“It’s real Roy of the Rovers stuff!” has been a cry of football commentators for decades – and the latest episode of the award-winning 2000AD podcast features an interview with author, comics editor and writer Barrie Tomlinson, the man who helped make Roy Race of Melchester Rovers a British institution.
With the IPC Youth Group titles now part of the archive at 2000AD’s publisher, including Roy of the Rovers, (for a growing list of what they own visit this page), Rebellion, in a two-part interview the 2000AD Thrill-Cast talks to Barrie about the heyday of British comics, from overseeing 2000AD and Battle to launching titles such as Scream, Speed, Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles, M.A.S.K., Ring Raiders and many more.
With his uncanny knack for securing celebrity endorsements – which saw him rub shoulders with everyone from magician Paul Daniels and comedian Eric Morecambe to cricketer Geoffrey Boycott and gymnast Suzie Dando – Barrie was probably one of the most successful editors in British comics.
As an editor at Fleetway/IPC, Barrie launched Roy of the Rovers as a stand-alone title selling 300,000 in its first week and also relaunched the venerable Eagle, introducing a whole new generation to Dan Dare alongside now legendary characters such as Doomlord and Max, the homicidal computer of “The Thirteenth Floor“.
Barrie’s influence on British comics for 30 years cannot be understated and it’s a great time to hear a different perspective on the seminal period of the 1970s and 1980s.
The 2000 AD Thrill-Cast is the award-winning podcast that takes you behind-the-scenes at the Galaxy’s Greatest Comic! As well as interviewing top creators and famous fans, publicity droid Molch-R brings you announcements, competitions, and much more!
• You can subscribe to the Thrill-Cast on iTunes or listen now at www.2000ADonline.com/podcast
• Real Roy of the Rovers Stuff is available now from all good book shops
Roy of the Rovers © Rebellion
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. He is currently editor of Star Trek Explorer, published by Titan – his third tour of duty on the title originally titled Star Trek Magazine.
Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Babylon 5 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.