Monday, 10 July 2017


From July 1988: THE BEST OF EAGLE issue 3, starring Manix.

BoE was one of a bunch of BEST OF... monthlies published by IPC around this time.  The benefits were obvious: quick to paginate, no origination costs, no back-end payments to the creators.  In short: a very profitable way of making the IPC archives work harder to offset falling sales in the core comics business.

Some of these titles did very well.  THE BEST OF 2000AD MONTHLY ran for a decade AND spun-off a JUDGE DREDD solo version and a few specials as well.  This one, on the other hand, shuttered after a mere six issues.  Despite being a spin-off from IPC's most successful new launch of the decade.  Very strange.

Maybe the strips were too recent.  Maybe EAGLE's readership had no interest in revisiting the past.  Maybe IPC couldn't secure decent distribution.  Or maybe they realised that they would need to run more and more reprints in the core title in the years ahead... so didn't want to run them all in a spin-off.

It's not to be confused with the dying days of the main EAGLE comic.  It switched to a monthly frequency and - with a few exceptions - became a mostly reprint title as the sales dropped through the floor.

These six issues are now pretty hard to find.  They are worth picking up if you do.

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