Saturday, October 15, 2016

Yaffa digest gallery: Pairing up the retitled Yaffa digests - or, The centre is everywhere and no circumferance can be drawn

To state the obvious, collecting a complete run of a series is a challenge. Sure, some may take as little six months, but as serious collectors understand and accept, many take ten or twenty years or more.

I have full runs of titles running over 100 issues. I also have incomplete series with stubbornly elusive issues which have thwarted me from completing runs of less than 20 issues.

But at least they are a known quantity -  finite series with a neat, orderly number of consecutive issues, generally with a regular publishing frequency.

Collecting unnumbered or one-off issues is a different matter altogether. Firstly they need to be sighted for their existence to be confirmed. And you need to weave around dead ends such as dodgy databases or inhouse advertisements for non-existent issues. Then you need to secure a decent copy. Think Gredowns. Think Murray digest romance or western comics. Think some Newtons.

Then consider one-off, unnumbered, retitled digest Yaffa/Page issues. Random issues published towards the end of the licence, with no apparent schedule, no unifying volume number or series, and no existing complete checklist or index.  

You can draw a loose circle around, say, a couple of dozen or so, without knowing the full circumference.

I've posted on a few of these before, but I wanted to bring together in one place as many pairings as I could recall and identify. So, for the moment, enjoy this gallery of one-off, unnumbered, retitled Yaffa/Page digest issues, paired with their mother, and I'll add a few more notes at the end.

Still with me? Cool. Allow me to add a few more words about these images.

1. This is obviously not a complete gallery. I do have a few more one-off, retitled issues - or cover scans of issues - for which I have not yet identified matching original sources. I wanted to survey confirmed pairs only in this post.

2. There may also be a large range of Yaffa/Page issues and pairs with similar qualities to those above, but which are beyond my radar, such as Archie comics, which don't interest me.
3. Generally speaking, the covers and other images I post on this blog are from my own collection. I would say more than 90% are my own. Having said that, many of the images in this post in particular are from various sources, such as AusReprints, GCD, eBay, private collections, and other miscellaneous sources from ages ago too.

4. Given I don't have my usual access to all of these issues, I cannot guarantee that every retitled issue above is indeed a direct reprint of the original as far as the inner contents are concerned. I believe they are, given the track record of the issues to hand, but I must, in good faith, add the qualifier that I haven't confirmed it to be so for every single issue.

5. I'm aware that some of the Yaffa issues above had subsequent reprintings by Yaffa quite apart from the retitled digest editions eg. Master of Kung Fu #1. Such reprintings have been covered before and are a separate albeit related topic.

6. I alluded at the top of the post to the apparent randomness of the retitled issues. At times I've sensed or hypothesised an underlying order of sorts - that retitled issues followed directly from the end of the parent series, and were maybe even published sequentially sans numbering following the reprinting of the first issue as say the 10th issue of the regular series. This kind of makes sense, but there are examples where this does not apply so neatly. However, if and when these retitled issues are fully indexed, a pattern may become evident, and the circumference drawn.

1 comment:

Mark Cannon said...

A wonderful compilation - excellent work!

I wonder if Yaffa has the same jack-of-all-trades coming up with their titles as Federal, when they switched to one-shots for their reprints of DC material? The titles are a similar mix of the suitable and the awkward.

I'm pretty sure that there were some Archie digest reprints that also used one-shot titles. I say "Pretty sure" because while I don't collect them, I think I spotted one a couple of weeks ago somewhere in the chaotic mess I laughingly call my "comics room". I'll have to try and find it - wish me luck....

Keep up the good work!