A new podcast celebrating 2000AD and its proudest fans’ first discovery of the comic has just launched. This first episode of the podcast, dedicated to all the collected editions from 2000AD and Rebellion Publishing, is the brainchild of host Eamonn Clarke and for this first outing he’s joined by Simon Belmont discussing the recently-released Dan Dare: The 2000AD Years Volume One.
Simon – who not only has a full run of 2000AD but the original Eagle, too (and more) – is a huge Dan Dare fan and is enthusiastic about the book, offering background to the character’s appearances in the comic, and it’s an interesting look back at how Dan was revamped for the comic back in 1977. It’s no surprise that Simon (who helpfully explains some Dan Dare Eagle history to 2000AD fans who may not be familiar with him) describes Massimo Belardinelli’s incredible art on the early stories as “insane”, but he’s also impressed by the take.
Dave Gibbons take on the character is also examined, likening his Dan Dare to another 2000AD character, Bill Savage, noting Dave’s nods and winks to the original comic and the Star Wars influence on the strip, delivered, as Eamonn notes with “immaculate” line work.
The “Starslayer” storyline is singled out for praise, encapsulated by the cover of Prog 51 (the “cricket bat” cover!) but one of Simon’s favourite stories from the book is one of the “extras”, drawn by Ian Kennedy, published in the 1979 Dan Dare annual.
It’s a smashing listen, whether you’re a 2000AD or Dan Dare fan, so do give it a listen.
• Listen to the Mega City Book Club podcasts here
• You can find the 2000AD Thrill Cast episode where Pat Mills discussed the Dan Dare collection with Michael Molcher here
• Head to 2000ADonline.com to purchase your copy of Dan Dare or any of their splendid books
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.