Let's just say that straight off the bat. The man was legendary and his work on Oink! brought with it the kind of intricate detail and colouring that made the strips he drew truly epic. They may have been about pigs on motorbikes (Street-Hogs) or pigs saving the future (Ham Dare) but when reading them they still had a feeling that transcended other comics (humour titles or otherwise!) of the day.
At the beginning of the run, we also had the fortnightly pleasure of the Oink! Superstar Posters; double-page spreads of piggy parodies that, let's face it, looked awesome (and I don't use that word lightly) on our walls. To this day the artwork still looks phenomenal and the posters themselves are still funny. In the first of two blog updates dedicated to the eight spreads, below are the four posters from the preview edition and the first three regular issues.
I'm very tempted to purchase more copies of these early issues just to be able to get the posters up in frames in my house, while keeping an intact issue too. And I'm sure I'm not the only collector who has contemplated it...
Looking at these now I think it's incredible the amount of work that went into these for this anarchic kids' comic! These would be reprinted later in Oink!'s run for those that missed them the first time around, during the monthly issues. Personally I can remember some of them from back then, but moreso some of the ones still to come, so I'll go into that in more detail when I put up part two in a few weeks. The next posters would be included in issues 4-6 and then #8 so I'll post up the remainder after that issue.
Sadly, Malcolm passed away on 22nd March 2009 after battling cancer.
Oink! writer/artist Lew Stringer wrote a touching piece on Malcolm and his work on his blog at the time, which you can read here:
The Guardian newspaper also ran an obituary for "our friend Malcolm Douglas", which you can see here too:
Malcolm's own website is still open, where you can read about his work in his own words and is full of his fond memories as an artist.
Look out for more of his work soon with more posters (you can now click here to go directly to part two) and for fans of the Street-Hogs don't worry I haven't been leaving them out and their early adventure will be seeing the light of day soon on the blog.
See you all again next Friday, 26th July for the next issue.