Tuesday, 29 November 2016

1988: DOCTOR WHO SILVER NEMESIS VHS

From 1988: On air this month, to mark DOCTOR WHO's 25th year on the telly, was the flawed Cyber-romp SILVER NEMESIS.

This was the BBC VIDEO VHS release. The scan has reproduced quite darkly because it was printed on a special foil paper (contradiction?) that gave it a suitably metallic finish.

Tbe tape is notable for including a US documentary not subsequently included on the DVD.


1992: PERSONALITY PRESENTS STAR TREK: PATRICK STEWART

From July 1992: Another entry into the PERSONALITY PRESENTS STAR TREK run, this time focused on the Next Gen crew. The first issue, naturally, focused on Patrick Stewart.

Make it so.


Monday, 28 November 2016

1985: FANTASY EMPIRE ISSUE 16

From March 1985: the 16th issue of American fan magazine FANTASY EMPIRE.


1996: THE 5 TIMES ISSUE 7 (THE UK BABYLON FIVE FAN CLUB)

From New Year 1996: the 7th issue of the fanzine THE 5 TIMES, published by THE BABYLON FIVE UK FAN CLUB.


1988: SOMETHING IS OUT THERE UK VHS COVER

From 1988, the UK VHS rental release of US SF mini-series SOMETHING IS OUT THERE.


This two-nighter was a curious - and not always terribly logical - combination of MOONLIGHTING, ALIEN, THE HIDDEN and INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS and - in truth - plays like any number of straight-to-tape SF thrillers of the period despite some a-list talents behind the camera.

Filming - in an arrangement that could only make sense to a studio accountant - was split between LA and Australia despite the fact that the whole thing is based in Los Angeles with only a brief excursion off-world.

Aired as two nights of feature-length programming, this tape combines the two parts into one extended movie. Fortunately no-one considered a shorter cut to squeeze onto a shorter tape. There was no sell-through release and this - and the series that followed - has never troubled DVD. It was also shown on SKY ONE in the UK.

NBC, having apparently failed to grasp the lessons of V's failure, promptly concluded that America was desperate for a weekly series. In an industry ruled my market research, it never ceases to amaze me how often network executives get it so wrong. They assumed that audiences would rush back for the romantic adventures of the leading duo (one a tough cop... the other a pretty alien with a lot to learn about Earth) but punters really wanted more monsters. Something the telly types had neglected to supply.

The weekly series mustered a mere eight episodes, of which the network aired only six, before the plug was pulled and the show axed. All the episodes, with new introductions from cast and crew, eventually surfaced of the SCI FI CHANNEL.

1989: FANTAZIA ISSUE 1

From 1989: Turtle Power! The first issue of British mainstream media & comics mag FANTAZIA (Disney lawyers take note: no relation).


This rode the wave of the post-BATMAN super boom with a mix of superhero fare covering film, TV, comics and - unusually - RPG. And even - as this cover shows - theatre.

This always seemed like a "lets do anything we fancy" type mag with a diverse range of contents which didn't seem to adhere to the original mission statement. Horror and SF movies also started to sneak in as the remit flexed. Even the animatronic sitcom DINOSAURS managed to snag a cover.

One of the highlights was the Hollywood Heroes feature filed monthly by Andy Mangels. This was the same piece he filled for US fanzine AMAZING HEROES but with better presentation.

Launched in 1990 and published monthly by Pegasus, this clocked-up 18 issues before folding into the pages of ACADEMY (22 issues between 1990 and 1992). The latter part of the run enjoyed better production standards including squarebound printing. Distribution was predictably patchy and I used to have to go to one newsagent in a neighbouring village to find a copy.

1994: THERMAL LANCE ISSUE 16

From April 1994: the 16th issue of British DOCTOR WHO fanzine THERMAL LANCE.


1992: DOCTOR WHO YEARBOOK #2 (MARVEL UK)

From 1992: the second DOCTOR WHO YEARBOOK, published by Marvel UK and (as per tradition) dated for the year ahead.


Tuesday, 22 November 2016

1991: PERSONALITY PRESENTS STAR TREK: WILLIAM SHATNER

From June 1991: PERSONALITY PRESENTS THE ORIGINAL CREW: WILLIAM SHATNER, the first of a long run of unlicensed biographical STAR TREK tie-ins published during the 1990s boom by PERSONALITY COMICS.

Depending on the creative team, these unauthorised retrospectives either took the form of traditional cimic strips or - like this Shat-tastic starter - illustrations with accompanying text. I picked a career highlight, below, by way of an example.

I steered well clear of these when they were published but recently stumbled upon a pretty good run of copies which I picked up as interesting oddities in the Trek publishing pantheon.



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...