Thursday 27 August 2015


Much to my surprise (but... cue: warm feeling inside) STARLOGGED gets a positive mention, as a place for all things MARVEL UK, in the new issue of BACK ISSUE magazine (the International Heroes issue which, amongst many excellent articles, includes pieces on the launch of CAPTAIN BRITAIN, Spider-man's mid-eighties sojourn to the UK and the Annex Of Ideas in general.

Hopefully this will bring in a few new readers hitherto unaware STARLOGGED existed.  Welcome one and all.

To make life a little easier, here are some of the key posts that you might find good starting points for diving into the massive Marvel UK back catalog:

A chronological overview of the ongoing series published between 1972 and 1996 or thereabouts.  There's plenty that will surprise all but the most ardent collectors of the British Bullpen.

From the late 1980s onwards, and peaking with the 'Genesis' line in 1992-94, the British Bullpen made various excursions across the Atlantic in the hopes of gaining a foothold.  The occasional incursions (like Death's Head and G.I. Joe European Missions) became a deluge... which ended suddenly with the behind-the-scenes Genesis Massacre. 

For four short weeks, the British Bullpen relocated the Web Slinger to London (and Birmingham) for a made-in-the-UK adventure.

The Green Goliath was a mainstay of the British Bullpen from the very beginning (indeed much earlier: the first commissioned-outside-the-States Marvel strip was a done-in-one Hulk adventures published in the UK in the late Sixties) and his career here (including several solo titles) is chronicled HERE

Marvel's first family were also here from the start (part of the dream team line-up alongside Spider-man and the Hulk in THE MIGHTY WORLD OF MARVEL issue 1) and subsequently appeared in numerous British comics.

Published between 1980 and 1982, these black and white A5 digests are a whole sub-section of the M-UK pantheon.

If you thought you'd read the whole SECRET WARS saga in one of the numerous book releases... think again.  The Annex of Ideas gave their own spin to the superhero slam jam.

There are hundreds (thousands?) of individual posts dedicated to MARVEL UK: you'll find obscure one-shots, ongoing series, covers, house ads, free gifts, editorial, company paperwork.  All sorts.  Just click on the MARVEL UK link at the bottom of any relevant post and start your explorations.

The STARLOGGED 'mission' is to chronicle Geek Media from the Star Age (that pre-millennial period, from the Seventies onwards) that had STAR WARS and the other contemporary space epics (and not-so-epics) at its core, so you'll find plenty else outside of M-UK to grab your interest. 

Comments and contributions are always welcomed. 

Tuesday 25 August 2015

1994: STAR WARS GALAXY Issue 1 (Topps)

From the last quarter of 1994: the launch issue of TOPPS' STAR WARS GALAXY magazine.

The mid-nineties saw a profusion of officially licensed STAR WARS magazines as different publishers, in different territories, tried to grab a slice of the resurgent interest in the franchise (and, no doubt, hoped to be at the front of the line when liceses related to the impending new movies were dished out). 

The existing LUCASFILM FAN CLUB (companion company to the Official Trek outfit) had been publishing a flimsy wraparound for their mail order business since 1986 (which, in turn, had replaced the equally flimsy but less glossy Bantha Tracks published by the Star Wars Fan Club).  They started to offer better value for money, and chase shop sales, by rebooting as the STAR WARS INSIDER, from issue 23, in 1994.

The selection widened again in 1996, at least if you lived in the UK, when Titan Magazines added a SW title to their existing Trek offering.  The UK edition shared a lot of material with the US title and Titan eventually took over publication in 2007.  It's still going today.

Sitting in the midst of this, Card makers Topps took advantage of their existing (dating back to 1977) relationship with Lucasfilm to launch this magazine, borrowing the title from the card sets they'd published since 1993.

