Just published by the Jeff Hawke Fan Club and available to members is this collection of Jeff Hawke Jnr., containing all the Jeff Hawke strips from Junior Express weekly.
The 128 page book is the same large format as the Club’s COSMOS magazine which features strips from the Express, but is full colour throughout. In addition to the four strips published in the comic – “Spacerider”, “Planet of Fire”, “The Space Frontier” and “Operation Danger” – the book will include biographical information on the various artists and writers that created the strip, together with articles on the Jeff Hawke collector cards and club, with contributions from astronomer Duncan Lunan and our very own Jeremy Briggs, among others.
Although tangential to the main body of Jeff Hawke stories that featured in the Daily Express, once described as “the first adult science fiction strip in the UK”, Jeff Hawke Jnr. was an alternative incarnation of Sydney Jordan’s space hero who appeared in the pages of Junior Express weekly, launched in February 1954, only seven months after Hawke’s first appearance in the Daily Express. The publishers considered that Jeff Hawke would also appeal to younger readers in stories that were tailored to their tastes.
The stories were not drawn or written by Sydney and featured a different cast of supporting characters (including a young schoolboy); but there are a number of similar elements, such as Hawke’s encounter with a flying saucer and the Shining Ones in Sydney’s first story “Spacerider”.
Strips included “Wulf the Briton“, created by Jenny Butterworth and Ruggero Giovannini but best remembered for the strips by Ron Embleton (reprinted as Ron Embleton’s Wulf the Briton: The Complete Adventures by The Book Palace), “Lone Ranger”, drawn by Mike Noble, “Jeff Hawke” (based on Sydney Jordan’s newspaper strip for the Daily Express) and the “Battle Brothers” drawn by Harry Winslade.
Jeff Hawke © Daily Express