Fleetway War Libraries - bumper collections coming!

Talk here about just about anything associated with British comics or story papers and the industry that does not fit in any other forum.
There are separate fora open to registered members for discussing specific comics, artists, websites etc.

Moderators: AndyB, colcool007

Lew Stringer
Posts: 7041
Joined: 01 Mar 2006, 00:59
Contact:

Fleetway War Libraries - bumper collections coming!

Post by Lew Stringer »

For those of you who were hoping that IPC would release bumper collections of their war libraries, (as Thomsons did with Commando) your prayers are answered! John Freeman's excellent Down The Tubes website (always a great source for UK news, - bookmark it!) has the full details plus cover repros:

http://www.downthetubes.net/

I'm not a fan of war comics but Fleetway's libraries contained some marvelous artwork so I'll be buying 'em!

Lew
The blog of British comics: http://lewstringer.blogspot.com
My website: http://www.lewstringer.com
Blog about my own work: http://lewstringercomics.blogspot.com/

User avatar
philcom55
Posts: 5170
Joined: 14 Jun 2006, 11:56

Fleetway War Libraries - bumper collections coming!

Post by philcom55 »

I don't like to be a glass-half-empty type person, but while the remarkable success of these volumes is good news on one level I can't help but worry that, like Classic Comics and the yearly 'Best of Beano & Dandy' volumes it might have unfortunate repercussions for the surviving titles of DCT's comic line. After all - why should they continue to commission new material for Commando if descriptions like "Classic" and "Best Of" can actually be used to make reprints seem even more collectable? Also this approach means they can now get away with representing work that was previously overlooked as 'politically incorrect' for today's climate: all they have to do is market it as a 'historical document' like the Monster Dandy book! :?

- Phil Rushton

brisey
Posts: 148
Joined: 01 Mar 2006, 07:48

Fleetway War Libraries - bumper collections coming!

Post by brisey »

Thanks for that Lew and it answered my question about Anzacs at War-August apparently.The article also mentioned indexes and reference works which also sound interesting.

Phil I think these are aimed at a different market than comic collectors-the outlets that I saw them in were usually gift orientated-like the Jackie books.The choices so far in the Commando books have been PC but the Fleetway ones were more Gung-Ho.

If it makes people aware that Commando is still going,it can be no bad thing.

From the previous thread I take it that the writers and artists will not be paid

brian

Lew Stringer
Posts: 7041
Joined: 01 Mar 2006, 00:59
Contact:

Re: Fleetway War Libraries - bumper collections coming!

Post by Lew Stringer »

brisey wrote: Phil I think these are aimed at a different market than comic collectors-the outlets that I saw them in were usually gift orientated-like the Jackie books.

True, but I see Phil's point. The thing is, WE know that, but do the unimaginative accountants running comics these days?

Several years ago Fleetway had some moderate success with their Best of.. reprints (Buster, Whoopee, etc) so then they launched Funny Fortnightly instead of developing a new comic, and started putting more reprint in the weeklies.

Funny Fortnightly initially sold very well, so they smugly thought their policy was a winner. As we know, this didn't last, but by that time the publishers had convinced themselves "comics don't sell", not that their reprint policy was to blame.

Kids know if a strip is reprint. The styles look dated, the humour is dated, and some of the references and props look dated too! Unfortunately, as comics are run by people who only think in terms of costs, this goes over their heads.

I could always tell if a strip was "old" when I was a kid, as I'm sure most of us here could. Whilst it's great for comics fans like us to see old strips reprinted, the majority don't like it. (Evidenced by the demise of every Fleetway title that turned to reprint.)

The last thing we want is for some promotion-hungry person in sales to start thinking "classic" and "retro" are the new buzzwords to shift "product". Unfortunately we've seen it happen time and time again resulting in disaster because these young guns have no conception of the history of comics, and are therefore doomed to repeat the same mistakes.

For those publishers who think "comics don't sell anymore" I suggest it's not the format of comics that are out of favour, but what's on offer. Reprint is not going to turn things around.

If comics themselves were no longer popular, how is it sales of comics are still good in other countries? It's the approach of British comics that needs re-evaluating, which means more insight and imagination than the "managed decline" that's usually their easy option.

Lew
The blog of British comics: http://lewstringer.blogspot.com
My website: http://www.lewstringer.com
Blog about my own work: http://lewstringercomics.blogspot.com/

Conor B
Posts: 339
Joined: 01 Mar 2006, 09:00
Location: Merseyside

Re: Fleetway War Libraries - bumper collections coming!

