Sunday 21 November 2021

Getting to know Shakti Comics, new publisher of Phantom comics in India

Q & A with Shakti Comics

Q1. Congratulations on your first issues of Phantom, Mandrake and Flash Gordon. 

Tell us about the response you are getting?

A. The response is tremendous. It is beyond our expectations whether it is Hindi, English or

Bangla. We are getting lots of emails, messages and phone calls from readers mentioning

that they are happy with our work and our sellers are also very happy as the stock they

acquired initially is sold out very soon and almost all of them reordered.

Q2. Tell us briefly about Shakti comics. Since when are you in business? Who are the team


A. Of course, Shakti Comics has actually been here in the comic field since 2004, then, it

was a retail shop in Meerut (near New Delhi) where people used to get comics on rent. 

In 2020, we launched it online and started publishing in 2021. The Team Members are:


1. Mr. Shankar, a very senior Phantom Phan since the times of Indrajal comics

2. Shakti Studios: takes care of translation and cover art management.

3. Artist: we have Anupam Sinha Sir onboard, well renowned Indian artist who has

created many Indian Super Heroes.

4. Ankit Mitra: An International Level Art enthusiast: Phantom Cover Artist.

5. Subhomoy Kundu: Nostalgic Art Enthusiast: Bengali version Production Head.


Q3. How / Why did you decide to get into publishing from retailing?

A. It was a great experience to make sure comics were reaching readers through our efforts

in the new normal. Still there was a huge void to be filled as there are only a few publishers

that too are producing very few new stories. Then we decided that our role should be

changed from retailer to publisher to do something for the Indian comic industry, especially

for regional comic fans who have a limited number of titles to read.


Q4. How/Why did you shortlist Phantom, Mandrake and Flash Gordon for your first


A. Yes! Here comes the question… When we decided to switch our role. 

We were thinking of many  stories and characters… then Mr Shankar suggested 

why not Betaal (Hindi for the Phantom)? 

 The obvious answer was “Regal has that…” 

Mr Shankar then  asked why they are not printing in Hindi?

So, we contacted King feature syndicate and acquired the rights for Hindi and Bangla

(exclusive) and English (shared with Regal). 

During the discussions with King Feature Syndicate we locked Mandrake 

and Flash Gordon also. Today, we are very happy with the response

from the public for all three characters.


Q5. Are you a Phantom and Mandrake fan yourself?

A. Yeah… I read all Indrajal comics on rent during my childhood, some of them I purchased

and collected also.


Q6. What are some of the challenges that you faced while coming out with the first issues?

A. Most of the team members were new and not much aware about the Phantom except Mr.

Shankar that too upto 1990.

After that we were totally untouched by the changes that came to the Phantom universe. 

Then in India  we do not have Phantom artists for cover arts also. 

But still we managed and results were in front of us.


Q7. We already have a publisher for Phantom and Mandrake comics in India i.e, Regal. 

How are you different from them?

A. We are focused on making a premium product. Regal has the phantom and Mandrake but

not Flash Gordon nor the rights of Hindi and Bangla. And for Phantom also the stories are

different. Apart from that we are focused on making every issue a more collectible one in

every aspect… cover art… back cover design, story title… binding and paper quality of

international standards.


Q8. How do you explain the recent growth of interest in Phantom and Mandrake comics in


A. It was always there… English readers were always enthusiastic about them. Now the

Hindi and Bangla readers are also getting these through us so we are happy that we are

bringing them in regional languages as well.


Q9. The first 3 issues have come out in 3 Indian languages-Hindi, Bangla and English. Do

you plan to publish in other regional languages as well?

A. Yes, if we will get enough demand then we will definitely be happy to publish in other

languages also.


Q10. How difficult was it to find a good translator for the Hindi and Bangla version?

A. Hindi translation was not so tough as we all are quite good in Hindi and English. 

But, yes Bangla translation was a little difficult. Initially, we gave the responsibility 

to a translator but he could not cross the bar, then it was given to Subhamoy 

and team and they did it very well.


Q11. You have chosen a very different, smaller size for the comics (~ B5) as compared to

Regal or Frew. Any particular reason the same? Will you continue to publish in the same


A. There are three reasons:

1.The size is very good for KFS strip placement.

2. Also Indrajal used to come in the similar size

3. In this size there is no wastage of paper… and Phantom loves the Jungle.


Q12. How do you choose the cover artist for the comics?

A. Initially we wanted to put some amalgamation of Indian touch to Phantom that's why we

chose Anupam Sinha and Subhomoy to revive the nostalgia. But now we are taking it more

seriously and the theme is more important. Some artists do bright stories well, some do dark

ones better like Ankit Mitra. So, we are going according to that.


Q13. What will be the frequency of publishing these comics?

A.    We would like to catch up on a monthly publication scheme


Q14. What are your plans for the future? Are you going to add more characters to your

publishing list?

A. Yes of course we will add more characters. Some are already in contract. some are in

process. Also, indigenous stories are in the pipeline.

You can order your copy of the comics here -

One stop shop for your favourite literary merchandise -


  1. Well, Hindi translation was quite poor. And to choose Anupam Sinha as cover artist for Phantom was the biggest mistake as he made Phantom to look like a caricature and a cheap copy of Dhruv..

  2. As a beginning, all are welcome .do not be deterred by negative comments .they to take a comments a positive ti improve your performance. Well planned n quite appreciated