Friday, July 25, 2014

Comic #114 - LAST Mandrake Indrajal : গোপন আবিষ্কার(খন্ড 27 সংখ্যা 7 - Apr'90)

   Before going to the comic,I would (once again) like to share few words about this series,Indrajal Comics.
   After reading a quite a number of comic-publishers' out-put(both Indian and Western),I yet to find a series with so much variety in one place!Not their every effort clicked and I have my dislike-list from those 800 odd published issues,but have to agree that this series stands unique even after more than 24 years have been passed since the last issue released! And with every passing year,the interest associates with Indrajal Comics is only getting bigger and bigger,not restricted within Indian fans anymore!

 If we talk about the major heroes(cover-stories),you will find as many as 12-13 such. If we talk about the pin-up/one-off characters, mostly humor with few detective ones, there were at least 10+ of such,and then the numerous GK/informative articles those were regularly appeared in the back-pages of each issues(and let's not forget those memorable and vintage ads,although the purpose was solely commercial!)

  Then, top of the all,these were mixed of both Western and Indian flavors.

 While Phantom (Betal),Mandrake,Flash/Kirby etc represented the foreign league, Bahadur,Dara etc. represented the very Indian rooting!
  While Micky Mouse,Robinhood,Zorro etc were from Walt Disney classics, Henry/Gunodhar,Chalky,Little King etc introduced us with the western funnies,in the other hand Chimpoo,Timpa,Pasha etc were our kids!
 Same goes about those very informative and interesting articles like Ripley's believe it or not,Capree's animal world,Ancient World History to only name a few! 
  Now would request other fans to tell us if they have encountered with any other comic series throughout the world, where as much variety-of-contents were present??  Tell us if there is/was any other comic-series with so much depth and versatility?? And not to forget,all these happened for more than 25 years!
(It's a humble request to all fans as although I read several comics from different countries/continents,still there is a chance that I missed some,specially those which were not published in English!) 
Now, the comic...

  গোপন আবিষ্কার was not only the last official Mandrake issue from Indrajal Comics,but it's also the last Bengali Mandrake Comic! After ToI cancelled the series, Diamond Comics bought the right,as we know.But they published Mandrake only in English and Hindi,so Bengali fans were left out.Later on 2000,after DC cancelled these comics,Egmont(India) bought the right,published as many as 15 old Mandrake stories(from Falk-Davis era) alongwith the Phantom,but all were in English only!

  So even after more than 24 years,if one looks back,he will find this issue,গোপন আবিষ্কার, dated 1-15 April 1990, as the last available Mandrake comic-book in Bengali - a very unfortunate truth(as I believe there are many Bengali fans who love this magician and his friends' adventures in a great extent!).
 Anyway,the story was fine,nothing great but that doesn't matter it's the last time you are reading this magicians' adventure in Bengali in a prominent book-format! This story was the extended part of the previous tale 'ষড়যন্ত্রের জাল'(খন্ড 27 সংখ্যা 4/Mar'90) and this time the fantastic duo finally reached that small university named Harrison. There they met vastly talented and seemingly funny Prof.Ghagah who invented a fantastic device which will move matters through the air without any visible means! But soon after,he was kidnapped..!!

 For the rest,read the story....

 Sometimes it happens that when you first obtain some books,you might haven't realized the importance of that issue,due to either lack of exposer or simply the fact that,we are not future-tellers!!;-) Same thing happened with me back on 1990,when I had this issue just withing the couple of days of the release,lost on very next day,felt bad but not too bad :-), and hence decided to buy the next issue as a substitute(which was ,as you know, eventually the last Indrajal issue).

 But years later when I was re-started my hunts for Indrajals,on and from 2005,bought plenty of issues from various sellers,when Indrajal Comics used arrive in the markets in 200-300 per bundle and they showcased those openly..
 In all those years while purchasing all other issues, I failed to manage a single issue of গোপন আবিষ্কার,even a coverless one! On 2008/9 Chandan(from Goa) gave me the English version but that's it....
Finally, on 2012, I have this rather elusive issue through exchange with Swagata,and this year another issue,this time,and for the first time in 9 years, from a seller!!
 I guess all these happened as a lesson that you should immediately purchase a 2nd copy if your original one(of any kind of book,specially magazine sort) is lost! Because you never know when that issue will vanish from market...for me,this period was lasted for only 21 years!! ;o)
PS - In a 2011 blog-post(Can You ever forget your First Indrajal Comics(ইন্দ্রজাল কমিকস্)??), I have mentioned this incident,when still I was missing that issue....but soon after got this!! It's like if you desire something pretty hard,you ended up having that....isn't it?? :)


Ranjan Gangopadhyay said...

nice post ............. nostalgic comics ....... thanks for the post & comics

Pradip Baksi said...

Khub valo post. Many many thanks. Apnar utsaho o porishram dekhe SELAM janai.

HojO said...

@RG : Welcome...

@PB : Welcome...and thanks!Indrajal amar onnotomo passion,tai ei niye kichu lekha manei stress-reliving! :)

Ja likhechi ta amader jana,kintu ek jaygaye dekhle bodhhoy series-tar uniqueness-ta aro bhalo bhabe bojha jay!
10+ Cover-heroes that incld. many top Western heroes,10+ regular pin-up characters,plus plenty of informative articles Indrajal-er 26+ year-er archive ke somriddho koreche....
Eto Comic-series porlam,onek jothestoi bhalo kintu tara mostly 'safe' Archie comics' series,or Australian Frew(Only Phantom) etc...