Frew #1370
by Bob McLeod & Jim Shepherd
(this edition is the 1398th actually printed)

Release Date: 28 November 2003

  • Pages: 36
  • Price: $2.20 inc. GST
  • Cover: Bob McLeod & Jim Shepherd
  • No Phantom Forum in this issue

Fantomen Nr.24/2003
by Rolf Gohs

  • Secret of the Skulls Pt.2
    • Script: Claes Reimerthi
    • Art: Bob McLeod
    • First published in Fantomen Nr.24/2003 by Egmont, Scandinavia (14 Nov 2003). Original Finnish cover shown on the left, thanks to Brian Jensen.

  • Message from the Publisher:
    In this issue we present Part Two of Secret of the Skulls! For comics entertainment in the grand old tradition, this episode takes a lot of beating - and there is much more to come in the concluding Part Three. Have you guessed the eventual outcome? You may be surprised! There are just as many twists and turns in the final part of the adventure as in the first two parts and I feel sure many Phantom enthusiasts will be in for a number of surprises.
    There is always something magical when The Phantom mixes it with the Singh pirates! When you remember Lee Falk introduced the Singh Brotherhood in his very first story in 1936, it is now 67 years ago that the spotted flag villains were introduced! Is there another comics hero who has been battling the same gang for so long? I seriously doubt it!
    Claes Reimerthi wrote the script for part two and art is by Bob McLeod, a Phantom illustrator with enormous talent. Take a good look at Bob's action scenes and his lavish use of backgrounds. Absolutely brilliant! As I said in the introduction to part one of this continuing adventure, Claes Reimerthi has risen to new heights with his pace and continuity and the input of the artists guarantees Secret of the Skulls will be enormously popular. So much so, that I'll be surprised if readers do not select it as the top Phantom adventure for 2003.
    The blockbuster concludes in Frew #1371 which will go on sale on 12 December. To follow will be Frew's Christmas Special which will contain three full length stories, the classics The Masked Marvel and The Diamond Hijackers and the new American adventure Terror in Mawitaan. Both classics were the work of Lee Falk and Wilson McCoy and originally appeared in 1948-49 and 1960 respectively. Both have been out of print for around 13 years and are presented in their entirety for the first time.
    [Comment from Guran: Once again Jim's records are in error. The Masked Marvel was last published by Frew in #972 (1991) and The Diamond Hijackers (retitled as The Monkey Mail) in #1230 (1999). Both stories were then claimed to be published in their entirety for the first time, so Jim's present claim about #1371 is misleading.]
    Those who know something about the sport of professional boxing will spot some familiar faces in The Masked Marvel. Lee Falk was a lifelong boxing enthusiast who attended many world heavyweight championship contests in and around New York back in the late 1930s and in the 1940s period and drew inspiration for many of his Phantom adventures from the real life drama of the square ring. A little-known story about Lee was that he accepted an invitation from the promoter to be at ringside for the Joe Louis-Tony Galento heavyweight title fight in the 1930s and at the promoter's insistence, turned up at the outdoor stadium wearing a Mr.Walker-style overcoat, hat and dark glasses and accompanied by a highly trained Alsatian (German Shepherd dog) which acted the part of Devil! When Lee and "Devil" were introduced to the huge crowd by the ring announcer they had an enormous reception from the huge crowd in attendance!
    The 2003 Christmas Special will be on sale on 19 December. It will be followed by our 2004 Annual Special (on sale 9 January 2004) which will contain a big range of Lee Falk classics, an unpublished (in Australia) Scandinavian adventure featuring the Singh Pirates and the Jungle Patrol and a number of new stories.

Jim Shepherd

Future issues planned as of 26 November 2003 (subject to change without notice):

Check the New@Egmont, Frew Reprint Schedule, and The Missing Semic Stories pages for details of other upcoming stories.

My thanks to the staff of Frew Publications for providing this information.

More Frew stuff ...

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Bryan Shedden /
Last updated 26 November 2003