Saturday, May 3, 2008

The Mysterious Island of ... The League of "8"!!

The League of "8" or simply the "8" - this very description means a lot to any seasoned Mandrake fan & that too rightfully as "8" signifies the one-of-the most dreaded crime-organisation readers experienced in ANY of the comic-strips! They were(or are?) unique on many aspects,,,from their 800-year long crime history which started in the medieval era or those mysterious hide-outs(they had 8 arms around the world like Octopus) up to their chief ,the mysterious 'Octon' who controlled every move of this secret crooked organisation....everything is truly fascinating!! :o)

Mandrake & Co. were accidentally introduced wid this gang way back in the 1965,curtsy Narda's study on ancient history where she stumbles upon clues of an ancient crime-gang ,which everybody thought extinct by now,the league of "8" and she got enough clues indicating that this gang is still alive,,only their pattern-of-crime has been changed over these years!!

To make it short,in this way Mandrake/Lothar introduced with a crime-gang and eventually became their MOST dreaded enemy ...
After 1965,M/L duo found many other secret hide-outs of "8" and as their rule,Octon always destroyed their arm(s) when that failed to nab their enemies(precisely M/L!) .In this way the first hand had been destroyed when their members were failed to kill Mandrake & his companions,in the mysterious Island of 8 !!

That was 1968,when a English criminologist,Dr.Dell, visited Xanadu to see mandrake's famous Rouge's gallery and eventually hooked with the description of The League of "8" ...Later she mentioned her knowledge on "8" in one of her seminars & soon kidnapped as like Mandrake once said "after Police - the thing '8' hated most is - publicity" .In order to find out what happened wid their beautiful friend,M/L were also kidnapped & brought in a mysterious island of this secret crime organisation!

Now it's the first time where one can see the mysterious island of 8 where everything,from the castle to the garden,is in the shape of their crime-sign i.e. "8" !! This headquarter,the 7th of their arms,was a 8 shaped castle and was filled with the 8 symbols. With help from Inter Intel Mandrake,Lothar & Dr.Dell succeeded to escape from the headquarter ,i.e. the 7th. arm of the league of 8, just in time before their mysterious chief 'Octon' blew the whole headquarter !

In the several other encounters with the league of '8',most of their hide-outs were based on cities/localities ,unlike this hidden mysterious island and eventually this particular encounter(D136:Dr.Dell & '8' ;1968) is MOST thrilling among the '8'-series on this account. In short,a special island of this mysterious-n-ancient crime gang,where everything bears their unique symbol,is more fascinating and also matched with their mysterious attitude in very move!

* Trivia: The panels are mostly taken from a French version of that Daily:D136 ,which published in Indrajal twice as 'Gigantic Octopus(#226)' and 'The Hideous Underworld(V23 N10)' ....Anyway,you will see some panels in this French version which were 'edited' in Ijc wid needless to mention :the awesome coloring used in this strip! :)


adibud34 said...

Hi Sagnik, interesting post. Did you hear about the Mandrake movie being planned? I heard its going to be set in the 1930's - I hope they don't keep Lothar in that slave/servant type role. That would really upset me! Lothar is too cool to be seen as a servant by me! :)

comic60 said...

interactions b/w Mandrake and The league of 8 are one of my favourites. It would be wonderful if one of you comic bloggers post all the related "8" comics as one package.

dArA said...

Thanks. Yep,Lothar was a 'servant' in the early days like '30s to '40s! Even I still remember a panel frm a '38 daily, where Mandrake was in a hurry & Lothar carrying his(Mandrake's) shoes as the magician forgot to wear!!!...can you imagine?? ,,in those days Lothar's english was too poor & he always call Mandrake as "Master" !!!
These were the real racist peroid which later improved quite a gr8 extent(specially when Fredricks took the charge in '65).. :))

Anyway,for movie, personally I don hav much interest ...still I'm expecting a gud response as it may help to start the Mandrake Comic-books once again! :o)

dArA said...

You are Welcome! :-)
Yep, "8" series is the BEST in any of adventure series,only 'cos NO heroes had have such a mysterious/powerful enemy who's strenght is world-wide & MOST IMPORTANT fact is,Police/Intelengencies are unaware of this secret & anicent crime-gang,,thus M/L duo had to face 'em by themselves only.....

You see,if you count Phantom's Vulture/Hydra/Scorpia stories where each of 'em were a anceent-n-secret gangs too and potentially ALL MOST equally exciting as "8" ...but they cudn't suceed as Falk NEVER returned 'em (I don count those Non-Falk Phantomet creations like Mystery of Vaccul Castle ;Ijc #341/342; story of V)...

P.S.- There are 12 "8" stories and Ijc published first 9 of 'em,,last 3 are frm Post-Ijc era!

dArA said...

...and about your proposal for ALL "8" IN ONE PLACE is quite exciting but for zat we need thoz last 3 as well..let's hope one day we'll get 'em! :-)

Keep coming ..

Anupam said...

Interesting way of posting mate. It's really a treat to the eye with non-traditional post layout.
i.e. scattered images along with text feels like many colourful islands amidst a sea.