Gredown by James Zee
From around 1975 to 1984, Gredown published a diverse range of magazine-size comics, predominanly horror but also western, science fiction and other genres.11Thanks to Spiros for is pioneering effort a notesfromthejunkyard.blogspot.com to develop an index of all Gredown comics.... Beginning as sequentially-numbered magazine-size series, the comics later became mainly one-shots with a wildly eccentric range of titles.
Little is know about Gredown's origins, although it seems the company was formed to compete with KG Murray. Greg Murray appears to have established Gredown after his father, Kenneth G. Murray was bought out by Australian Consolidated Press (APC) in 1974.22See Atlas/Seaboard Down Under.... The earliest Gredown publications were magazines, but the company's output was soon focused on reprint comics.
The largest portion of Gredown's output was sourced from the US Eerie Publications, including reprints and reworkings of pre-code horror stories. The company also produced reprints from ACG, Ajax/Farrel, Atlas/Seaboard, Charlton, Dell, Fawcett, Red Circle (Archie) and Skywald (and more), possibly sourced through Transworld Feature Syndicate Inc. Later years saw an increasing proportion of Spanish material, sourced from agencies such as Selecciones Ilustradas and Creaciones Editoriales.
The most distinctive and collectible aspect of the Gredown publishing regime is the occasional story published first or only in Australia that had been originally intended for a cancelled publication internationally. Previously unpublished stories have been identified from Atlas/Seaboard in the US and from Spain (possibly from Norma Editorial or Selecciones Ilustradas).
Few of Gredown's covers came from the original publications, with the most from Spanish agencies and some produced in Australia. The most significant of these were by Phil Belbin (1925-1993),33For further information on Phil Belbin, see www.collectingbooksandmagazines.com.... a renowned Australian comic artist who was Gredown's art director in the mid to late 1970s.
It seems possible that the Gredown format was perceived as a success, with Murray adopting the same approach of magazine-size, one-shot comics from 1980.
Around this time, Grewdown appears to have been bought out by a private equity firm, with the name Boraig Pty. Ltd. subsequently listed in the comics' indicia.44Most issues on the AusReprints site are just listed with Gredown as the publisher, but data on Boraig issues will...
Somewhere in the range of 450 to 500 comics were published by Gredown over its decade of comic publishing. Most are undated and a precise publication schedule will probably never be known. While Gredown still exists, fan inquiries suggest that it does not retain corporate knowledge or records about its comic publishing history.55Kevin Patrick (Comics Down Under) and Daniel Best (20th Century Danny Boy) have both reported a lack of...
- 1Thanks to Spiros for is pioneering effort a notesfromthejunkyard.blogspot.com to develop an index of all Gredown comics.
- 2See Atlas/Seaboard Down Under.
- 3For further information on Phil Belbin, see www.collectingbooksandmagazines.com.
- 4Most issues on the AusReprints site are just listed with Gredown as the publisher, but data on Boraig issues will be progressively added as it is identified. Generally, most issue priced at $1 seem to acknowledge Boraig.
- 5Kevin Patrick (Comics Down Under) and Daniel Best (20th Century Danny Boy) have both reported a lack of responsiveness to inquiries.