The British comic book industry is perhaps best known for children’s humour titles such as ‘The Dandy’ (DC Thomson, 1937-present) and the ‘Beano’ (DC Thomson, 1938-present), which began the golden age of British comic books. Alternatively, some older readers might argue that the jewels of British comic books are titles such as ‘2000AD’ (IPC, 1977-present) or ‘Warrior’ (Quality Communications, 1982–1985). These offered science fiction, superhero and dystopian tales that challenged readers’ assumptions and expectations. By comparison, British female comic books have never received the same attention and respect, despite having many of the same creators and at their peak both outselling and outlasting the male’s titles. Comic books such as ‘Tammy’ (IPC, 1971–1984) outsold ‘2000AD’ on launch, selling 250,000 copies per week compared to ‘2000AD’s 220,000 (Mills, 2012). The longest-running British female comic book, ‘Bunty’ (DC Thomson, 1958–2001), lasted for 2249 issues and 43 years, while at the time of writing ‘2000AD’ has just reached its 40th anniversary.
Spawn, The Soldier Of Hell: The Center Of The Mandala
The Spawn character was created in the early 1990s by the Canadian-American comic book creator and entrepreneur, Todd McFarlane, who tells the story of an Afro-American soldier, Al Simmons, who, after an outstanding career in the Vietnam War, was invited to become a secret agent for the United States of America government. His missions focused on fighting crime but evolved into destroying the evidence by killing the targets. Al Simmons’ boss, Jason Wynn, was a master at manipulating people. He made Al Simmons believe that everything they did had a fair purpose: protecting the nation’s safety.
Batman Origins And The Legends Of The Dark Knight
With a panel from the opening of 1939s ‘Detective Comics’ #27, the world was introduced to Batman. In the seven decades since his first publication, Batman has become an internationally recognized figure, his distinctive logo is one of the top five recognized symbols in the world. He remains one of the top sellers of comic books, appearing in multiple titles, and various creators have parlayed that success into other media such as film and television. But the secret to his cultural resonance remains an elusive mystery that has not been duplicated.
The Phenomenal Lovecraftian Prestige in Hellboy’s Abstraction
Michael Joseph Mignola established himself as an artist at DC Comics and Marvel Comics, gaining a reputation for moody, dark illustrations with the Batman book ‘Gotham by Gaslight’ (1989). His creation of the character Hellboy was inspired by a variety of sources, including the works of horror fantasist Howard Phillips Lovecraft. Michael Joseph Mignola found humour in matching a large, all-red character fitting the conventional depiction of a devil with the concept of a rough-and-tumble paranormal investigator who approaches dilemmas with a gruff humour and steady resolve.
The Phenomenal World of Neil Gaiman’s ‘The Sandman’
In 1895, the daily newspaper The New York World launched the first United States of America comic strip, ‘The Yellow Kid,’ with the ambition to increase the sales of the paper. Fortunately, the uncanny popularity of the comic strip was the springboard of future publications as press barons realised the potential of the comic strips as a marketing tool.
An Academic ‘Hunting For The Dark Knight,’ Batman
One warm summer’s night browsing the Internet for no good reason, I stumbled across some book called ‘Batman and Philosophy.’ I had just written a paper on the film ‘The Dark Knight’ but I did not consider actually investing any time or funds in the topic of Batman. Just for the novelty, though, I ordered it. But after reading it I did another basic Google search; I found another Batman book. And then another, and another.
‘Baltimore: The Red Kingdom’ twists the knife
Mike Mignola, the legendary creator of Hellboy and The New York Times bestselling novelist Christopher Golden have reunited for the epic conclusion to their comic Baltimore with ‘Baltimore: The Red Kingdom,’ a five-part comic book series from Dark Horse Comics co-written by Mike Mignola and Christopher Golden, with illustration by award-winning children’s book illustrator Peter Bergting, colours by Michelle Madsen and stunning covers by Ben Stenbeck (known for is magnificent work on ‘Frankenstein Underground’).