Sixty years ago today, the classic comic Eagle was launched (or at least I think it was). To be honest, I’m not sure if April 14th shown on the first issue’s cover, refers to the week-ending date (often used by comics and magazines at the time), or the actual date of publication.
While the general style and quality of Eagle provided inspiration for many other later comics (including TV Century 21), the most popular and successful element was undoubtedly Dan Dare, created, written and principally illustrated by Eagle’s co-founder Frank Hampson.
As mentioned in an earlier post, PS Publishing are marking the sixtieth anniversary with the launching of Tomorrow Revisited, a completely new version of Alastair Crompton’s earlier book about Frank Hampson and his work, The Man Who Drew Tomorrow. The new book can be ordered directly from their website.
Tomorrow Revisited also features seven unused characters created by Frank Hampson for Eagle, showing examples in print for the first time, along with concept and adventure background details. The seven character formats specifically, along with other examples of Frank Hampson’s work, can be seen in Wakefield Carter’s website (also written by Alastair Crompton), The Lost Characters Of Frank Hampson.
As for Dan Dare himself, as featured in earlier posts, he lives on in the pages of Spaceship Away, with the twentieth issue currently on sale and issue 21 in preparation.
So it’s a special sixtieth anniversary for Eagle and of course, Happy Birthday Dan Dare!