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Author Topic: LETTERSENTERTAINYOU 2015 - The Beast Lives!  (Read 2757 times)

Buttonman

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LETTERSENTERTAINYOU 2015 - The Beast Lives!
« on: 27 June, 2015, 05:07:55 pm »


Annnddd we’re back. Yes! Another thread of dull letter reviews and the same jokes - just what no one asked for! We’ve been away for a while, mostly due to The Beast developing a faulty part, but we’re back now and it’s not because of this week’s 2000ad letters page content or anything.

Our previous threads can be found here and   here.
and we can all remember the excitement when the Road to 10,000 was finally won by someone who didn’t claim their prize or probably even know their place in history! Can’t we? Still, this one will be better because rather than a Slaine beanie, which now forms part of our hill walking apparel, the prize is £100. Yes 10 tenners is the prize for the first person to get 100 letters across both 2000ad and the Judge Dredd Megazine. D.C. Dredd doesn’t count cos it was crap! Later down this thread you will see the leader board and it couldn’t be closer, with literally 27 people within a measly 90 letters, or less, of the grand prize. The usual LETTERSENTERTAINYOU T&Cs apply or details send an SAE to The Moon, Space.

This column will also review current letters to a high and impartial standard and provide stats direct from The Beast concerning the composer of each. You may also post requests for letters data but please don’t ask stuff like - ‘What Prog was that letter about Dredd appearing in a pizza in the 1990’s in?’ - The Beast isn’t wired that way!

In the last two years while we haven’t being dying, we haven’t been idle either with the first ever Letters Road Show containing top talents Stephen Watson and Alan ’Hollo’ Holloway penning missives to Tharg live in a Witherspoons in front of a frankly disinterested audience. Picture credit : Iz McAuliffe.



This was a great moment when two top 8 talents got together. Unfortunately Tom Proudfoot couldn't make it, because if he had it would still have been two top 8 talents.

Anyway to business. Prog 1937 had a fine back page foursome with a wide range of talent and experience.

The Letter of the Week prize when to new boy Nic Freeman of London who confesses his virginity in all things letters in his opening line. The Beast can confirm this statement to be TRUE! Nic has been reading 2000ad since he was 26 so he must be about 40 now. What a weirdo! Most readers are at least 44! We’ll be gentle on Nic due to his newness but his inspiration that “each issue is so varied” kinda states the obvious in what is billed as an anthology comic. We also had that all Rogue Trooper issue a while back so he’s technically wrong in his generalising. There is a lot of positively in his letter and Tharg sounds flattered in his gushing reply.

There have been three Tim Canterburys, sorry Freemen, in the Prog before with ‘JD’ in Prog 316 and Adam in Prog 840 who drew a smashing ‘Judge Mellie’.

Next up is attention seeking, ventricular tachycardia exaggerating, mash potato scoffing, Paisley resident Stephen Watson who celebrates his 88th letter and his first in over two years.

The letter is OK but is shamelessly namedrops Mike Carroll as a source of info (Hi Mike!) and is perhaps missing his usual cutting edge of wit and toilet references. Some good, albeit obsequious, points were made and he did get the always welcome reply from Tharg. He revealed on his well followed Facebook thread that he received the Dredd Heroclix for his letter and posted the photo below of his bounty.



Ivo Bochenski sounds like the baddie of some terrible Commando comic but he is in fact an old friend of the letters page having had his debut in 1997’s Prog 1044. He was previously seen in Prog 1517 in 2006 so he’s clearly another who has recently rediscovered his muse or at least Heroclix addiction. All Ivo’s letters have appeared in the Prog although two of them are credited to ‘Evo’ - must be Tharg’s mistake as The Beast is infallible.

Ivo’s letter notes his long-term absence from the letters page which The Beast has already confirmed. His letter has no shortage of whimsy as he sees some synchronicity to his writing a letter to a new story in “the fabric of things”. Maybe it’s really just a bunch of stuff that happened? Anyway Ivo’s daughter was the real critic here as she ran off before he could say any more!

