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Author: Kerr

The Best British Comic Superheroes – Part 1

When you think of comic book superheroes the names of Batman, Superman and Spiderman immediately spring to mind. This is hardly surprising as it was America that brought the genre of the comic book superheroes to the world’s attention. But the invention of characters that have special powers are not solely the domain of DC Comics or Marvel. In fact, in the 1960s in Britain there were a plethora of costumed characters that appeared in comics and books, such as the robot Archie, or the Steel Claw. We thought it was time to celebrate these British icons and find out more about them. Johnny Alpha Johnny Alpha was a mutant and was the son of a mutant-hating politician who was set on wiping out mutants as a race. He soon became the leader of the Mutant Resistance and with incredible powers such as the ability to read minds and see through objects he hunted down his oppressors. Johnny Alpha was one of the first characters to also have a set of really cool gadgets that set him aside from his other comic book contemporaries. Marvelman Marvelman was the British rip-off of Captain America, and just like his namesake, Marvelman was a consequence of a military experiment. The British government merged alien and human DNA to create a new military weapon. Captain Britain This superhero was a creation by Marvel...

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The Early Development of Comics

Comic books and comic book characters seem to have been with us forever, but when where the first comics created, and who was responsible? Before comics there was the popular medium of cartoons, and it dates far back right to the 1800s. These cartoons appeared in periodicals and were mostly politically inspired to lampoon famous figures of the day. Probably one of the famous of the early cartoonists was Thomas Nest, and it was his cartoons that were largely to blame for the demise of Boss Tweed’s political empire in 1870s America. Cartoons gradually evolved into longer format and eventually into comic books, at first with original drawings then mass production and the appearance of superheroes. The Yellow Kid in McFadden’s Flats It is widely accepted that the very first comic book was The Yellow Kid in McFadden’s Flats published in 1897. On its back cover it even mentions the phrase comic book, which is the first time that this appears in print. It was rather a drab monochrome publication featuring reprints of popular cartoons. Comics Monthly was the first regular comic book, and was first published back in 1922, and it also just reprinted cartoons in black and white. It was not until 1933 that the first color comic appeared called, Funnies on Parade. National Allied Publications Two years later the precursor to DC Comics was published, it...

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The Famous Walt Disney Characters

Walton Disney is famous for the characters that his animation studio has created. This has led to many cartoons being played on both television and in films. His success has seen his company win 22 Oscars from 59 nominations and he has also received two Golden Globes and an Emmy award. Many comic book characters start in comics before being used on screen but with Walt Disney Productions it is the other way around. The characters have been first used in cartoons and then the Walt Disney Comic appeared later. They first were released in 1930 and published all around the world. The first cartoon character to achieve success was Mickey Mouse and he is still as popular today as he has ever been. He was first created in 1928 and appeared for the first time in the short film “Steamboat Willie”. The mouse has appeared in over 130 films and in 1978 he became the first cartoon character to have its own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. When Mickey Mouse first showed up, so did his girlfriend Minnie Mouse. Over the years she couldn’t quite keep up with the growing popularity of Mickey, not appearing in as many films as he did. However, in 2018 also received her start on the Hollywood walk of fame. In many of Mickey’s films he is accompanied by a number...

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Who Creates the Comic Characters?

Comic Characters over the years have developed so much that some have even turned into human roles as their parts have been played both in television and in films. However, they have nearly all started in comic books as they were all first created as a result of someone’s creative imagination. Many of the comic characters have arisen as result of the partnership between writer and cartoon artist. There is no bigger comic book hero than Batman and he was created as a result of the writer Bill Finger working closely with artist Bob Kane. For years, it was the artist Bob Kane who took most of the credit and he was almost boastful in the role he played. However, it was the writer Finger who did most of the research and incorporated the finer details of Batman’s character that made him so popular. Yet, he was more than happy to shun the lime light as he led a life as a recluse. Another famous partnership was formed between artist Joe Schuster and writer Jerry Siegel, and together they created Superman. This first started in 1933 and although it was first a failure once Schuster modelled Superman on Douglas Fairbanks Snr and Clarke Kent on a combination of Harold Lloyd and himself, the character became popular. After a ten-year association with Detective Comics Ltd, the pair left the company...

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The Biggest Criminals in Comic Books

Comic books have produced criminals who have become almost as well known as the superheroes who have battled to counter the dastardly acts these characters have been producing. Some of these villains are never quite vanquished, often reappearing in later story lines with new ways and methods of terrorizing ordinary citizens. A character that has been featured for years sending shivers of fear through Batman fans has been the Joker. Created in 1940 by Bill Finger, Bob Kane and Jerry Robinson for DC Comics, the permanently grinning criminal was in the first issue of Batman the comic. The character is psychopath with a warped and sadistic sense of humor. Over the years he has developed into the archenemy of Batman. At times he has appeared as a goofy prankster yet on other occasions he has evolved into an evil murderer. He was responsible for the murder of Batman’s ally Jason Ward who was the “second Robin” and as well as fighting Batman he has also challenged Superman and Wonder Woman. There have been times when the Joker has worked alongside other villains and one of these is the Penguin. The Penguin, also created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger, first appeared in DC comics in 1941 and has been part of Batman’s rogue’s gallery for a good number of years. The Penguin regards himself as the gentleman of all...

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