Mike Collins (comics)
|Area(s)||Writer, Penciller, Inker|
Mike Collins is an English comic book artist and writer and has been working in comics since the mid-1980s.
Born in West Bromwich in 1961, he moved to Wales in 1985 after an abortive stab at a career in the law, in London. Despite his training as a barrister, Mike decided that he enjoyed the fiction-based life of comic book characters over the fiction-based statements of clients. He is married to Karen Collins and father of three daughters, Bethan, Rebecca and Rhiannon, and is currently placed in Cardiff. He is the grandson of Military Medal-winning World War One soldier Thomas Guinane.
In the mid to late 1980s, Mike wrote and drew strips for Marvel Comics United Kingdom division, amongst them; Spider-Man, Transformers, Doctor Who, and Zoids. He also worked on the celebrated UK weekly comic 2000 AD drawing Judge Dredd, Sláine and Rogue Trooper, as well as writing various Future Shocks.
He was hired in the 'Second Wave' of British artists lured to the United States in the late 1980s. Through the 1990s, he worked primarily for DC Comics on their key titles – Batman, Superman, Flash, Teen Titans, Wonder Woman, and the Justice League.
He also drew a series of licensed comics for the company, using various TSR, Inc./Dungeons and Dragons characters. A brief spell at Marvel saw Mike working on Uncanny X-Men (Key issue: #266, the first appearance of Gambit). He was back to DC though, to write and draw Peter Cannon, Thunderbolt, a revival of a 1960s Charlton Comics character.
Mike's primarily known for his work on TV and movie tie-in comics- for both Marvel and DC he has written and drawn Star Trek comics. In the late 1990s, he drew a Babylon 5 mini-series, "In Valen's Name", written by series creator J. Michael Straczynski and Peter David. A departure from most tie-in productions in that it actually serves as series 'canon' being based on an unused 3rd season script.
Currently, the artist (and sometime writer) on Panini Comics Doctor Who Magazine, Mike also wrote and drew a strip for the late, lamented Weekly World News, as well as co-creating the series American Gothic with Ian Edginton for 2000 AD.
Outside of comics Mike paints covers to a monthly series of downloadable Star Trek novels – the Starfleet Corps of Engineers, and works as a storyboard artist for both animation and live-action TV and movies.
Major work recently published is a 135-page adaptation of Charles Dickens' 'A Christmas Carol' for Classical Comics. His regular 'Doctor Who' collaborators, inker David Roach and colour artist James Offredi, worked with him on the book, with the script writer being Sean Michael Wilson. The graphic novel was chosen as one of the Top Ten Graphic Novels of the year by the Sunday Times and has gone on to sell well across by the UK and US, with several foreign language versions also coming out.
For BBC Books he has drawn The Only Good Dalek- the first graphic novel from the publisher, written by longtime Doctor Who author Justin Richards, and a sequel/prequel to the TV episode Victory of the Daleks, The Dalek Project.
Unusual and unique work
He wrote and designed the first ever Welsh language graphic novel – Mabinogi in association with Cartwyn Cymru in 2001, and is the first UK artist to produce a series of graphic novels for Norway with Gunnar Staalesen, featuring his celebrated private eye, Varg Veum.
He works as a key illustrator for Welsh language school books using the comic strip medium, aimed at reluctant learners.
He supplied art for a number of cards in the Harry Potter Trading Card Game.
Mike is the lead singer of Cardiff-based Tom Waits tribute band 'Tom Waits for no man'. Named by his daughter Rebecca, who is also a founding member alongside Viv Lock on guitar and Terry Williams on bass. They are a large contribution toward the lively and fast-growing Whitchurch music scene.
Film and TV
As well as comics work, Mike is a storyboard artist for Calon and Dinamo on children's TV shows, primarily the BAFTA winning Hana's Helpline, Igam Ogam and Cwm Teg. He has also worked on short live action movies, one of which -Day at the Beach- was BAFTA nominated in 2004. He also storyboarded on the Warhammer 40,000 CG film UltraMarines, and for Doctor Who.
- Tharg's Future Shocks:
- Judge Dredd: "Doomsday" (with John Wagner, in Judge Dredd Megazine #3.58–3.59, 1999)
- Sinister Dexter: "Wising Off" (with Dan Abnett, in 2000 AD #1311, 2002)
- Starfleet Corps of Engineers: "Caveat Emptor" (with Ian Edginton, ebook, 2002, tpb No Surrender, 2003)
- American Gothic (with Ian Edginton, in 2000 AD #1432–1440, 2005)
- Doctor Who:
- "The Nightmare Game" (with Gareth Roberts, in Doctor Who Magazine #330–332, collected in The Flood, 226 pages, 2007, ISBN 978-1-905239-65-8)
- The Ninth Doctor Collected Comics (98 pages, April 2006) collects:
- "The Betrothal of Sontar" (with John Tomlinson and Nick Abadzis, in Doctor Who Magazine #365–367)
- "The Lodger" (with Gareth Roberts, in Doctor Who Magazine #368)
- "F.A.Q." (with Tony Lee, in Doctor Who Magazine #369–371)
- "The Futurists" (in Doctor Who Magazine #372–374)
- "Interstellar Overdrive" (with Jonathan Morris in Doctor Who Magazine #375–376)
- "The Woman Who Sold the World" (with Rob Davis in Doctor Who Magazine #381–384)
- A Christmas Carol (adapted by Sean Michael Wilson, with inks by David Roach, 132 pages, Classical Comics, October 2008, Original Text, ISBN 1-906332-17-7, Quick Text, ISBN 1-906332-18-5)
- The Only Good Dalek the first graphic novel from BBC Books written by Justin Richards, 128 pages of big screen Dalek action featuring the 11th Doctor and Amy Pond, September 2010, ISBN 1-84607-984-5
- Mike Collins at Barney