We close out this opening salvo with Mike Morgan who has a bee in his bonnet, as those Americans say. He opens stating he “enjoyed the Prog immensely” but then goes on to damn with faint praise some thrills and lambasts others. A brave man who comes out with hotshots such as ”The Commercial Break 3riller was OK”, a statement that must have had Tharg jittering in his jumpsuit. Mike gets a near full column in a letter that could have been trimmed, but was left super sized - well he is an American!

Mike has a deserved place on the all time leader board which sees him in mortal combat with his near neighbor Doug Butler on 12. Mike is another returnee with this his first letter since his effort in 2011’s Meg 308. He has a lopsided 8 to 4 tilt towards the Prog and previous letters state he’s from Texas, so we won’t mess with him any more.

All in all a good letters page with some movement on the all time chart which is always welcome. We’ll try to run a column to coincide with each letters page or Dreddlines unless we get bored or snuff it or something. We leave you with the updated chart and as you can see the ba' is on the slates as far as the grand prize goes!


Bad City Blue

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Re: LETTERSENTERTAINYOU 2015 - The Beast Lives!
« Reply #1 on: 27 June, 2015, 07:40:19 pm »
pah! I will have to start scribbling.

Dandontdare

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Re: LETTERSENTERTAINYOU 2015 - The Beast Lives!
« Reply #2 on: 27 June, 2015, 10:09:20 pm »
Why does your ranking go 7-9-8-10?

I don't think the Beast has been fixed at all. Pah!

Buttonman

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Re: LETTERSENTERTAINYOU 2015 - The Beast Lives!
« Reply #3 on: 27 June, 2015, 10:15:13 pm »
Good! Someone spotted the deliberate mistake! 5 points!

COMMANDO FORCES

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Re: LETTERSENTERTAINYOU 2015 - The Beast Lives!
« Reply #4 on: 27 June, 2015, 10:32:03 pm »
What a con! Anyone who bothered to send a physical letter to D.C. Dredd and have it printed, should automatically get 99 points.

I, Cosh

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Re: LETTERSENTERTAINYOU 2015 - The Beast Lives!
« Reply #5 on: 28 June, 2015, 09:12:34 am »
Ha. Realistically, only one man has the power to stop him.

But he hasn't been seen in years.

Some say he never really existed. He's just a story to tell children who dream of writing letters.

But I believe. I'd be happy to help pay for Floyd Kermode's subscription if it means a real letter writer can win this challenge.
We never really die.

Buttonman

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Re: LETTERSENTERTAINYOU 2015 - The Beast Lives!
« Reply #6 on: 28 June, 2015, 10:29:45 am »
Oh Pete, how did you fall so far from the true path? Your 5 letter total (2 in 2012!) is really good. OK you never has a Letter of the Week or made double digits but you could have been someone. Now you are cheerleading for someone who left you, who hasn't has a letter printed since 2009 and frankly didn't like you anyway (probably). Get your pencil off Mother an scribble a few lines. Tell you what I'll ghost re-write them for you at Glasgow Comic Con and we'll see if we can rebuild your shattered self-esteem and indeed letter writing career.

Buttonman

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Re: LETTERSENTERTAINYOU 2015 - The Beast Lives!
« Reply #7 on: 15 July, 2015, 11:21:30 pm »
Not a full post as no one is known to us in the Dreddlines of Meg 362 and slagging off (or indeed praising!) strangers is not good form. A ood coverage of the old and new here with four writers having letters footprints of over ten years!

So in Top of the Pops style I'll do a quick run down of the charts.

Now then, now then, who's this with the biggest riser of the week...

The Letters stars of Meg 362 are :

Ken Langfield of e-mail land : 7th Letter - first in Meg 213 in 2003. 4 Meg and 3 in Prog - all Letters of the week!

Graeme Carnegie of Cambridge : 3rd Letter and first in Meg. 1st Prig letter in 1215 in 2001.

