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It was in Glasgow's VIRGIN MEGASTORE in 1982 that I saw PACIFIC PRESENTS #1, and probably bought it primarily for STEVE DITKO's The MISSING MAN strip. However, there was really only one star of the mag, and that was The ROCKETEER by DAVE STEVENS, which had first appeared as a back-up in STARSLAYER #s 2 & 3. (Never bought them and therefore missed Rocky's debut.)
After two issues of Pacific Presents (dated October '82, and April '83 respectively), The Rocketeer next showed up in the November '84 dated Special Edition, The Rocketeer #1 (published this time by ECLIPSE) - only to promptly vanish again. The Rocketeer Adventure Magazine #1 (dated April '88 and published by COMICO), was the next venue for Stevens' high-flying hero, with a 2d issue the following year (dated April '89). Six years later, a 3rd (and final) issue, this time published by DARK HORSE, hit the stands, dated January '95.
In '85, Eclipse published a collected edition of the first five chapters, and IDW followed suite in 2009, with a very handsome, recoloured hardback volume of all eight chapters. Sadly, Dave Stevens died in 2008, aged only 52, after suffering from leukemia for several years. His Rocketeer series remains a high benchmark in the world of graphic storytelling, and it's certain that this very fine artist will not soon be forgotten - if ever in fact. Here's to you, Dave.
And now a word from our sponsor - namely me. I kept the first two issues of Pacific Presents in the drawer of the writing bureau beside my bed, where they remained in the new house my family moved into in 1983. Subsequent appearances of The Rocketeer have joined those two issues over the years, though I missed the 3rd issue of Adventure Magazine in 1995. However, I managed to track one down and it arrived today, and has now joined its companions in that drawer.
As regular readers know, I returned to my former home after four years, so it gives me a glow of satisfaction to know that The Rocketeer's comics journey eventually ended in the very same drawer of the same desk, in the exact same room of the same house in which it began, 35 years before. That's what you call full circle, eh?
Now, check out Dave Steven's great art, and then leave a comment of appreciation for the man and his work in the you-know-where, if you'd be so kind.