Growing up in post-war Britain, children — boys particularly — couldn’t avoid the cultural legacy of the nation’s involvement in the Second World War. Whether factual or fictional, films, TV dramas and books set in WW2 were everywhere.
In more concrete (plastic) form there were kits of the tanks, planes and ships used in the conflict — not to mention bags of model soldiers. Of course these offerings covered all nationalities involved in the war — well, you had to have an enemy, didn’t you?
Nowhere was this fixation on the years 1939-45 more obvious than in my favourite medium — comics. From Action to Warlord there was a ready ration of WW2 available on, generally smudgy, newsprint from 1945 until the early 90s.
By the time of the 50th anniversary of the end of the war, the only survivor regularly appearing in British newspaper shops was DC Thomson’s Commando series. Though more generally referred to as a “library”, this pocket-sized graphic novel was the final representative of the line of British war comics. Even today it continues to provide “action and adventure” set in a host of different wars.
So, the war comic is but a shadow of its former self and yet it still has a place in the minds of many brought up on a diet of Cadman, Kampfgruppe Falken and Charley’s War. This blog is unashamedly dedicated to the era of British War Comic — past, present and future.