2011/03/13

D&D comics history special - D&DC (animated serie) related

Before the first comics related to D&D RPG were issued by american publishers, european ones did published some based on the D&D animated serie.

The first serie ever published (according to my actual knowledge), adapting all the 27 episodes of the cartoon, is spanish, entitled :

"Dungeons & Dragons - Dragones y Mazmorras

(DyM means D&D in spanish). It has been issued by Comics Forum, division of Editorial Planeta De Agostini from 1985 to 1986.


 The serie is not following the episodes order of the cartoon.
For instance, the first issue "El Ojo del Vigilante" is the adaptation of the second episode "The Eye of the Beholder", as well as the second title, "El Valle de los Unicornios", is the version of the episode 4 of the serie 'Valley of the Unicorns", and so on and so forth. (weird when you know that the spanish dubbed version of the serie - broadcast on tve channel - respected the original episodes order...)

Considering these have been printed in mid-80's, the graphics are pretty good.
Based on a weekly release, when a certain Efepé is in charge of the script, the artist is different from an issue to the next. (and so is the quality)

Here is the list of artists who worked on the serie :
Pascual Ferry (All covers, 1, 6, 10, 14, 16, 20, 27)
Francisco Javier Montes (2, 7, 15, 18, 22)
Juan Bernet Toledano (3, 9, 13, 23, 26)
Eloy Garijo Casajuana (4, 8, 11, 17, 24)
Bernardo Serrat Garcia (5)
Ramon Gonzales (12, 19, 21, 25)

 
     by P.Ferry                        by B.S.Garcia                    by E.G.Casajuana


   by F.J.Montes                    by R.Gonzales                      by J.B.Toledano

In my opinion, the whole serie is a success. First of all, the quality is here, then the complete serie was published, which is not so common considering D&D comics history. Now (as far as I know) it is in spanish only, no adaptation of the whole serie being done in another language. We can still hope for some reissue someday... (IDW is actually republishing the TPB version of DC Forgotten Realms... who knows heh)


Tho, next year, Marvel published :

Dungeons & Dragons Annual 1987

Here is an interesting use of copyrights. The annual is a hardcover book including a comic divided in 3 parts between which are short novels and puzzle games, all related to D&D cartoon show. (FYI, D&D annual 1986 was a children's book containing 7 short novels and 1 labyrinth game)


Now the amazing fact about this 1987 annual, despite the fact there is no mention anywhere in the book, is that the comic is the translated version of "El Ojo del Vigilante", first issue of the spanish serie. 
Strangely, here the story is entitled "The Eye of the Watchman".
I believe this is due to the translation process.
As well, the entire story suffers from a poor english. 
Printed in Italy, I do believe the translators were not native english speakers...


You can find the entire scanned version of this book (as well as 1986 one) on Dungeons & Dragons cartoon encyclopedia, the blog by Rogull72.


In the same vein, the same year, Marvel released :
 
Dungeons & Dragons Summer Special

This Marvel Summer Special 1987 is the translated version of "Prisión Sin Paredes", issue 4 of Dragones y Mazmorras (that went out in 1985).

    
Contrary to the Marvel Annual, this issue contains only the comic.
If there is no title on cover, it appears on the first page (which follows 2 pages of introduction, kind of summary of the animation's opening). As expected it takes up the title of the corresponding TV episode "A prison Without Walls".


I have to disagree with Zakiyah on the quality of the art. Especially when she said on her page (which no longer exists actually) that Annual's one was so awful and that this Summer Special's is decent... I tend to think the exact opposite. The adaptation of the spanish comic in this US format is a real shame for a bunch of reasons. The printing is of a very poor quality, the inking badly done. (Have a look at Dungeon Master in both pics and compare...)
The framing is just a joke... I let the margins on both scans for a comparing.
And translation... just as bad as it was in the Annual...
None of the onomatopoeia has been remade... just wondering since when "í" (inversed "!") is used in english XD... And icing on the cake... XD XD XD... they forgot to clean up some bubbles before putting translated text in...

