Friday, June 29, 2007

Thrud The Barbarian by Carl Critchlow…

A Review of the comic book series.

I have known Carl for a great many years and known his work even longer.

I was there when Thrud first appeared in black and white in White dwarf magazine for Games Workshops then fledgling in-house gaming magazine – White Dwarf and found its humour very appealing.

It was therefore no surprise to me and indeed I greeted the news with great anticipation when I first heard Carl was going to be self-publishing a full colour comic version of his masterful creation.

If you haven’t seen it yet, please go out and buy a copy (details below), because you are missing a brilliant piece of work.

This latest comic issue #5 “Bungle in the Jungle is, as usual, a great rib tickler, full of nice touches with heroic fantasy pastiche in-jokes and puns galore. I love looking around the backgrounds to see the names of the Inns, characters and places and such like.

Just look at a couple of my favourites from throughout the earlier issues: To-Me Ku-Pa the Sorcerer and The Black Currant a death dealer pastiche. With names like these you know there’s fun afoot here.

I could tell you about scenes that will have you in stitches, but then that would spoil the fun of reading them and seeing them for the first time.

I don’t want to spoil this latest issue for folks that haven’t yet seen the insides either, but just one little taster hopefully won’t hurt and it is where we see the mighty sun god Hotlwotlbotl. It takes me longer to read this than other comic books, because there’s lots of hidden gems in there and also it just has me crying sometimes when the unexpected is slipped in.
In this episode we see Thrud, who usually starts a fight over a spilt pint, actually waxing lyrical and sounding more like a public school boy then a barbarian.

And now for a gratuitous plug for my good mate Carl:

Go on do yourself a favour and buy a copy now!!!

It’s really easy to do, just follow the instructions below…

Send a cheque or postal order for £2.60 (including P&P) made payable to Carl Critchlow to:

PO BOX 371

Retailers and Non-UK enquiries please email Carl at:

By the way there's also a link on the Wizards Keep website to Carl's website and his Thrud website too.

Now then Carl about the money for this plug, did we say we would waver it if I got an appearance in the next issue?

Until next time have fun!

Tim Perkins…

June 29th 2007

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Lancaster Comics Convention…

The Second Annual Showcase of Northwest Comics Creators…

Saturday November 17th – Sunday November 18th 2007

I thought I would just add a quick plug for this years upcoming comics convention in Lancaster.

Wizards Keep will again be in attendance and will be selling products from the stand and also I’ll have some artwork on display from the “Worlds End” graphic novel. Hopefully there’ll be some other stuff on display to view and to buy as well.

I’ll post more here and on the Wizards Keep website as soon as there’s more to add here. There will also be a new Photo Gallery on the Wizards Keep website so you will be able to check out some photos from last year amongst other photos of my exploits over the years in comics, as a concept artist and more besides. This new section will accompany the new Hall of Fame section, which will be going live quite soon and is my chance to show folks the work of the folks that have influenced me.

Last year’s event in Lancaster was excellent and we really enjoyed it and did well, which was nice. The event has grown from the one-day event of 2006 to the weekend event now scheduled to happen in November. It is an intimate event with visitors able to chat easily with the guests and exhibitors.

The site for the event is in a beautiful location and had a great deal of visitors last time around, so we are really looking forward to attending again.

If you are at all interested in visiting the Lancaster Comics Convention please visit - The website dedicated to the 2nd annual Lancaster comics convention. Included on the website are a list of links to the websites of guests, exhibitors and the Memorial site itself, which includes a map and directions how to get there, amongst other relevant information pertaining to the convention.

After the success of last year’s one-day event, the organisers have decided to devote an entire weekend to bringing small press and independent comics to the Northwest. The Convention will take place over the weekend of the 17th and 18th of November 2007 and once again will be held inside the stately surroundings of the Ashton Memorial, Williamson Park in Lancaster.