Jonathan Robson of Sherborne : 3rd letter - First in Meg 181/V3.78 in 2001. " Meg to 1 Prog

Dr Rich Evans of Conwy : 16th Letter - 10 Prog 6 Meg - 4th of 2015 - challenging last year's 5. 1st appearance Prog 1386 in 2004.

Kieron Stynes Dublin : 1st appearance

This of course moves Dr Rich up the charts from his lowly total of 12 morphing into a healthy 13.


Buttonman

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Re: LETTERSENTERTAINYOU 2015 - The Beast Lives!
« Reply #8 on: 15 July, 2015, 11:25:02 pm »
Apologies for the typos - where is the 'modify'?!

To clarify Dr Rich had 3 letters up for debate as they were for 'Merseyside' rather than his usual Colwyn Bay. An international panel of experts have studied the linguistics and awarded them to Rich, hence his rise up the ranks.

Buttonman

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Re: LETTERSENTERTAINYOU 2015 - The Beast Lives!
« Reply #9 on: 18 July, 2015, 04:25:14 pm »


And we’re back again! As expected the newly de-fibrillated Beast has encouraged both an upswing in the number of letters being printed and of lapsed writers doing the scribbling. We are seeing groundswell of excitement from old stagers making a return to the spawning grounds of the Nerve Centre as well as young newbies, making their first fawn like forays into the welcome embrace of the letters community.

Prog 1940 was a veritable Battle of Britain with three of the home nations represented - eat that Wales - as well as one colonist.

Letter of the Week when to a first time writer, as is often the case, in the shape of Anthony O’Connor from Ireland. He’s the first O’Connor since ‘D’ of Birmingham in Meg 27 (V2.7) and has two to go to match John of Co. Kerry who has one letter, two drawings as well as a non-scoring reader profile.

Anthony’s letter is one of those faintly embarrassing theme pieces as he pretends to be someone from Nu Earth. Things level out at the end however when he reveals it’s all a joke and he liked the Prog. We all enjoy a happy ending and we’re not talking about the Sunrise Sauna, two for one on a Tuesday.

Next up is old hand James Feist of Romney who is a prolific Beast botherer - and he writes letters too. This is James’ 15th letter and sees him surge up the league table which is reprinted, with permission, below. James was last seen in 2007’s Prog 1564 when he occupied the Letter of the Week berth. His first score was back in Prog 1274 in 2002 and his Prog to Meg ratio is 9 to 6.

James’ letter reads like a backhanded compliment with the current run of Progs being described as ‘mundane’. He should know having produced this moribund effort that reads like a paper version of Valium ‘hitting their stride’, ‘steady rhythm’ and ‘nicely paced’ - this one doesn’t get out of first gear!

A familiar face (if you’ve seen ‘Bad Manners’) next as friend of the thread Alan Holloway makes his 28th appearance which sends him further up the charts - he’s only one away from a top five (equalled) berth. Alan has 17 Meg letters and 11 Prog and hadn’t been seen before today since Meg 329 in 2012. He did sabotage letters guru Stephen Watson of Paisley with his madcap Mexican scheme and now weasels his way into Tharg’s affections with this palpably made up tale of spreading the word via his book shop. Remember Tharg, you see none of that money!

All quiet now as the clergy make an appearance. We’ve done nothing wrong but you can’t help but be uncomfortable with a priest in the house. That could be anyone’s copy of ‘Razzle’ Father! The pious penciller is Fr David Palmer of Nottingham who lets us know the Pope is down with the kids talking about ‘Mega-Cities’. Well at least that’ll be one thing the church has a modern take on!

Father David is a first time writer but the priesthood have been represented before - the delightful sounding High Priest Watson had a reading in Prog 860 and repeated the feat with the slightly changed rank of ‘Priestlet’ in Prog 891.

