Express Weekly

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Lew Stringer
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Express Weekly

Post by Lew Stringer » 16 Feb 2007, 11:28

One comic that seems to be somewhat neglected is Express Weekly (later TV Express). Great artwork by Ron Embleton, Mike Noble, Mike Western and more. I'm not sure why it's not remembered with the same fondness as Lion, Eagle, Radio Fun etc although I must admit I've only "discovered" it myself recently. And even now I only have a handful of issues.

Anyway, I've written a short item on it over on my blog and have uploaded a few scans etc.

http://tinyurl.com/2r6jpp

Lew

[IMG:255:353]http://i19.tinypic.com/2a5ci29.jpg[/img]

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Shaqui
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Express Weekly

Post by Shaqui » 16 Feb 2007, 15:38

Even more forgotten is Express Weekly's direct predecessor Junior Express, effectively a newspaper for children, and which had a two-year run (or there abouts) in that format. Jeff Hawke started in that, before Express Weekly had colour...

Other great artists include Ron's brother Gerry (who I'm sure did most of 'No Hiding Place'), A.W. (Bill) Mainwaring and Bill Mevin. I think John Canning (better known for Dr Who in TV Comic also started his career on this title.

8)

Lew Stringer
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Re: Express Weekly

Post by Lew Stringer » 16 Feb 2007, 16:11

Shaqui wrote:Even more forgotten is Express Weekly's direct predecessor Junior Express, effectively a newspaper for children, and which had a two-year run (or there abouts) in that format. Jeff Hawke started in that, before Express Weekly had colour...

Other great artists include Ron's brother Gerry (who I'm sure did most of 'No Hiding Place'), A.W. (Bill) Mainwaring and Bill Mevin. I think John Canning (better known for Dr Who in TV Comic also started his career on this title.

8)

It's quite bizarre that it's an almost forgotten comic. (Although admittedly I hadn't given it much thought myself until this week!) Wonder why? Could it be because it wasn't published by the big two (Fleetway or DCT)?

I mentioned Junior Express on my blog but I didn't know Jeff Hawke had appeared there! I'll add that. Thanks Shaqui.

Further investigation revealed that Jet Morgan also appeared in Express and (how could I have forgotten) that those strips are currently being reprinted in the excellent Spaceship Away comic?

http://spaceshipaway.org.uk/

Lew
The blog of British comics: http://lewstringer.blogspot.com
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Shaqui
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Express Weekly

Post by Shaqui » 16 Feb 2007, 16:36

Fairly sure of that Lew - I bought a couple of issues a while back after going through Junior Express at the British Library. Cover and centre pages were black and red duotone. If you want some scans to include, I'll try and dig out my issues...

:)

David Simpson
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Express Weekly

Post by David Simpson » 16 Feb 2007, 17:52

Fans of Jack Kirby might like to know that Express Weekly ran his Sky Masters strip, running justa few days after American publication, sensitively reformatted and, best of all, beautifully coloured. The one example I have is a lovely sight.

David Simpson

Lew Stringer
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Re: Express Weekly

Post by Lew Stringer » 16 Feb 2007, 17:55

David Simpson wrote:Fans of Jack Kirby might like to know that Express Weekly ran his Sky Masters strip, running justa few days after American publication, sensitively reformatted and, best of all, beautifully coloured. The one example I have is a lovely sight.

David Simpson

The more that's revealed about this comic the more interesting it becomes! Which makes the mystery of why it's so often overlooked even more intriguing.

Lew
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Shaqui
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Express Weekly

Post by Shaqui » 16 Feb 2007, 18:37

Despite the fact it was beautifully produced, it kinda died and merged into TV Comic before the sixties took off, and fads of that kind. Even TV Comic in the 1950s is a pretty overlooked era - most kick off with Four Feather Falls in 1960...

:roll:

Lew Stringer
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Re: Express Weekly

Post by Lew Stringer » 16 Feb 2007, 20:34

Shaqui wrote:Despite the fact it was beautifully produced, it kinda died and merged into TV Comic before the sixties took off, and fads of that kind. Even TV Comic in the 1950s is a pretty overlooked era - most kick off with Four Feather Falls in 1960...

:roll:

That's true. I picked up a bunch of 1950s Radio Fun annuals from eBay at very reasonable prices. (Some for as cheap as a fiver each.) Interest in fifties UK comics hardly exists any more it seems.

Express seems to be a blind spot in particular though. I ran the info about the Danger Man text stories past the Usenet Prisoner groups and the reaction so far has been almost complete indifference.

