the dan dare annual 1974

unlike the hard cover hawk books dan dare reprints from the 1990s which consisted of scans taken from the comics published in the 50s the dan dare annual 1974 appears to have used the original artwork

the clues to this are

1    with 70s technology the colour reproduction is different to (presumably because it’s more accurate than) that of the 50s comics

2    the image below shows a text box pasted on to the art where the glue seems to have turned brown with age – implying the artwork, produced in 1959, was used again in 1973

text box

copyright IPC 1973

it’s difficult to tell if this will be discernable from the screen on which you are reading this but on p69 of the annual the following panels clearly have a piece of transparent tape stuck across them

copyright IPC 1973

which may have been stuck there in the 70s

reading that back that last point isn’t really evidence of anything: if anyone has a different print of safari in space (ideally in the original comics) could they confirm neither of the things mentioned above are visible

lastly note the strips reproduced in this annual (the other is the red moon mystery) have been edited down so they fit into the book + to remove the eagle masthead from every other page

a significant point on this subject is that the cover of eagle vol 3 no 2 (reproduced below)

eagle vol 3 no 2
which would be expected to appear between p 30 + 31 of the annual has been omitted.  this is a major omission – although it does very little to progress the story this page features a range of people from different ethnic origins (compare the way they’re depicted here with some of the images of eg the japanese found in US comics from 1952)

the whole of the map in the background is stated to consist by 1999 of independent countries where individual liberty + equality is secure regardless of race, colour or creed.  the text box should be legible if it isn’t already in the following enlargement:

eagle vol 2 no 3 detail large
+ in case the footnote on the map cannot be read at this degree of magnification it states ‘all boundaries printed on this map must now be considered obsolete – UN racial law 267’.  note this was on the cover of a comic aimed at 8 – 12 year old schoolboys seven years after the end of world war two

eagle vol 2 no 3 detail detail large
this has to be the finest (+ is certainly the most explicit) example of the humanitarian values the eagle chose to represent – depicting a potential positive, optimistic world order its readers may contribute to achieving when they’re older

SF has far too many dystopias warning adults they ought to change the way they think or act in case something awful happens in the future + nowhere near enough visionary thinking aimed at the people who are actually going to have to live in it

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