Topps, witnessing comicdom's expansion into the card business (at one point Marvel owned Fleer, Skybox and Panini), pushed back with an ambitious move into publishing.  But, they couldn't nab (although I'm sure they hoped to) the SW license from Dark Horse so they settled for the next best thing: a comicbook-sized magazine devoted to the saga and spin-off merchandise.  Following the tried-and-tested DOCTOR WHO MAGAZINE formula, they commissioned new SW strips from Dark Horse anyway.  Although I'm sure Topps hoped for the day that the license would come up for renewal and they'd have a chance to use their history, commitment to the brand and experience with other Hollywood franchises (notably THE X-FILES) to wrestle the rights away.  

Published quarterly, it ran for thirteen issues between late 1994 and late 1997.  Then, possibly to define its niche amongst the other licensed magazines, it relaunched as STAR WARS GALAXY COLLECTOR MAGAZINE with a larger format and, as the name suggests, a new emphasis on SW merchandise and collectibles.  They certainly had A LOT to write about during this period.  Eight issues appeared between February 1998 and December 1999.  

Each issue of original SWG maximized the synergy wrought by the Topps connection and came polybagged with trading cards.  Another highlight was the original illustrated covers, another benefit of the card art connection.  

The magazine is not to be confused with Titan's 2010 launch of the same name which reprinted US Dark Horse strips for the British market.  Despite a handsome format (the 'Collector's Edition format pioneered by Marvel UK/ Panini and subsequently adopted by Titan for their DC reprints), it closed after 24 issues. 

Monday 24 August 2015


From 1985: a June free gift boom courtesy of the IPC weeklies...

The humor (BUSTER and WHIZZER AND CHIPS) and boys 'adventure' weeklies (EAGLE AND TIGER and ROY OF THE ROVERS) served up, courtesy of a hook-up with stodgy breakfast biscuit provider (now, apparently, making inroads into China if the SUNDAY TIMES is to be believed) WEETABIX for cover-mounted promo badges featuring the briefly ubiquitous marketing creations (stars of TV ads, the improbable Weetabix Club and on-packaging appearances).  The badges were, probably, randomly distributed across the four titles.  

Odd-man-out was BATTLE ACTION FORCE who were fully engaged in the battle against global terror with a free, no-doubt Palitoy bankrolled, ACTION FORCE poster.


From September 1982: GREASE II graces the front cover of MARVEL UK's CINEMA issue 5.

Reproduction anyone?

Friday 21 August 2015


From 2000 (and therefore, technically, outside the Star Age): CINEFANTASTIQUE magazine's epic retrospective (including full, annotated, episode guide) on BABYLON FIVE.

This hefty whopper covered years 2-5 of the main series (the pilot and season one had already snagged coverage in issues covered in previous posts), the spin-off TNT TV movies (a mixed bag of the good and the bordering-on-bad) and a look ahead to the ill-fated CRUSADE (a show with the distinction of being cancelled before a single episode had even been shown to the public).

This wasn't quite the end-of-the-line for the franchise.  It also spawned a much-derided (although I actually liked it... so go figure) TV movie, LEGEND OF THE RANGERS, in 2002 and 2007's disappointingly low-budget direct-to-disc THE LOST TALES.  Both were intended to kick-start new aspects of the show's epic story arc but both floundered at the first hurdle and the franchise has been dormant ever since.  

It's surprising, given that the 1990s have come of age and that publishers are always looking for established brands to exploit, that no-one has seriously looked at doing a new comic strip version.  It seems a natural for a publisher like IDW.  Maybe the Warner Brothers connection automatically locks-out a third-party publisher (DC dabbled with a short-lived run, reprinted in the first incarnation of Titan's magazine over here, when the show was on the air but obviously struggled to find an audience).

This is Volume 31, issue 12. 


From November 1981: More of the same as MARVEL UK's BLOCKBUSTER hits it's sixth (of nine) issue. 

Thursday 20 August 2015

1982: STAR WARS: WORLD OF FIRE (Marvel Illustrated Books)

From October 1982: A Marvel STAR WARS adventure which will seem a lot more familiar to British Starloggers than our American cousins: WORLD OF FIRE.