In addition to the main convention weekend there are a few new ideas being introduced to build on last year’s success, which the organisers are inviting folks to contribute to. First off, they’re planning to produce an anthology of comics, strips, cartoons and features to showcase the fine work that's being created in the small press at the moment. Then, there’s going to be an exhibition of comic art in the Williamson Art Gallery situated on the top floor of the Memorial building, which will run from the 13th of October until the last day of the convention on the 18th of November 2007.

So, in addition to the comics, exhibitors, guests and the events that’ll happen over the course of the main convention weekend, the organisers hope that the added elements of the exhibition and anthology will once again showcase the small press, as well as continuing to open up the market for sales up here in the Northwest.

I would advise folks to keep checking the website for more details, which will follow over the coming weeks regarding table prices for the weekend, how to contribute to the Lancaster Comics anthology and the art exhibition etc, but if you can’t wait, or if you have any other enquiry, don’t hesitate to contact convention organiser Ant Mercer at

Now it’s back to the drawing board for me, so…

Until next time have fun!

Tim Perkins…
June 28th 2007

Monday, June 25, 2007

Jack Kirby’s Fourth World Omnibus Volume 1…

A Review of the first book in the series…

Well my copy of the book came this last week along with The Ultimate Galactus hard cover TPB – a review of which will follow in a later Blog, and I have to say it was like being eleven all over again.

The book isn’t as big as I thought from pre-sales advertising billing it as an oversized coffee table format book. It’s only around as big as a regular Masterworks type book…but worth every penny.

DC have made a great move to ensure the colour integrity is as Jack’s work first appeared back in the seventies on his Forth World books. The paper stock chosen is similar to the one used back then in the regular comic books. This is a change from the regular graphic novel/trade paperback/hardback versions generally on sale nowadays. The paper is one, which absorbs lots of ink and as a result the colours aren’t as strong or garish (to quote some folks) on the page.

The book contains the stories from all four “Fourth World” books:

  • Super Man’s Pal - Jimmy Olsen
  • The Forever People
  • The New Gods
  • Mister Miracle

The book also prints them in the order that they appeared on the newsstands back in the early seventies. Excellent reproduction throughout, with an introduction written by Grant Morrison and an afterword by Mark Evanier, it also contains a couple of pages of Jack Kirby’s concept drawings from the series. At 396 pages in total the book is excellent value for money and a nice thick volume.

If there is a fault, and it is only something to watch for when reading it – the paper stock is quite brittle, because of the type used and so my warning is be careful when turning the pages so they don’t tear. A minor point and quite moot really in the grander scheme of things, I for one can’t wait for the next and consequent volumes to arrive.

Until next time have fun!

Tim Perkins…

June 25th 2007

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Fantastic Four – The Rise of the Silver Surfer…

A Review of the Film…


Please read this Blog at a later date if you haven’t yet seen the Fantastic Four Film!

Jack Kirby's cover featuring The Silver Surfer from Fantastic Four issue 50

Well I have just returned from watching the late showing of the FF film starring Norrin Radd - The Silver Surfer, and I must admit that, despite a few reservations, due to a few reviews and comments from some colleagues in the comics industry, I thoroughly enjoyed it.

The Movie Silver Surfer from Fantastic Four 2 - The Rise of The Silver Surfer

You could have heard a pin drop throughout the entire performance.

The SFX were spectacular. The characterisations were spot on from the Kirby Lee years of the sixties and early seventies, which was great and I found myself smiling a lot during the entirety.

Of course there was a certain liberty with the character of the World Devourer – Galactus, which I already knew due to certain folks telling me, so I was aware of the change to this character, before seeing the movie. This is why I put a spoiler at the beginning of the Blog…this way other folks won’t have any idea of what I am talking about.

The end of the movie sort of confirmed what I have been hearing in both the comics and movie industries regarding a Silver Surfer film and think that the rumours of one being in the pre-production stage are probably correct, as the final scene lends itself to speculation with the Surfer floating in space.

I am hoping this is where the “real” version of Galactus will be seen for the first time and why the character’s visualisation in the second FF movie was not the Jack Kirby version that all the comics folks both creatives and fans, know and love.

