Tuesday, 4 June 2024
-- Advertisement --
Liberty Club Level3 Divers24

POP dives: how comic book characters dive

It’s 1952, five years before the release of the award-winning film ‘The Silent World’, directed by Jacques Cousteau and Louis Malle, but the underwater world had already captured the interest of George Shed, who created, among other characters, Captain America. His pencil conjured up Marlin Keel, a keen blond oceanographer, the first diving hero and
Published: May 25, 2018 - 15:30
Updated: July 22, 2023 - 16:49
POP dives: how comic book characters dive

It’s 1952, five years before the release of the award-winning film ‘The Silent World’, directed by Jacques Cousteau and Louis Malle, but the underwater world had already captured the interest of George Shed, who created, among other characters, Captain America. His pencil conjured up Marlin Keel, a keen blond oceanographer, the first diving hero and perhaps the first diver to use a mask and fins alongside the helmeted wetsuit normal at the time.

Short comic strips are published in the Sunday Comic Strip in 1952, but perhaps this is too early for people who think that diving is only for professionals and naval special forces. The Marlin Keel comic strip goes out of print in 1954. Diving stories are forgotten until 1956, when sporadic stories appear, such as Fightin’ Navy, Charlton Comics Group and Marvel’s Navy Combat, set during the recently concluded World War II.

-- Advertisement --

BOOM

The boom came in the 1960-62 period. The film about Agent 007, Thunderball, had not yet been made, but comic book writers were already sensing what was coming. More and more documentaries about scuba diving are being made. A mask, fins and a diving cylinder as well as a breathing machine give incomparable freedom of movement underwater. The first equipment for recreational divers appears in tackle shops. Diving stimulates the imagination and gives creative minds the opportunity to show off. “What if…” – the main motto of any book or comic book series – arouses the curiosity of readers experiencing adventures in an underwater world that has become accessible to many people. Diving appears in adventure and Disney comics.

Mandrake, Tom and Jerry, Johnny Hazard and even Donald Duck – in 1962 virtually every character dives with a mask and breathing machine. No one wants to stay on land lest they miss their next adventure.

kmxh002

BOHATERS

In the same year, new characters appear in the diving series.

Drawing inspiration from the highly successful children’s TV series, Dell Comics is releasing a series featuring Diver Dan still diving in a helmeted diving suit. However, it is the Frogmen (Divers) comic that has stolen the hearts of readers and collectors. Its protagonists are Steve Randall and Jim Collins, underwater explorers, former commandos, World War II veterans, who discover mysteries and solve criminal puzzles on the ocean floor.

Many authors publish short comic strips in four colours for Dell Comics at 15 cents a copy. War stories are still very popular.

kmxh003

DIVING EQUIPMENT

Diving equipment issues almost always look alarming. Ducks and other characters adored by children dive in transparent spheres resembling a round goldfish aquarium, vending machine hoses are sometimes there and sometimes magically disappear, waistcoats remain a rather unknown item even in the 1980s and 1990s. On the other hand, axes, knives, harpoons, shotguns and mines are essential equipment.

kmxh004

ENEMIES OF THE ENVIRONMENT

dismembered sharks, blown-up giant squid and orcas… Sea creatures are treated like monsters from outer space. In this hostile environment, the problem is not failure to observe diving limits, but how to deal with the inhabitants of the underwater world. To its credit, this is a sexy comic without the horror scenes: the sea is depicted as a gazebo, coral is a lace tablecloth in a romantic restaurant, and ducks neutralize a hungry squid with a barrel of pepper.

kmxh005

WILDLIFE

In the 1960s and 1970s, divers were either ducks and cats, or heroes and adventurers capable of facing deadly dangers before breakfast. Now anyone with the desire to complete a short course can dive underwater. Dive comics are shrinking to a few pictures on a strip – in an era of products aimed at a narrow audience, they are becoming entertainment for divers only.

From a column in Beachcomber to Diver magazine to Sherman’s Lagoon, the characters in the comic strips are usually fish or other sea creatures commenting on the diver’s presence in their environment, or divers finding themselves in a surreal situation or battling their own neurosis.

Source: alertdiver.eu

Other posts
Share:
Facebook
Telegram
LinkedIn
Twitter
Pinterest
WhatsApp

About author

Tomasz Andrukajtis
Editor-in-chief of the DIVERS24 portal and magazine. Responsible for obtaining, translating and developing content. He also supervises all publications. Achived his first diving certification – P1 CMAS, in 2000. Has a degree in journalism and social communication. In the diving industry since 2008.
-- Advertisement --
technical diver tuna hastberg mine
-- Advertisement --
Level3 Club CCR Divers24
Recent post
Baltictech Conference, last days to catch tickets at discounted price.
Shearwater Peregrine TX: The Ultimate Diving Companion
Baltictech 2024: Dive into Inspiration - Tickets Now on Sale!
Adriatic Depths: Cultivating Sustainable Tourism through Underwater Heritage
Jared Hires: A Tragic Loss in the Depths of Plura Cave
WRECKS4ALL: Unveiling the Southern Adriatic's Underwater Heritage
You haven't read yet
Introducing the Divesoft Reel
Baltictech Conference, last days to catch tickets at discounted price.
Marcin Bramson Discusses His Switch to Divesoft Liberty and the Future of Rebreather Diving
Lungfish Orca v6 Rebreather Achieves CE Certification
Shearwater Peregrine TX: The Ultimate Diving Companion
Raid HYPOXIC TRIMIX OC course to 100 metres

Search...

The Divers24 portal is currently the largest online medium treating diving in Poland. Since 2010 we have been providing interesting and important information from Poland and around the world on all forms of diving and related activities.

Contact us: info@divers24.com