Battles in Time gets national launch

Battles in Time Issue One - Cover (Small)Battles in Time, the Doctor Who part work combining articles, a Customisable Card Game and comic strip by a variety of creators including artists John Ross and Lee Sullivan, is now on sale.

The game doesn’t look too bad but the production values on the comic-magazine pale compared with other kids titles on the market, such as TOXIC! – which may look garish but at least is well designed – The Dandy and Wallace & Gromit.

This is yet another case of comics being “dumbed down”. When modern kids are considerably more sophisticated compared with my (ancient) generation, why do some kids comics seem to be created as if they’re being written for morons?

This formatying issue reminds me of the time Look-In decided to do away with comic strips drawn in traditonal form by the likes of Arthur Ranson and others and make every frame look like a TV screen. The garsish colours, unintelligible layouts and simplistic formatting of many of today’s British kids comics all smack of a lack of respect for the intelligence of the target audience who have grown up quite happy to read Harry Potter.

“I suppose it reflects other media,” my friend Lew Stringer notes. “Children’s tv is now full of noise and primary colours, whilst the local 6 o’clock news programmes look more like sixties Blue Peter.

“It’s a conspiracy to make us all too thick to start a revolution I tells ya!”

I’m with you, Lew!

The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Explorer (previously known as Star Trek Magazine) and more. 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 "Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies" for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.

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2 replies

  1. Although we all slammed BATTLES IN TIME and DOCTOR WHO ADVENTURES in the Westminster Arms group a few months ago, I have to confess to you and Lew that my kids love those magazines. The free gifts are, of course, the big draw (you gotta get the TARDIS with BIT #2!) but I must admit I got a bit teary eyed watching my 7 and 9 year olds chasing each other around the house in their cut out Cyberman and Gas mask masks shouting out DELETE! DELETE! and freaking my wife out with ARE YOU MY MUMMY?!

  2. Strangely, I recently came across a copy of the BBC’s “It’s Hot” in a cafe yesterday. It’s a girl-oriented modern “Look-In” of sorts, with several varied strips but several of them utilise characters from BBC soaps or ongoing dramas. It’s much better designed than I feel some of Doctor Who Adventures has been at times, but that said I think DWA has settled down nicely and has hopefully found it’s feet. It seems less frenetic now the show is off air, oddly…

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