When Comics Were King: Advertising in Eagle

Richard Sheaf (with additional material by John Freeman) looks back at advertising in the Eagle in 1960…

It’s perhaps hard for many comic fans of today to appreciate just how valued comics were as a means to reach young consumers.

Advertising was a staple part of comics up until, in the main, the 1990s, the huge circulation figures of comics more than enough of a convincing reason to promote a huge range of things, from breakfast cereals to anti-smoking campaigns, armed forces career drives and new model kit releases.

The Eagle was no exception and, following on previous items both here and on my Boys Adventure Comics Blog (research about Eagle also leading me down a great rabbit hole in the search for breakfast cereals material related to British comics), my friend of the blog Norman Boyd, keeper of the Frank Bellamy Checklist, has sent me some further scans.

These are all taken from Eagle in 1960, offering a fascinating snapshot of the hot items of the time as far as teenage boys were concerned, advertising supported by associated features and competitions, of course.

Sadly, today, restrictions on what can be advertised in publications for children, and the diminished range of comics beyond licensed titles – effectively an advertisement for a particular toy range or TV show from cover to cover – mean we’ll never see such variety again. But it’s fun to look back on it.

• Richard published his take on Eagle advertising here and here on his Boys Adventure Comics Blog

Advertising in comics items on the Adventure Comics Blog

With thanks to Norman Boyd

Eagle copyright Dan Dare Corporation

Categories: British Comics, Creating Comics, downthetubes Comics News, downthetubes News, Features, Merchandise

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