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Jamie Hewlett's Phoo Action No Longer From Z2 Comics

Phoo Action by Jamie Hewlett and Mat Wakeham is no longer to be published by Z2 Comics and those with pre-orders have had them cancelled.

In August last year, Bleeding Cool reported that the comic strip Get The Freebies by Mat Wakeham and Jamie Hewlett that used to run the magazine Face in the nineties and also got a BBC Three pilot transmitted in 2008 called Phoo Action, was to be collected in a massive hardcover volume from Z2 Comics, Phoo Action: Silver Jubilee with tonnes and tonnes of backmatter, behind the scenes as well as new work.

The TV series, which would have starred Jaime Winstone as Whitey Action, Carl Weathers as Police Chief Benjamin "Ben" Benson and Eddie Shin as Terry Phoo was commissioned, but cancelled just before production was due to begin. The new book would finally explain why, as well as tell the story that would have been told in the show, in an illustrated novel form.

But now there is a new glitch. I saw an almost-complete mock-up copy of the hardcover Phoo Action at London Book Fair the other week, courtesy of the co-author and long-term Jamie Hewlett collaborator Mat Wakeham, where I also learned that the book was no longer to be published by Z2 Comics. Now I learn that those who had pre-ordered the book have been told the news, that their orders have been cancelled. This letter has just gone out:

Dear Phoo Action Fans, Thank you for preordering the 'Silver Jubilee' book through Z2 Comics. Maybe like us, you've been counting the days until the book drops. We love all your enthusiasm for Terry, Whitey, and the Freebies' absurd crime capers, we really appreciate it and we share it. So we've very disappointed to report that for reasons beyond our control, 'Phoo Action Silver Jubilee' will not make the already delayed April 2023 deadline. Long story short, we're going to have to change publishers. It's a real pity all round and of course Z2 is disappointed by this latest setback too. As a result, you will get a full refund and we'd like to send you an exclusive Phoo Action sticker set and in addition, please take your pick of any standard Z2 publication, yours for free. Hopefully this will bridge the gap. Jamie and Mat are still set on their mission to bring you the ultimate edition of 'Phoo Action Silver Jubilee'. This latest bump in the road for the phoomobile is just another case for the unstoppable super-cop-duo to crack and they're confident that – together with you – this slice of madcap justice will be served. Want to know what's in store for the Phoo Action book? You can join their email list here to stay informed about future developments. They will be back in touch there in the coming months, as soon as they find a new publisher. Thank you for your understanding and for keeping the Phoo Action fighting spirit alive! Z2 Comics and Phoo Action

To prove that it really is a thing, here's a copy of the book as I saw it at London Book Fair last month, with unseen Jamie Hewlett pages. I expect a fair few publishers will be interested in picking this up. And if you want to keep up with the latest, sign up here. I just did.

Phoo Action
Phoo Action by Jamie Hewlett – Photo/Rich Johnston


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Rich JohnstonAbout Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.
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