This Chris Claremont penned adventure (art by Carmine Infantino and Gene Day) was first published in March 1980 in the pages of STAR WARS WEEKLY (issues 107-115), one of several "buffer" strips inserted into the UK run whenever it looked close to running out of material (Marvel were smart enough to realize a repeat of an Apeslayer style deadline crunch should be avoided at all costs).  By this point, SWW was already the first-run outlet for the strips, appearing in the UK before they were 'reprinted' (albeit in colour) in the US monthly.  

It's unclear whether this, and the other UK exclusive strips emanating out of the US Bullpen, were ever penciled into the American book's schedules or whether they were always created on the understanding that they would only be seen oversees.  If the latter was the case, it's interesting that by 1980 the NY office didn't just tell the post-Revolution British Bullpen (by now adept, albeit sometimes reluctant, at producing strips in-house) to "sort it out yourselves".  

It's also odd, but presumably down to licensing and cash, that the US didn't see the launch of a second, companion, title to the core monthly ala the multiple Spider books of the era (partly created to ensure that the British weekly was never short of reprints).  A second book would almost certainly have increased overall sales (even if the core book took a slight hit) and would have helped ensure the Weekly was kept well-stocked.

Regardless of plans, this adventure was left on the shelf once THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK hit and Marvel switched to a succession of self-contained post-movie stories.  Once again, they could have presented it as a post-movie adventure (with, perhaps, new wraparound bookends to position it as a flashback tale) but it turned up here, as a hard-to-find, black & white paperback instead.  

I've never seen a copy in stores (at a guess I would say UK distribution was virtually non-existent) so I eventually took the plunge and ordered this copy on-line.

It's officially STAR WARS 2 because Marvel had already published the 1977 paperback version of the movie adaptation.  They presumably chose to ignore that they had already published a second SW paperback: the 1980 outing of The Empire Strikes Back.  

Ironically, the strip is actually pretty symbolic for me as issue 110 was the first issue of SWW I ever owned.  Although, thanks to School Fairs and a market stall, I soon amassed a substantial selection of earlier issues.   

For the record, the other UK-only strips that appeared in SWW were Way of the Wookiee (SWW 94-96), The Day After The Death Star (97-99) and The Weapons Master (104-106).  SWW also reprinted the strips from PIZZAZZ magazine which also didn't form part of the regular US run.

These extra strips (and their excellent original covers) are usually omitted from compilations of the US runs but they can be found in the WILD SPACE collection (along with the latter post-ESB British created strips and other oddities).  Snap up a copy of this Dark Horse published book whilst you can as it will, presumably, drift out of print now that the license has shifted to Marvel again.  Those hefty hardback Marvel omnibuses are, once again, skipping these adventures.  They've never been published in colour (SWW and this paperback are both black & white) and, presumably, the colour work was never completed. 

Tuesday 18 August 2015

1992: EPI-LOG ISSUE 16

From March 1992: More Gerry Anderson as part of the selection of British shows covered (come of whom must have been a revelation to US readers) in the 16th issue of EPI-LOG.  

Personally I think the magazine industry would be in much better shape today if it had resisted the rise of the web with more covers featuring string vest inspired attire. 

1976: THE MAKING OF SPACE:1999 by Tim Heald

From November 1976: a book that seldom seems to surface today: THE MAKING OF SPACE:1999.

I spend a fair amount of time perusing secondhand book stores and comic book stores whenever I'm visiting a new town or city but this one had, up until recently, eluded me.  I hadn't made it my life's work to find it... it's just the sort of paperback I would buy without a second thought if I ever saw it.  Which I never did.  

So I eventually took the plunge and ordered a copy (for a lot more than the 85p cover price) from Amazon.

