The reason for the erratic publication and no issue for 2 months is that negotiations were going on for the sale of the magazine.Dez continues to head Quality Communications (website here) but will not be putting on a Comic Expo event this year. According to Rich Johnson's Lying in the Gutters (#92, 20 February):
Dez Skinn has new projects he wanted to pursue and which needed all of his attention so he was looking for a suitable new owner. That new owner/owners can now be revealed.
They are Peter Boyce, who runs a media business for the film industry and who will soon be launching an internet channel, is heading up a triumvirate which includes Mike Conroy, who moves up from his 'Frame to Frame' column to be Editor in Chief, and Martin Biff Averre whom you all know.
The first new issue under the skilful hands of Mike Conroy will be much the same as before with a planned relaunch of style and content with #207. Issue 201 will continue with the format of #200, 100 pages and a price of £2.99.
Dez Skinn has abandoned plans to run another Brighton convention, after the Birmingham show moved dates on the 13th-14th October forward, two weeks before his own planned event.What's next for Dez? Someone who has spent 35 years in the comics industry isn't likely to disappear entirely and he's likely to stick with a field he knows. Experiments outside haven't been too successfull -- the four issues of Toy Max published in 2003 lost around £25,000 -- and the last few years have seen him mired in various controversies (even his Wikipedia entry has been semi-protected to prevent unregistered users from editing it); my guess is that he'll be happy to take a break, look outside the comics field... but he'll be back.
Next month is the 25th anniverary of the launch of Warrior (which got me back into reading comics after a couple of years off) so don't expect Dez's name will be out of the news any time soon.
Update: The Forbidden Planet blog has an interview with Mike talking about the takeover: 'Under New Management' (27 February).
- John Freeman's Down the Tubes has its third Albion-related interview up, this time with artist Shane Oakley.
- Alex Fitch's I'm Ready for my Podcast site has the latest show available to download featuring the first part of a 2-part broadcast celebrating the 30th anniversary of 2000AD. Part 1 (broadcast 22 February) features an interview with Pat Mills. Part 2 will feature an interview with current editor Matt Smith.
- Something I've missed until this evening: the old Marvel UK Transformers strips are being reprinted by IDW. Transformers: Target: 2006 #1 is due to hit the shelves in April.
- Best-selling children's author Jacqueline Wilson has an autobiography out, Jacky Daydream, on 5 March. At 17, Wilson joined D. C. Thomson after spotting an advert in the Evening Standard -- "Wanted! Teenage Writers!" -- seeking romantic stories for a new teenage magazine. Shortly after, she joined the staff of a soon-to-be-launched new title... and, as she was the youngest member of staff, they named the new magazine after her: Jackie. An interview with Wilson appeared in last week's Sunday Times ('A Girl's Own Story', 18 February).
... and here's where I spent most of the evening. Free bar! What more do I need to say. "Tired and emotional" is probably the best description.
I love that bar. That bar's my best mate. Hic!)