The latest issue of Eagle Times (Volume 32,Number Two), the magazine of the Eagle Society, is available now by mail order, offering a diverse range of features and some text fiction, largely inspired by the original Eagle adventure comic.
The Eagle Society is dedicated to the memory of EAGLE – Britain’s National Picture Strip Weekly – the leading Boy’s magazine of the 1950s and 1960s. It has published the Eagle Times, for many years, the team behind it recently taking the decision to diversify the content beyond the original Eagle, reflecting efforts by the organisation to widen its remit and appeal to a greater range of SF, adventure story and comic fans.
It’s another fascinating issue, despite the unfortunate mis-spelling of Charles Chilton’s name on the cover cover. (I was also a little bemused by a perhaps erroneously reported claim that another editor had edited the very Dan Dare collections I put together for Titan Books, including Safari from Space, but this is minor gaffe).
I particularly liked David Britton’s piece on the background to “Riders of the Range”, a terrific western strip which ran for twelve years in Eagle. Written by Charles Chilton, it outlasted its own radio show and remains the longest running western strip in British comics history.
I always find Eagle Times an enjoyable read and the wider range of articles is welcome. It’s a shame the Society doesn’t as yet have the resource (in terms of volunteer and budget) to have a greater physical presence at comics events so comic fans could see how much work goes into this welcome publication. But I’m aware of work behind the scenes to promote the Society more widely, so hopefully that’s changing.
In this issue:
• ‘Charles Chilton & the Indian Wars‘ – The first part of an in-depth series by David Britto, dealing with Native Americans and how they were interpreted in “Riders of the Range”. This article covers the 1957-58 series ‘War with the Sioux’, drawn by Frank Humphris, focusing on the events that led up to the signing of the Sioux Treaty (this strip was last reprinted in the UK by Hawk Books in 1990)
• ‘Thoughts on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’ – Thoughts on the life of the famous author and his only story to appear in the Eagle, “The Lost World”.
• ‘Newly Discovered Dan Dare Reference Material’ – A couple of examples of newly discovered “Dan Dare” concept sketches
• ‘The Eagle Society Annual Gathering 2018’ – A fun and in-depth report of the dinner. All the talks and activities are covered with plenty of photographs. This year it was held at the Hilton in Leicester.
• ‘Dundee: Venue for the Eagle Society Dinner 2019’ – This article gives us a flavour of what the city will be able to offer the Eagle Society during their visit next year. It mentions a number of the major attractions that will be available.
• ‘Connaught Racing Cars: 1948 to 1957’ – An article on the Connaught company and how the Connaught B-Type centre spread fuelled a passion in the author for their cars.
• ‘In and Out of the Eagle‘ – more instalments in the series that presents Eagle-related snippets
• ‘Space Fiction Movies in Eagle’s Times‘ part 5 – continuing a look at films about space exploration and alien visitations to the earth, the bread-and-butter of the Eagle‘s “Dan Dare” adventures between 1950 and 1969. This part covers 1963-65 and includes (among others) Ikarie XB-1, The Day Mars Invaded Earth, First Men in the Moon, Unearthly Stranger and Ghidorah the Three Headed Monster
• ‘The Case of the Educated Archie – Part 2’ – an Adventure of Archie Berkeley-Willoughby of Scotland Yard. A new story inspired by the character created by Alan Stranks for his radio show P.C.49
• ‘Whatever Happened to My Ten Percent’ – The text from one of the most anticipated fun talks of this years Eagle Society dinner, by downthetubes contributor Stephen Winders. It wonderfully covers various topics including King Richard III being found in Leicester, is humankind actually regressing and many more!
• Membership of The Eagle Society is via Annual Subscription to Eagle Times magazine, which is published four times annually. The Subscription rate for 2018 is UK £29 | Overseas £40 (in £s Sterling, please). Postal applications to Eagle Society Membership Secretary Bob Corn, Wellcroft Cottage, Wellcroft, Ivinghoe, Bucks LU7 9EF United Kingdom.
• If you wish to pay by Paypal (from your Paypal account to the eagle-times hotmail address given below) – the not for profit Society request that you make your payment as a GIFT). Enquiries: email@example.com
• The Eagle Society has a weblog at eagle-times.blogspot.com, created to provide an additional, more immediate, forum for news and commentary about the society and EAGLE-related issues. Want to know more? See First Post and Eagle – How it began
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The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. He is currently editor of Star Trek Explorer, published by Titan – his third tour of duty on the title originally titled Star Trek Magazine.
Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Babylon 5 Magazine, and more. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War” and “Dan Dare”.
He’s the writer of “Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies” for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.