Saturday, 12 November 2016

WesterNoir TPB Vol.1 gets its first review.

Ian Carter says some nice things about the first volume of WesterNoir over at

Dr. Strange.

This week I found myself staying overnight in London once again with the day job. What do you do with yourself in such circumstances ? Well, I'll confess, usually not a lot. This time however I decided to go and see the new Dr. Strange movie on the IMAX in Leicester Square.

Why ?
Well two reasons really. Firstly my usual cinema buddy, my daughter Jemma, is away at University and secondly Chris Dingsdale, but don't tell him I follow his advice, heartily recommended it on Facebook.
Now I'm not a big fan of 3D cinema, but I wanted to experience the full spectacle and so within an hour or so I found myself sat in front of a very large screen, wearing silver looking glasses over my normal ones and hoping that they worked better when the film was on than they did when it wasn't.
I needn't have worried.
The film itself was very good. Solid story, great character development (and Stephen Strange although similar, was very different to Tony Stark (which had been a concern of mine)), some nice humour here and there and great acting... but it was the special effects that made it fabulous.
And the effects worked so well on the IMAX that I found they messed with my mind at certain points. 
Although I was sat in a chair I found myself trying to right myself as the images in front of me kept tumbling, with floor becoming wall and wall becoming ceiling.
This is my favourite Marvel film to date.
I don't think it'll be quite that when it hits my 2D DVD collection but sat there watching it on IMAX it certainly was.
The one small thing that annoyed me slightly was that, to my uneducated ear, the sound track sounded a little too similar to the new Star Trek theme tune, although I loved the 'Sherlockish' version at the end as I waited for the second extra scene.
Go watch it.
If you can go watch it in 3D on an IMAX.

Monday, 7 November 2016

16th of 16 in 16.

Thought Bubble was our 16th and final convention of the year (I've got Jeremy Briggs to thank for the title of this posting).
As the biggest and best pure Comic Convention in the UK it is always a great end to the Convention year.
With four members of the Accent UK team at this year's event we were raring to go and as is always the case, completely blown away by the other comic books on display in the three venues.
With Thought Bubble we find that we have more returning customer's, looking for the latest issue of WesterNoir or Stephenson's Robot.
It was great catching up with our readers, most of them I recognize now, and amazing that some of them have framed our prints and Tarot Cards or have a shelf in their houses dedicated to Accent UK books. Very humbling.
I managed to get a couple of books signed by Mike Mignola and missed out on a Sketchbook by Kim Jung Gi but managed to catch him working some of his magic...
It was great catching up with a whole host of people, old friends and new.
Yep, Thought Bubble has a real comic buzz about it that I feel at no other Convention. All credit to Nabil and the gang for keeping it the success it has become. We were at the very first event some 10 years ago and to 15 or so tables have become... well... a lot more.


As my daughter Jemma is now firmly dug in up there at Glasgow University I've taken to sending her the odd postcard ...
They involve me taking a card from my box of Penguin Classic Science Fiction book covers and sticking things on them,
Postcollages as it were.
I'm quite enjoying the challenge really,..
And I even write something on the back,
It's odd, and quite nice, in this digital age to go back to basics.

Saturday, 5 November 2016


Three days standing behind a stall selling comics.
Is selling comics becoming a young man's game ?
Will my poor old legs survive ?
Will they then be able to drive us all back up North afterwards ?
Will I stop opening blog postings with a load of questions ?
We are regulars at the MCM events now, and have almost become part of the furniture. People expect to see us and head straight for the latest issue of Stephenson's Robot or WesterNoir when they do.
There are also an almost constant number of new customers and this year they had the opportunity to pick up our first collected edition of WesterNoir.
After a couple of let downs by AirBnB we ended up in a Travelodge in Woolwich Arsenal, which made things a little more expensive. Each morning we took the DLR and then walked over the Thames by way of a bridge that was at the top of a very tall flight of stairs. I've never seen the like but it did provide a nice view.
Now the thing about MCM events is that whilst they attract a huge number of people, most of those are dressed in elaborate costumes and come to parade around, meet friends and generally have a great time. They are not really there to buy comics.
Some of the costumes really are great though and you can't help but get swept away by it all.
Despite this the Comic Village gets bigger and bigger, which is the other concern. Will the punters have spent all of their cash on the great selection of comics on offer before they even get to our table ?
I was going to ask this young lady...
...but didn't want to upset her further. She looked like she was having a pretty rough day as it was.
Friday is the quieter of the three days, but each year there seem to be more people there than the year before and so we did find ourselves being fairly busy and we did sell more comics than we expected to.
I managed to pick up Skies On Fire issue 3, which is a great independent comic. I don't tend to recommend books but this one is fabulous and I bought it first thing to make sure they didn't sell out before I got to them.
Saturday was crazy busy, Yes we had quiet spells but when it picked it up did so in style. We sold a healthy number of books despite the great competition for the customer's cash and were very happy, We decided to celebrate by having our evening meal in the O2, and took the cable car to get to it, which you use your Oyster card on and is really cheap.
Steve Tanner joined us and helped calm Colin down, who isn't keen on heights.
Sunday was half way between Friday and Saturday with regards sales and number of people passing by. So it all added up to a very productive three days.
I love the way the Cosplayers all appreciate each other's efforts and this was typified by Superman and Wonder Woman helping out a poor Dinosaur in distress.
But it's the age old dilemma. If the Dinosaur then goes on to do some despicable act, are the two super heroes somehow responsible ?
In this case the Dinosaur in question got into a light sabre duel with another dinosaur and it didn't end well for the poor thing.
Yep.. Jedi Dinosaurs.
And we saw it first Mr Lucas... or should that be Disney.
Three really enjoyable days saw us have one of our best ever Cons.
Can't wait for next year.
I'll leave you with my favourite Cosplay.
I really enjoyed the comics that Neil Gaiman did and Mark Buckingham illustrated (if memory serves)... so here she is ...

Looking forward to the next London MCM in May, hope to see you all there again.

WesterNoir Issue 7.

Has been printed.
This is the issue that explains a lot of what is going on ...
It looks great.


This is our closest event. For Gary it's just down the road and for me it's a 20 minute drive. A little further for Colin but it makes a change him coming out our way as it's usually us picking him up on the way to Manchester or Liverpool.
It's a smaller event than either of those MCM shows but as we arrived we could tell that it was one that was appreciated by the locals. We were made to feel very welcome.
There's a University degree course in Comic Books (didn't have that in my day) and a lot of the students and lecturers were present and we had been asked it we'd give a talk to the students the following day, I couldn't make it, running out of holiday days with my day job, but Gary and Colin were up for it.
The Con itself was quite but pleasant.
We did sell a decent number of books, met new customers, chatted to Paul Birch (who popped in) about the new Birmingham Comic Event next year (which we'll be attending) and caught up with the crazily talented Frazer Irving.
All in all a great day.
Hope we can make next year.