Great Comic Mergers

As ComicScene coverage of new and indie comics finds itself inside the new Shift Anthology on newsstands from Thursday 29th October we take a look at some other great comic mergers. You can save £84 a year and get Shift and the new ComicScene History of Comics (where the ‘retro’ coverage of comics can be found) together here.
A big hitter finally goes to comic heaven 19 years after its 1950 launch when the original Eagle merged with Lion. Eagle was to return in the 80’s for over 500 issues!
Some mergers made absolute sense – some didn’t. Some led to a sad demise for once great comics.
The beauty of having done ComicScene is I learnt about some great sounding comics like Terrific, Fantastic, Wham, Smash, Pow, Jag, TV21 – all before my time unfortunately. Smash, Pow and Fantastic sounds brilliant but was probably a merger too many for some!
Not a merger as such but Roy of the Rovers signing to Walford Rovers felt like you were losing your favourite comic at the time! I don’t believe Roy of the Rovers merged into another title – it ended then was brought back as a monthly.
Barrie Tomlinson shares this on twitter today so we have added it as a late addition! Again some Speed characters have reappeared in Rebellion reprints and new titles. Death Wish anyone?
Krazy moved into Whizzer and Chips. Interestingly Rebellion chose Buster and Cor for their latest humour title, as Whizzer and Chips was by far ComicScene readers favourite humour title in our comic survey.
The merger of Cheeky (my favourite comic) into Whoopee! was a hard one to take! At least it had its own supplement, presumably to use up all the artwork that had been prepared in advance. Crazy now to think, with many newsstand comic titles today struggling to sell over 15,000 copies, that a comic that dropped below 200,000 sales would be hatched, matched and dispatched!
2000AD still stands but it is amazing to think some of the most enduring characters didn’t begin in its pages, such as Strontium Dog in Starlord.
I read Tornado. But not 2000AD at the time (I had discovered American comics in my newsagent and the Prog lost out to Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman!). I didn’t follow Tornado to the Prog – it would be far later when I jumped on board. Quite liked Wolfie Smith and Victor Drago!
Here’s a big merger – with both titles back this year from Rebellion
Eagle was back in the 80’s and it seemed every comic title merged into it, leaving it the last comic standing. Scream didn’t survive an industrial strike at IPC Magazines. It’s back, as are a number of reprints, and Group Editor Barrie Tomlinson tells the story in the new History of Comics books.
Another big hitting issue. On the whole I enjoyed the merger issues and this one features a number of stories recently reprinted or revamped at Rebellion.
My love for Eagle had waned at this point and there wasn’t many comics left to merge with.
Rebellion have kept on the tradition of merged issues with their new titles – here’s Misty and Scream. Misty merged with Tammy back in the day. Both featured spooky and mysterious stories.
Tammy and Jinty also joined forces under Rebellion with new Roy of the Rovers character Rocky Race making an appearance in this issue.
Out for Christmas Rebellion release a collection of their Buster Cor comics.
Here is Shaman Kane issue 6. It’s out in November from David Broughton. The character features alongside several others in the ComicScene Hardback Annual 2021.
Not a merger as such but it’s one of the first times several characters who have appeared in their own U.K. indie comics have appeared all together under one cover. Shaman Kane, Mandy the Monster Hunter, Dick Turpin, Captain Cosmic, Moon, Alex Automatic, Mahoney’s, NPC Tea, Geek-Girl, Harker, WESTERNoir, Captain Wonder and Whackoman all feature. Preview and order the annual here.
Don’t forget ComicScenes new and indie comic coverage will continue in Shift!
Our retro coverage and looking at current reprints features in the new Partwork the History of Comics.
We will also continue to bring you new comics if the Annual is successful. Help us avoid being hatched, matched and dispatched and join the Comic Club today. Details here.

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