Saturday, 14 January 2012

"It Came From THE BOX..." # 1 - Comicon '78

At the end of last year, Steve Cook posted a version of this art on his blog secret oranges blogspot:

I knew I had seen it somewhere before and a couple of days ago I found it in 'The Box'. To tell the truth, there are actually several boxes, stuffed with cuttings, fliers, mags, all kinds of things that I can't bear to part with. 'It Came From THE BOX...' will be a regular feature here, and what better way to start than with the source of that amazing Bolland/McMahon illustration. As Alan McKenzie pointed out on Secret Oranges, this was a paid advert in the center of the 1978 UK Comicon book, which he edited. Here's the cover, with art by Frank Bellamy.

This was one of the first conventions I attended. I came up from Exeter with my girlfriend. We were broke and couldn't afford a hotel, but back then, there was always the all-night film show. Looking at the movie programme, I realise that this is where I first saw Tod Browning's Freaks, which was showing at 2.20. I think we made it as far as Vault of Horror and then found a quiet corner of the lobby to get a couple of hours' kip. The Bloomsbury Centre Hotel was very accommodating of conventioneers crashing out in the corridors.

Here's the full programme of events. You can see that guests included George Perez, Brian Bolland, John Bolton and Dave Gibbons.

Guest of honour was Don McGregor, who was one of the most innovative writers of the time, with Killraven in Amazing Adventures, Black Panther and Luke Cage, Powerman, all published by Marvel.

Don told me to 'Hang in There!'   I did!

The booklet included a number of great sketches. Here are a few of them.

And weirdly, on the back of the programme, an advert for Sham '69 anthem, 'If The Kids Are United', featuring a wide range of copyright infringement!