Garth

NAME:
Garth
NEWSPAPER:
Daily Mirror
DATES:
24JUL1943 - 22MAR1997

ARTIST(S):

Steve Dowling
John Alard
Frank Bellamy
Martin Asbury
Dick Hailstone
WRITER(S):
Steve Dowling
Don Freeman
Harry Harrison
Peter O'Donnell
Jim Edgar
Hugh McClelland
Martin Baines

The very first Garth strip published in 1943 shows our hero unconscious and drifting ashore on a raft. Where he came from, who he is and much of the rest of his history has been delivered to us over the subsequent years, but not always in a way that holds up. For example he is variously described as: a) a God, b) son of a God, c) a normal child adopted by a Scottish couple, d) grandson of an alien being called Wolfen who had a relationship with an Earth woman three thousand years ago (do the maths on that one!).

Garth travels across both time and space in his adventures, whilst also taking time out to right modern day wrongs. He is less the typical chaste hero, and more often the chased hero, by beautiful women who seem willing to share his time. The only constant companion in his adventures is his mentor figure Professor (Prof) Lumiere who has been with him from almost the start of the strip. Whilst never really taking part in Garth's adventures, he is there to provide friendship and advice to our hero. The only other figure that pops up in the adventures from time to time is the Goddess Venus (otherwise known as Astra) with whom Garth has had a long and somewhat chequered love affair.

 

Original art by Steve Dowling & John Alard for the story Islands of Kaa (1947), scripted by Harry Harrison.

 

Garth was devised by Steve Dowling and Gordon Boshell, unfortunately Boshell was too busy with his career at the BBC to take an active hand and Dowling took over the running in both storyline and artwork. However, Dowling did take on a young man of 15 years called John Alard to work as his assistant - and John stayed on through out the series.

On Dowling's death Frank Bellamy took over - and his are the stories most reprinted. After Bellamy came Martin Asbury and finally Dick Hailstone. Many writers have worked on the series including veteran science fiction writer Harry Harrison, Peter O'Donnell (Affairs of Eve, Tug Transom, Modesty Blaise et al), Jim Edgar did a spell when Matt Marriott was winding down, and even veteran artist, Australian Hugh McClelland (Beelzebub Jones, Jimmy Gimmicks and Scott Lanyard etc) took a spell.

Above the original art by Frank Bellamy for the story The Bride of Jenghis Khan (1974-75), and below the FEB 2013 colourised reprint version from the Mirror website.
Original art by Martin Asbury for the story The Man Hunt (1976-77).

Garth has been reprinted around the world almost from the time that the strip first started and although the strip was finally axed in 1997. However, owing to demand the Mirror Group are reprinting them in colour, although only on their website and so far only the Bellamy strips. There was a rumour a few years ago that Pengiun Books (India) were about to reprint every Garth adventure in chronological order - unfortunately this venture did not take place. Inrajal Comics (India Times) have been republishing many of the more modern Garth adventures, whilst our friends at the All Devon Comic Collectors Club have many Garth adventures available.

GARTH UK REPRINTS
1946 (reprints 1st strip)
Daily Mirror publication
1958 - a double sided book with
Romeo Brown
on the reverse.
Daily Mirror Book of Garth
1976
Daily Mirror Book of Garth
1975
Mirror Classic Cartoon Collection (1998)
(contains two Garth reprints)
Spaceship Away started printing the Bellamy strips with additional colour added by John Ridgeway in 2009
Two offerings from Titan Books: Book 1 The Cloud of Balthus (1985) and Book 2 The Women of Galba (1985) both drawn by Frank Bellamy.
GARTH FOREIGN REPRINTS
Garth Comic 1
French SAGE edition 1949
Garth Comic 14
Australian Atlas edition 1950s
Inrajal Comics vol 21 nr 12
Indian Times edition 1984
   
 
Australian reprint 1988
 
PLEASE NOTE THAT The All Devon Comic Collectors Club HAS MANY MORE GARTH STORIES AVAILABLE.

 


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© Kerschner & Taylor
Last updated :
18/11/16

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