Forget Spider-Man. If you have any sense at all, there's only one thing in this world that you want to see stuck to the side of a building.
And that's a police box.
Reader, in 1977, I saw that police box. It was stuck to the side of a building in Blackpool, Lancashire, England, Britain, Europe, the Earth.
Inside that police box was not a policeman. It was an exhibition.
It was a Doctor Who Exhibition. An exhibition that could only be accessed by entering that box and then descending a flight of stairs, into a basement.
Within that basement were many things.
There was a Dalek threatening you as you arrived.
There was a Sea Devil pointing its deadly round thing at you.
There were yet more Daleks, roaming around on rails, doing yet more threatening.
On the walls were stills from the making of the show, including the story The Talons of Weng-Chiang. How all visitors must have gasped at the site of ex-jungle-brawler Leela being nibbled on by a giant rat.
Most important of all to this story, there was a shop. And that shop sold only things related to the universe's greatest Time Lord.
From that shop, I got The Doctor Who Monster Book, a staple-bound book filled with articles about the Doctor's greatest enemies. In its centre was a poster by Chris Achilleos, the man who did all those covers for the show's epic Target novelisations.
In the modern age, none of this might seem that exciting but, in the dark days of the 1970s, when the internet didn't yet exist and old episodes couldn't be found on videotape, a book filled with photos of the show's greatest menaces was a Godsend. At last I could be reacquainted with the monsters I recalled from years gone by and I could meet other monsters I had no memory of at all.
There was a Giant Robot. There was a Zygon. There were hordes of Daleks on Westminster Bridge and a Mechanoid doing whatever it was Mechanoids did. Most intriguingly of all, there were the Zarbi, man-sized ants with human legs. What terrible powers of evolution had combined to create such a creature? Truly, this was the greatest book ever published.
I accept that this site is called Steve Does Comics and that that book was not a comic. But I don't care. Some things are so awesome they have to be shared with the world. Even things that aren't comics.
And if you fear it's too much to ask of flesh and blood to endure a post about a book on a comics site, just thank Rassilon I didn't do a post about the picture cards I used to get from boxes of tea. Now there is a post I'm saving up for when I have nothing at all else left to write about.
Keep Those Things Away From Me - Novel
1 year ago