Nicol Williamson as Macbeth (1982)

The BBC’s failed attempt to create the definitive set of the complete works of Shakespeare adapted for TV demonstrates just how hard to pin down the bugger can be. From his rediscovery at the end of the eighteenth century through …

The BBC Television Shakespeare (1978 – 1985) Read more »

Hot on the heels of Peter A. Jones, here’s my tribute to another great SF artist who, sadly, is no longer with us. The vast majority of science fiction art through the ages has been illustrative, which is not particularly …

The Art of Jack Gaughan Read more »

One of the strangest books to come out of the 1970s fantasy art imprint Paper Tiger had to be Bruce Pennington’s Eschatus (1976). I’ve already briefly spoken about Pennington as one of the iconic science fiction book artists of the …

Eschatus – Bruce Pennington (1976) Read more »

As a companion post to my review of Mansfield Dark’s Count Magnus and The Story of A Disappearance and an Appearance, Richard Mansfield very kindly agreed to answer some questions about the movies: Why make M. R. James ghost stories …

Interview with Richard Mansfield of Mansfield Dark Read more »

Until now I’ve always been left a bit disappointed by film and TV adaptations of M.R. James’ stories. Even acknowledged classics like Jonathan Miller’s 1968 version of Oh, Whistle, And I’ll Come To You My Lad, starring Michael Horden lack …

Count Magnus and A Disappearance and an Appearance – Mansfield Dark Read more »

On the one hand it’s great that SF and Fantasy are more or less mainstream these days, and so every Waterstones has a huge selection to browse. On the other I do sometimes find myself looking at the shelves and …

Cosmic Fire Clowns – Bob Haberfield’s Moorcock covers. Read more »

Jonathan Jones wrote an article in The Guardian in which he stated that he had never read Terry Pratchett and had no intention of doing so because the discworld novels lacked literary merit, unlike Jane Austen’s books. It had all …

Why Terry Pratchett is not Great Literature Read more »

Funnily enough it was Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle who turned me on to Dante. Their decidedly odd libertarian take on the original, Inferno, came out in 1976 and had the Science Fiction author Allen Carpentier dying after falling out …

Dante Deluxe Read more »

Comics again, this time with a couple of wonderful graphic novels that tackle similar mathematical themes but in very different ways. Logicomix: An Epic Search for Truth by Apostolos Doxiadis and Christos H. Papadimitriou focuses on Bertrand Russell’s attempt to …

The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage, and Logicomix Read more »

I came across the wonderful Fantastic Travel Destination posters of Autun Purser at Dysprosium and immediately bought the complete set of cards and a print for one of my own personal favourite locations – the Lidenbrock Sea from Verne’s A …

Autun Purser – Fantastic Travel Destinations Read more »

I came back from Eastercon 2015 with several pulp magazines, including a couple of copies of Fantastic Adventures carrying Frank R. Paul’s ‘Life on..’ series. This was a wildly optimistic attempt to extrapolate alien life on the planets of our …

Life on Uranus – Frank R. Paul, Fantastic Adventures April 1940 Read more »

Crucible

Go here for my review of Jim Burns’ latest book The Art of Jim Burns: Hyperluminal. Can you talk us through one of your paintings from concept to finished image – both in terms of the idea and the practical …

Interview with Jim Burns Read more »

For me the golden age of science fiction and fantasy paperback illustration in the UK spanned the 70s and 80s. While 60s covers often favoured a minimalist Pop/Art approach the following decade saw an explosion of wildly imaginative and entrancing …

Jim Burns – Hyperluminal Read more »