I've not had a chance to look at it in detail (and, in truth, I'm worried that the ancient binding might not respond to well to too much love at this advanced age) but I'm (once again) struck that it is not the sort of book that would ever appear nowadays.  It's a text-heavy paperback which is dense with information but not a great format for stills, artwork etc.  Today, it would be a studio-scrutinized coffee table tome with an abundance of images and a lot less text.  And none of it critical.   

This seems to have been published in the States and then shipped to the UK.  This may explain why copies are few-and-far between.

Monday 17 August 2015


From this month back in 1982: the fourth issue of MARVEL UK's CINEMA MAGAZINE, with a very contrasting cover to the previous month's offering.  Maybe it was this erratic style that confused would-be readers?


From June 1983: A ticket, and advertisement, for the first European screening of RETURN OF THE JEDI, accompanied by its two distinguished predecessors.

No.  I wasn't there.  Although I did see ROTJ in the cinema that summer.  Of course.  

I recently acquired some STAR WARS books from a second-hand store and, tucked inside one of them, I found these passports back in time.  Whoever owned them had clearly kept mementos of the day safe, tucked inside the books, for more than thirty years before (presumably inadvertently... or maybe they just didn't care) selling the book with them still tucked inside.  

Imagine the excitement of seeing ANH and ESB on the big screen again (where they even, officially, out on VHS in '83?) and knowing throughout that they were simply the warm-up act for the big finale...

And... knowing that you'd be seeing it before anyone else you knew.  Probably. 

Friday 14 August 2015


From October 1981: the fifth issue of BLOCKBUSTER monthly, from Marvel UK. 


From Autumn 1988 (and the Random Scans file): the second printing (with new, colour, cover, revised text and enhanced interior layouts) of the third issue of influential British fanzine (and companion to the Anderson-centric S.I.G) TIME SCREEN

1982: STARBURST ANNUAL Number 2 (Marvel UK)

From 1982 (I think): the undated second, and harder-to-find, STARBURST ANNUAL from MARVEL UK and Grandreams.  

As the cover suggests... this was dedicated to vintage horror, monsters and scare-fare.  It's nigh-on-impossible to image a book like this slipping onto the annuals section of WH Smith these days.

The relative scarcity of this one, coupled with the fact that they never did a third, suggests that sales were soft. 

Thursday 13 August 2015


From July 1994: The fallout from the GENESIS MASSACRE: CLAN DESTINE's debut in the pages of the anthology MARVEL COMICS PRESENTS.  

The Alan Davis creation was to have been part of the MARVEL UK renaissance a retrenching of the operation with a new emphasis on quality over quantity in the hopes of riding out the industry slump.

However, Marvel NY took radical action to deal with the product glut and ordered the London office to cease their incursion into the US market forthwith.  The tradeoff was that the most promising of the Genesis titles would transfer to the auspices of the US Bullpen.  In practice, Clan Destine was pretty much the only survivor.  Even DEATH'S HEAD II was dumped overboard without a second thought.

Marvel NY, to their credit, put some muscle behind this.  In addition to their first appearance herein, they also garnered a preview edition.  M-UK had also generated some pre publicity with  magazine articles and a trading card attached to the cover of COMICS WORLD magazine here in the UK. 

1992: EPI-LOG Issue 15

From February 1992: a double-dose of the Shatners in EPI-LOG issue 14 with guides devoted to both T.J. HOOKER and THE BARBARY COAST. 

Tuesday 11 August 2015


From May 1997: From back when multi-channel TV was still analogue... the dishes were bigger and the programme line-up more appealing: an ad for the UK branch of the SCI-FI CHANNEL


From September 1981: MARVEL UK's bumper bundle of annuals for the impending festive season... including the now-final RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK design, superseding the placeholder seen back in August (see here). 


From September (but probably on-sale any day now) 1981: the fourth issue of MARVEL UK's (less than) BLOCKBUSTER monthly.

Note the slightly redesigned logo which continued to use the US style "Marvel Magazine Group" header but now also incorporated the more British "A Marvel Monthly" for good measure. 

