HARRIS Peter John

HARRIS Peter John

“Peter Harris of Toronto is the editor of one of the largest weekly magazines  in Canada, Star Week, the TV and entertainment supplement of the Toronto Star. At the same time he is also editor of the smallest, Captain George’s Penny Dreadful, a nostalgia-oriented newsletter issued every Friday by the Vast Whizzbang Organization.”                                                                                                “Notes on the Contributors.” The World Encyclopedia of Comics: 744.

Born 8 August 1931.

He began his journalism career in Sarnia and London Ontario and later moved to Toronto and worked for the Toronto Star and the Globe & Mail. He was interested in popular culture with a focus on old Canadian comic books, Toronto movie houses, radio and Hollywood films and particularly the serials of the Republic Studio.

He was part of a group of popular culture aficionados connected to the Memory Lane Memorabilia Store at 594 Markham Street in Toronto. See MEMORY LANE PUBLICATIONS.

He edited the fanzines of the “Vast Whizzbang Organization” including Captain George’s Whizzbang, and Captain George’s Penny Dreadful. Each Whizbang issue included a reprint of a page from one of Canada’s 1940’s comic books, identifying which comic book it came from. Through these reprints a new generation of Canadians were introduced to “Brok Windsor”, “Freelance”, “Dixon of the Mounted”, Commando Yank, Cosmos, “Sooper Dooper”, Black Wing”, The Crusaders”, “Sergeant Canuck”, and so on. Although the editor of these reprints was not identified it had to have been Peter.

Captain George’s Penny Dreadful, as stated above was a weekly newsletter printed on an eight and a half by 11 inch sheet of paper folded in half. The back page was written by Pete Harris and contained short events items. The two inside pages were filled by various writers most often those listed above.

Perhaps his most important contribution to Canadian cartooning came in the form of his work in The World Encyclopedia of Comics where he wrote about some of the principal characters and authors connected with the Canadian scene of the 1940’s.

Later Harris published independently the Hogtown Gazette.

He died 30 November 2013.

WORK:

WRITER:

BOOK TEXT ANTHOLOGY:

The World Encyclopedia of Comics. Ed., Maurice Horn. Chelsea House Publishers, 1976:…
“Dingle Adrian (1912-1974)”: 208.

“Freelance (Canada)”: 265.

“Frise James Llewellyn (1891-1948)”: 266.

“Nelvana of the Northern Lights (Canada): 515.

“Penguin The (Canada)”: 546.

“Rex Baxter (Canada)”: 580.

“Robin Hood & Company (Canada): 585.

PERIODICAL TEXT ANTHOLOGY:

The New Captain George’s Whizbang. Vast Whizzbang Organization/Memory Lane Publications.

No. 7 (vol. 2 no. 1), 1970: “The Immortals of World War 1: 28-29.

No. 12 (vol. 2 no. 6), 1971: “Wings was this nostalgia trip necessary?”: 28-29.

Captain George’s Penny Dreadful, 352, 21 Nov. 1975 to 487, 23 June 1978.

NEWSPAPER:

“Whatever Happened to …?” Globe and Mail, 23 Oct.1982: Fanfare 7.

EDITOR:

PERIODICAL TEXT:

The New Captain George’s Whizbang. Vast Whizzbang Organization/Memory Lane Publications.
No. 7 (vol. 2 no. 1), 1970.

No. 8 (vol. 2 no. 2), 1970.

No. 9 (vol. 2 no. 3), 1970.

No. 12 (vol. 2 no. 6), 1971.

No. 13 (vol. 3 no. 1), 1971.

No. 14 (vol. 3 no. 2), 1972.

No. 16 (vol. 3 no. 4), 1973.

No. 17 (vol. 4 no. 1), 1974.

No. 18 (vol. 4 no. 2), 1974.

SOURCE:

Article Book:

“Notes on the Contributors.” The World Encyclopedia of Comics. Ed., Maurice Horn. Chelsea House Publishers, 1976:  744.

Article newspaper:

“Obituary” Toronto Star, 6 Dec. To 7 Dec. 2013.