Post by Conor B »

Lew Stringer wrote:Kids know if a strip is reprint. The styles look dated, the humour is dated, and some of the references and props look dated too!
BeanoMAX 2 :

Billy Whizz: Telephone, Artist's work on Billy seen in Christmas special THREE MONTHS AGO.

Ivy the Terrible: Artist is DEAD, Logo by computer doesnt match hand painted style

Roger the Dodger: Same as Ivy, but also the camera looks old fashioned

Also in the Dandy on Class Act comics you can see little fuzzes of browny-white showing that the people colouring theb ackground (which I hate) are missing out bits of paper that are a different shade becuse theyre old.
Last edited by Conor B on 31 Mar 2007, 15:27, edited 1 time in total.
Comic Genius Runner Up 2006

User avatar
Captain Storm
Posts: 898
Joined: 01 Mar 2006, 21:15
Location: 1981
Contact:

Fleetway War Libraries - bumper collections coming!

Post by Captain Storm »

Hi Lew,seeing as you're in the business as it were,any chance of passing on the views of this and several other fora re the state of comics and what fans really want?By this I mean dropping a little memo onto the accountants and boys in charge.Why not tell them to visit these fora and the myriad tribute sites to see that a lot of potential customers are in the offing.Also,tell them"Do not bite the hand that feeds,rather feed the hand that needs" otherwise they could be out of work soon if the current state of UK comics is anything to judge by.Remember the early 80's...the dole queues heaved with unemployed artists,writers,and....comic book editors(and accountants)!!!!!

HISTORY HAS A HABIT OF REPEATING ITSELF!!!!!

Lew Stringer
Posts: 7041
Joined: 01 Mar 2006, 00:59
Contact:

Re: Fleetway War Libraries - bumper collections coming!

Post by Lew Stringer »

Captain Storm wrote:Hi Lew,seeing as you're in the business as it were,any chance of passing on the views of this and several other fora re the state of comics and what fans really want?

A) I have a feeling Thomson's accountants would tell me to f*** off and mind my own business, considering I don't work for The Beano or Dandy.

B) They'd consider that the views of a dozen of so regulars here are nothing compared to the thousands that buy their comics.

C) If the comics fail, the bean counters will move on to other jobs, blaming the fall of British comics 100% on TV, video games, or whatever other distraction kids have. (Ignoring how Manga is huge in Japan, the land of video games!) The marketing guys see their job as running a declining genre as long as possible on a tight budget, in which case they're seen to be doing a good job!

Lew
The blog of British comics: http://lewstringer.blogspot.com
My website: http://www.lewstringer.com
Blog about my own work: http://lewstringercomics.blogspot.com/

User avatar
Captain Storm
Posts: 898
Joined: 01 Mar 2006, 21:15
Location: 1981
Contact:

Fleetway War Libraries - bumper collections coming!

Post by Captain Storm »

Sadly I have to agree!Any emails I passed onto said bigwigs have not even warranted a reply.Scanners,start warming up your machines.It's up to us to preserve the great legacy of our comics past.Pity we can offer no greater reward to the genius body of artists and writers who moulded our childhood imaginations through the medium of comics than by purely remembering their works and commenting on them.What a bloody disgrace!!!!Gift horses are being looked squarely in the face as our comics heritage is being torn apart for a few dollars.False economy fat cats will waste this opportunity and move on and all will be utterly lost.What am I saying..IS utterly lost and GONE!

2007 UK COMICS R.I.P.

p.s. Must go now to oh about a thousand or so web sites dedicated to comics of our past.

p.p.s. Hang on,there's NO market for new comics or reviving old ones?Tsk..should have been an accountant,then I would know everything!

Lew---keep on trucking!

Lew Stringer
Posts: 7041
Joined: 01 Mar 2006, 00:59
Contact:

Re: Fleetway War Libraries - bumper collections coming!

Post by Lew Stringer »

Captain Storm wrote:
2007 UK COMICS R.I.P.

Let's keep a sense of proportion. There IS still A British comics industry. Not as large as it was by any means, but most of us who get together at conventions seem to be hanging in there so the work must come from somewhere.

(As for fears of reprint: in the 1970s newsagents were full of Alan Class and Top Sellers comics; not a new page amongst them as I recall.)

