And while we’re talking about Frank, his son, Peter Hampson, has pointed us in the direction of a new book by John Wade, entitled The Golden Age of Science Fiction. published by Pen & Sword, it concentrates on 1950s SF and covers radio, TV, books, comics and film.
“Eagle and Dan Dare are substantially featured in the book, together with copious illustrations and a host of other interesting information,” Peter notes.The 1950s has been dubbed the “golden age of science fiction”. It was a wonderful decade for science fiction, but not so great for young fans. With early television broadcasts being advertised for the first time as “unsuitable for children” and the inescapable barrier of the ‘X’ certificate in the cinema barring anyone under the age of sixteen, John Wade had only the radio to fall back on – and that turned out to be more fertile for the budding SF fan than might otherwise have been thought.
Which is probably why, as he grew older, rediscovering those old TV broadcasts and films that had been out of bounds when he was a kid took on a lure that soon became an obsession. For him, the super-accuracy and amazing technical quality of today’s science fiction films pale into insignificance beside the radio, early TV and B-picture films about people who built rockets in their back gardens and flew them to lost planets, or tales of aliens who wanted to take over, if not our entire world, then at least our bodies.
The Golden Age of Science Fiction is a personal account of the author’s fascination with the genre across all the entertainment media in which it appeared – the sort of stuff he loved as a young boy – and still enjoys today.
• Frank Hampson Centenary Exhibition Tuesday to Saturday 9.00am – 5.00pm until 12th March 2019, Bourne Hall Museum, Spring Street, Ewell, Surrey KT17 1UF | More about the Museum on the Epsom and Ewell Borough Council web site here – the nearest station is West Ewell – check out out Richard Sheaf’s review here
• There’s a brief guide to Frank Hampson’s Epsom connections here on the Epsom and Ewell History Explorer web site
• The Official Frank Hampson web site is at frankhampsonartwork.co.uk
• Frank Hampson – The Man Who Drew Dan Dare – runs until Saturday 16th March 2019 – For more about the exhibition visit The Atkinson web site
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