I well remember David Fickling’s ‘why not?’ when I admitted I hadn’t taken out a subscription to his comics. I slunk away in shame, but the truth which can be hard to admit sometimes, was that it was simply too much money for us at the time. I just hope I wasn’t the one to sink the DFC.
Now I’m happy again, because the comics are back in book form, and I’ve read Good Dog, Bad Dog by Dave Shelton, and it’s great fun! That’s hardboiled dogs (oh dear, that sounds rather like a cross between eggs and sausages) embroiled in colourful crime, comic style.
Book 1 contains three stories, and they are beautifully drawn with colours good enough to eat, and stuffed full of clichés. Don’t take this wrong; one wants clichés in these circumstances. ‘The name’s Bergman. Kirk Bergman. But you can call me “Detective”.’ It’s police dogs (I mean canine cops) Kirk Bergman and Duncan McBoo, out solving crime. McBoo is so clumsy I haven’t yet worked out whether it’s an intentional thing, or if it’s more serendipity that the clumsiness helps solve crimes.
(I have an odd coincidence here. While I was DFC-less a couple of years ago, I was offered the chance by Candy Gourlay to read her copies, had I been in north London. As you know, I’m not exactly in north London. More north of London and then some. Now Candy is David’s next big new author, except she’s not very big. Her book is though, Tall Story. And coincidenting heavily here, I am soon on my way to both London and eventually north London, and Candy, and David. And a few others.)
Anyway, I reckon comics as books is a good thing. You can hang on to them without feeling a complete nerd for having stacks of comics lying around.