Posts Tagged ‘Flash Gordon’


I’ve been busy. Grim dark futures (where there is only war) and coffee table books dominate my life at the moment, so I’ve not put any archive posts up for a few weeks. But I must soldier on! Soon I will be cutting and pasting my bits of Death Ray 17 onto this very blog, after which there are only four issues to go before I’m done. Admittedly, there are sundry other pieces from earlier issues — like interviews with Terry Pratchett and Raymond E Feist — to commit to an eternity upon the web. Yeah, I’m sure you’re interested in those, but they’re massive and so take ages to format, that’s why they’re still in a folder on my hard drive. I promise I’ll get around to it. And don’t worry if you’ve a thing for my incisive commentary on ancient SF obscurities, once Death Ray is exhausted I’ve three years worth of SFX reviews, interviews and features to get on with.

Today we have:

A review of the beautiful but tedious live-action version of Mushishi.

Wildly crap Billy Zane SF-thriller Memory.

Top YA author Darren Shan’s adult horror novel Procession of the Dead.

A book on horror films called Horror Films.

And an interview with the lovely Jonathan Walker, who played Rankol in the SciFi Channel’s not-so-lovely 2007 version of Flash Gordon.


Ah, Death Ray, how fruitful plundering your corpse is for my blog… This article originally appeared in Death Ray 08, back in 2007, as part of our insanely crammed “Ten Minute Guide…” series. These were among my favourite articles to write; packed full of detail, and no transcribing involved. I’ve put this one up as my review of the Flash Gordon TV series of 2007/2008 is one of the most viewed articles on this site by a long, long way. General searches for “Flash Gordon” take people there, so curiosity about this primal member of the modern SF heroic pantheon still abounds.

Flash Gordon: Perennially popular cosmic adventurer

flashgordon_1cvr

The original, and the best. Click the pic for more on the comic.

Golden-haired saviour of Earth, Flash has been protecting us from the art-deco hell of Ming the Merciless’s Planet Mongo for 70 years, often in a pair of tight trunks. In a word: Pulp.

Flash’s adventures are ones of swash-buckling, over the top, Prisoner of Zenda style derring-do in space. The stories are simple stuff, simply told, their enduring popularity down to the sumptuousness of Alex Raymond’s art and the on-screen extravagance it inspired. If scantily clad slave girls, finned rocket ships, weird alien kingdoms and decadently luxuriant palaces are your thing, step this way… (more…)