a comic version of The Prisoner in 1976. But not before writer Steve Englehart had taken a crack at the concept.“Marv Wolfman, as Marvel's Editor-in-Chief, wanted to adapt the classic TV show, but after securing the rights, his duties didn't leave him enough time, so he handed it off to me,” Steve Engelhart recalls of the project’s origins.Steve Engelhart, Steve Leialoha and letterer Tom Orzechowski recreated the splash page of Engelhart's comics take on The Prisoner for a convention program“I plotted an adaptation of the first episode, and Gil Kane handled the art (with Joe Staton providing his layouts). I was all ready to script - but by then, Marv had resigned, a new E-I-C had taken over, and Marvel was in turmoil. I ended up leaving, and was told I would not be allowed to script my Prisoner. I told them I darn well would, and they told me I'd have to turn in the script the next morning!”He delivered a script on time - but it was still shelved.Kirby’s planned series never went into production either, the hugely influential comics creator instead tackling 2001: A Space Odyssey. Most pages of the first issue, based on the show’s opening episode Arrival, were drawn. You can read It on line over at Forces of Geek and there’s a great article by Charles Hatfield about the history of the project, first published in Jack Kirby Collector #11, first published in 1996, over at four-part The Prisoner sequel, Shattered Visage, by Dean Motter and Mark Askwith, was published by DC Comics in 1988-89, which attempted to answer some of the show’s many questions - but fans didn’t like the revisionist approach to the source material.There’s been more favourable fan reception to EVERYMAN: A Celebration of Patrick McGoohan & The Prisoner, British comic creator Brian Gorman’s new graphic novel, launched, appropriately enough, at this year’s Portmeiricon, the annual Prisoner event hosted by Six Of One. Titan Comics new comic will be written by Peter Milligan (The Mummy, Dan Dare, Hellblazer) with art by Colin Lorimer (The X-Files, Hellraiser, Harvest - and will launch next year.“For a story where all is ambiguous, it’s hardly surprising that everyone takes from The Prisoner something different,” [...]

Kendal Calling: An interview with cartoonist Lynn Johnston

Wed, 04 Oct 2017 16:32:00 +0000

With the Lakes International Comic Art Festival just over a week away, we continue our Kendal Calling interviews with a chat with Lynn Johnston, a Canadian cartoonist known for her newspaper comic strip For Better or For Worse. She was the first woman and first Canadian to win the National Cartoonist Society's Reuben Award. David, We’re Pregnant! which sold over 300,000 copies. Shortly after, she was divorced and worked as a commercial artist, freelancing from home.Lynn was born in Ontario and grew up in British Columbia. She attended the Vancouver School of Art then took a job in an animation studio in Vancouver, where she began to apprentice as an animator. After getting married, Johnston moved to Ontario in 1969, and in 1972 the discovery that she was expecting her first child led to the publication of In 1975, Hi Mom! Hi Dad! was published as a sequel to David, We’re Pregnant!. By this time she was remarried and continued to freelance until her daughter Kate was born. Do They Ever Grow Up? was the third publication in her first sequence of books about parenting.In 1978, Universal Press Syndicate asked if Johnston was interested in doing a daily comic strip. She signed a 20-year contract and the work on For Better or For Worse began. This comic strip has been syndicated since 1979 and, at its peak, appeared in more than 2,000 newspapers in 23 countries.Lynn was the first woman to receive a Reuben Award for Cartoonist of the Year in 1985, she has been nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, has received the Order of Canada and claims a star on Canada’s Walk of Fame.downthetubes: Which comic project you’ve worked on are you most proud of and where can people see it or buy it?Lynn Johnston: I ended the story of For Better or for Worse in 2007. It was a syndicated comic strip, running in over 2000 papers at the time. Right now, I’m painting and working on a series of comic art fabric patterns. I hope to have a few clients interested in bedding, draperies and children’s apparel. I’m also updating my original comic strip art for the web.downthetubes: Which comic project you’ve worked on are you most proud of and where can people see it or buy it?Lynn: I’m proud of everything I do! I’d like folks to see my comic strip – all 29 years worth on our website. There are many collection books available through Amazon and it will soon be available again in a series of hard cover books. The first of these should be on sale soon.downthetubes: How do you plan your day as a cartoonist? Do you plan your day?Lynn: I have just turned 70, but I’m still working. I put in three days a week on the fabric patterns and paint when I feel the muse. I also produce new art for the website and occasionally write an article for same. I am also working with another artist on a graphic novel about his life. We have set a year from now as our goal for publication.downthetubes: What’s the best thing about being a comics creator?Lynn: The best thing…for me, was doing what I loved to do and be gainfully employed doing it. I think that all of us who were/ are syndicated or in some way, doing comic art for a living, feel the same.Another tremendous plus was meeting all my heroes. I came into the business when Charles Schulz was there – and Will Eisner, Bil Keane, Dik Browne, Johnny Hart... I knew many of these wonderful, talented and generous people. What a privilege to have called them my friends.downthetubes: And the worst?Lynn: The worst part of doing a syndicated comic strip was also the best: I hated the pressure. No matter what else was happening in my life, I had the relentless pressure of deadlines. I worked harder than I ever[...]