Current British titles that have significant NEW strip content (more than ten pages):

Wallace & Gromit Comic
Shaun the Sheep (out today I think!)
Dandy
Beano
BeanoMAX
Action Man A.T.O.M.
Spectacular Spider-Man (yes, UK writers and artists on all new stories)
Commando
Viz
2000 AD
Judge Dredd Megazine
Fun-Size Beano (or is this all reprint now?)
Fun-Size Dandy (is this all reprint now?)

Current British titles that feature SOME pages of new strip pages:

Toxic
Hot Wheels
Power Rangers
Doctor Who Adventures
Doctor Who Magazine
Doctor Who Battles in Time
Spider-Man and Friends

Yep, a poor show compared to 20 or 40 years ago but it proves the industry isn't dead yet. And this is just the stuff available in newsagents. There are numerous small press titles out there (although admittedly their creators don't depend on them for a living).

Lew
The blog of British comics: http://lewstringer.blogspot.com
My website: http://www.lewstringer.com
Blog about my own work: http://lewstringercomics.blogspot.com/

User avatar
philcom55
Posts: 5170
Joined: 14 Jun 2006, 11:56

Fleetway War Libraries - bumper collections coming!

Post by philcom55 »

Another current title that easily gets forgotten is It's Hot! (possibly because it comes polybagged, which means you can't leaf through it in W H Smith's!). The amazing thing about this is that it's actually keeping alive the great British tradition of TV-related strips from their heyday in comics such as TV Fun, TV Comic, TV Century 21, TV Action and Look-In by featuring new comic-strip versions of 'Eastenders' and 'Casualty' aimed at an audience of young girls.

A far cry from Frank Bellamy's Thunderbirds maybe - but it all adds up! :)

- Phil Rushton

Kashgar
Guru
Posts: 2761
Joined: 09 Nov 2006, 14:15

Fleetway War Libraries - bumper collections coming!

Post by Kashgar »

The Fun-size Beano and Dandy are now published half and half, one new strip and one reprint strip in each issue.

User avatar
stevezodiac
Posts: 4789
Joined: 23 May 2006, 20:43
Location: space city

Fleetway War Libraries - bumper collections coming!

Post by stevezodiac »

Getting back to War library reprints. Won't people be put off by the fact they're in Black and White? I don't suppose it would be cost effective to colourise them but i've often wondered how they can publish the Beano and Dandy libraries in colour but not Commando. They have the same page count and are the same price. But i guess the colour in the Beano and Dandy is a lot more basic than the Commandos would have to be. What about one colour like the old Brassneck and Winker Watson strips? Green would be good.

tonyodonnell
Posts: 56
Joined: 16 Mar 2006, 11:27
Location: Orkney

Fleetway War Libraries - bumper collections coming!

Post by tonyodonnell »

I think that Fun-size Beano has been totally reprint since November 2006, or at least that was what I was told. It is possible, as regards the colour tint on Fun-size that it was decided years ago that this was best suited for Humour titles or perhaps it depends on which printer is used. Football Libraries used to have a red tint,I recall.
Lew did you leave out those girl's comic's like is it Bratz and Witch and perhaps Barbie because you know the strips are reprints...I dont know, either way..I just wondered?

Lew Stringer
Posts: 7041
Joined: 01 Mar 2006, 00:59
Contact:

Re: Fleetway War Libraries - bumper collections coming!

Post by Lew Stringer »

tonyodonnell wrote: Lew did you leave out those girl's comic's like is it Bratz and Witch and perhaps Barbie because you know the strips are reprints...I dont know, either way..I just wondered?
I'm not sure about those as I've never looked at them! (I believe W.I.T.C.H. is reprint from Europe though.) I assumed, perhaps wrongly, that Bratz and Barbie were all feature-based?

I didn't include any reprint comics, but if I had there'd be another dozen titles on the list easily.

Lew
The blog of British comics: http://lewstringer.blogspot.com
My website: http://www.lewstringer.com
Blog about my own work: http://lewstringercomics.blogspot.com/

Kashgar
Guru
Posts: 2761
Joined: 09 Nov 2006, 14:15

Fleetway War Libraries - bumper collections coming!

Post by Kashgar »

Just checked the two 'Fun-size' titles. According to the blurb in every alternate issue one full title per month is new and the other reprint not half reprint/half new per issue as I originally suggested.

Post Reply