yes si master amo !                             who...what ¿?¿

But well, even considering all these fails... this issue is still a must-to-have for any D&D comics collector.... pretty rare and so... vintage heh XD
A priori, no other translated version of Dragones y Mazmorras were published.
But here, in France, a strange adaptation of the episode "The Valley of the Unicorns" was issued. It is from 1987 (feb/mar release), by Editions de la page blanche and is simply entitled :

Le Sourire du Dragon - Donjons & Dragons

Le Sourire du Dragon being the title of the animated serie in France when broadcast on Antenne 2 channel.
(The license Donjons & Dragons was already existing in France that period... so I am wondering why the serie got entiltled differently... copyrights issue ? Desire to avoid any controversy ?)
Now on first page we have the title of the story : La vallée des Licornes
(No need I translate that heh...)


It is not really a copy of the spanish version. Just something else. 
The artist seems to be a certain Eugster according to the signature on first page and last frame. The graphics are on the whole awful but some pages denote a certain artistic sense (at least a very colorful one heh). Now my interrogation is to know if this comic got inspired by the spanish version or if both their layouts result from the cartoon sketchbook/celluloids.
(I ll watch the episode in near future to get an idea)
As a pic is worth a thousand words, here are the 2 first pages of the comic followed by the 2 first pages of the DyM issue for an insight :



As written on the cover, this is issue n°1. I have searched for other ones but found nothing yet. I so can t assure it is the only existing issue in this serie but it is highly probable.

Heh, here ya are, Nostalgia ! :P

PS : If you, oh reader, have any info about a non listed D&D animated serie-related comic, please feel free to contact me !

O_oV

14 comments:

  1. Hello. I think the Watchman thing in the 1987 annual is not a translation error but to do with the Beholder monster being the intellectual property of TSR. This can be bypassed by changing the monster's name. For example the Labyrinth Lord roleplaying game has a similar monster called the Eye Of Terror. (Not overly sure whether this is correct or not so don't quote me.)

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  2. Hey hey, thanks for passing by !

    I hear what you say but... here is my thinking :
    The original spanish version used the term "Vigilante" (that i believe is the official spanish term for beholder in D&D monstruous bestiary... for info, in french one it was called a Tyrannoeil - litteraly "tyrant-eye" heh)
    Anyway, if you translate "vigilante" into english, you get "watchman".

    I could easily agree with you if this comic was not D&D marked, and also not a Marvel one, as I am aware of this bypass-cheat being commonly used (no hobbit in D&D for instance heh...) but, the episode "The Eye of the Beholder" being a co-production of TSR & Marvel, Marvel already used the Beholder term so I assume they already got the beholder license (or whatever it is called)...

    Tho that s just my guess heh. (and am far from being a copyright & co specialist :P).
    You still may be right in the end.
    For sure this needs more investigations !

    O_oV

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  3. Hi, I was just passing by your site. As it had stuff related to the cartoon D&D.

    I was specifically looking for a D&D 1987 summer Special comic. I have an issue in near mint condition and I was hoping you could point me in the direction of a site or place where… well where I can sell it.

    Hopefully to someone who will appreciate it more than anything else. Any pointers will be much appreciated.

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    Replies
    1. I don't know about anyone else, but if you haven't sold it yet, I'd be interested in buying it.

      sanctum(dot)blog(at)gmail(dot)com

      Thanks!

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  4. Heya, well you could ask Rogull72 :
    http://dungeonsanddragonscartoon.blogspot.com/
    He is THE specialist of D&D cartoon and I am not sure if he owns this piece, he so might be interested. (or know someone who would be)
    Otherway, I d recommand ebay. I m sure people from all over the world are looking for this issue as it s not so common.

    o_O

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  5. Hello, I am a big fan of Dungeons & Dragons - Dragones y mazmorras, of Brazil, and I'm very interested in these 27 comics (and others you have in your country - of Dungeons & Dragons - mazmorras Dragones y), please , you can put them for download? can be in any language. It is because, in Brazil, were not on sale.
    This is my Hotmail: paulo_anderson40@hotmail.com
    If you could to put to Download, let me know.
    If you could put, thank you very much!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hi Luis,
    Fact is that it would take too much time to scan all these, even one issue to scan is not something you can do in a few.
    Honestly, if I had time to spend, I ll write more posts here.
    But you can find some of the spanish comics for sale on ebay or other webmerchants. (and these are not expensive)

    Thanks for passing by anyway !

