Dan Dare The 2000AD Years – 5th November 2015 (Spoiler Light with preview pages)

Dan Dare CoverDan Dare The 2000AD Years
Published by Rebellion

Writers:
Ken Armstrong, Pat Mills, Kelvin Gosnell, Steve Moore, Gerry Finley-Day, Garry Leach
Artists:
Massimo Belardinelli. Dave Gibbons, Brian Bolland, Garry Leach, Ian Kennedy
Letterer:
Peter Knight, John Aldrich, Bill Nuttall, J.Swain, Tony Jacob, Jack Potter, Tom Frame, Dave Gibbons

Available in shops UK/Ireland – Diamond order code SEP151555
£30.00
Available digitally Worlwide – 2000AD iOS AppAndroid Ap & 2000AD Shop

Originally serialised in 2000 AD Progs 1-23, 28-51, 2000 AD Summer Special 1977, 2000 AD Annual 1978, 2000 AD Sci-Fi Special 1978, 2000 AD Annual 1979.

When 2000AD was advertised pre-launch I was a very excited 9 year-old, it all looked fantastic. We had one comic a week bought for each of us, I already had one and didn’t want to drop it. Dad wouldn’t counter Mum, Mum wouldn’t counter Dad sooo… “Dad, look at the new comic that is starting. It looks really good and it has Dan Dare in it.” as if I knew my Dad liked Dan Dare from Eagle in the 1950s (he was born in 1930 and loved Eagle so I probably over egged it to be fair).

So in a way Dan Dare is why I write this blog. I may not have blagged myself that extra comic if I hadn’t known my Dad loved Dan Dare. Don’t worry my (older) siblings soon realised I’d duped everyone and got an extra comic too.

This isn’t the Dan Dare from the 1950s, this was a version commissioned for 2000AD by Pat Mills. Pat explains more in an article you can read in this volume, so I don’t go very far in to that here.

There are 5 pages of preview art at the end of this article, the pages follow a full list of Contents.

The first story introduces readers, who most likely hadn’t read Eagle, to Dan Dare without explaining any differences between the two settings. However the final story in this book does give the 2000AD origin, as in the ‘how the 50s version is the same man as the 70s version’. The stories in this collection are not like those my Dad had read in Eagle. I’ve read many of those since I first read the stories in this volume and I love both. I can also easily accept that the man Dan Dare is the same person.

The Dan Dare we meet is the Captain of a ship who is wronged by his seniors. He has to clear his name… It is a trope we’ve seen before and since but it was a great hook for me at nine. I instantly saw the injustice and I was on Dare’s side straight away.

But plot aside I loved the art by Massimo Belardinelli, I had never seen anything like it. His storytelling is sound and his characters are full of life. He was instantly one of my favourite artists, though at the time I didn’t know who he was because there were no credits given on the pages of 2000AD in those days.

Dave Gibbons was another of my top favourites and he’s in here too. His work in Doctor Who Weekly thrilled me just as much. In those days it was the Artists I noticed most. It wasn’t until much later I started thinking about the Writers.

There are elements in these stories you may recognise from other sources. One that has annoyed me many times is people pointing out similarities between Dare’s origin and a famous US TV show. That show debuted in 1979, Dare debuted in 2000AD in 1977. Another is in the BBC Sci-fi Comedy, Red Dwarf.

If you’ve never read these stories before these are not bad reprints. The paper stock 2000AD was printed on was pulp, very cheap quality indeed. These repros are loyal to the way the pages looked at the time.

There are some wonderful support characters along the way as well as a marvellous villain… The Mekon.

This is a delight for me to re-read and it is on my Christmas Present List.

Contents

Introduction by Garth Ennis

Dan Dare
Script: Ken Armstrong, Pat Mills, Kelvin Gosnell
Art: Massimo Belardinelli
Letters: Bill Nuttall, Jack Potter, Peter Knight
Originally published in 2000 AD Progs 1-11

(Between each episode of the first story)
Dan Dare: My Part in his Revival
by Pat Mills
Originally published in Spaceship Away (Dan Dare Fanzine)

(dotted along the way)
Posters and cuttaways

Hollow World
Script: Steve Moore
Art: Massimo Belardinelli
Letters: Peter Knight, John Aldrich, Bill Nuttall, J.Swain, Tony Jacob, Jack Potter, Tom Frame
Originally published in 2000 AD Progs12-23

Legion
Script: Gerry Finley-Day
Art: Dave Gibbons
Letters: Dave Gibbons
Originally published in 2000 AD Progs 28-33

Greenworld
Script: Gerry Finley-Day
Art: Dave Gibbons, Brian Bolland
Letters: Dave Gibbons
Originally published in 2000 AD Progs 34-35

Star Slayer
Script: Gerry Finley-Day
Art: Dave Gibbons
Letters: Dave Gibbons
Originally published in 2000 AD Progs 36-51

Dan Dare: Untitled
Script: Unknown
Art: Unknown
Letters: Unknown
Originally published in 2000 AD Summer Special 1977

The Curse of the Mytax
Script: Unknown
Art: Massimo Belardinelli
Letters: Unknown
Originally published in 2000 AD Annual 1978

Visco
Script: Garry Leach
Art: Garry Leach
Letters: John Aldrich
Originally published in 2000 AD Sci-Fi Special 1978

Dan Dare: Untitled
Script: Unknown
Art: Ian Kennedy
Letters: Unknown
Originally published in the Dan Dare Annual 1979

Dan Dare: The 2000 AD Origin
Script: Unknown
Art: Unknown
Letters: Unknown
Originally published in the Dan Dare Annual 1979

Covers

Dan Dare1

Dan Dare2

Dan Dare3

Dan Dare4

Dan Dare5

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