See here for an introduction to Captain Powerchord. In a couple of days I will post the fourth strip: The Castrator!
See here for an introduction to Captain Powerchord. In a couple of days I will post the third strip: Big Dudey.
See here for an introduction to Captain Powerchord. In a couple of days I will post the second strip: Have This Robots.
The strip was a music-based humour comic, very much in the British comedy tradition, though my golden rule was to not resort to sexual innuendo or toilet humour, something all too easy to do when you're trying to be funny (I was about 92% successful!). It appeared between November 1993 (in 5D issue 20) and August 1994 (in 5D issue 25). I wrote and drew a further three episodes that did not appear in 5D, but did appear in a small press collection I produced in 1996, of which only 100 copies were printed - long sold-out.
I'll post the first strip next week, then another every two or three days or so. I'll also post up some of the extras that appeared in the collection, which included a theme tune, a board game, puzzles and a poster. In the meantime, here's the introduction as written in 1996...
"Somewhere in the cosmos of comicdom, blown together by the mighty solar winds, where Max Fleischer meets Asterix for a sit-down cup of cocoa, where The Dandy does lunch with Robert Crumb, where Walt Disney goes down the pub with The Goodies and bumps into Woody Allen - who's just joined Spinal Tap - arm in arm with Stan Laurel ... there you will find the origins of Britain's most rock-n-roll superhero. If you look really hard that is."
Cosmic Hobo produce the excellent and highly entertaining Scarifyers audio adventures (which you may have heard on BBC Radio), featuring occult investigators ghost-story writer Professor Dunning (Terry Molloy) and his colleague from the Metropolitan Police, Inspector Lionheart (Nicholas Courtney). The five tales (so far) have included a variety of brilliant actors, including Brian Blessed, Leslie Phillips, Nigel Havers, David Benson... and many more. The stories started out brilliant and have just got better with each new release. (If you're wondering what my involvement is, I designed and illustrated the CD inserts for the series).
They also have two other fantastic releases in the form of Peter Cushing's own reading of his autobiography (Past Forgetting) and the never-before released audio version of The Return of Sherlock Holmes, also read by the wonderful Peter Cushing. All marvellous for listening to while spending long hours at the drawing board!
As it currently stands, September is the correct publication date for volume 3. Yes, that's a long way off, and yes, I know for much of 2009 I have been telling people it was to be April or May. So why has the date changed? It's simply because I have taken longer on volume 3 than expected - the script took longer and the art is taking longer. I've also had more interruptions - promotional events took more preparation than I thought they would, I had to take on illustration jobs to have some money coming in, I had some hospital stuff to take care of, and I've had (and continue to have) some quite big creative struggles with RO that have prevented me from zipping along as I would like.
I sincerely apologise for this - I'm very disappointed that I'm not able to be a super-disciplined page-a-day-no-matter-what man and, especially to those of you who have been following RO since the beginning, this must seem a ridiculously drawn out process for what is, essentially, not that big a book. I am so very aware of all that, I promise you!
So anyway, that's the answer - September 2011 will see the conclusion of the story published. To make it up to you, if that's possible, before volume 3 hits the shops, I will be returning Julius Chancer to the web-comic format, possibly sometime in April or May - so there will be new and free material for you to read online well before September. And looking ahead, early 2012 will see publication of The Rainbow Orchid in one complete volume, as always intended.
Working on The Rainbow Orchid over the past 10 years has meant changing some of my ideas and focus, but also keeping to a plot that I created a long time ago and having to see it through to the end. I'm very proud of the work I've done (and am doing) on RO and have learnt a lot about writing and drawing comics in that time, but I don't see it as the pinnacle of my work by any means. The next Julius Chancer book (which will not be in three strung-out parts!) will reap the benefit of my experience thus far and I'll keep learning and growing as I get better and better at what I do.
So here's to 2011, a very happy new year to you, and a big fat thank you for all your support so far - it means a lot and keeps me going.