Sunday, 26 April 2015

POW! KEN REID'S DARE-A-DAY DAVY (GUEST-STARRING NICK FURY, AGENT OF S.H.I.E.L.D.) - PART ONE...


POW! #1 January 21st 1967

Here are three DARE-A-DARE DAVY strips from POW!,
first published back in 1967.  Drawn by the irrepressible KEN REID
in his usual manic style, these pages are a visual delight to the eyes and
deserve to be collected in a deluxe hardback book for posterity.  In fact,
I believe someone did that very thing a few years ago, but the limited
print run has long sold out, so you've had your chips, chums.

I have all the Davy strips in some form or other;  I've virtually a
complete set of Pow!, although some of them are in a bound volume
and therefore difficult (if not impossible) to scan.  In such instances, if
I post any more of the strip, some instalments will be from black and
white reprints and others will be from the original issues.  I'm sure
you'll be equally appreciative regardless of the source.

POW! #20 June 3rd 1967

The above strip probably wouldn't be allowed now in a comic
for kids because of Davy's reference to him committing suicide.  To
me, it seems that Davy actually means that the nature of the dare is
'suicidal' rather than the intent, although the result is likely to be the
same.  The result in the 'real' world of course, but this is comics.  How-
ever, the wording isn't clear on the distinction, so if it were to be re-
printed, the speech balloon would probably be changed. 

(Funnily enough, it's rumoured that Ken actually pitched the idea
of a strip about a character who tries to kill himself every week, but
it was rejected, no doubt on the grounds that it would be regarded as
being in bad taste.  Years later, someone with no such sensibilities pro-
duced a strip on the theme for VIZ (thanks, McScotty), but as it's
not a mag I buy, I can't show you an example.  (Phew!)

POW! #33 September 2nd 1967

As you can see, MARVEL's NICK FURY makes an appearance
in the above strip (in what looks like a TV21 DALEK spaceship, no
less), which was perfectly natural as Pow! reprinted Nick's adventures
inside the comic.  (As the pair were stablemates, why not have a little fun
with them, eh? )  I doubt it was ever regarded as 'the team-up of the cen-
tury' or 'the battle you demanded', but it was actually quite significant
in its way, in that it was one of the earliest inter-company crossover
examples in comics history.

Note also the suggestion that Nick Fury is British (unless, of
course, he merely means that his current mission concerns the U.K.).
American references were usually deleted and revised in the pages of
Pow! (and its companion papers), so young kids were probably un-
ware that the reprint strips were originally set in the States. 

Want to see more of Davy?  Dare me!

8 comments:

Bob The Wordless said...

Ken Reid is probably the greatest comic artist/writer in the history of comics. Faceache is my favourite character, though I do have a fondness for all the characters he created.

By the way, is this true? From Wiki "One episode, in which Davy was dared to resurrect Frankenstein, was too gruesome for the editors and eventually saw print in the underground comic Weird Fantasy in 1969"
One last thing..."Leslie Crowther says Suck it and see...It's magic!"
Sex sells. Even ads in comics : )

Rip Jagger said...

Fascinating. I was reading some of the earliest Howling Commandos stories just yesterday and was struck how gruff and brutal Nick's character was originally. Not that he ever got smooth, but he did seem a bit tamer.

Rip Off

Kid said...

Yup, it's true. However, the strip was never lettered properly, which is something I intend to rectify one day. You can see the unpublished strip here:

http://www.savoy.abel.co.uk/1picts.html

******

Bet you never thought you'd see him in a humour strip (outside an issue of Not Brand Echh), eh, Rip?

Paul McScotty -Muir said...

Great stuff, I for one would like to see more "Davy" as I'm not sure if I have seen them all. I have managed to pick up about 25 episodes so far over the last 20 odd years and seen about another 7 on line that are not in my coolection. I think the Ken "suicide" strip that he pitched (to 2000AD) but was never published was called "The Dummy" about the last man on earth after a nuclear disaster , he was mutated so badly so every week he tried to kill himself but his mutated body would stop him for example by turning into a propeller if he tried to jump of a cliff etc, Isn't there a VIZ character that tries to commit suicide every episode?

Kid said...

I think you're right, McScotty, that particular strip probably does appear in Viz. I must've been mixing it up with another one the artist does. (As you know, I'm not really a follower of the man or his work.) I'll amend the post. Subject aside, 2000 A.D. were foolish in not accepting a Ken Reid strip. They should have suggested something else to Ken. Having said that, perhaps the idea of a man who can never commit suicide trying to do so isn't quite as shocking an idea as it seems.

John Pitt said...

Count me in for more Davy's too ( and some faceaches? ). I don't remember the Davy/NF strip, but I didn't have every issue. B&W reprints are fine, no worries when you can't scan the originals.

Kid said...

I don't have too many Faceaches, JP, but I do have the 1st ish of Jet, and may already have posted FA's debut. If not, I'll get around to it before too long.

Kid said...

I've since heard an interview with Pat Mills, in which he suggests that at least several instalments of Ken Reid's 'The Dummy' were drawn and waiting to go. Ken apparently submitted them to another IPC comic, but they were rejected. Pat, upon learning of their existence, wanted them for 2000 A.D. (which, if I recall correctly, was still in preparation), but was fobbed off by IPC big-wigs who told him the strips couldn't be found.

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