Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Knights of Pendragon and X-Men Forever speculation.

You may remember a short while back (March to be precise) I mentioned that Panini Comics would be putting out a first trade volume of the Abnett/Tomlinson/Erskine new age-eco-Arthurian epic, Knights of Pendragon. This is a particular favourite series of mine, and one which I feel was long overdue a collection. It was, I believe, in part the quality output of books such as KoP which actually resulted in Marvel UK being given an imprint of its own.

I have now found the ISBN for the volume itself and it is now available to pre-order from Amazon, with the provisional release date of 8th of October 2009 ( ISBN-10: 1846534313 ). Of course, please remember that this date IS only provisional (Let us not forget the delays over Panini's Captain Britain Vol 3) but anybody who might wish to reserve their copy - and it would be well worth your while - now you can.

While we're still on the subject of Panini during the process of my reserving a copy of the aforementioned volume I also noticed that there is a pre-order page for a 4th Panini Captain Britain volume, subtitled "The Siege of Camelot" ( ISBN-10: 184653433X ). This volume appears to continue directly from vol 3, completing reprints of the Black Knight and Captain Britain stories from the UK Hulk Comicand onwards into the Dave Thorpe, Alan Moore and Alan Davis stories - debuting The Fury. It certainly appears that, and the rumours I have been hearing so far this year seem to support this, that regardless of Marvel's own Captain Britain Omnibus Panini intend to continue printing all of Cap's pre-Excalibur appearances, up until completion. Great respect to them, if this is the case.

Still on a Captain Britain related theme several regular readers have mailed me over the last few weeks with regards to the poster on the right here (Click to Enlarge). It was released by Marvel to coincide with the start of Chris Claremont and Tom Grummett's X-Men Forever.

For those unaware of the series, X-Men Forever is basically a fortnightly (That Bi-Weekly for our American readers) ongoing What If...? series, allowing Claremont to write an alternate history of the X-Men, and X-Men titles, as he would have written them had he not left the the X-Men books in 1991, after the release of (Adjectiveless) X-Men #3. At that point Claremont had been writing Uncanny X-Men, and steering the creative direction of X-Men spin-off titles foe 17 years (Utterly unthinkable in modern comics) and nobody can debate that his leaving had a heck of an effect on X-Men comics through the 1990s.

Several of you have rightly pointed out the notable presence, on this poster, of two very distinctive Marvel UK properties, namely Captain Britain & Meggan. And drawn by Jim Lee they look very impressive too - Meggan in particular:

And upon seeing their presence on this poster immediately jumped for joy at the prospect of their turning up in X-Men Forever.

Please folks, hold your horses.

I don't mean to disappoint anybody (And indeed I may be premature in doing so) but this poster is not new work. It's a re-issue of a poster Jim Lee and Scott Williams did in 1990 or 1991 of every X-Man who was on an X-Men title at that time, accompanied with the phrase "... and the BEST is yet to COME!"

Cap and Meggan appear here because at the time, in continuity, they were both part of Excalibur. As were Rachel Summers, Nightcrawler, Kitty Pryde and Lockheed, who are also pictured.

This is a re-issued poster with modern colouring. It looks damned good, and as it dates from the rough point that Claremont left the X-Books, making it a good fit. At the point X-Men Forever begins these are the teams in play. But I don't think we can take it as read that this will have any indication over whether or not Cap and Meggan will appear.

I mean sure, Chris Claremont has always loved to feature Captain Britain (The character he has always gone back to since creating him in in 1976) and Meggan, wherever he logically can in his X-Writing. Something I've always been kind of grateful for. But this vision of the X-Men is a bit different. In X-Men Forever #1 we already have Kitty and Nightcrawler debating leaving Excalibur to rejoin the X-Men, having returned to New York for Magneto's funeral.

So this one may well play out very differently. I always have my fingers crossed, but you never know.

Anyway, enough of my talk.

If you wish to contact me you can mail me or Tweet me at the usual places (Listed on the right) and feel free to drop your own comments on any of the Blog threads I start.

Until the next time...



  1. What I love about that poster (and it does look mighty good) is how Brian and Meggan are the only ones in it who don't look really frakking miserable. And Kurt, I suppose. But the rest of them... Even Lockheed seems to be scowling. Rachel looks like she's about to burst into tears!

  2. You know Fliss, looking at it, you're right. This was the adrenaline pumped 90s. Some viewed a smile as a sign of weakness... ;)

    Shadowcat also has an element of light-hearted whimsy to her expression, in my opinion. Although this could be down to my weakness for brown-eyed brunettes, with Jewish leanings. A weakness which, now I think about it, probably began WITH Kitty Pryde.

    Damn you Marvel. You have shaped my mind to your will! ;D

  3. Just an update I thought you might be interested in re: KoP, and Cap Vol 4.
    I work for a book retailer, and upon checking my system today for release dates for the two mentioned Graphic Novels, I now have a date for a release for both Graphic Novels.
    Both are being released by Turnaround publishers, who provide us with most of our Panini Graphic Novels, have given a release date as 24th Feb 2010 for both Knights of Pendragon Vol 1, and Captain Britain Vol 3: Seige of Camelot.
    Amazon still have it listed as we'll notify when it's available.
    Reminder to myself to speak to rep, and hopefully bag myself free copies of both, I managed to with Cap Vol 3.
    Obviously like all things book related, release dates can change. I will keep you informed of any changes!

  4. Thanks for that info ElvenBrit. That would be appreciated. When I've tried contacting Panini by phone in the past they've seemed a little bit clueless, unable to give me a date for release. A shame.

  5. Another Update... it looks like the release date has changed, yet again. Knights of Pendragon Vol 1, and Captain Britain Volume 4 have now a release date of 3rd March 2010.
    If we're very, very lucky we might get it this side of Christmas!?!