Jurassic Larks! Do you remember that time dinosaurs devoured the Daily Star?

Here’s a great find by Darryl Lee Ransom, one of the members of the Mighty World of British Comics Facebook group – a smashing action-packed dinosaur-laden strip drawn by Alan Burrows, best known perhaps for his work on Starblazer and EAGLE.

This eye-catching spread was British newspaper the Daily Star’s way of capitalising in the huge interest in the release of the first Jurassic Park film back in June 1993 – a comic strip-led feature you’re sadly unlikely to see today in a world of much diminished editorial budgets.

Frustratingly, the paper itself mis-credits the spread to STIK – aka Bill (StiK) Greenhead, today better known for his animation work, who also drew “The Workers” for the Daily Star, written by Dave King, who’s also better known today for his work in animation.

This feature was one of several items put together by former EAGLE and Tiger editor Barrie Tomlinson, who also produced the paper’s popular “Fizz” supplement.

“That’s a feature I’d totally forgotten about.,” says Barrie “… I did a lot of stuff for the Daily Star.”

Writer and comics events organiser Paul H Birch also reminds us Alan Burrows did quite a bit of work for newspapers at one time, including a series of one page historical strips each on a famous painter, for one of the Sunday broadsheets.

This is some great work from Alan, today an International Man of Mystery rather than comic artist, although we’re happy to report he’s still out there and occasionally dips back into the comics community now and again!

With thanks to Darryl Lee Ransom, Paul H. Birch, Ian Ellery, Bill “STIK” Greenland, Richard Elson and Barrie Tomlinson

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The founder of downthetubes, John works as a comics editor, writer, as Creative Consultant on the Dan Dare audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Working in British comics publishing for over 30 years, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War and “Dan Dare”. He’s the writer of “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood for digital comic 100% Biodegradable.



Categories: British Comics, British Comics - Newspaper Strips, downthetubes Comics News, downthetubes News, Film News, Other Worlds

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4 replies

  1. love this feature but the Trex did remind of the first splash page of Slaine by Angie Mills.
    http://www.greatnewsforallreaders.com/blog/2018/8/10/on-this-day-20-august-1983-2000ad-prog-330
    Shame newspapers wouldnt even consider doing colour strips like this in print these days

    • This spread in the Daily Star was published in June, and the first episode of Slaine for 2000AD was published in August… Some newspapers, such as The Guardian, do still run plenty of comic-related material and cartoons but most no longer have much of a comic strip section here in the UK… and if they do, it’s reprint

    • ahh, should have been clearer, my bad – the Jurassic Park feature was 1993,
      the Slaine splash page was published in 1983.

      Having recently re-read the first Slaine collection the drawing jumped out at me, especially the stance of the claws and legs, though i prefer the T-rex by Alan in the Star, particularly the colouring.

      Just a shame that the current dinosaur comic art in Lego Jurassic World strips is so disappointing compared to this or Flesh.

      • Oh, d’oh! My bad! Totally misread the date on the Slaine post on GNFAR and got my decades mixed up. Thinking about it, it wouldn’t surprise me if Alan wasn’t giving a nod to 2000AD in the spread. Hopefully I’ll get the chance to ask him at some point.

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