I recently asked Glenn Fleming, Publisher and Editor of Crikey! magazine if he would write something for the blog 'summer' and he very kindly obliged with the following brilliant feature:
"When the idea of Crikey! came up and my involvement was assured, being an artist myself ( http://www.glennbfleming.com/ ) I decided to concentrate my writing contributions to the artists who have made the biggest impact on British comics in general and myself in particular. Being an avid Gerry Anderson fan (I remember when Supercar was first aired! Gulp!) and being just a boy of ten when TV Century 21 made its debut back in January 1965, I decided that the late, great Frank Bellamy should make his debut, 31 years after his untimely death, in the pages of Crikey! issue 1. Being the designer of the magazine I took it upon myself to ‘claim’ the centre pages (and the following three) so that I could show Frank’s superb artwork over a greater, uninterupted spread.
For Crikey! 2 I dedicated the centre spread and following four pages to Ron Embleton. You’ll all no doubt recall his ground breaking illustrations on Stingray and Captain Scarlet and, although Ron’s TV Century 21 work was only a fraction of his output during an all too short career, it is still considered some of his best. In that same issue, Helen D Bennett gave us a fantastic look into the mind of a nine year old girl, as she describes in vivid detail winning a competition in Lady Penelope magazine, back in 1966! The article is complete with a photo of Helen wearing the fur coat she won and the letter she received from Penelope herself!
Crikey! 3 brought Fireball XL5 to the fore as we covered the day the Kaplan was assassinated in an eerie echo of Dallas in 1963: political murder, the elimination of the wrongly blamed patsy and a full on conspiracy. Art imitating life? With superb artwork by Mike Noble, Steve Zodiac has his work cut out trying to prevent an all out galactic war...
Following this article, Crikey! 4 just had to feature artist Mike Noble. I wrote about his life and work, again using the centre spread of the magazine to show Mike’s fantastic art from ‘Zero-X’ amongst other work.
With issue 7, I produced a montage of Anderson’s great Thunderbird machines to adorn the cover (I think its one of the best of the series so far, using artwork mainly drawn by Frank Bellamy. It gave me a chance to show Frank’s work in colour). The artwork lent itself to my article ‘No Strings Attached’, an overview of Thunderbirds in TV Century 21. Anderson artist Graham Bleathman is interviewed in this issue and the article shows some great cut away art by Graham: Thunderbirds 5 and 2, Stingray, the Spectrum helicopter and the Sidewinder!
Becoming editor and publisher with Crikey! 8 cut back my writing assignments, but I still managed a 5 page article on ‘Zero-X’ in issue 10. The artwork was mainly by Mike Noble (probably because he drew most of the series!) but there were other pieces featured by notables such as Jim Watson and the Spanish artist Belsia. I also got an exclusive interview with former Anderson puppetman Terry Curtis - a scoop if there ever was one!
As this is written, Crikey! 15 is about to hit the shops, but with issue 16 we have a great article on ‘Stingray’ followed by ‘Captain Scarlet’ in issue 17. There are plans for articles on all the Anderson series - UFO to name one - and they will appear in future issues.
While you’re at it, you could also check out Crikey!’s sister magazine ‘Super-Spies & Secret Agents’ for my article on ‘X-20’ - you’ll learn how insane a piece of wood can be!
If you go to http://www.crikeyuk.co.uk/, you’ll find that all issues of Crikey! and Super-Spies are still available. Check it out!
All text and pictures printed with kind permission of Crikey!