Stuff (& Possibly Nonsense) # 151

Published On February 16, 2018 | By Richard Bruton | Books, Comics

It’s Friday, and that means just one thing… time for Richard and Joe to talk of themselves in the third person yet again as they run down the comics news stories that have caught their eye this past week in the latest Stuff (& Possibly Nonsense)…

Garth Ennis and PJ Holden welcome you to World Of Tanks

Comics and video gaming have a long shared history. And in May, Dark Horse and Garth Ennis returns to the battlefield with artist PJ Holden for a prequel series to Ennis’ previous World Of Tanks: Roll Out. Both obviously based on the MMO game World Of Tanks. Obviously, Garth Ennis has a long history and fascination with all things warfare, and PJ Holden seems a great choice for artist, given that his 2000AD work is always a highlight for Richard.

The basic deal goes thus; World Of Tanks: Citadel follows the duels of two tank crews, German and Russian, duking it out in WWII’s Battle of Kursk (one of the greatest tank battles in history). It sounds like another great comic series set in the world of video gaming. Art below from someone not PJ Holden…

Rok of the Reds – extra time!

Coming in April 2018, the collection of the excellent 6-issue football meets intergalactic exploits tale Rok Of The Reds. If you didn’t pick it up at the time, this is your chance to catch up with a series written by the legendary John Wagner and Alan Grant (you may have heard of them from some little character called Judge Dredd? Art is by talented newcomer Dan Cornwell.

Capital Sci-Fi Con 2018 07
(Above: John Wagner with Rok of the Reds at the recent Capital Sci-Fi Con in Edinburgh, pic from Joe’s Flickr)

Dangerous intergalactic outlaws and an arrogant footballer collide when Rok of Arkadi, on the run after his home world is destroyed, needs a hiding place. And that hiding place happens to be troubled football star Kyle Dixon.

Andi Watson… Patreon on and on and on…

Meant to mention this many moons ago, when one of Richard’s favourite British artists announced his Patreon page. Since launch, Watson’s been putting up new and exclusive art and comics for our delight. Go support Andi Watson at his Patreon page, secure in the knowledge that you’re helping one of our very best make wonderful things.

COSH Studio

One of our comics chums from Singapiore, Cheng Tju, returned home after studies in London, drops us a line to let us know that he and several friends have started their very own comics collective in Singapore, COSH Studios. They’ve released three titles so far (including Cheng’s Guidebook to Nanyang Diplomacy) already, with plans to release a further four this year. Always good to hear of thriving new Indy comics in different countries!

Laydeez Do Comics Prize

The longlist for the first Laydeez Do Comics prize has been announced, with Camille Aubry, Cathy Brett, Emma Burleigh, Sam Cowan, Eliza Fricker, Emily Haworth-Booth, Julie Innes, Rebecca Jones, Akhila Krishnan, Danny Noble, Jenny Robins, Rima Sabina Aouf, Jeeti Singh, Anna Trench and Sarah Ushurhe all featuring. Congratulations to all those who made the cut – the final shortlist will be announced on the 26th of February, and the winner revealed at the Laydeez Festival on the 24th of March.


Tales of the Forgotten: the Beginning is a multi-media science fiction project from Dylan C Jones and friends and sounds pretty impressive – book, illustrations, music (with actual orchestra) and more, an immersive SF story utilising various media. Their Kickstarter is running right now:

The Culture

Good news from top science fiction and fantasy publisher Orbit Books: in 2019 they will be publishing a book which celebrates the Culture universe of the late and much-missed Iain M Banks. The book will include original, never before published drawings and maps by Iain himself, and will come with commentary, notes on the CUlture’s history and society, and be curated by his estate and his life-long friend and fellow Orbit author, the excellent Ken MacLeod (I can think on no better writer to curate this project).

The Culture novels of Iain M. Banks have been enjoyed by millions of readers around the world, and one of Iain’s great achievements is his vision of the Culture itself. These many drawings, maps and sketches reveal both the astonishing imagination behind the Culture and Iain’s passion for every detail of the universe he created. It’s incredible to see how the Culture was taking shape even before he wrote the novels. I’m thrilled that the Estate has given us permission to publish the collection, and that owing to special circumstances Ken MacLeod has agreed to join the team working on it,” Tim Holman, publisher, Orbit Books.

New sagas from Iceland

If there is one thing Icelanders really know it is stoyrtelling and sagas, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that a new fantasy voice hails from Reykjavik. Alexander Dan Vilhjálmsson Shadow of the Short Days was, unusually, pulled from the “slush pile” of unsolicited manuscripts which many publishers and literary agents have, and which is, sadly, often as far as many would-be published authors get (to be fair every publisher and agency tends to have far more submissions than it is possible to read and decide if they are worth pursuing). Alexander has been very fortunate for an editor at Gollancz to spot it among those other manuscripts and to feel there was something to it.

The deal takes in two books which comprise the Hrímland Saga, which is described as “a strikingly original Icelandic debut set in a strangely familiar alternate Reykjavík where wild and industrialised magic meet. Perfect for fans of China Miéville, Lev Grossman and Paulo Bacigalupi, this is a strange and wonderful tale of damaged characters forging a revolution against an oppressive government. Alexander Dan Vilhjálmsson is a fantastic new voice in the genre that will speak to a new generation of readers.”

Something for the walls? Darryl Cunningham has the answer…

Over at his shop, Darryl Cunningham has a beautiful selection of art on sale, perfect for a wall near you.

Department of awwwwwww….

Jamie Smart gets the sweetest fan mail…

The Name’s Bond, James Bond…

A couple of cracking recent James Bond commissions the fab Chris Weston posted up on his Twitter, one a montage of the Sean Connery era, the other from Roger Moore’s tenure as 007. Extra brownie points for including Nik Nak the devious dwarf butler from The Man With the Golden Gun in the Moore artwork!

Cartoon Roundup time…

Steve Bell on Theresa May and Brexit

Chris Riddell on that Rees Mogg chap

Tom Gauld in New Scientist

And finally… Chris Riddell on reading and phonics

Now, there are circumstances where teaching phonics first works. It’s good sometimes for children who struggle with traditional reading, have dyslexia etc. BUT, as a rule, the words of Professor Stephen Krashen, as illustrated by Chris Riddell are absolutely true. READING promotes READING SKILLS. So get those books out, read to your kids, encourage them to read for pleasure. And for god’s sake, let them read comics!

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About The Author

Richard Bruton

– Started in comics retail aged 16 at Nostalgia & Comics, Birmingham. Now located in Yorkshire, he’s written for the Forbidden Planet International Blog since 2007. Specialising in UK Comics and All-Ages comics, Richard’s day job in a primary school allowed him to build the best children’s graphic novel library in the country.

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