Out Now: 2000AD Prog 2051

Wed, 04 Oct 2017 15:33:00 +0000

The latest issue of 2000AD, on sale now in all good newsagents and comic shops, comes wrapped in a smashing cover from David Millgate and features the following Thrills (and plenty of spills...)Favourite story this issue? Well, apart from the way “Judge Dredd” is developing into a thoroughly nasty affair harking back to the days when robots ran amok in Mega City One, and that Dan Abnett is slowly taking over the comic (another fun “Sinister Dexter” tale this week!), I’m simply loving the ramping up of SF concepts we’re getting - without forgetting some good old roustabout head bashing and mythology in “Slaine”.If you came aboard afresh with Prog 2050 after a break, it was the right decision!Judge Dredd - Icon (Part 2) Writer: T.C Eglington Art: Colin MacNeil Colour: Chris Blythe Letters: Annie ParkhouseMega-City One, 2139 AD. Home to 72 million citizens, this urban hell is situated along the east coast of post-apocalyptic North America, where unemployment is endemic, boredom universal, and crime is rampant. Tensions run a constant knife-edge, and only the zero-tolerance Judges — empowered to dispense instant justice — can stop total anarchy. Toughest of them all is JUDGE DREDD — he is the Law!Sláine - Archon (Part 2) Writer: Pat Mills Art: Simon Davis Letters: Ellie de VilleAlbion. Celtic warrior SLÁINE united the tribes of the Earth Goddess and became the first High King of Ireland, but is now a wanderer. Having journeyed to Monadh to rescue Sinead from the Drune Lords, he’s discovered that they have been experimenting on their own creations, much to the displeasure of the Cyths’ jailer, the Archon Yaldabaoth. Now, the Archon has awoken and unleashed his army of stone warriors...Indigo Prime - A Dying Art (Part 2) Writer: John Smith Art: Lee Carter Letters: Simon BowlandThe multiverse. There are an infinite number of parallel realities, and all need managing in case of dimensional instability. This is where INDIGO PRIME comes in, the multiverse’s troubleshooters, whose agents — recruited post-death — are trained to deal with space/time catastrophes. Now, the majority of IP’s Imagineers have been sent into psychic toxic shock following the Christhulhu event... Sinister Dexter - Snake-Skinned (Part 1) Writer: Dan Abnett Art: Jake Lynch Colour: John Charles Letters: Ellie de VilleGun-sharks Finnigan SINISTER and Ramone DEXTER are the best hitmen money can buy in the future city of Downlode. Having spent the last year offworld hunting for Holy Moses Tanenbaum, a ganglord from an alternate dimension whose presence threatened the fabric of reality, they’ve returned home, and are getting back to business. But whacking Tanenbaum has reset the continuum, meaning no one knows who they are...Grey Area - Homeland Security (Part 2) Writer: Dan Abnett Art: Mark Harrison Letters: Annie ParkhouseThe mid 21st century. Earth has a heavily armed defence network, and any ETs arriving on the planet are housed in the Exo Segregation Zone, known as the GREY AREA, which is policed by squads of Exo Transfer Control officers like Captain Adam Bulliet and his team — wife Birdy, linguist Kymn, weapons expert Feo, and alien transfer Resting Bitch Face. They have to keep the peace amongst all manner of off-world life forms... [...]

Wishing you all the very best of the season... but --

Wed, 18 Dec 2013 09:04:00 +0000

Merry Christmas, Saturnalia, and a Happy New Year... And a quick reminder that the main now features all our news direct, as well as interviews and other features on British Comics. Cheers!




