Saturday, January 21, 2017

Look out! WHAM! is coming! (1964)

A few years ago I showed how Today magazine promoted Wham! comic in 1964 (see that post here) and today I'm showing how Eagle did it too. As this was a time before Wham! had spawned its sister titles Smash!, Pow!, Fantastic, and Terrific, it was up to Eagle and Boys' World to advertise the new comic.

The first mention of Wham! appeared in Eagle dated 13th June 1964, with a quarter page ad (above) showing kids excitedly rushing to a newsagent. (Artist unknown.) I'm including the full pages that these adverts appeared on to give them some context.

The following week, Eagle dated 20th June 1964, revealed the cover of Wham! No.1 by Leo Baxendale...

The week after, a glorious full page illustration by Leo Baxendale, promoting issue 2. Wham! was a relatively anarchic comic so it's great that such a pro-establishment comic as Eagle was featuring such a grotesque caricature and telling kids not to be afraid of teachers. (I think this page also appeared in Wham! No.1).

The following week, Eagle used the Humbugs strip from the previous week's Wham! to advertise issue No.3...

Even when the free gifts stopped, Eagle still carried the promotion over its next three issues to advertise Wham! issues 4 to 6. (The Fidosaurus strip has nothing to do with it but it was on the same page and is by Reg Parlett, so worth showing.)



The promos then stopped for a while, before resuming for one week with Eagle dated 26th September 1964 when Wham! No.15 had its free Whampire Bat gift...

As you can see, Wham! was promoted as "the funniest comic ever", and for many of us back then it most definitely was!

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Why oh why aren't there comics like this anymore.Such a Shame!

Lew Stringer said...

Try these:

http://www.lewstringer.com/page7.htm

James Spiring said...

Haha, any chance for a plug, eh?

Are you sure that unknown artist advert isn't by Baxendale? It looks similar enough to the next couple that you identified as his.

Arnaud said...

That's quite a great Baxendale illustration indeed !

Lew Stringer said...

That first one definitely isn't by Baxendale, James. Odhams employed a lot of artists to imitate his style and that's one of the more obvious ones that didn't quite mimic him 100% but still did the necessary job.

Yes, Arnaud, that big illo is brilliant. One of Leo's best of that period I think.

Ken said...

Lew, could you possibly list the actual issue numbers of the Eagle comics you mention re Wham ads?

Many thanks,
Ken.

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