|A panel from COMBAT COLIN No.4, out now.|
Combat Colin started out as a gag-a-week half pager with Colin as a bumbling wannabe soldier, which was sort of traditional fare, but I gradually evolved the strip. First by running occasional serials, bringing in weird villains, and then developing the supporting characters. The old 1960s strip The Cloak (from Pow! comic), by Mike Higgs, was my biggest influence, and I was also inspired by Jack Kirby (hence the collage above). However I was also inspired by other stuff such as cult TV shows.
You no doubt know that The Prisoner is referenced a few times in Combat Colin. Most blatantly when he and Steve (and other heroes) become Prisoners of the Place of No Return in a village looking very much like Portmeirion (where The Prisoner was filmed).
However, another influence towards the end of the strip's run was Twin Peaks, David Lynch's surreal TV show that aired in 1990. Obviously some aspects of that show were too adult to put into Combat Colin but there were little touches such as mysterious symbols, sinister owls, the fish in the perculator, and The Giggly Sisters owning a pair of pet dogs... Twin Pekes!
There are some other bits inspired by Twin Peaks too and you'll see those reprinted in Combat Colin Nos. 5 and 6 this year. I recently re-watched the 1990 series (still brilliant, apart from the middle episodes that sag) and bought the new series on DVD. Fantastically bizarre, thought-provoking stuff. Curiously, one of the new aspects of the new series... portals to elsewhere... is something I put into my Combat Colin strips long ago, so there's a nice synchronicity there.
Of course, most young readers of Combat Colin back in 1990 wouldn't have been up late watching Twin Peaks, so I had to make sure that any such references worked on two levels so they wouldn't alienate anyone. They had to make sense within the context of the strip, but were a nod to the TV show for older readers in the know. No doubt some still found the whole thing a bit strange though... in fact I hope they did! Weird comics are the best comics.
You'll be able to revisit those stories in Combat Colin Nos. 5 and 6 when I publish them sometime this year.
|Maddest TV show you'll ever see. Unmissable!|