Monday 10 August 2015

1992: EPI-LOG magazine Issue 14

From January 1992: An essential purchase for me at the time... New World Television's TOUR OF DUTY on the cover of EPI-LOG magazine's fourteenth issue.

ITV's regional schedulers, and the first Gulf War, played merry havoc with the scheduling and transmission of this series... running episodes out-of-order (so people died before they even arrived and end-of-season cliffhangers were rendered nonsensical, muddling episodes from different seasons and dropping the show, at the last minute, from the schedules (despite a billing in the TV Times) for weeks at a time.  And then the war made broadcasters skittish about anything with soldiers or combat, forcing ITV to drop the show for an extended period.

All that made making sense of the show, and the correct running order, something of a challenge.  Thank you Epi-Log (and your second military-themed issue) for coming to my rescue.  Kids today don't know how lucky they are. 


From July 1982: A sure-fire circulation killer: ANNIE the movie musical (which Marvel also adapted into comic strip form for a SUPER SPECIAL, limited series and British annual) graces the cover of the third issue of MARVEL UK's CINEMA magazine. 

Friday 7 August 2015


From 1999: Another issue of RETRO VISION magazine, the first of a four-part run of specials devoted to the two bastions of the Star Age: Trek and Wars.

The SW aspect was covered by the start of an extensive guide to the various fiction spin-offs from the trilogy.  This has been done a few times since, most notably in book form, but this was new (at least to me) at the time and was a perfect antidote to the burgeoning (and bewildering) number of new SW novels and short stories that had hit the stands throughout the Nineties.  Star Wars had gone from an entertainment franchise traditionally under represented in paperback form (no one in my school was excited by the prospects of Lando solo novels) to (once Lucas has spotted their was a buck to be made) tons of the stuff.

I'm not convinced this ever made it to the promised four-issue run.  I'm pretty sure issue 2 appeared (I think I have it somewhere) but I think that was it from the Retro Vision empire. 


From 1991: the first of two consecutive issues of EPI-LOG magazine devoted to war and combat series.  

For me, it was around this time that EL started to get really interesting.  The first year had, of course, ticked some obvious boxes: shows that, of you read a lot of books and magazines, had already been covered to a greater or lesser extent elsewhere.  EL was now starting to broaden its horizons to cover a lot more shows that didn't fall under the purview of traditional genre publishing. 


From June 1982: a bevy of barely remembered (at least by me) movies grace the front cover of the second issue of MARVEL UK's brief entry into the sphere of general movie mags: CINEMA

Thursday 6 August 2015


From October 1995: CINEFANTASTIQUE magazine (volume 26, issue 6) devotes its in depth coverage to THE X-FILES to-date.  

There was certainly no shortage of coverage, in magazines and books, devoted to the show during this period where any tie-in seemed to fly off the shelves but (as usual) CFQ (along with SPECTRUM) offered the most sensible and detailed coverage rather than simply gushing about the relative sex appeal of the two stars.  

I watched, for the first time since the initial theatrical release, the first X-FILES movie (originally FIGHT THE FUTURE although any such title was conspicuously absent from the DVD release) yesterday (I got it for a £1 at the weekend) and although it was better than I remembered (and I remembered very little... the whole last part was something of a revelation as I'd forgotten it entirely) it still wasn't much cop.  I always thought the show was at its weakest when it indulged in the alien conspiracy mythology (creating a straight jacket that constricted the show's creative process and became increasingly difficult to sustain over the long haul) and the movie was very much along those lines.  It was basically an extended, better resourced (but still relatively cheap) episode which crammed a lot in but made very little sense of any of it.  And ended, pretty much as it had begun, with not much having changed.  

I prefer the far more low-key sequel (which seemed to pass the world by) because it sensibly ignored all the alien stuff which made it far more accessible to someone like me who bailed on the TV show about half way through the extended run.  I hope the new show takes a similar approach despite understandable audience expectations that The X-Files = alien conspiracies and lonely men oblivious to smoking regulations.  