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  7. I know it's been a year or so since the last guy asked, but you think you can scan your D&D Cartoon Comic collection to provide for download? It's very hard to find, otherwise I'd buy them outright and scan them myself. I'm currently translating the Requiem comic into English, I'd more than be happy to pass along the finished work to ya. Then I intend to use that comic to be played as a video using the radio show audio together as a sort of AV final episode. If your willing to scan all 27+ comics, I'd consider doing English translations of all those 27 Spanish comics as well. I guess you'd have to see how well I did Requiem to see if I'd theoretically do a good job. But yeah maybe you should scan and preserve those rare comics not just for D&D fans but for yourself, since those comics can deteriorate to a point of no return. Not only would you be preserving a rare D&D comic series for yourself, but you'd also be able to share with other D&D fans, on top of that you'd also potentially gain a digital English set, as well as the final comic that makes the series complete. Wait I can include an example of my work here: http://imagebin.ca/v/2M8GsJhITBVk
    Consider this task, I know it's alot of time but it'd be worth it in the end. If it's too much for you, would you consider loaning the set to me to scan, I'd send them right back and star working of them. Let me know, if you want to chat more in-depth about this, I'm on Facebook and we can chat there to work out the details if your interested in this project. Hope to ttyl, peace.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello,

      first of all, thanks for passing by.

      I am sorry to say that, despite your offer is interesting, I won t send my whole collection to someone I don t know. (And even if I knew you... not sure I d be willing do that). And that for many reasons :
      1. You (or anyone else I could send them to) could damage the comics by accident.
      2. This means 2 shippings... and I am working in shipping & logistics... which means to me also 2 chances to have damages or loss... which is just a risk I won t take.

      People already asked me for this as you said. As people asked me for full scan of the rare Vecna comics, which I refused to do considering the risk of damaging the item.

      And here some facts :
      These would be hell to scan due to the paper quality. Lots of page have so thin paper that you can see the reverse side appearing on the page you re looking at. I had lots of issue to scan one page for the comparaison with the french version and photoshop was almost no help at all.
      And I have to says that most of the comics I own in this collection are not mint at all... even some were damaged by humidity. These are not the best base to start such a work.

      Secondly, no these are not hard to find. Some issues are kinda rare to find (missing one still) but you can easily find 80% of the whole in a few weeks for abordable price. And be patient as I am to get the rest. (got the 26th issue after 2 years search... :) )
      Shipping costs are another issue tho... (Spain shipping policy had recently -within last years- changed like US did... and it s a bit expensive now, even intra-europa). But well, a collector won t stop all for a few more bucks heh... XD

      Then, I do not own the rights to publish here scanned copyrighted materials. I did an exception with the 2 story books and of course with pages here and there to add materials to my posts but I won t put whole scanned serie here... my blog would not last long then...

      Last point is that I don t judge your abilities to do the job correctly here, I am sure that you are willing to give the community a nice piece of worked materials. But you will have to find other way to get the base comics for that. Hope you understand.

      Take care.

      Kuro

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    2. Nevermind I got them all now. :)

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  8. Hi,

    Umm... I have an issue of dungeons and dragons summer special i'd like to sell. But I can't find a guide price anywhere. Any suggestions on what a good price would be? It's in very good condition, the cover does have light wear and a small tear though. thanks

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    Replies
    1. Hi, I acquired the summer special on ebay auction in 2011 around 40$. (shipping costs not included).
      We were many on this auction. (was 1$ auction at first)
      I believe you can ask for 50$ at least and the auction may be a good idea... who knows.

      Thx for passing by btw !

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    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  9. Thank for that. I'll be putting it up on ebay at the end of January. If you know anyone interested (or 2 or 3 people :) ) let them know it will be listed on the ebay uk site

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