The Earth has been invaded by a skeletal-looking alien race, intent on taking over the planet. With civilisation on its knees, it’s down to the Brit military’s ‘Storm Squad’ to take the fight to the alien ‘Spooks’ whilst Professor Ed Lomax hunts for a solution to making the Earth alien free for good.
That’s the basic idea behind Invasion 1984! It’s a thriller of old school action comics, originally published in 1983 in the pages of Battle, one of a number of classic Brit comics of the time.
Before 2000 AD revolutionised sci-fi comics in the UK, there was Battle, a classic Brit comic that featured some of the best writers in British comics. Created by Mills and Wagner in 1974, Battle ran all the way through to 1988, with many hugely important tales told along the way, including the classic Charlie’s War by Mills and Joe Colquhoun, Rat Pack by Gerry Finley-Day and Carlos Ezquerra, Darkie’s Mob by Wagner and Mike Western, and Johnny Red by Tom Tully and Colquhoun.
By the time Invasion 1984! came along, Battle was a well-established war comic for the slightly older boys market. And suddenly having an alien invasion story might have seemed an odd fit for the comic. Thankfully, with Wagner and Grant (writing as R Clark) at the reins, Invasion 1984! was wonderfully, unrelentingly, action-packed, with every episode just 3 pages long, but managing to be a real thriller. It’s also, given the target audience, a really hard-hitting story, full of all the horrors of war, the suffering of the people, and some particularly gruesome deaths.
And as for Eric Bradbury‘s artwork, it’s an absolute joy to see this art reprinted by the Treasury of British Comics, delivering his superb, powerful art in a wonderfully clean version, a long way from the original comic pages. It’s powerful, dramatic, and bold stuff.
But you can see all that for yourself in the Comicon.com preview!
Invasion 1984! by John Wagner, Alan Grant, and artist Eric Bradbury is released from the Treasury of British Comics on 2 May.