From August 1981: A MARVEL UK House Ad for that year's ANNUALS, published in association with fellow Jadwin House residents Grandreams.

It's notable for using a couple of mock-up covers (for THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK and RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK) that vary a lot from the final, published, versions.

The RAIDERS cover uses some Sterenko pre-production art (or mood boards) that were apparently created long before Harrison Ford was cast and were intended to evoke the pulpy adventure paperbacks of yesteryear. 


From August 1981 (so it was probably about to actually go on sale any day now): BLOCKBUSTER, from MARVEL UK, issue 3.

Just in time to alert Star Age Marvel fans (with deep pockets) that the MARVEL EPIC COLLECTION of softback trade paperbacks (at hardback prices) have recently (yesterday!) released a POWERMAM & IRON FIST collection to accompany the IRON FIST sole reprints from a few weeks ago.  Sweet Christmas indeed. 

Tuesday 4 August 2015


From May 1982: Following on from the one-shot (although it doesn't feel like it) Winter Special, this is the first regular monthly edition of MARVEL UK's soon-to-be-shortlived CINEMA Magazine. 


From July 1987: the seldom-seen paperback adaptation of the notorious crime against cinema AND comics that is Cannon's epic misfire SUPERMAN IV: THE QUEST FOR PEACE.  

I only acquired this recently (and I'm not sure I would want to be seen reading it on public transport) but, considering the number of last-minute changes (mostly stemming from a chronic lack of dosh), it might make a fascinating excursion into the what-might-have been.  

As for the film: I saw it when it was first released on the big screen (my friends and I were banned from seeing our first choice... the latest JAWS sequel) and thought it was pretty grim.  Now I've acquired a love of the half-arsed (which makes virtually every film Cannon ever made fair game) and rather enjoyed it.

Clearly the publishers were only supplied a single still deemed useable for both the front and back covers.  The official movie subtitle is also curiously absent from the cover.  Does this suggest some last-minute wavering on the behalf of the studio(s) and their marketing commandos?

That's a cheesy official anniversary logo as well!

The real oddity is its predecessor: why did they suddenly think that the Man of Steel worked better as a comedy romp?  It's not as if the first two films had been creative or commercial failures...

1999: MARVEL MONTHLY CATALOG Issue 7 (Marvel Comics)

From February 1999 (and the very outer limits of the Star Age): the mildly historic last issue of the MARVEL MONTHLY CATALOG.

It's significant because it marked then end of Marvel's misplaced ambitions to distribute its own products to the Direct Sales sector.  The ambitious suits within the burgeoning comics-to-cards empire thought they could cut out the middle man by ditching comicdom's traditional wholesalers (who were at least more efficient, and less corrupt, than the news stand suppliers that publishers had wrestled with in previous decades) and offering product direct to the retailers... on Marvel's terms.

That legendary misstep sparked the short-lived Distributor Wars which saw Diamond and Capital fight to sign exclusive deals with the other publishers.  Diamond did well.  Capital less so.  And the other, smaller, players were squeezed out entirely.  Capital eventually conceded defeat and merged with Diamond, leaving just two (the other being Marvel) to slug it out.  

Marvel's HEROES WORLD subsidery never nailed it and, as the losses mounted, Marvel also folded and... with no other option... were forced to go back to the only other player in town.  Marvel's greed and ineptitude had shaken out the industry... and left it going cap-in-hand to the monolith it had helped to create.

This issue was the last to appear as a standalone magazine-cum-catalog.  From the following month, Marvel's books were once again listed inside (or, more accurately, as a standalone insert) in the main Diamond PREVIEWS phonebook-a-like (albeit much diminished from the whoppers that appeared during the boom years). 

Monday 3 August 2015


RETRO VISION a US genre magazine that appeared sometime in the late 1990s but, beyond that, my information is hazy.

This is doubly frustrating as not only did I but it at the time but I've also reacquired several issues, including this one, more recently.  Publication details, including a date, are scant inside.

