Hot on the heels ( as they say ) ( and why do they say that? ) of my 30-day song challenge, here comes another challenge for these slightly-less-locked-down-but-still-socially-distancing days.
Yes, it's another subject close to my cold, black heart - comics!
Day 1 - Your favourite comic
Conan The Barbarian no. 24 ( March 1973 )
It's almost an impossible task to choose a favourite comic but I'll go with this one because it has a very special place in my heart. As I've banged on about before, my copy ( yep, the one above ) was bought for me by my parents in the legendary Dark They Were & Golden Eyed in ( I think ) 1978 on my first visit to that there London. Many, many years later I was lucky enough to have it signed by the even-more-legendary Roy ( The Boy ) Thomas himself. On top of all that, it's just one of THE greatest comics of the Bronze Age, skilfully scripted by Roy and boasting some beautiful, impossibly detailed artwork from Barry Windsor-Smith at the very height of his powers.
Day 2 - A comic you recommend to everybody
The Hunt ( 2016 ) by Colin Lorimer
The Hunt is a spine-tingling, creepy slice of Irish folk horror by multi-talented artist, writer, storyboard-creator and friend of TGW-S, Colin Lorimer.
Here's the beautiful cover to issue 3 and above that is a signed print of some stunning interior artwork which Colin very kindly sent to me, all the way from Canada. Not only is he a very, very talented comics creator, he's also a great guy.
Day 3 - A great adaptation of another work
Amazing Adventures Featuring Killraven - Warrior Of The Worlds
Roy Thomas ( it's that man again! ) and Don McGregor project HG Wells' War Of The Worlds into the future of a barbaric, dystopian Earth ( 2019 ) - with the help, of course, of such awesome artists as Neal Adams, Herb Trimpe, Gene Colan and ( especially ) P Craig Russell. This series was one of the highlights of Marvel's 1970s output, a savage but philosophical examination of a world crushed under the
Day 4 - First comic series you seriously pursued
Of course, it's The Mighty World Of Marvel - Nuff Said!
Day 5 - A great love story
Swamp Thing and Abigail Cable
Only Alan Moore in his prime could craft the story of a love affair between the daughter of a super villain and a walking compost-heap and make it one of the most beautiful and sensitive romances in comics.
"My vegetable love should grow / Vaster than empires and more slow" - Andrew Marvell
( Pretentious? Moi? )
Day 6 - A comic that is underrated
Starman ( 1994 - 2001 )
With its intricately-designed Opal City, huge cast of characters and deep dive into DC mythology, James Robinson & Tony Harris' Starman is, at heart, a very human story about the bonds of family
Day 7 - Your comfort comic
Fantastic Four no. 51 ( June 1966 )
Possibly the single greatest work of the Lee / Kirby team ( with Joe Sinnott! ) - a poignant but inspiring story of how even the worst of us can find heroism.And then there's THAT iconic cover! You can read more of my thoughts ( should you want to, of course, it's not mandatory ) on this classic comic here
So, yeah, week one done. Phew! If anyone would like to join in with the challenge please leave a comment. What are your favourites?