Space Ace Vol 10 comes from John Lawrence and reprints more of the stories by one of the best science fiction artists in British comics history, Ron Turner. Space Ace was written and drawn by Turner for Lone Star Magazine in the late fifties and early sixties, was originally in black and white and was produced for one of the lowest page rates Turner ever worked for.
Space Ace really is a strip of its time. The influence of Dan Dare is all over it, and the plots and dialogue really are from a different age. But the artwork is superb and the colouring, by John Ridgway really brings it to life. Every page is a delight and the design of spaceships and aliens hugely inventive and visually fascinating.
Editor John Lawrence, in his truly informative editorials, is quite honest about the way in which Turner approached these strips. When hard pressed some of the strips would be repetitive or even a bit lacking in plot. As a result he has been careful not to put anything sub-standard into any of these issues, but has found a great way of ensuring that none of Turner's great artwork is lost.
By combining stories, where maybe one is lacking in plot and another in action, he had created 'Frankenstein's monsters'. Strips that are better than the sum of their parts. Volume 10 has another of these stories. "The Looters of Loomar" takes the strip of the same name from 1958 and combines action scenes from "The Acid Test" from two years later into a seamless tale. They are of their time, and aimed at a younger audience than most comics seems to be today, but the plot moves well and the art is what most readers are there for. Nobody does aliens or hardware like Turner as this issue clearly shows.
Volume 10 is four pages longer than previous issues, features the second part of John's story of Space Ace and a substantial letters page. Overall it's a delight to see these comics from a different era. A time when the future looked very different. Ron Turner was a great comic artist and I think he'd be delighted that his old friend and agent, John Lawrence is making sure his work is still out there and looking better than ever.
Available for £8.95 (UK) or £12.50 (Europe) and £14.50 (International) including p&p. Payments via Paypal to Spaceace.firstname.lastname@example.org or by cheque or postal order (do such things still exist) to John Lawrence, 39 Carterweys, Dunstable, Beds. LU5 4R
Issue 3 opens with Kane, Sable, his dead ex-partner (in the termination business), Annie the artificial intelligence and his childhood friend, Shaman Jane Rain on board the Star Liner, Dante. They are tasked with uncovering the cause of a spate of outbreaks of the dreaded zombie plague.
I've read all three issues and really enjoyed them and if a fourth comes out I'll be first in line. I've read a few other things David has done, mostly working with a writer, but the three Shaman kane comics are the things I've enjoyed most and I'd most certainly recommend them.
Check out his Comicsy page here. You won't regret it.
There is an opening page with some Kirby Crackle and scenes of alien life that remind me of the early days of Green Lantern's sojourns into space. Everything about this looks right, I really enjoyed the artwork and even the set-up of the story was working well for for me. My only disappointment, and I mean only, was that the plot used was too close to a story I remember reading - albeit nearly 45 years ago. I read this story in the sixties and there were simply not enough surprises for me not to feel slightly cheated. Maybe for a younger audience this wouldn't matter but it somehow it did for me.
The bad guy's plan was instantly recognisable as belonging to a well-known silver-age villain. And he's even been given the same coloured skin as his predecessor. I won't say it spoiled the comic for me, it didn't, but it all seemed just a little too close.
Andy's art is great, this comic looks great and has a real sense of fun to it. I wonder would it be even better with some help on plot from a writing partner?
|Why am I thinking Dark Phoenix here?|
I'll be coming back for the next issue either way.
You can get a copy of Captain Cosmic number one from Andy's Big Cartel page here.