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Buck Rogers in the 25th Century: The Complete Newspaper Dailies, Vol. 1: 1929-1930 Hardcover – December 25, 2008

4.6 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

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About the Author

In 1928, in a world without televisions, lasers, or rockets, Buck Rogers, a fantasy character in a fantastical world, sprang to life out of the imaginations of writer Phil Nowlan, artist Dick Calkins, and National Newspaper Syndicate founder John Flint Dille.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Hermes Press; 1 edition (December 25, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1932563199
  • ISBN-13: 978-1932563191
  • Product Dimensions: 11.8 x 9.1 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #723,026 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I've loved the Buck Rogers strip for over 25 years but there has never been available a reprint of the strips with all of the stories in order with their titles, chapter by chapter. The reproduction of past reprints has ranged from terrible to so-so. This book is simply fantastic and forever remedies that problem; not only does it have a great introduction by Ron Goulart accompanied by pulp covers, Buck Rogers comic books, toys, movie poster art, Buck Rogers premiums - and even a great picture of the atomic disintegrator gun -the strips are the sharpest, clearest, and cleanest examples of the strip I have ever seen. The book features two strips per page in a 9 x 12 inch format and I couldn't ask for more. The book has the first seven installments of the strip; 582 strips in sequence. The paper is nice, heavy weight and matte. Can you tell I'm a big fan of the strip? I love the dustjacket too, it really grabs my eye and it's also printed on the hardcover as well; my 12-year-old actually looked at the book and commented how "neat" the cover art was, so maybe we'll have a next generation Buck Rogers fan in the house. I'm so happy with the book I've ordered a second copy.
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Format: Hardcover
[This is very annoying that I have to recreate my review because Amazon somehow destroyed it]

I have been awaiting this new reprint series for a long time.

I've long been an SF fan, and growing up there were 2 major SF comic strips: Alex Raymond's Flash Gordon and Buck Rogers. But while there have been several complete reprints of Raymond's Flash Gordon, there was only one partial reprint of Buck Rogers: the large hardback edition from Chelsea House. My aunt had a copy, and when I visited her house, I pulled it out and read it. I finally got my own copy, only to find it was a later edition that dropped a lot of the strips (tho added some newer stuff). Because several of the storylines were left unfinished in that book, I wanted a more complete reprint.

This volume begins the reprints of dailies and Sundays. BR had separate storylines in the dailies and sundays. Some strips did this, other later merged them together. So Hermes will be reprinting the Sundays in a separate series of volumes.

This edition starts off the reprint series, publishing the first 7 storylines. While most of this was reprinted in the Chelsea House edition, there is new stuff.

Most people know the basic story, but will be surprised in what really happens in the comic. Buck Rogers is a WWI veteran who falls asleep for 500 years, and awakes in the 25th Century. But in the intervening years, America (and most of the world) has been conquered by "Red Mongols", using futuristic flying ships. So Buck's first job is to help free America. By the end of the book, most of America (the eastern US and Canada) is free from Mongol control.

There are a lot of problems with this strip for modern audiences. Artwise, BR was fairly crude.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It's easy to lament the demise of the newspaper comics page, where the strips keep getting smaller and the percentage of good-to-great strips keeps getting smaller too. To go back to the early 20th Century is to see if a different era for the comics, one where they were a more respected genre. In this period, starting in 1929, Buck Rogers came about, bringing science fiction to the comic-reading audience.

The premise of the strip is that Buck Rogers is accidentally exposed to a gas that puts him in suspended animation until the year 2430. This origin story takes place in a single strip; soon he encounters the female lead for the strip, Wilma Deering. The two will eventually fall in love, though the road to romance is never smooth. (One problem with the strip is it never really exploits the man-out-of-time element after the first few weeks.)

The bumps in that proverbial road are the perils of the 25th Century, particularly those caused by the fractured political situation. The U.S. has been more-or-less conquered by the Mongols (this was written in the heyday of the "yellow peril"), and Wilma and Buck are part of the resistance. Overcoming these problems just leads to new ones, including threats from alien invaders.

There are risks in trying to review a strip like this: first of all, you have to take in consideration that this was written in another era, with its own narrative style. Also, it was meant to be read day-by-day, not quickly in book form. Nonetheless, I only think this is a good strip, not a great one. I do this by comparing it to other strips of the same era; compared to a serial strip like Gasoline Alley or Thimble Theater (Popeye), Buck Rogers comes up short, with story lines that seem to peter out and few truly interesting characters.
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Format: Hardcover
As a kid growing up, I was always an sf fan. There were always 2 classic sf comic strips: Flash Gordon and Buck Rogers. Flash has had several reprints of the Alex Ramond work on the strip (I have volumes from 3 different publishers). But Buck never got this. For years the only sampling of BR strips were the Chelsea House hardbacks. My aunt had a copy at her house, and when I visited, I pulled it out and read thru the the strips. Later, I was able to get my own copy, but found it was the revised edition they came out with, where they dropped a lot of the strips, but did add some from George Tuska's work. The CH collection was frustrating. Yes, they reprinted a lot of good storylines, but some were left incomplete (like the 2 Sunday storylines they reprinted).

Now, Hermes is working on reprinting all the Dailies and Sundays. As the Sundays had a totally different storyline (the first few years didn't even have Buck, but starred Wilma's kid brother), they will be collected in a separate set of books.

This volume reprints the first 5 storylines, and sets the groundwork for future storylines.

I hope that these sell well, because there are issues for modern readers.

Let's be honest. The artwork isn't as slick and polished as most would expect from comic strips. And the writting doesn't help. You have to wince and roll your eyes on some of the writing.

And there are other issues. Buck awakes in a world were America has been devistated and taken over by the "Red Monguls", who conquered the world with their superscience of repeller rays and destructor rays. This is typical early 20th century 'Yellow Peril' fears. Thankfully, Buck is able to help the Americans throw off the yoke of the Monguls and make peace with the Supreme Mogul.
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