The Official Gerry Anderson Store is selling copies of TV21 No. 243 – an “alternate universe” continuation of the first series of classic 1960s comic TV21, originally produced as part of the Supermarionation Blu-Ray and DVD release by Network, back in 2014.
Positing a world in which TV21 never merged with the short-lived Joe 90 comic, TV21 243 takes up where the original series left off and was produced to the same dimensions and specifications as the original.
A huge number of comic artists and writers worked on this project edited by Martin Cater and was delighted to have been given the opportunity to write three of the strips: “Agent 21”, one of my favourite non-TV strips from the original comic, drawn by Doctor Who and Torchwood artist Brian Williamson; “Joe 90”, drawn by Doctor Who artist Mike Collins, hopefully suggesting both a reason for the creation of the BIG RAT and Professor McClaine’s backing for Joe’s recruitment to WIN; and “Lady Penelope” drawn by John M. Burns, lettered by Jim Campbell.
The full roster of artists and writers involved in the 24-page special edition were Martin Asbury (“Captain Scarlet”); Martin Baines (“Thunderbirds”, one of my favourite spreads from the special); Graham Bleathman (Mars Space Probe Cutaway); Antonio Baretti (“The Secret Service”); Martin Cater (“Zero X”); Mike Collins (“Fireball XL5” and “Joe 90”); Gerry Embleton (“Stingray”); Jimmy Hansen and Bambos Georgiou (“Supercar”); Paul McCaffrey (“Project S.W.O.R.D.”) Lew Stringer (“Zoony the Lazoon”); Shaqui Le Vesconte (“Project S.W.O.R.D.” and features); Mark Wheatley (“Front Page”); and Brian Williamson (“Agent 21”).
Incidentally, before Brian and I worked on the strip published in TV21 243, we worked up some ideas for a new “Agent 21” series.
Here’s one of Brian’s test pages… We’d still love to revive this character!
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.