The  Ubiquitous American Letter next with Andy Porwitzky doing the honours. Andy enjoys his first printed letter here and unsurprisingly is the first ‘Porwitzky’ to trouble The Beast. Andy’s letter is a gushing tribute to the Sci-Fi special and he’s hammered his colours to the Slaine mast. His sentence structure is a bit garbled “too zarjaz not to write to you about” but we like his enthusiasm and brevity!

We close out with Ralph Burns of Edinburgh who knocks Tom Proudfoot down another rung on our ‘Favourite Writers From Edinburgh’ list. Ralph is a new writer and he suspiciously talks only about the Future Shock documentary - check those credits for a ringer! Tharg grabs the chance to promote the film and we look forward to taking it in when it shows up in darkest Paisley.

A good Input page with 6 letters covering a wide spectrum of writers and subjects.


Buttonman

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Re: LETTERSENTERTAINYOU 2015 - The Beast Lives!
« Reply #10 on: 17 August, 2015, 09:33:24 pm »


Well we’re back. Fresh from touching Sandi Toksvig at least four times, we return refreshed and energised and at least a fortnight without a heart epissss……

And we’re back! A bumper crop this week so let’s fire straight into Prog 1944. Seeing as we are read about as avidly as ‘The Cellar of Dredd’ blog we’ll keep the stats to the minimum and focus on the criticism - and there will be plenty of that! If you want more stats the Beast always enjoys a workout so please add your requests below.

Prog 1944 had a nice inside back page four bagger and just look at the quality. Keep looking, you won’t find any. Letter of the week goes to Adrian Manning of London who celebrates his second letter printed with this offering, following his Prog 1921 debut. Moley starts well by harking back to his previous letter that we confirmed in the previous sentence. Always good for letters to promote other letters. Rexy then goes on to find superlatives for all strips even when some are not required, before some unseemly begging to his wife - grow a set man - buy your own comics! So long as that isn’t a contradiction in terms!

It’s not so much ‘McCosh’ next as ‘McTosh’ (Hahahahahahahaha!) as Pete from Glasgow ends his letters exile that dates back to Meg 322 in 2012. Pete famously has no Letters of the Week at all and that’s hardly surprising given the work on show here. Still it is only his 6th letter and he does suffer somewhat in the shadow of the Letters Behemoth just down the M8. He uses the term ‘run’ twice in two sentences that shows up his poor vocabulary as well as, some, comma, splicing, which, makes, him, sound, like, he’s, on, the, cider, again. Pete does come up with a possible future instalment of the ‘… Life’ stories but frankly we’d have more fun watching Doc Cox’s rude vegetables on ‘That’s Life’!

Email’s very own Ken Langfield next as the man, who is really from Brighton (Progs passim), tells us his thoughts on the current line up. Ken is 8 letters to the good and first saw print in Meg 213 in 2003. He boasts three Letters of the Week which is three more than Pete McCosh. Ken waffles on a bit about the letters he meant to write but didn’t, but more than compensates with this meandering treatise on all the things he can come up with regarding the Prog ever. In fairness he did keep his counsel regarding ‘Droid Life’ so we can be thankful for small mercies.

The page ends with…oh bloody hell, it’s only John ‘Commando Forces’ Burdis making his first appearance since Prog 1677 in 2010. The Nerve Centre may be giving him a slot for old times sake, given it’s the 21 anniversary of his first appearance in Meg 80 V2.60 back in 1994. Back then John was massacring Argentineans (at the Gaucho Grill) and the Cellar of Dredd was a mere shelf in the downstairs toilet. The letter is headed ‘Life’s a Gas’ and certainly something stinks - maybe it’s those Scotch eggs that fell off his lorry? Anyway John is high for ‘Helium’ and even betrays his beloved Dredd for a Heroclix. The shame - just wait til the Ironic Legion hear of this! He cleverly notes that “the artwork adds to it” when praising ‘Absolom’. He ends with his usual merchandise based frenzy and you can almost hear the froth bubble as he muses on those San Diego and Glasgow Comic Con exclusives not available to a Souther softie such as himself.

Over to the frankly classier ground of Megazine 363 where the riff-raff are shown the door and punctuation isn’t someone sticking a needle in your ass.