The format was a cardstock cover with black & white interiors on nice, but not glossy, paperstock.  

As the above cover suggests, the editorial was a mix of the near contemporary (the HIGHLANDER TV show) and older fare (hence the title I guess).  Subsequent issues devoted in-depth coverage to STAR WARS fiction and an extensive piece on on the four Warner/ Cannon SUPERMAN movies.  One issue also ran a nice, annotated, episode guide to TV's AMERICAN GOTHIC which complimented a similar piece in the pages of SPECTRUM magazine.  



The Annex of Ideas launched this companion to STARBURST in the hopes that they could replicate the success of their SF magazine by porting across the formula to a film title with broader scope.  The editor was, once again, Alan McKenzie.

The strategy was sensible enough and also strengthened Marvel's magazine business but, in typical M-UK style, the production resources available didn't match the resources required and McKenzie soon found himself overstretched.  

As far as I can tell, this Winter Special predated the shortlived regular run.  Although it seems, judging by the text inside, that the decision had already been made to make this an ongoing series.  

The monthly incarnation didn't last a year and shuttered suddenly after the ninth issue.  The multi-part Spielberg retrospective which started in what became the final issue was wrapped-up in the pages of Starburst.  

Over the next few posts (inter-spaced with all the other usual STARLOGGED random goodies) I'll be recounting "the history of cinema".  It's not as ambitious as it sounds. 


From the summer of 1981:  The second issue of MARVEL UK's shortlived dalliance with the (relatively) obscure (IE Iron Fist, Omega and The Inhumans*): BLOCKBUSTER.

*The Inhumans are now, thirty-plus years later, on the cusp of becoming something big.  Now that Marvel have twigged that they still retain the movie rights to an ensemble they hope will beat The X-Men at their own game.  Only at the mixed-up world of the batty Bullpen. 

Saturday 1 August 2015


From November 1977: The paperback version of Marvel's STAR WARS movie adaptation.

The deal that secured Marvel's rights to the movie is legendary in the biz: the Lucas Crew were so desperate for the credibility that association with the House Of Ideas would bestow on the film that they cut Stan a killer deal which allowed Marvel to publish the first five issues without paying a cent. 

What no one anticipated is that the adaptation was a sell out, went to a rare second printing and was reissued in a variety of formats (not to mention overseas editions and multiple reprints ever since)... including this black & white (huh?) paperback from Del Rey.  

Whether Marvel's stellar deal allowed them to issue reprints without additional payments is a tadge more cloudy... and I suspect that, once the initial license came up for renewal (Marvel seemed to deal in twelve month blocks... which is why licensed titles seemed to expire in increments of twelve) Lucasfilm were able to extract a better deal.  

Marvel, meanwhile, credit that deal with bringing in a much needed cash injection during a bleak period and allowing the company to move into the Eighties on a firmer financial footing.   

Marvel's takes on the two sequels were also given the paperback treatment (now in colour!) in 1980 and 1983. 

1978: FUTURE MAGAZINE Issue 8 (Starlog)

From February 1979 (and the Random Scans file): The 8th issue of early STARLOG spin-off FUTURE, boasting a SUPERMAN THE MOVIE cover.  

FUTURE, launched in April 1978, was an odd mix of serious science and Starlog's traditional media coverage.  Presumably the magazine for the thinking fan and scientists who liked to settle down and watch Battlestar Galactica on a Sunday night.  This was the last issue to appear under the original title.  From the next issue, the masthead was subtly amended to become FUTURE LIFE.  

The mag surprisingly plodded on for an impressive 31 issues through to December 1981. 

1987: THE EQUALIZER 2: TO EVEN THE ODDS (Target Books)

From 1987: The second and, as far as I know, final in the brief series of novelizations of the Universal series THE EQUALIZER.  

This one adapts The Defector (episode 3) and Back Home (the 13th), both from the show's first (of four) seasons. 
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