Saturday, February 28, 2015

Star Wars weekly

hi there

here's one of them posts that might be more for the casual user of google rather than my more discerning sort of regular reader, but if all who see it have some level of appreciation then that's nice.

i recently had reason, as the discerning from above will be quite aware and no doubt tired of hearing of, to celebrate another birthday. i got a staggeringly high and very valued number of good wishes. on top of this some most splendid gifts too.

one of these gifts was particularly moving and special, as it came from Sharpy. it was a very kind action of him to take, and all the more impressive that what he sent did not come from W H Smith.

well, it might have originally, i suppose, but in this case he purchased, or rather re-purchased, it off of one of them comic convention things. a comic convention where he was, presumably, one of the few not dressed as something or someone off of one of them science films.

what Sharpy sent me, as you can see here, was one of the Star Wars comics issued way back in 1978. at that time we only had the one Star Wars film, and no practical way of knowing that further would be made. still, we were very happy with the toys and the comics. 

there is of course every chance that i owned a copy of this comic at the time of publication, that time being August 2 1978 (it is edition number 26, fact fans). there was a paper shop up the road from where we lived at the time - New Marske, i believe - and Mum would get me one from time to time. also, every now and then, i was sent to these shops to get the newspaper, the Evening Gazette, or some other such errand.

the cover looks familiar, but it would be greatly and sorely amiss of me to state as any sort of fact that i certainly remember owning this one. whether i did or not before does not matter, for i do now, with thanks to the kindness and the thoughtfulness of Sharpy.

i would not want to step on the toes of copyright too much in respect of the contents of the magazine as such, but i am sure none out there would object to a few highlights. certainly not when they feature, as is the first thing to do so here, look you see, an advert.

the current generation, or if you like the "kids of today", might be baffled by this. but in 1978, right, us kids saw Star Wars at the cinema - once - and that was more or less the only time we would get to see it until it turned up on TV, usually some 4 or 5 years after it had been shown at the cinema. nope, home video was not widespread, and there was certainly none of this DVD or "download" nonsense.

the above, then, was exciting. these projectors let you watch 20 or so minutes of a movie in your own home, whenever you wanted to watch it. hard to think now that such a thing was so revolutionary.

if you wanted to watch it in colour and with sound, it cost quite a bit, as you can see. for a sense of perspective, internet tells me that a house (an actual one) cost £13,820, so £165 for a projector was a fairly big ask. i think, although obviously this varies, a car cost some £600.

sometimes video arcades and amusements had special booths set up where, for 10p or so, you could watch a bit of a movie on it. i know this because i enthusiastically put 10p pieces, with my brother and sister, into such a projector at such an amusement arcade so that we could watch bits off of Star Wars. i think it was in Blackpool, but it is possible it was Rhyl. 

a bit of one of them "public service information" posts from the comic now. every now and then, you see, the internet is not all about pictures of cats, frogs and debates about what colour a dress is. sometimes you can use it to share stuff that might be of interest, use or curiosity to someone.

so, if a Mr George Milbank, or his son John Milbank, who is now probably about 43 or 44, and grew up in Hunts, Cambs (Cambridgeshire?) is reading this, well here you are, this is what you sent in and had published in this particular edition of the Star Wars weekly comic. what an absolute bonus it would be if that young lad there found this.

photographs, too, were an expensive thing then. a camera cost a lot of money, film was expensive and you had to wait a good fair while to have the pictures developed. think about that, all you kids who use that Twirker thing to send a hundred pics of yourself to each other every day.

i have not googled or yahooed my own name since it seemed like the thing to do back in, what, 1997 or 1998, but if anyone who knows the Milbank family of the above has done so and found this, then nice one.

finally, for now at least, a 'pin up special' from the back of this particular edition. i say for now as if for some reason anyone wants more i can scan it in, i suppose. but hey, this pin up special. have a look.

would it be just me, or do the stormtroopers above have helmets that look rather more like they do in the upcoming 2015 movie Star Wars Episode VII : Mission To Moscow rather than they did in the original 1977 film? if so, maybe Sharpy also sent a copy of this comic to the makers of the new one; a chap called JJ or something similarly avante-garde.

anyway, i trust this was all of some use or interest to someone out there!

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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