Rani Comics (translating from Tamil language to Rowdy Raja) was published in Chennai, India between 1984 and 2005. Rani Comics published Phantom comic books from 1990 thru until 2005.
Dina Thanthi (translating to Daily Mail) was established by Si. Balasubramania Athithan in Madurai, India in 1942 as a daily newspaper. The newspaper is published in Tamil language and is distributed in 16 cities in India and prints an international edition for Dubai.
Rani Comics was published in Tamil language, competing with Lion Comics and Mehta Comics within Tamil language circles of the time. Rani Comics was well placed and ahead of it’s competitors, mainly due to Rani Comics solid distribution, drawing upon Dina Thanthi distribution network and also the fact that Rani Comics price point was much lower then it’s competitors.
Phantom comics weren’t seen in an exclusive published series, but randomly placed/released amongst other comic books and characters. Each comic released by Rani Comics didn’t feature it’s own character within the comic, often released with 2 characters, with puzzles and general interest articles also found within the covers.
Comic book characters published include James Bond 007, Cisco Kid, Johnny Hazard, Axa, Kit Karson, Rip Kirby, Flash Gordon, Mandrake the Magician and Black Tiger.
We find Phantom comics randomly placed within the series from comic book number 141 in 1990 thru to comic book number 500 in 2005. Internal pages were published in black and white up until 2003, then published in color through to 2005. 68 pages were found in the majority of Phantom comic books, increasing to 84 pages in 2003.
Below we see Phantom comic book number 141, the first comic book to feature the Phantom by Rani Comics titled ‘Ragasiya Police 000’.
Phantom comic books were published in a mix of landscape and portrait formats, measuring approximately 13.5cm x 19cm regardless of the format. The majority of content found within the comic books are Daily and Sunday comic strips by Lee Falk and Sy Barry, which were sourced directly from King Features Syndicate before translated to Tamil language.
A small sample of comic books published by Rani Comics which feature the Phantom on the front cover can be seen below.
A sample of internal pages found within Rani Comics can be seen below.