photo credits: Wikimedia Commons
Buck Danny is a Franco-Belgian comics series about a military flying ace and his two sidekicks serving (depending on the plots) in the United States Navy or the United States Air Force. The series is noted for its realism both in the drawings and the descriptions of air force procedures as part of the storyline. In particular the aircraft depicted are extremely accurate. Mixing historical references with fiction, Buck Danny is one of the most important 'classic' Franco-Belgian comic strips. Starting in 1947, the first albums were set against the backdrop of World War II, but from 1954 onwards, the series started to play in 'the present' and has so ever since. Like this, the series reads as a chronology of military aviation as well as the events that were catching people's imagination at the time of publishing, ranging from the Korean war, the cold war, UFOs, international terrorism and drug running, the space race, rogue atomic bombs, the collapse of the Soviet bloc and recently the conflicts in Sarajevo and Afghanistan.
True to the Franco-Belgian tradition the adventures are first published as a series in a weekly comic magazine. After a complete story has run its course, it is bundled and published as a book. In the case of Buck Danny, the story appeared in Spirou magazine in weekly installments of one page per issue and from 1947 to 2008, 52 albums have been published by Spirou's parent company Dupuis editions. All are still in print today.
From 1947 to 1979, the first 40 albums were a collaboration between writer Jean-Michel Charlier and artist Victor Hubinon. After the death of the latter in 1979, the series took a hiatus of 4 years before Charlier continued for 4 more albums with artist Francis Bergèse. After Charlier's death in 1989, Bergèse tried one album with a scenario by Jacques de Douhet before writing his own stories. After 1996, 7 more stories appeared, combining realistic penmanship with continuously complex scenarios.
Bergèse announced his retirement after the publication of album 52. Hence since 2008, production of new material ceased. Officially however, the series is not 'dead' but simply on hiatus while the production company is looking for a new artist and writer. In May 2010 it was announced that Dupuis commissioned writer Frédéric Zumbiehl and artist Fabrice Lamy to continue the Buck Danny franchise. With the publication of album no. 53 in November 2013 it turned out that writer Frédéric Zumbiehl was still in charge but drawings are now made by Francis Winis. If the new team proves to be successful, this would be the third artist and fourth scenarist for the series.
Read more or edit on Wikipedia