50 Years of Captain Scarlet to be celebrated in new unofficial guide

Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons - Titles

Chinbeard Books is to publish an unofficial guide to Gerry Anderson’s Captain Scarlet next year, marking the character’s 50th anniversary since his debut on ITV.

Originally shown in September 1967, Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons was Gerry Anderson’s follow-up to the stunningly successful Thunderbirds and, while it didn’t prove as popular as that show, it was pretty ground-breaking in some ways, with its all-female fighter pilots and multi-cultural (albeit puppet) cast.

Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons - End Titles by Ron Embleton
End credit art for the Captain Scarlet TV show by Ron Embleton, who also drew episodes of his comic adventures in TV21

The show follows the classic Anderson theme of a group of specialists saving the Earth, pitted against the invisible Mysterons who could take over people and objects, using them for their own ends. Whether or not Captain Scarlet and Spectrum defeated them in the final TV episode is never made clear, but they were beaten in the comic and the concept was revived for Gerry Anderson’s New Captain Scarlet in 2005.

Due to be published in late 2017, the book Spectrum is Indestructible is the work of journalist, critic and writer Fred McNamara and although an unofficial book, it does have the backing of both ITV and Anderson Entertainment.

It will include in-depth reviews of all 32 episodes of the classic series, as well as other essays tackling specific themes/ concepts found in the show.

There will also be list-based features, a fresh, critical examination of Captain Scarlet’s extended universe found in comics (including the 1960s British weekly TV21, where Captain Scarlet became the cover star, drawn by artists such as Ron Embleton and Mike Noble), novels and audio dramas, and much more.

(Fred has already written several articles on the comic strips, over on Megaventures).

TV21 Issue 155 - Captain Scarlet cover
“With Captain Scarlet’s 50th anniversary coming in September 2017, I wanted to take advantage of celebrating this unique television show in a way not done so before,” says Fred, who writes for Starburst magazine, A Place To Hang Your Cape, PopMatters and Andersonic magazine and is a life-long fan of the Supermarionation TV shows and films of Gerry and Sylvia Anderson.

Art from "The Angels" by Jon Davis, published in Lady Penelope comic
Art from “The Angels” by Jon Davis, published in Lady Penelope comic

He’s written extensively on their works for numerous websites and magazines.

Other Chinbeard Books due for release in 2017 include Gullible’s Travels , the autobiography of BAFTA award-winning actor and director Jason Connery, The Life & Times Of Jackie Jenkins, a collection of columns from Doctor Who Magazine, and Who’s Playing Who?the diary of a decade of tantrums and triumphs in a TARDIS by Barnaby Eaton-Jones.

“I don’t have a confirmed release date as of yet, really because I’m knees deep in writing the book at present,” Fred says.

“However, rest assured this book will be out in time for Captain Scarlet’s 50th anniversary in late September 2017.”

• You can check out Chinbeards Books’ website here for further info, as well as follow them and Fred on Twitter for future updates as work on Spectrum is Indestructible progresses

• Fred McNamara’s Official Site: fredmcnamarawrites.wordpress.com

Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons – The Complete Collection is avail;able here from amazon.co.uk

Gerry Anderson’s New Captain Scarlet is available here from amazon.co.uk

Limited edition prints of the end title art from Captain Scarlet are available from This Planet Earth

Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons copyright ITV

John Freeman

The founder of downthetubes, John describes himself as is a "freelance comics operative", currently working as a freelance editor for TITAN COMICS, as Creative Consultant on the new DAN DARE audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the LAKES INTERNATIONAL COMIC ART FESTIVAL and LANCASTER COMICS DAY. John has worked in British comics publishing for over 30 years, starting out at Marvel UK, where he edited a number of the Genesis 1992 books with Paul Neary. His numerous credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine at Marvel and Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine at Titan Magazines, where he was Managing Editor. He also edited STRIP Magazine and worked as an editor on several audio comics for ROK Comics, including TEAM M.O.B.I.L.E. and THE BEATLES STORY. Most recently he is writing CRUCIBLE as a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and DEATH DUTY and SKOW DOGS with Dave Hailwood for the digital comic 100% Biodegradable.

%d bloggers like this: