The history of the E C Ryder/J Edward Oliver strip The strip began in Disc (and Music Echo) in late 1970 under the title “The Adventures of E. C. Ryder” (as in Easy Rider) in a roughly square format, though by episode two it was just “E. C. Ryder”. The strip is very different in the starting episodes from later. There is no weekly title, none of the usual JEO bits and pieces appear and E C Ryder himself looks very different. The NEXT WEEK: line appears from episode one. The early strips are noticeably less busy and are not numbered. There was a format change by episode 22 and the strip gained the weekly title, the first being “in Super Screenerama Vision”, though the first ‘proper’ title was episode 24. The story became increasingly inconsequential, with puns, comments on and caricatures of the "stars" of the day and parodies of current and favourite tv programmes and films. There were homages to other cartoon strips, puzzles to solve and games to play. As resident cartoonist and humourist, Jack also created graphics for the paper and wrote stories and, on one occasion, a letters page. By episode 96 we were back to a squarer format. Long-loved dinosaur Fresco-Le-Raye had appeared, looking rather different than his finished form, and some of the garbage items were making appearances, including Rocker Doodles. As the strip was established, the column went to a full half page then to a full whole page. The section of Instant Garbage was always popular. This started to appear weekly from episode 170. Fresco gained a fan club (at one time consisting of over 4000 members, needing a staff of seven to send out the freebies), there were competitions with real prizes and other enticements. Many readers were regular contributors to the strip and there were prizes to be had, usually of the warthog variety. When the paper changed from Disc (and Music Echo) to Record Mirror, Jack’s column was cut from a whole page to half a page, something he was always complaining about (presumably partly due to salary cuts). JEO was also frequently found complaining about the lack of a pay rise and censorship, and finding ways of cutting down on the work (including blank frames). On at least one occasion, the strip was drawn by other people, including once, famously, partly by the Editor. The J Edward Oliver strip, as it was called by episode 127 (”featuring E C Ryder”) had a huge cult following and was very popular. Despite some special episodes and the increasing popularity, the column was axed at the end of November 1977 due to "Editorial Policy" (perhaps it was the arrival of punk) having become the longest running pop cartoon strip in all of history. The final episode was called "Parodies Lost". Jack tried to match the content and style required by the paper, but it was not satisfactory. It had run for 386 episodes over seven years. The spin offs and other material finished immediately and J Edward Oliver was gone from the paper forever. JEO went on to work for comics, which you can read about elsewhere.