Tuesday, 7 July 2015

1984: ENTERPRISE SPECIAL COLLECTORS EDITION Issue 5 (NMP)


From November 1984: the eye-catching cover (it's the Enterprise burning up in orbit above the Genesis Planet from STAR TREK III: THE SEARCH FOR SPOCK) from the fifth (of six) ENTERPRISE COLLECTORS EDITIONS.

This reprints the seventh issue of the original run, first published with a different cover (art of a fleet of Romulan Warbirds) in 1981. 

1977: STAR WARS: THE MARVEL COMICS ILLUSTRATED PAPERBACK (Dell Ray)


From November 1977: The US paperback reprint of Marvel's STAR WARS movie adaptation.  

Once Marvel realized they had a sell-out hit on their hands (surprise!), they scrambled to get the six-issue adaptation back into print in as many formats as possible.  The early issues of the regular comic (which Marvel snagged royalty-free, because Lucas and Fox were desperate for the exposure) went back to press for a rare second printing and, in addition to this paperback, Marvel also supersized with two (and latterly a third) treasury editions.  

Unlike some of Marvel's other comics-to-paperback transfers, this one has black and white interiors.  The paperback editions of the sequels were upgraded to colour. 

1979: BATTLESTAR GALACTICA MARVEL SUPER SPECIAL UK HOUSE AD (Marvel UK)


From April 1979: a rare MARVEL UK House Ad (from an issue of STARBURST) for imported copies of the BATTLESTAR GALACTICA edition of MARVEL SUPER SPECIAL.  

Dez Skinn wasn't exactly won over by the good ship Galactica so his Annex of Ideas didn't go all-out to flog the Marvel tie-in in the UK.  His enthusiasm may have been further dampened by the rival strip that was running at this time (thanks to a quirk in the licensing deal... facilitated by ITV's early purchase of the broadcast rights... which they then sat on for over a year) in LOOK-IN.  

Marvel UK never bothered with a British edition of the movie adaptation (they didn't have the rights to publish annuals based on the show, depriving them of another possible outlet) and relied on imported copies of the US editions (magazine, treasury and paperback) to meet demand.  April '79 roughly coincides with the UK theatrical release of the faux feature film pilot.  

The strips made their official UK debut in STAR HEROES WINTER SPECIAL towards the end of the year but the test-the-waters one-shot skipped straight onto rerunning the 4th and 5th issues of the US run, skipping the extended (and fixed) rerun of the pilot in the first three issues.  That version didn't see a UK edition for decades: Titan eventually collected it in the first of two trade paperback compilations of the Marvel material that they released (and then quickly remaindered) to coincide with the new series and the launch of their magazine spin-off.  

1984: KNIGHT RIDER: KNIGHT OF THE PHOENIX (aka the pilot) Novelization (Star Books)


From 1984: the first KNIGHT RIDER novelization from Star Books.

Star were, alongside Target, another imprint of WH Allen, who - as we've been seeing (and will continue to see) had a nice little sideline in TV based novels (all adapting screen adventures) during the mid-Eighties.  

This was the last Larson show created under his Universal contract (I think his day-to-day involvement on the weekly series was minimal as he'd moved over to 20th Century Fox to create the likes of THE FALL GUY, MANIMAL and AUTOMAN) so, sure enough, he made sure that he garnered a co-author credit (ala BATTLESTAR).  In reality, he probably never even knew this existed except as an income line on his contract.  

The book, which I've not read yet, is based on the show's feature-length opening movie aka Knight of the Phoenix.  It's worth a watch because, tonally, it's a little darker than the series itself.  Larson's stock company of Star Age performers saw several familiar faces clock in for opening night.  

According to the commentary on the DVD release, Larson didn't have time to finish shooting and editing the opener by deadline so he completed a partial version and pitched that to NBC.  Once the deal was sealed and the series green-lit, he went back and inserted the (cringy) comedy sub-plot with the bumbling car thieves to bring it up to the requisite length for broadcast. 

David Hasselhoff... Superhuman.  Apparently. 

Monday, 6 July 2015

1978: STARBURST Issue 3


From May 1978: STARBURST issue 3.

This was the last issue to be published solo by Dez Skinn.  In addition to publishing this and the Hammer mag, Dez was also undertaking a spot of consultancy work for Stan Lee re: the future direction of the Annex of Ideas.  That landed him the job of the British Bullpen's boss man... and he made Starburst part of the deal. 

1983: ENTERPRISE SPOTLIGHT Issue 4: STAR WARS


From 1983: ENTERPRISE SPOTLIGHT issue 4, dedicated to STAR WARS.  

This is where I need a bit of help.  This seems to be a spin-off from ENTERPRISE INCIDENTS or, possibly, ENTERPRISE... the magazine that seems to have replaced (or appeared alongside) EI circa 1983.

This seems to be (based on my admittedly basic web search) a pretty much unrecorded branch of Trek publishing, so it would be nice to gather more information.  

There were clearly three issues prior to this one (and possibly more after) but I can't find anything about them online. 

Anyone able to provide a potted history of EI/ ENTERPRISE/ ENTERPRISE SPOTLIGHT?  Any high-res cover scans would also be a welcome addition to STARLOGGED (or... alternatively... if you are willing to sell at a reasonable price)...

1982: CONAN THE BARBARIAN Movie Novelization



From 1982: The British paperback novelization of the CONAN THE BARBARIAN feature film. 

Friday, 3 July 2015

1980: STARLOG'S SCIENCE FICTION TV SUMMARY






From July 1980: STARLOG's summary of the state of small-screen SF.

For me, this article perfectly captures the peak of Star Age SF-TV: all the dumb-but-fun US shows of the time are present and correct.  

The superhero shows might have been winding down (Note to Hollywood: it's a boom-and-bust genre like any other... don't get too cocky...) but they were still present-and-correct.  Larson's domination of small-screen SF was ultimately pretty short-lived but this article sits slap-bang in the middle of his BATTLESTAR-BUCK-GALACTICA triple-play.  

And there's a smattering of oft-forgotten shows like CLIFFHANGERS (from Ken "V" Johnson), SALVAGE 1 and THE MARTIAN CHRONICLES that are worthy of revisiting.  

By my reckoning, we'd have to wait until the 1990s for another comparable wave of telefantasy (a combination of multiple Treks still pretty much at the top of their game, several other syndicated spacers chasing a piece of Paramount's lucrative action and a wave of X-wannabes dolling out ghosts and aliens on moderate budgets.  

This article appeared in STARLOG issue 36. 

1983: RETURN OF THE JEDI OFFICIAL COLLECTORS EDITION

 

From 1983: The RETURN OF THE JEDI OFFICIAL COLLECTORS EDITION.

This follows the same (winning) formula as the EMPIRE edition of three years earlier (see here): a combination of a summary of the film and copious behind-the-scenes material sure to excite any fan back-in-the-day. 

1984: ENTERPRISE INCIDENTS SPECIAL COLLECTORS EDITION Issue 4 (NMP)


From July 1984: ENTERPRISE INCIDENTS SPECIAL COLLECTORS EDITION number four, reprinting the sixth issue of the original run. 
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...