The fanzine is something that’s been around for decades. In fact Wikipedia says it can be traced back to the 19th century and people like H.P. Lovecraft, which is rather extraordinary that Lovecraft was involved but the fanzine as we know it grew out of the classic 1920’s science fiction writers fans. A spin off of that fanzine scene was comics, but for me I noticed fanzines during the 1970’s firstly in record shops with early punk fanzines.
But I saw comics fanzines too. Not many, most of them were crap. Some were spectacular, many were just painful to look at but they’re all a valid part of British comics history that’s dying in the digital age. Plus even some of the worst ones raise themselves head and shoulders over some of the stupefying pish that passes for comics journalism and criticism, sorry, content, in the digital age.
I mean you can’t not look at some of the writing in Fantasy Advertiser, BEM, Arkensword, AKA, or the legendary Panelologist and even think much of what’s online is even close. myself included. So finding out the other day that’s a chap by the name of David Hathaway-Price has started a site listing old UK comics fanzines, and in some cases includes PDF’s of the fanzines themselves is a little bit of joy to me.
Alright, it’s early days and digitising so many titles is a task, but what’s here is a goldmine of material so far. Click here for the website, Classic UK Comics Zines, and more importantly, if you’ve got any old fanzines and can help, get in touch with him because this is an important bit of archiving that I’m grateful someone has done.