by Paul Ryan & Tom Smith
- Eye of the Hurricane
- Idea: Hans Lindahl
- Script: David Bishop
- Art: Kari Leppänen
- First published in Fantomen Nr.26/2004 by Semic, Sweden. Original cover shown on the left, thanks to Ulf Granberg.
- Message from the Publisher:
Movie lovers and even weather buffs will be fascinated with Eye of the Hurricane, our new story featured in this issue! David Bishop wrote the script, which is based on a suggestion by Hans Lindahl, and Kari Leppänen provided the art.
What's the connection between movies and weather pattems? The story is based in Florida, which was the setting for a famous movie called Key Largo starring, among others, Humphrey Bogart and Edward G Robinson. Key Largo is an established centre on the Florida Keys at the southern end of the state. If you study a map of Florida you will find it well removed from the Everglades where alligators abound. However, Key Largo, like so many parts of the state of Florida, is right in the line of the hurricanes which all too reguiarly wreak havoc in this exotic area of North America.
More connections! The movie Key Largo had a plot based around gangsters and innocent people forced by a fierce storm to take shelter in a remote hotel. Aviation history also records a number of aircraft crashes in the Everglades, many with horrific fatality and casualty lists - and even some where little or no trace of wreckage could be found! Bearing all that in mind, Eye of the Hurricane takes on an even more chilling feel.
For the benefit of younger readers, I must point out that the story is set sometime in the 1960s, when the world feared a war might break out between America and Russia. Cuba was one of the areas of worry for America and in April 1961, an organization called the Cuban Revolutionary Council embarked on what became known as the Bay of Pigs invasion. The invasion was supposed to have been made by Cuban "exiles" in an attempt to overthrow the Marxist Government of President Castro, but Russia claimed the rebels had the backing of America's. That might help a little to explain the appearance in our story of CIA agent Agnew! In October 1962, America discovered Russian missile bases under construction in Cuba and American President John Kennedy immediately imposed a quarantine on all weapons shipments to Cuba. After a nerve-wracking week of confrontation, the USSR capitulated and eventually, signed a limited nuclear test ban treaty. The world breathed more easily, but there were many more dramas to come! On November 22, 1963, President Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas. Dallas Police were convinced the chief suspect was Lee Harvey Oswald, a former US Marine who had defected to the Soviet Union in 1959 and who later returned to America and was a member of a pro-Castro "Fair Play for Cuba" committee. Oswald was arrested, not for the killing of President Kennedy, but the murder of a Dallas policeman the same day the President was assassinated. Oswald, who always protested his innocence of both murders, was himself shot dead in Dallas Police Headquarters on November 24, by local businessman Jack Ruby who allegedly told police, "I did it for Jackie Kennedy" (wife of the slain President). The Warren Commission later handed down a finding that Oswald acted alone in the assassination of President Kennedy, but this has long been disputed by believers in a massive conspiracy plot.
The 2005 Annual Special, our next issue, goes on sale Friday 14 January.