Miscalibrated Internet Receptor Stalks

This is a comic character who needs a 21st Century make over. Earlier, I took a peak inside an ancient package that has been sitting around the house. It contained a bundle of Sparky comics from 1969, one of the DC Thomson humour titles which sported Barney the Bulldog on the cover at the time. I had a little walk down memory lane with the likes of Spoofer McGraw, L Cars, Puss and Boots, Mr Bubbles and The Sparky People. But crikey, I had completely forgotten about Invisible Dick. In this particular issue he is camping on the shore of Loch Ness.


Dick has an older pedigree than the Sixties. The original incarnation was Dicky Brett who swipes a mystical potion from his dotty Eygptologist uncle. His adventures ran as a text serial in The Rover from 1922 and he had fun knocking the helmets off passing policemen and other scampery. Written by Frank Topham it was compiled as a novel in 1926.

Dick made the transition from ripping adventure to comic strip and by 1937 Invisible Dick had transferred to The Dandy. In this version a peg-legged sailor gives him the Egyptian bottle of magic potion. Don’t talk to strangers Dicky! Too late. Similar hijinks ensue. In 1968, there was a bit of a makeover for the Sparky version. Dick Dixon discovers an electric torch that his father had taken into space. His dad is an astronaut. Something has changed the properties of the torch and it now emits a black light that renders objects invisible for a time. So long as he has a couple of Ever Ready batteries to hand, new Dick has the power of invisibility at his finger tips. If memory serves, the Loch Ness strip is fairly representative of the Dick Dixon years. All bullies are routed and there is a satisfying conclusion by the final panel.

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