Saturday, 19 December 2015

The Crunch #1 (DC Thompson/1979)

By the late seventies DC Thompsons titles were beginning to look a tad dated as their "family friendly" comics were more suited to an earlier, more innocent age. The advent of of 2000AD, Action and competition from American rivals Marvel made the publishers of Victor and The Hotspur attempt something new.

They came up with The Crunch.

This comic launched in January 1979 had the same format as DC Thompsons other adventure comics but the content was a bit edgier.

The reader was treated to a full "splash page" to introduce Arena, a tale of a political dissident in the near future sentenced by an obviously totalitarian regime to die in combat in the Arena reserved for criminals. And someone wants Mark dead quickly....

Another splash page leads us to the US based story, The Mantracker. A quite violent story of revenge and redemption in which Jay returning from service as a Green Beret witnesses the murder of his grandfather and upon dealing with the miscreants uses the reward to set him on the path of being a Bounty Hunter.

After the usual football feature which isn't of interest to me we are taken to the Walking Bombs. This tale set in the Cold War sees unexplained nuclear explosions taking out the West's top brass. The title rather gives away the future mystery and the hunt is on for a certain Professor Hagan who may be in danger and is the key to solving this mystery.

Then there's Hitler Lives. Set in the dying days of the Third Reich a mutinous German soldier sets off to assassinate the Fuhrer only to find Hitlers body being burnt...but it isn't and loyal Nazi's are smuggling the dictators body out of the country so that the Reich might rise again. Jacob Lindt decides to go with them so he can stop this nefarious scheme.

The final story is yet another crime story set in America, Who killed Cassidy which sees a traffic cop framed for neglecting his duty.

The Crunch lasted just 54 issues before being merged with the Hotspur which was itself an ailing title.

Overall not a bad comic and may pick up a few more over time.


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