Sunday, 24 August 2014

Last days of Smash, Pow and Fantastic (The Odhams comics story part three)

At their height Power Comics had a grand total of five different titles being published weekly. The first sign of problems at their publishers, Odhams came when their oldest title Wham! merged with Pow!

Now the other comics began to merge. The reason for this was quite simple. Money.

It appears that the way that Odhams had kept their accounts (which showed an overall profit on all their operations) hid the fact that the comics line was actually losing them money.  The fact that their prices had been higher than those of their competitors did not help either.

Plus one other crucial factor.

The Marvel Comics features were facing stiff competition from the fact that these were being more widely distributed and easier to obtain in the American colour formats. Something that attracted many readers, myself included at that time.

The two "magazine titles were merged into Fantastic and Terrific, but this didn't last long until it too merged with Odhams  only other title becoming the long titled Smash and Pow incorporating Fantastic with issue 144 in November 1968.

Eventually the comic was renamed Smash incorporating Fantastic, but these were its last days as IPC took the title over and when the licence to reprint Marvel stories expired, changed the comic into a more familiar British boys comic. Simply Smash! 

An anthology of the normal fare found in IPC's line such as Valiant and Lion.

A sad day for Power Comics fans but by then we were all growing up and other interests lay ahead. However these comics remain highly collectible by the generation that grew up with them and if you get a chance do pick up a copy of Wham!, Smash! or Pow!.

They are great fun. And for me hold memories of simpler times long gone

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