Luck of the Legion

Sergeant Luck (centre) and friends

Luck of the Legion was a strip cartoon in the Eagle Comic drawn by Martin Aitchison. It followed the exploits of the French Foreign Legion in North Africa (then largely French-colonised or controlled) and focused mainly on the chisel-jawed British hero Sergeant 'Tough' Luck and his faithful companions, Belgian Corporal Trenet and Italian Legionnaire Bimberg. Bimberg was the comic relief, short and fat and perpetually dishevelled, with a battered kepi. The strip was set in approximately 1900 - a period of colourful uniforms and unquestioned imperial values.

Sergeant Luck and his companions also saw service elsewhere in the French colonial empire - such as Indo-China or West Africa. However their adventures were normally focussed around isolated forts set in the Sahara. Adversaries were generally tribesmen whose dress was inexplicably Saudi Arabian rather than Algerian or Moroccan. However on occasion Sergeant Luck found himself in conflict with unbalanced or traitorous senior officers.

Due to the success of the Eagle comic strip, writer Geoffrey Bond wrote a series of novels based on the characters. These were:

  • Luck of the Legion (Hutchinson - 1954)
  • Sergeant Luck Takes Over (Hutchinson - 1954)
  • Carry On, Sergeant Luck! (Hutchinson - 1956)
  • Sergeant Luck's Secret Mission (Hulton Press - 1956)
  • Sergeant Luck's Desert Adventure (Hulton Press - 1958)
  • The Return of Sergeant Luck (Max Parrish - 1964)

Two of the above novels were also published in France under the Collection Signe de Piste (by Alsatia), with artwork by French artist Pierre Joubert. These novels were simultaneously published in both soft and hard covers:

  • Les Tigres de Chaï-Fang (Sergeant Luck Takes Over) - 1968
  • La Garnison Fantôme (Carry On, Sergeant Luck!) - 1969


Luck of the Legion
(Hutchinson 1954)
Thanks to Richard Sheaf for the scan


Sergeant Luck Takes Over
(Hutchinson 1954)


Carry On Sergeant Luck
(Hutchinson 1956)

 

Luck of the Legion's Secret Mission
(Hulton Press - 1956)

Luck of the Legion's Desert Adventure
(Hulton Press - 1958)

The Return of Sergeant Luck
(Max Parrish - 1964)
   
 
Collection Signe de Piste No. 194
(Alsatia - 1968)

Collection Signe de Piste No. 196
(Alsatia - 1969)
   
   

Sahara Patrol Board Game
Chad Valley (1959)

Foreign Legion Card Game
Pepys (1960)
It is tempting to wonder why the manufacturers did not market the above games as "Luck of the Legion", and place an Eagle logo on the packaging.


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Last updated :
27/11/16

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