eros the Spartan is the most eagerly anticipated reprint of any classic British comic strip.
In 1962 Frank Bellamy was asked to draw a new Roman epic strip for the Eagle, written by Tom Tully. Bellamy had previously honed his artistic skills on Robin Hood and King Arthur in the Swift (both available from Book Palace Books) and The Happy Warrior, the Story of Winston Churchill, Montgomery of Alamein, Marco Polo and Fraser of Africa, also in the Eagle.
At the pinnacle of his artistic skills, this new commission gave him a unique opportunity. The new strip Heros the Spartan was being presented on the centre double page spread of the Eagle. This enormous canvas gave Bellamy a format few comic strip artists ever achieve or even dream of. The double page format enabled Bellamy to create the greatest comic strip adventure ever presented to the public.
He excelled himself with revolutionary page and panel design and dramatic ink line work all in glorious colour and his ink lines and colour work on this strip have yet to be equalled by any other artist on any strip.
Universally regarded as THE greatest British comic strip ever produced the art has never before been reprinted since its initial publication in 1962.
We at Book Palace Books have longed to reprint Heros the Spartan and with current advanced scanning and reproduction techniques we are proud to present Heros in this most luxurious format at a quality of reproduction far superior to the original comic printing.
This has been a tremendous undertaking and we have had a lot of help from dedicated Bellamy collectors from around the globe. The introductory chapters, which feature Dez Skinn and Dave Gibbons' interview with the great man (many thanks to both Dez and Dave), also includes mouth watering reproductions of key examples of Bellamy artwork that are largely sourced from high resolution scans and add an extra zing to the whole production.
Finding Bellamy Heros originals was as problematic as can be anticipated with artwork of this vintage. The search continued throughout the eighteen months that this project occupied us and we did manage to unearth a lot of Heros artwork that had remained unseen for decades.
One of the spreads high on our list was, of course, the famous massacre of the fifth legion, which was one of the strip's many artistic high spots. We did locate the spread in question and we were delighted to reproduce at least a sizeable chunk of original artwork adding a lot of extra lustre to what is already a very desirable book.
This is without doubt, the most ambitious project that Book Palace Books has invested in, and the production costs reflect this. We took the decision to reproduce the Heros pages to the same size as they first appeared in the Eagle comic some fifty years ago. This means that each spread runs over two pages, the binding on this book is such that each spread opens out without information getting lost in the gutter. We have designed the whole book to emphasize the panoramic feel and to reinforce this cinematic effect.
Over 18 months of meticulous scanning, colour corrections and with the best printing money can buy Heros the Spartan is now available again after over 50 years.
For those who remember the strip this will bring back very fond memories. For those of you who have only previously heard of Heros or who have only seen a few examples, boy are you in for a treat! After 50 years Bellamy's Heros is in print to excite a whole new generation of knowledgeable comic enthusiasts, collectors and art afficionados.
We give you the complete Frank Bellamy Heros the Spartan in one giant deluxe volume