My advice is go out and watch the movie for yourselves and then make a judgement!

The nicest thing about the whole thing was the inclusion of the creative team at the beginning of the movie…

Based on the Characters created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby.

Sure Jack created the Surfer, but at least the credit is there for all to see and maybe as a result his name will become as synonymous with Marvel Comics as Stan Lee’s is nowadays.

By the way Stan “The Man” Lee has one of his obligatory cameo scenes…and it was nice to see him get thrown out of Reed and Sue’s original wedding ceremony…Nice one Stan!

Yet again the movie is a fun thing to watch…

Well done, Marvel this year with some great viewing of our favourite Superhero types on the big screen!!!

Until next time have fun!

Tim Perkins…
June 23rd 2007

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Top Secret Project for Markosia Enterprises Limited…

New NDA protected Project scheduled for UK comics and media company Markosia!

Whilst at the Bristol Comics Expo the other week I spoke to Harry Markos Managing Director of Markosia. I had not met him before and had not seen his comic books either, prior to this meeting.

On the Sunday afternoon I had a table to sketch and sign for folks. Whilst I was doing so my wife, Margaret had taken a stroll around the convention hall in lieu of a walk out in the awful rainy weather that day. When she came back she told me I had to take a look at the books on the stand opposite. I had been casting glances over to the books on the stand all day and had wanted to take a look as soon as the opportunity arose to do so.

Now for as long as she has known me, my wife has been surrounded by all things fantastic and comic book-esque, so over the years she has become used to seeing a great many wonderful things, but something about the books on the Markosia stand had caught her eye.

Soon after this I asked Margaret to look after the table, whilst I took a wander over. I spoke to Harry for a while after looking at the books, and they were superb looking books, I have since read them and can tell you they equally well written.

Harry then came over to my table see my work and we exchanged business cards having discussed the possibility of my producing some work for them. Over the weeks since we have had many such conversations, both over the telephone and the Internet via email. Whilst I am not at liberty to discuss the actual project itself, at least at the moment, Harry has kindly given permission to make it public knowledge that I am working with him and his team on a Markosia project.

I am working on my “Worlds End” graphic novel alongside the new project, whilst I finish the pencils for this new work, but don’t worry it will be back on full steam ahead very shortly. It’s actually nice to work on more than one project like this – it helps to keep things fresh.

All I can tell you is that I am having great fun with the new Markosia project!!!

Until next time have fun!

Tim Perkins…

June 19th 2007

Monday, June 11, 2007

Happy Birthday Joanne…

A Birthday wish to my wonderful daughter!

I hope you will all join me in wishing my daughter Joanne a Very Happy Birthday for today!

Here she is with her fiancĂ©e Toby…

Until next time have fun!

Tim Perkins...
June 12th 2007

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Back from Beyond...

Or, where the ecch have you been?

Well a few folks…well lots of you guys have been emailing me and asking what I am up to, so I thought I’d just take a few moments to say sorry for not posting much for the past couple of weeks or so, but I have been really busy since Bristol.

Lately I have been:

  • Finishing off some commercially commissioned work.
  • Working on a project, which is covered by an NDA, so I can’t talk about it, at least not at the moment.

  • Overseeing the graphics for a retail outlet, which is going to stock my products for me and producing POS for our new retail outlet ready for the rescheduled launch around August time.

  • I am about to start work again on “Worlds End” graphic novel over the weekend...

So as you can see things have been a little more than manic around here of late.

A sad piece of news, which I was going to post a Blog on was the recent passing away of artist extraordinaire Angus McBride. If you have never seen his work, do yourselves a favour and look his work up…

Fabulous stuff!!!

I never got around to doing so as I was so busy.

Anyhow, apologies again for not Blogging recently, but I will be sorting a new piece here, very soon…

By the way…what happened to this year?

It’s June already…yesterday it was Christmas 2006…

Until next time have fun!

Tim Perkins…
June 8th 2007