Joe 90 Magic Instant Picture Books — Page 1 of 2

There were two books in the Joe 90 range:

These are copyright dated 1968 (for the TV programme rather than for the books), but the serial number indicates 1970. They are very late for monochrome silkscreen transfers — the last new products from the Kippax press.

Perhaps the client, Century 21 Merchandising, was interested in keeping costs to a minimum. Or more likely they had fond memories of their previous monochrome Thunderbirds set, & asked for more of the same!

Publishing as a book, rather than as a toy, also had tax advantages for Letraset.

Shaqui Le Vesconte says:

"Well-known comic artist and illustrator, the late Brian Lewis (he died in 1978), did the colour spread for the transfers. The other credited artist is N. Faure, who I believe did the b/w strip adaptation. It is possible Faure did the colour cover illustration — it doesn't look like Brian Lewis' distinctive style."

Brian Lewis has, indeed, signed the 'Test Flight' centre-page background (although not so for 'Attack of the Tiger'). But his immaculate line elevates the backgrounds & transfer sheets to as high a standard of work as can be found in transfer sets.

The story is by E.C.Tubb, who was a prolific & successful science fiction author.

We're going to show you both books in unused condition, but just to give you an idea of what they might look like after they've had their transfers applied:


We'd like to thanks Saint & AtlasSix for their helpfulness in sourcing the transfer sheets. The ones we can show you here are, in fact, recent additions to the SPLAT Scan Archives, but of course we are still grateful for their help!

PR61A: Test Flight

Intriguingly, the centre spread background & its transfers are not related to the main story. And it's poetic licence, presumably, that Joe 90's home is next-door neighbour to a secret enemy submarine base…

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• Next Page — PR61B Attack of the Tiger →

Picture Credit: The SPLAT Scan Archives — Saint — AtlasSix