“SHIFT Presents…” brings best of British independent comics to high street newsagents, including Pat Mills “Spacewarp”

SHIFT Presents… June 2021 Banner

The team at GetMyComics, publishers of the SHIFT anthology and distributors of a wide range of comics to British comic shops, is working with a number of independent publishers and creators on a brilliant new project to bring their comics to an unsuspecting public through high street newsagents across the UK.

One of the first titles to be released, out in July, will be a news stand edition of 2000AD creator Pat MillsSpacewarp anthology.

Running alongside GetMyComics flagship SHIFT title, SHIFT Presents… will be a series of self-contained collections or stories in either the SHIFT format, or UK magazine size. The first two titles in this series of special editions are available for pre-order now from GetMyComics, ahead of release in July – and will be available in newsagents and comic shops a few weeks later. Each comes with an exclusive art print of the cover.

Because SHIFT has already secured a placement in over 1500 newsagents across the UK, SHIFT Presents… is an extension of the title and not a separate publication requiring additional distribution costs to bring to the news stand.

SHIFT Presents… Spacewarp - not final cover
SHIFT Presents… Spacewarp – not final cover

Pat Mills’ Spacewarp is being released in a news stand format, after its successful deluxe release last year. This edition costs just £4.99, staple bound magazine format and features an exclusive new cover.

A British science fiction comic of great new hero comic strips for the science fiction world we live in today, Spacewarp features a great line up of stories, including “Special Forces One” , “Jurassic Punks” and “Xecutioners”.

“I’m quite proud to be getting Spacewarp into newsagents,” GetMyComics co-owner Adrian Clarke told downthetubes, and so he should be. The anthology, reviewed here by Peter Duncan, went down a storm with comic fans, but Pat was clear he wanted to reach as wider audience as possible with the project, and this SHIFT Presents edition enables that to happen.

As Pat has previously outlined, Spacewarp is not aimed at adult, elitist or nostalgia readers, but the ordinary reader that publishers stopped listening to a long time ago.

“Readers like my original 2000AD readers, who bought my creation every week,” he explains. “All 200,000 of them.”

“But unlike 2000AD, where the creators had no choice but to sell all their rights, Spacewarp stories are creator-owned and all creators share equally in its financial success. And control the destiny of their creations.”

SHIFT Presents… Brawler. Cover art by Mark Montague
SHIFT Presents… Brawler. Cover art by Mark Montague

Also in the works is SHIFT Presents… Brawler!, an 84-page square bound, SHIFT format title, produced with in partnership with Time Bomb Comics and ComicScene, which features strips from Time Bomb’s two Brawler anthologies and the ComicScene 2021 Annual.

Offering 11 action-packed stories, the title features a fine array of the UK’s best independent creators,including “Major Rakhana” by Steve Tanner, Pete L Woods and Bolt-01, “Westernoir” by Dave West, Gary Crutchley and Matt Soffe, “Wolfheart” by Ferg Handley, James Devlin and Bolt-01, “Amnesia Agents” by Jason Cobley and James Gray, “Dick Turpin and the Crawling Terror” by Steve Tanner, Roland Bird, Brett Burbridge and Bolt-01, “Shaman Kane” by David Broughton and much more. This title also includes an exclusive story not seen anywhere else, “The Baker Street Irregulars”, by David Morris and Patrick O’Connor.

ComicScene publisher Tony Foster
ComicScene publisher Tony Foster

Tony Foster, publisher of ComicScene and The History of Comics part work, said, “Adrian Clarke and GetMyComics have been very helpful to us over the last three years, making sure subscribers get our publications. We returned the favour and helped get SHIFT in newsagents and comics shops and are pleased ComicScene continues in their pages.

“When Adrian Clarke said there was an opportunity to bring additional comics and share the work of indie creators on newsstands,I jumped at the chance.

“Steve Tanner at Time Bomb Comics was a big help with the ComicScene Annual 2021,” he continues, “and I’m a big fan of the Brawler anthology – so I thought it would be cool to bring strips together that fitted the Brawler vibe.

Time Bomb Comics publisher Steve Tanner
Time Bomb Comics publisher Steve Tanner

“We are all going to continue to do our own publications but to bring these fabulous comic creators to a wider audience through newsstands and possibly comic shops in the UK and US, is amazing news.”

“Usually, when British comics announce they’re joining forces it’s bad news,” adds Steve Tanner, editor of Brawler and publisher at Time Bomb Comics, “but for the past few months Time Bomb has been delighted to be working alongside SHIFT and ComicScene on the Brawler Special – a publication that really will be great news for all readers – and a great read!”

In separate news, a quick reminder that ComicScene are taking submissions for new comics Atomic and The Saturday Comic Box. Who knows, you too might end up on the newsstands. Read more and submit your ideas before the end of June here.

SHIFT #5 – Cover by Chris Geary

If you pre-order the SHIFT Presents… special two-pack with reduced postage cost – at just £11.75 – you can get the first two SHIFT Presents titles together on release, with art prints of the covers, and an exclusive Charlie Gillespie art print, featuring Slayer from Spacewarp and Major Rakhana from Blazer

SHIFT Issue Five is on sale now and available in newsagents next week, and features the start of two new stories: “Dega” by Dan McDaid (Planet of the Apes) and “Crucible” by John Freeman (Doctor Who) and Smuzz (“ABC Warriors” for 2000AD) | Find your nearest SHIFT high stockist here

You can also join the ComicScene Comic Club for £20 per month to receive the SHIFT Presents… Brawler, SHIFT Presents… Spacewarp, the ComicScene Best of Indies Special, prints, and the regular SHIFT, too – full details here

Find out more about Pat Mills Spacewarp at www.spacewarpcomic.com

Check out Time Bomb Comics at timebombcomics.com

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.



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