Lew
The blog of British comics: http://lewstringer.blogspot.com
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Shaqui
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Re: Express Weekly

Post by Shaqui » 16 Feb 2007, 22:15

Lew Stringer wrote:
Shaqui wrote:Despite the fact it was beautifully produced, it kinda died and merged into TV Comic before the sixties took off, and fads of that kind. Even TV Comic in the 1950s is a pretty overlooked era - most kick off with Four Feather Falls in 1960...

:roll:

That's true. I picked up a bunch of 1950s Radio Fun annuals from eBay at very reasonable prices. (Some for as cheap as a fiver each.) Interest in fifties UK comics hardly exists any more it seems.

Express seems to be a blind spot in particular though. I ran the info about the Danger Man text stories past the Usenet Prisoner groups and the reaction so far has been almost complete indifference.

Lew
It's funny how comics *full stop* can rouse almost complete apathy from fans of the same TV series. I've contacted a number of US fan sites of various series, about the British strip counterparts, to little interest, and even Kim Stevens (GACCH co-producer) found the owners of the 'Space Family Robinson' sites in the US ignored the UK version from 'Lady Penelope'...

:roll:

john56peter756brit
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Express Weekly

Post by john56peter756brit » 16 Feb 2007, 22:59

great artwork from ron embleton shame he passed away at such a early age only in his 50's i can still see his artwork in my mind when i worked at martspress he did stuff for once upon a time fantastic stuff i did some lettering on his art how time goes by. :?

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philcom55
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Re: Express Weekly

Post by philcom55 » 17 Feb 2007, 02:47

Shaqui wrote:Even more forgotten is Express Weekly's direct predecessor Junior Express, effectively a newspaper for children, and which had a two-year run (or there abouts) in that format.
The brief heyday of Children's Newspapers has to be one of the most obscure chapters in the history of British Comics! I wonder who else can remember 'Space Captain Jim Stalwart' or 'Flash the Wonder Dog' from Junior Mirror - Let alone Armand & Michaela Denis from Junior Express Weekly?

[img:545:415]http://i135.photobucket.com/albums/q123 ... 5/JExp.jpg[/img]

- Phil Rushton

brisey
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Express Weekly

Post by brisey » 17 Feb 2007, 08:43

I do have a couple of issues squirrel away and they are beautiful drawn,bright comics.I tried a while back to buy some more but they never came up on ebay.

Could I hazard a guess that as they were not part of the Big Two,no-one remembers a particular favourite character.I take it none lived on much past the merger.

Eagle is synonymous with Dan Dare.He had decades picking up fans.

Even Thunder had Adam Eterno.

I must admit that I do find it interesting that Star Trek fans ignore Valiant/TV21 when they seem to buy most things with the slightest connection usually

My tuppence worth-just a theory


Brian

Lew Stringer
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Re: Express Weekly

Post by Lew Stringer » 17 Feb 2007, 12:02

Thanks for showing those Express banners Phil! May I use that image on my blog as an update? (I'll credit you of course.)

Lew
The blog of British comics: http://lewstringer.blogspot.com
My website: http://www.lewstringer.com
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Peter Gray
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Express Weekly

Post by Peter Gray » 17 Feb 2007, 12:10

Your blog has certainly got us talking here.......

made comicsuk forum even more interesting and fun....lots of different comics...artists...new and old...

thanks Lew 8)

Kashgar
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Express Weekly

Post by Kashgar » 17 Feb 2007, 12:33

Although a bit before my time, I was only four when it folded , 'Express Weekly/TV Express' was a very interesting picture strip title which, as has already been mentioned, began life as a children's tabloid newspaper, only converting to the glossy comic format with issue No74.
Possibly the main reason it ultimately failed despite its high production values, although with a total of 375 issues failure here has to be a relative term, was that it was basically a stand alone title from a publisher whose main interests lay elsewhere. Therefore when 'Eagle' began to go into decline in the early 1960's a title like 'Express Weekly' which had ultimately taken the 'Eagle' template as its' own found itself floudering in the wake of its 'mother-ship's' difficulties.
It is certainly a title full of interesting things, perhaps most famously Ron Embleton's lengthy stint on the 'Wulf the Briton' strip. It also spawned seven 'Express' annuals under various titles.
As to why it seems to be ignored by collectors I can only assume that lack of popularity then means that very few people remember it with fondness now, that and the fact that unlike collectors of titles produced by the big two, Thomsons and AP/Fleetway, you aren't encouraged to collect a title you'd forgotten about by seeing adverts for it featured in another title that you already do. You know the sort of thing I mean. I think I'll collect Valiant and then Lion and then Tiger and then Hurricane and Jag and Thunder and Jet and what about Ranger and Vulcan etc etc ad infinitum.

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