Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Binaca Toys.......

Binaca Toys

          Some of my fondest memories of the 1970s are The Comics I used to read, Films like Sholay, Ambiliamavan magazines, Cricket played on the narrow lanes , Marbles and student strikes wherein we all go to the Maidan near Cosmopolitan Club at Tellicherry  and played cricket to our Hearts full. But none perhaps gave me as much pleasure as these little gems which one gets from a packet of Binaca Toothpaste.It was such a rage that my friends and I used have competition on who gets the rarest or the most colorful toys from the set. It seems that we used to waste the Toothpaste avoiding the attention of our parents so that a New Binaca Packet arrives at our Home.I still remember my favorite of the Lot: A green transparent leopard. Alas even after obtaining around 60 of these Numbers that one is eluding me......

Friday, July 13, 2018

Kottayam pushpanath.......

Kottayam Pushpanath, The legend is no more. Malayalam' s most famous Detective and Crime Fiction writer died recently aged 80. He was one person who kindled my interest in crime and detective fiction. His famous creations are the detectives Marksin and Pushparaj. He gave us visions with Marzin's  scenes of Wine, Half a corona, the detectiv's favourite Cigar  with Roasted beef which Marksin used to consume in almost all the stories in general. He wrote more than 350 novels which were also translated extensively in Tamil. His stories used to come regularly in magazines like malayala manorama. My interest in these mags was to read and reread his stories. Here are some issues from 1970s including Issue#1 featuring Detective Marksin and some scenes from Malyala manoram weekly from 1977......

  

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Regal Comics.......

Regal Publication as in majority malayalam publications  has its headquarters at Kottayam. These large format issues has 4 panels same as in VM, but on a larger scale.All issues are either in Black and white or mono color. Various mono colored panels are seen in a single issue. The most striking feature of this large format Comic is its Cover art.And the cover art too has some unique features.A main Figure constitutes the central theme and  many small images is seen as satellites giving a clue to some of the incidents in the story line. Almost all cover art was signed as KGR. Once I requested Pratheep Jacob, who is currently working at Regal Publication to check the artist out.It seems the Artist's name is Kudamaloor Gopalan, a freelancer who drew for many publications. The Different colored panels seen below are from the same issue. 










Thursday, June 14, 2018

Chandamama from 1955......

Chandamamas from 1955. This publication first appeared in Telugu in 1947. In Kannada it was published in 1949 whereas in English in 1955. Malayalam editions came earlier than English in 1952. But it is really hard to find an issue Of Ambiliamavan as it called in Malayalam prior to 1970. Received four beautiful kannada copies. The gorgeous art of Sankar and Chitra which one enjoyed in later edition can be seen in these early ones too. But the Iconic Vikram ,Vetala Art by Sankar came to be much idolized in the 1970s . A lovely art by the Fabled Chitra is included here......









Thursday, April 5, 2018

Ambili Amavan

Ambili Amavan

     "Ambili amavan" the malayalam Version of Chandamama was such a Popular magazine during my School days. The stories of Ramayan, hanuman and especially The Vikram and Vetala stories made a Deep impression on my Mind. The Most beautiful art of Shankar and Chithra was out standing.The illustration of  King Vikram and vetala is iconic. Raza and Vapa were also exceptional artists of Chandamama.

              Though it is very easy to get the English Chandamama it was really very hard to get the Malayalam version. So was very happy to get issues from 1973 to 1975.    












Monday, March 26, 2018

Regal Phantom........

After Vidyarthi Mithram Comics, the most popular were the Regal issues of Phantom and Mandrake. Published in early 1990s, these were much larger in size than the VM version. Both were published from Kottayam, headquarters of Malayalam comics.
           The cover art of Phantom in this issue is quite unique. I have not come across any cover art showing the Phantom half naked. Regal comics are famous for their gorgeous cover art.....



Monday, March 19, 2018

VM Phantom & Superman.......

              This Vidyarthi Mithram publication is unique due to its cover featuring both Phantom and Superman. One would think it is a unique Crossover till you look at the panels and then you see that it is indeed a Phantom Story( IJC # 329:The Phantom, The superman). The panels are much smaller than the Indrajal version and double the number of panels are used in each page in this VM. After the decline in popularity of the VM Tarzans by late 1970s, Many issues of Phantom and Mandrake Vidyarthi Mithrams was published with this one's cover being the most Striking.......