Are you still coming here? Upgrade your links to

Fri, 15 Nov 2013 17:05:00 +0000

A quick reminder that the main now features all our news direct, as well as interviews and other features on British Comics. Cheers!




You haven't landed where you expected...

Fri, 09 Aug 2013 16:45:00 +0000

Saturday, 7th October 2017

The downthetubes new blog has been assimilated our main site, but we're glad you're here, because that's currently undergoing some under the bonnet refurb so we've brought this blog back from the dead to tide us over. 

We expect to be back up and running next week, just before the 2017 Lakes International Comic Art Festival - see you there? 

Hop over to for other British comics news, comic creating guides, interviews and much more!(image)

This isn't the downthetubes you are looking for...

Thu, 18 Jul 2013 07:21:00 +0000

A quick reminder that the main now features all our news direct, as well as interviews and other features on British Comics. Cheers!




Don't Forget - downthetubes has 'Moved'

Sat, 06 Jul 2013 10:00:00 +0000

A quick reminder that the main now features all our news direct, as well as interviews and other features on British Comics. Cheers!




Reminder: downthetubes news now on main site

Sun, 23 Jun 2013 07:59:00 +0000

A quick reminder that the main now features all our news direct, as well as interviews and other features on British Comics. Cheers!




downthetubes News now features on Main Site

Thu, 13 Jun 2013 16:34:00 +0000

The main now features all our news direct, as well as interviews and other features on British Comics. Not all the news stories we publish will feature on this blog.

We're also in the process of moving pages from our old site to this funky new version.




Photo Review: 2D Festival - Creators At The Comics Fair

Sat, 08 Jun 2013 06:00:00 +0000

This year's 2D Comics Festival in the UK's 2013 City of Culture, Derry-Londonderry, was the largest comics event ever held in Northern Ireland. With talks and work shops in the days running up to the weekend, the weekend itself had a family friendly cosplay event and a free comics fair during the day at the city's Millennium Forum plus evening talks in Sandino's Bar.Organised as it has been for each year since 2007 by the Verbal Arts Centre (above), it has outgrown the 19th century former school and so this was first year that 2D has moved from its spiritual home, and into the much larger Millennium Forum theatre and conference centre also just within the city's defensive walls. This year the Verbal Arts Centre building was retained for an exhibition of local artist Will Simpson's film and television work including that on the biggest TV series to be filmed in Northern Ireland, Game Of Thrones.The Millennium Forum (below) is a much more modern building with considerably more room to move around and generally be able to breathe. Built to cope with the hilly section of the city where the old wall actually runs beneath a road, the building has multiple levels with the main doors being, disconcertingly, at the top.The main atrium of the building was used for the 2D Comics Fair with tables squeezed into every space, from the entrance hall via various bridges and landings, to the main lower floor and even beyond. The layout of this at first glance seemed a little chaotic but realisation soon dawned that the organisers had blocked certain routes to ensure that everyone walked past all the various tables before arriving at the main floor level. Indeed the various guests were spaced around the building with each area having several guest artists meaning that there really were no sections that could be ignored.And the organisers were not ignoring their guests either with drinks and food being provided and even paper being offered to the artists in case they had run out. 2D has a good reputation amongst its guests and it was not hard to see why.As it was free entry to the Comics Fair, there was a varied cross-section of punters around with, on the Sunday at least, few cosplayers to be seen other than those taking part in the Heroes and Legends event deeper in the building.The city's local creators are Uproar Comics who came together through previous 2Ds and the 2D Collective offshoot. They publish the Zombies Hi title which is an anthology of the main ongoing Zombies Hi story backed up with short zombie text stories and comic strip, and is widely distributed within Northern Ireland. Writer Danny McLaughlin (left) was more than happy to talk about both zombies and their new standalone title, The Ballad of Half Hanged McNaghten, while artist Kevin Logue (right) drew attendees as zombies.There are more details of all Uproar Comics publications on their website. From across the border, and the Atlantic, was Canadian artist and Co Donegal resident Tim Stampton who was displaying some lovely watercolours of folkloric figures which he had combined into a softcover book entitled Irish Faerie Folk.There are more details of Tim Stampton's work on his website.Also from the Republic of Ireland, yet a familiar face at UK conventions, was writer Maura McHugh. As well as books and plays, Maura writes two title's for Dublin's Atomic Diner comics, Roisin Dubh and Jennifer Wilde. The third and concluding[...]