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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr

enik1138
-at-popapostle-dot-com
UFO: The New Boss UFO
"The New Boss
"
Countdown #12-18, May 8, 1971-June 19, 1971
Writer: Unknown (possibly Alan Fennell)
Art: Gerry Haylock

 

When General Henderson is injured in a UFO attack, an interim representative of the IAC decides to investigate SHADO and go public with the organization's existence.

 

Read the story summary at Technodelic

 

NOTES FROM THE UFO CHRONOLGOY

 

In the course of this story, Straker, Foster, and Freeman re-visit a half-demolished house, the site of a UFO crash "a few months back." This is probably the home of John and Stella Croxley, into which a UFO crashed in "E.S.P.", placing this story a few months after that one. This also places the story some time in 1982-1984.

 

DIDJA KNOW?

 

On the Technodelic website, their feature on the history of the UFO comic strips in Countdown magazine speculates that Alan Fennell may have been the author of this story.

 

DIDJA NOTICE?

 

Panel 3 of pages 1-2 depict SHADO control with a more complex setup of computer stations and personnel than in episodes of the TV series. Frankly, this is the more believable interpretation. It could be argued that this room does exist within SHADO underground HQ, we just never saw it (due to TV budget considerations), though panel 14 implies that this control center is right outside Straker's office, like the control room seen in the TV series.

 

Panel 4 of pages 1-2 depicts SHADO Mobiles deployed out of Markers Universal transport trucks, just as in some episodes of the TV series. However, the truck seen here just says Marker instead of Markers.

 

SHADO control projects the UFO to a termination near St. Louis, U.S.A. St. Louis is a city in the U.S. state of Missouri. The UFO is later seen firing at General Henderson's car on Highway 70. This would be a reference to Interstate 70, which runs through St. Louis.

 

This story introduces General Calper as a stand-in at the conference when IAC President General Henderson is wounded in the UFO attack. Calper seems to have the same adversarial attitude towards Straker and SHADO that Henderson had in "Conflict".

 

Panel 7 of pages 1-2 depicts Straker and Calper flying on what is described as a SHADAIR jet. But the presence of propellers reveals it is not a true jet! In fact, it is the same SHADO aircraft seen in "Ordeal" (though the interior cockpit of the craft seen on pages 3-4 does not look much like the one in that episode). Several UFO fan sites designate this aircraft as a SHADAIR Kingfisher helicopter; I've been unable to determine from where they obtained this designation.

 

Panel 11 of pages 3-4 seems to show Sky 1 shooting a missile out of its nose, like an Interceptor, instead of from its wing-mounted missile pods.

 

Judging by the building seen in panel 4 of pages 5-6, the IAC conference in New York is being held in the U.N. Building. The U.N. Building flies the flags of all member nations in front and, here, two of the flags are identifiable: The vertical blue, yellow, red bars of Chad (appearing twice!) and the horizontal yellow, blue, red bars of Columbia. The others are indistinct or seem to be fictional.

 

The race car taken from the movie lot by Straker to escape General Calper appears to be a Formula One style car.

 

The police car that chases Straker's Formula One looks rather similar to a DeLorean...in a story that was printed several years before the DeLorean was designed!

 

Why do the streets of England seem to be nearly deserted as SHADO Mobiles and race cars flit through city streets?!

 

The ruined house on pages 11-12 at which Freeman meets up with Straker and Foster is said to be the site of a UFO crash a few months ago. This is probably the home of John and Stella Croxley, into which a UFO crashed in "E.S.P.", though the drawing of the house here is slightly different than the look of the one in the episode; the differences could merely be due to artistic license.

 

On page 13-14, Captain Carlin is referred to as Colonel Karlin! 

 

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS

 

How did the aliens know where General Henderson would be when they attacked?

 

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