We open with ‘Mr 10,000’ Dr Rich Evans who seems to spend more time writing letters than he does prescriptions. This is his 17th letter and he’s had 3 in the last 5 Megs. Rich has a good gush and shows some comic history chops before going back to tell his patients that he’s spent all the pills money on more stamps.

Ah, now we’re talking. Stephen Watson of Paisley hoves into view next and what a view - 89 letters spread out as far as the eye can see. Popularly known as ‘Mr Megazine’ Watson extends his overall lead to 8 with the 100 mark surely just a decade away. His letter here is maybe not his best work but he is on pills, you know. He namedrops chatting to Alex Roland before making some pretty obvious and patently wrong observations about the Dredd. He then uses the word ‘religious’ twice in the same sentence - religiously hanging onto that one are we Steve?!

We reach a small Peake next as Owen locks in his second score. It could be his fourth but the Beast Committee cannot allow him the O.R. Peake letters from Prog 1064 and Meg 138 V3.35 without verification. The writer of these two came from Silsden and Keighley so post up some old address books if you want to claim these for your total, Owen. Maybe he shouldn’t bother as his letter here is a dull history of the 2000ad logo - wrong publication to begin with. He seems quite indignant over the 20 years usage of what he feels to be a sub standard banner - let it go Owen it’s not that important (unlike the chronicling of letters).

Simon Morris next and he may be the only new writer across both publications. There was a Simon Morris from Coventry back in Prog 621 but we’ll need proof from the Port Talbot Simon before assigning this score to him. Simon occasionally likes to ‘grab’ a Megazine and likes some stuff and others less so.

We finish off with a couple of familiar faces in the shape of American Readers Doug Butler and Mike Morgan. The gents share a similar pedigree and are therefore only getting one paragraph between them. Both enjoy their 13th score here with Doug starting out in Meg 309 with Mike further along the trail in Meg 256. Doug’s letter is somewhat brief and we bet printed only so they could use that ‘Bouquet of Flowers’ header. Mike takes a bit more time to trash quite a lot of the Meg’s content and offering only faint praise in return. Give us back our tea if you don’t like it!

Over all this was a bumper week for all things letters with the only concern being the lack of new blood. We like to think that this thread’s re-emergence as the ‘Forum’s Favourite’ has brought many lapsed writers back to the game but we concede that may be a long shot. I mean who’s read this far? Not me, I zoned out after the first paragraph!

Here’s the updated table for the all time letters printed - getting close about the 13 mark!


Link Prime

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Re: LETTERSENTERTAINYOU 2015 - The Beast Lives!
« Reply #11 on: 17 August, 2015, 11:54:17 pm »
Another entertaining round-up, always a pleasure to hear the smooth efficient whirring of The Beast's processors.

Proudhuff

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Re: LETTERSENTERTAINYOU 2015 - The Beast Lives!
« Reply #12 on: 18 August, 2015, 11:20:21 am »
I really must, almost knocked out the top ten.... :-X
No doubt I'll be a grumpy killjoy Mr Negative...

Satanist

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Re: LETTERSENTERTAINYOU 2015 - The Beast Lives!
« Reply #13 on: 18 August, 2015, 11:49:39 am »
Missed opportunity for a "the Butler did it" or as Blakey just died recently "I'll get you Butler" gag.

And if Cosh lives in Glasgow then I guess that makes me Robin Hood as I spent a week in Sherwood this year. Harrumph!
Hmm, just pretend I wrote something witty eh?

I, Cosh

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Re: LETTERSENTERTAINYOU 2015 - The Beast Lives!
« Reply #14 on: 18 August, 2015, 01:01:24 pm »
And if Cosh lives in Glasgow then I guess that makes me Robin Hood as I spent a week in Sherwood this year. Harrumph!
It's where I store my Heroclix. Will they ever run out of those do you think?

Have a few letters in the pipeline with different addresses though, just to keep BM on his toes.
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