Sunday, May 24, 2009

ITV Annual for Boys and Girls 1964

I borrowed a copy of this from a mate as it had a Mike Western comic strip. And, as I always do with annuals, I jotted down the contents, which I'll list below. As annuals go I actually found it rather uninspiring although there are some items of interest once you wade through the sports and various photo features. Two short stories based on American TV shows (77 Sunset Strip and Hawaiian Eye, neither of which I remember), one comic strip (based on No Hiding Place) and a feature on Fireball XL5. I don't know if this is widely known amongst Gerry Anderson fans so I've posted scans of the article below. It was a poor follow-up to an earlier annual, TV Crimebusters, from the same publisher a year earlier, which also featured some of the same elements (stories based on 77 Sunset Strip, Hawaiian Eye [also written by Alan Fennell], but also including Danger Man, Dixon of Dock Green and The Avengers, all of which I watched when I was growing up. I guess you have to be in your fifties to appreciate the ITV Annual and stars like natural history filmmaker Aubrey Buxton, roving reporter Bute Hewes and guitarist Bert Weedon. As someone desperately clinging onto his forties my first guitar hero was Hank Marvin (especially after The Shadows appeared in Thunderbirds Are Go).

Incidentally, I notice that Network are releasing a special edition Fireball XL5 DVD this June. The previous (2003) release had no extras to speak of: this one has a 60-page book, a brand new documentary and various other features including a home movie by artist Bill Mevin, who drew the contemporary "Supercar" comic strip for TV Comic.

ITV Annual for Boys and Girls 1964, ed. Huw Thomas (TV Publications, 1963, 102pp, 8/6, cover by ?)
* [Misc. Material] * (front endpapers; television studio) * ms; illus. photo
4 * Thomas, Huw * (Introduction) * ed
5 * [Misc. Material] * Survival (elephant) * il; illus. photo
6 * Buxton, Aubrey * The New Ark * ar; illus. photos
14 * Anon. * Here and Now * ar; illus. photos
23 * Anon. * The Cabah Caper * ss [77 Sunset Strip]; illus. photos
31 * Hewes, Bute * News Behind the News * ar; illus. photos
36 * [Comic Strip] * No Hiding Place * cs; illus. Mike Western
44 * Williams, Gerwyn * Rugby * ar; illus. photos
48 * Weedon, Bert * My Guitar and Me * ar; illus. photos
52 * Anon. * The Lilliput World of Fireball XL5 * ar; illus. photos
56 * Anon. * Police 5 * ar; illus. photos
60 * Fennell, Alan * Hawaiian Eye: Danger in the Deep * ss [Hawaiian Eye]; illus. photos
68 * Mills, John * Painting Club * ar; illus. photos
73 * Burrell, Roger * Man Overboard * ar; illus. photos
77 * Matthew, Brian * Thank Your Lucky Stars * ar; illus. photos
83 * Anon. * Telstar * ar; illus. photos
88 * [Misc. Material] * TV Picture Quiz * qz; illus. photos
90 * [Misc. Material] * Spot the Stars * qz; illus. photos
91 * [Misc. Material] * TV Crossword * pz
91 * [Misc. Material] * Seeing Sport * qz; illus. photos
92 * Gover, Alf * Cricket * ar; illus. photos
96 * Anon. * I’m Going to be a… Television Technician * ar; illus. photos
* [Misc. Material] * (rear endpapers; mobile camera) * ms; illus. photo


  1. "[The new Fireball XL DVD release] has a 60-page book, a brand new documentary and various other features including a home movie by artist Bill Mevin, who drew the comic strip version for TV Comic"

    Wasn't Fireball drawn (in black and white) by Neville Main in TV Comic? Mevin drew Space Patrol and Doctor Who (both in colour), I think.

  2. True. I was going from faulty memory. This is why I compile lists... if only I'd remember to look at them.

  3. Sorry Steve. Didn't mean to leave a comment anonymously: I checked the wrong button (it *was* one o'clock in the morning).

    So, do you know if that means it's Mevin or Main on the DVD?

  4. Definitely Mevin. Neville Main died many years ago. Bill Mevin is, thankfully, still around.



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