Wednesday 2 February 2011

Ian Kennedy and the Wild Wild West!

Ian Kennedy was keen to spread his wings further afield rather than just basing himself in Dundee, the steady flow of work from DC Thomson notwithstanding and so  in the mid 1950's he made contacts with the London Publishing giant Amalgamated Press.

As in the samples featured on this post you can see him working on both pocket libraries and in the example of Knockout's Hopalong Cassidy serialization he is providing an almost seamless carry over from his predecessor on this strip Mike Western. Western's page is the Hopalong Cassidy sample in black and white Kennedy's is the Hopalong Cassidy sample in color.

Western's style and Kennedy's style are superficially very similar, the most immediate clue is that Western was left handed and his inking in terms of feathering displays a bottom right to top left bias as opposed to bottom left to top right bias.

Hold a pencil and try it - you'll see what I mean.

All images © IPC Media 2011

Many thanks to David Slinn and Malcolm Norton for supplying these images.

P.S. Eagle eyed reader Malcolm Norton has pointed out that page 46 of The Kansas Kid story is also a Mike Western page - one of the clues is the saloon sign!

Malcolm is also of the opinion that the black and white Stumpalong Hoppity page is also IK.

I dunno anymore...


  1. I can't peg the B&W Hopalong as an Ian Kennedy. No matter how hard, Ian tries to draw villians, they are always rugged in look and never had that grittiy look that Bradbury, Lopez and Western could do so well. So apart from pg 46 and B&W Hopalong, a nice goldmine of Kennedy's genius.

  2. Yes I'm on board with you on this colcool007. The more I look at that Hopalong Cassidy b+w page, the more convinced I am that it is indeed the work of Mike Western.