In Review: DC Thomson revives “Spellbound” with a new digital collection

Spellboound

Creeping out of the DC Thomson archives for the first time in over 40 years, the fondly-remembered girls comic Spellbound returns this Hallowe’en to cast its spell in a spine-tingling new, digital graphic novel collection.

Exhumed from the vaults and resurrected in a 116-page volume are two spellbinding titles from the classic British supernatural thriller comic, published by DC Thomson from 1976 to 1977, a title that pre-dates the better known title Misty, published by IPC.

Spellbound - Cover
Spellbound 2019 Promotional Image

With a new introduction and a selection of fear-filled text features from the archives, classic chills and thrills await inside this digital collection, which also includes brand new Spellbound stories to enthral and transfix brave – or unwary – readers!

After you’ve enjoyed a two-page introduction to the title’s history, and a short all-new tale by Daniel McGachey and Lauren Knight setting the scene, delve into a selection of the strangest, most sinister tales told by the enigmatic Damian DarkeSpellbound‘s “Master of Mystery”, which include stories featuring art by Brian Lewis, among others.

It’s a great mix of vintage cautionary tales offering plenty of fear-filled scares, with some smashing art to boot.

The 2019 Halloween Spellbound digital anthology kicks off with a new story from Daniel McGachey and Lauren Knight
The 2019 Halloween Spellbound digital anthology kicks off with a new story from Daniel McGachey and Lauren Knight
Revisit the stories of Damian Darke - Spellbound's "Master of Mystery"
Revisit the stories of Damian Darke – Spellbound’s “Master of Mystery”

Then, get entangled in the enchanting serial “I Don’t Want to be a Witch“,  the story of Celia Winters, a reluctant teen spell-caster, collected in its entirety for the first time ever – which is followed by the launch of an all-new story starring Sophia Winters, her daughter. This tale comes from Commando writer Georgia Standen Battle, with art by Anna Morozova.

"I Don't Want to be a Witch"
“I Don’t Want to be a Witch” from the original Spellbound
"I Don't Want to be a Witch" continues with a brand-new story by Georgia Standen Battle, with art by Anna Morozova with a cliffhanger ending...
“I Don’t Want to be a Witch” continues with a brand-new story by Georgia Standen Battle, with art by Anna Morozova with a cliffhanger ending…

Given that the new “I Don’t Want To be a Witch” story ends on a cliffhanger, let’s hope we’re not kept waiting too long for the next collection…

The web interface for the digital edition is pretty good, enabling bookmarking and more. There’s no indication there’s an app-based version for mobile devices, even though DC Thomson uses PageSuite for a number of its digital products, including Beano.

Perhaps aware reaching the nostalgia market for girls comics is significantly more of a challenge than boys titles, this Spellbound collection is a digital only release for now, although a comment on the related “Damian Darke” Twitter account suggest future print editions have not been ruled out.

For just under £7 for a 116-page collection, complete with a nifty cover gallery as well as the stories, old and new, I’d say this is a digital anthology well worth checking out.

Damian Darke of Spellbound
Damian Darke of Spellbound

2022 Update!

Spellbound Volume One only briefly featured on PageSuite but was re-released though AmazonUK Kindle and ComiXology, price £6.39, in October 2022

DC Thomson launches digital Commando, Spellbound and Warlord “Heritage Comics”

Spellbound, Damian Darke and all art featured © DC Thomson

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.



Categories: British Comics, Comics, Digital Comics, downthetubes Comics News, downthetubes News, Reviews

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